Since grand juries ain’t in the business of handing out indictments recently, I guess I’m going to have to. America is a hugely religious place, according to recent data. Some 78% of Americans profess to believe not only in a God, but in the Christian God – the one that created the world, or made us in His own image, or loves all of us.
And based on all of the things that I have seen in response to the outrage over the Ferguson and New York City grand jury decisions, I’ve come to the conclusion that your God, at least the one you tell people about, is so ashamed of you right now. Yeah, I know, it’s gonna take a second time to get through to you. The God you tell me about is ashamed of you. Let me explain.
I have heard countless sermons in my life about the Christian God’s most notable attribute: love. Adventist Pastor David Asscherick actually devoted a whole sermon to the idea that the Bible tells us that God is not only loving, but He is the embodiment of love. There are a lot of other conceptions of and claims about the Christian God that we could attack here, but this is clearly the most important, because it undergirds most Christian theology today, and it’s what rivers of ink are devoted to. This idea of love is used to explain just about everything in modern Christianity, including the delay of the second coming of Christ (God’s love is so much that He would like to spare sinners and give them time to be saved), the presence of suffering in a world created by an omniscient being who ostensibly knew beforehand how bad this place was going to get (God’s love is so much that he created us knowing the risks ahead of time), and an understanding of the Christian’s place in society.
There’s a certain Christian song that goes, “They will know we are Christians by our love.” (Funny take on this song by atheist vlogger Jaclyn Glenn here). Broadly taken, mainstream Christianity is saying that the being that it worships is wholly good and the embodiment of perfect love, and that in order to be a true Christian, you have to embody those principles as well. This seems like a fair claim. And based on the juxtaposition of this standard of what it means to be a Christian and white moderate reactions that I’ve seen in response to shocking racism, I can only surmise either that you are not true Christians, or that your God is ashamed that that’s what you call yourself.
If I gave a list of things that God values, no Christian in America would deny the values of truth, justice, and empathy. If He values truth, why do I see people twisting Martin Luther King Jr.’s words in a way that suits their purposes, rather than his own goals? Why do I see them using the non-violent protests of the 1960s to explain away the fury of Black America today? Why do I see them attacking truth by almost maliciously misremembering the past with grandeur it didn’t have and panning over the dire struggle for racial equality in this country?
If your God values justice, why do I see so much apathy in the face of an actual video of a man being choked to death by the police? If your God values empathy so much, why do I keep seeing the white moderate heap blame on the black community itself for the oppression it experiences? Why do I see them shoot down experiences of police brutality with stories about little white girls getting shot by gangs, or diverting conversations like #BlackLivesMatter with #AllLivesMatter?
What I’m seeing is people that are more dedicated to the concept of social order than social justice. What I’m seeing is people more interested in making excuses for why it’s not your fault or making excuses for those who commit atrocities than standing with people who need your help. What I’m seeing is a people that don’t value the truth, empathy, or justice of the Christ they take their name from.
If you have a God that values these things, if you have a God that cares about the marginalized, the oppressed, who emphasizes that the only thing we need to do in life to keep His commandments is to love Him and love one another (Matt. 22:36-40), then He is ashamed of you right now, and He should be.
P.S. He’s especially ashamed of Matt Walsh. Always.
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