For the record, I’m typing on an iPad and I’m terrible at it. There’ll be a lot more typos than normal. I’m summarizing Dr. Moore and other speakers, not quoting. I don’t type that fast. His text was Ephesians 3.
Dr. Moore begins telling a story of a Sunday School teacher warning him of putting money in his mouth because a “colored person” may have touched it. She wasn’t anti-gospel. Right after that, they sang, “Jesus loves the little children of the world – Red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in his sight.” People just didn’t see the contradiction. We send quarters to missions to reach black people in Africa but did not want to touch black people in the same neighborhood.
She would have assumed, had you confronted here, that you had a political agenda. This attitude persists today. Our denomination was founded by men who knew the Bible and could exegete it well. But no one knows the names of the men and women who were kidnapped from their homes to work those same men’s fields. Women were raped while these men preached on family values.
That blood cries out from the ground even today.
Today, white supremacist remarks are not welcome in our circles. But the problem persists in our culture. We are divided. Issues split us — white, black, hispanic, asian. The reason we are here today is that these are not simply cultural, political or social issues, but these are gospel issues. The Spirit is saying to the church that if we are going to be on mission for Christ, we must figure out two issues.
1) What is the gospel?
2) What is the church?
Ephesians defines the gospel as God taking us from one kingdom into another. It is the mystery of Christ. Eph 1, Everything is summed up in Christ. In Eph 3, Jews and Gentiles are united in one body through the gospel. The gospel unites us all in Christ.
Whites assume we are Jews and other races are the Gentiles! NO! Whites, blacks, asians, hispanics – we are ALL equally Gentile. There were NO WHITE PEOPLE in first century Jerusalem.
(I am very upset. I’ve tried to update and lost several updates into cyberspace. Not sure where they are going. Folks, you need to hear this! Watch the video!)
The CHURCH as Fellow Heirs
It would have been so much easier if Paul had just authorized Greek and Jewish churhes. But the apostles did not do that. They demanded a unified church. They demanded a church that was fellow heirs.
The kingdom of God is not about co-existence but about reconciliation. Jesus Christ did not die for a denomination, but for a church. The SBC will not outlast the solar system, the church will.
The problem is that on Sunday morning, when we are showing the world the kingdom of God, we are showing the world what we would do if Christ had never come back from the dead.
LINE OF THE DAY: “But we like to be with people who we like and are comfortable with. Yeah, and I’d like to fight, fornicate and smoke weed. That doesn’t make it right!” The church is called to unity even if it is uncomfortable.
Maybe racial reconciliation in the church should start with reconciliation betweenthe ages and generations in the church. The fracturing of the modern American church is not of God.
The Worship issue – maybe we should stop worrying about our personal preferences and teach people what worship is all about!
By altering our musical styles, we are telling people – you are welcome here. Reconciliation is all about putting others first. That’s the manifold wisdom of God.
Paul talks abut the church as a sign to the rulers and powers of this present darkness. When Satan sees a group of people with the dividing walls torn down, with human divisors blown away, Satan trembles. One body, displaying Christ, shows Satan his downfall.
Where Do We Start?
Preach the gospel and be the church. When the church is the church, we can speak to the community as we should.
We don’t know how to do this. We don’t have an easy program. This is a work of God.