It has been another turbulent week in our country. It seems there are too many of late. This week I was going over my sermons in the past year. Multiple times I referred to the rise of distinctively racist and malevolent groups in our society. I am sure you wondered why I kept bringing it up.
White nationalists, Nazis, KKK, whatever you want to call them, are all unified around the same idea—the view that white men should dominate the world. Though they have benefited most from the world we have built they are the most insecure and the most afraid that someone else might have even a tiny slice of all the privileges they have enjoyed. So they try to find reasons to justify their naked desire for power. The obvious one is that they deserve it because they are superior. And in order to hold that view you have to assert that others are inferior; not just different, but of a different category of human being altogether. In fact, they go further. The reason they don’t have more power is because of those who have less. The reason for all their ills is some rich Jew, or some uppity black, or some woman who isn’t chained to the kitchen or the bedroom, or some gay person just trying to live their life.
At the end of all their specious arguments comes the final lynchpin that God has created it thus and to deny them is to deny God, and that they are the true voice of not only God’s word but God’s judgment on all those who are less than they are. This is how over six million children and their parents were exterminated. This is how blacks were roped up on trees. This is how fear, torture, rape, and death have all been justified in the name of God and white-is-right.
Once in a while, in these kinds of situations, it is actually good to go to the Word of the Lord. This is how I read it. First, we are all created in the image of God. Deal with it. If you can’t deal with it you have the problem. Don’t project your problem onto the rest of us. We know, even if it is difficult for us, that every living breathing human being is an extension of the breath of God. There is a sacredness in every beating heart that we must honor and that gives people a dignity not according to the ways of man, or woman, but the Way of God.
Secondly, if we are in a judging contest we are all bound for hellfire. If God wanted to wipe out inferior things to God’s self we wouldn’t be here this morning. But the gospel is that God became Jesus to tell us that we belong to Him, and even if we are unworthy we belong to Him. In fact, He loves us. It is in that love that we rise and become the better people He sees us to be. That is why Jesus didn’t come shooting fire from his fingertips but receiving nails in his hands.
If white supremacists were following the way of Jesus they wouldn’t be carrying crosses, they would be hanging on them; they wouldn’t be lording over, but suffering with; they wouldn’t be dominating, but serving.
The whole premise of what these groups believe is the opposite of the gospel regardless of how high they hold their crosses and how much they invoke their religious palaver.
Nothing I am saying this morning has to do with being an American. We are citizen of higher country and a greater authority. As a follower of Christ, you stand against this ideology, you speak against it, you protest peacefully against it.
As a follower of Christ, you pray for these people, you love them, and you redeem them the same way Christ redeemed us.