What would you say is the world's number one issue? The economy? Terrorism? Hunger? Debt? Poverty? Disease?
Several years ago, Dr. Billy Graham was asked by TV news anchor Diane Sawyer, "If you could wave your hand and make one problem in this world go away, what would it be?"
Without hesitation he replied, "Racial division and strife."
How did our world get to this place of prejudice, discrimination, classism, sectarianism and religious bigotry? Where did racism come from?
"Racism" is a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular group of people.
- Racism wounds.
- Racism divides.
- Racism is based on hate.
- Racism breeds favoritism.
- Racism causes conflict.
- Racism is exclusive.
- Gracism heals.
- Gracism unites.
- Gracism is based on love.
- Gracism brings favor.
- Gracism creates peace.
- Gracism is inclusive.
Racism is a sin of pride – one considers himself to be better than someone else because of nothing more than a genetic code.
Racism is not a "skin" issue – it is a "sin" issue.
Racism is a powerful tool used to divide, control and manipulate people.
There is only one race of humans. All of us descended from the first two people – "the Adams" – thus we are not biologically different races.
Skin color is the first feature we most often turn to when it comes to making so-called "racial" distinctions among people.
All humans are generally the same color – just variations of it.
All humans have the same basic pigment in the skin called "melanin" and it is usually a brown color.
We are not born with a genetically fixed amount of melanin, but rather with a genetically fixed potential to produce a certain amount of melanin.
In each of us, the amount of melanin increases in response to sunlight, and some of us are more responsive to the sunlight than others. Melanin is the most dominant factor determining skin color. Color of skin doesn't create a race.
From the beginning, God created one race – the human race.
Acts 17:26 (AMP) – And He (God) made from one [common origin, one source, one blood] all nations of men to settle on the face of the earth, having definitely determined [their] allotted periods of time and the fixed boundaries of their habitation (their settlements, lands, and abodes).
Your significance, as to who you are, is being made 99 percent in the image and likeness of God and 1 percent ethnicity.
The significance of who we are is the unity of our God-like humanity, not the differences in our ethnicity.
God did everything to make us one, all from one, and we continually divide ourselves by groups — ethnicity, economic, class faith.
Perhaps we who are covered by the Blood of Jesus could just come together as red-blooded human beings under the banner "Brotherhood of Blood."
Perhaps the greatest, yet most neglected story of the Bible is the beauty and excellence of God's Kingdom.
For the vast majority of believers, this profound message of His Kingdom gets swallowed up in the building, activities and programs of the institution we call church.
Jesus envisioned a Kingdom of "Graced" people committed to live by Gracism while continually sharing, as His ambassadors, the sincere message of reconciliation.
Gracism creates an environment of acceptance where once-divided people groups come together in the church to live out kingdom principles of love and unity.
II Corinthians 5:19-20 (MSG) — All this comes from the God who settled the relationship between us and Him, and then called us to settle our relationships with each other. ... God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God's work of making things right between them...
One of the hallmarks of greatness is to be dominated by a single ruling passion.
Love is the ruling passion of God's kingdom people. Love is the inward secret of self-esteem, confidence, security, trust, life-energy and joy. Racial harmony will be experienced when we live the message of reconciliation. Grace relations will produce unity in race relations.
God's remedy for racism is Gracism.
The whole world is waiting for the true sons and daughters of God to come together in racial reconciliation and show to the world the beauty and harmony of oneness in His Kingdom. Since no one, no institution, no government has a cure for this issue, it is time for the church to be that cure. Then, the world will see the true Kingdom of God's sons and daughters as barriers fall and bridges are built.
Perhaps each of us could become the cure for racism by personally committing to and living these verses:
May our dependably steady and warmly personal God develop maturity in you so that you get along with each other as well as Jesus gets along with us all. Then we'll be a choir — not our voices only, but our very lives singing in harmony in a stunning anthem to the God and Father of our Master Jesus! So reach out and welcome one another to God's glory. (Romans 15:5-7 MSG).
Let His Kingdom truly come into our hearts as we live out His message of reconciliation and see the glory of the unity of all mankind! Then the church will be the church Jesus intended it to be.
Tony Scott is senior pastor of The Church on Strayer in the Toledo, Ohio, area. It has campuses in the towns of Maumee and Fremont as well as an aggressive online presence. Scott is recognized internationally as a teacher, visionary leader and the author of two books, The Increase Life and his latest release, The Diamond Life. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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