Revivalist Will Ford: How Jesus Responded to Racism

(Unsplash/Aarón Blanco Tejedor)

Will Ford is a revivalist, a leader in the prayer movement and a reconciler of races. His end goal is that of the Lord's—redemption. Ford travels the globe with his family's heirloom, a prayer kettle, passed down from his enslaved ancestors. He uses it as a catalyst for mobilizing prayer, unity, revival and true biblical justice.

On a recent Fire Starter podcast episode on the Charisma Podcast Network, Ford explained something that many in the body of Christ may not realize: Jesus experienced racism. As followers of Christ, our response to prejudice needs to be the same as His.

In New Testament times, there was a bitter racial divide between the Jews and Samaritans. Intense hatred between these two groups prevailed. In Luke 9:51-56, Jesus wanted to cut through Samaria on his way to Jerusalem and sent word ahead to advise them of His plans. But the Samaritans sent word back that they would not receive Him.

Ford explains that when he was growing up, as a young African American man, there were certain neighborhoods he felt it wise not to cut through—white, Hispanic and Black. Many in our nation have shared same experiences. If Ford walked through particular sections of town, the people may not have received him. But he points out that instead of reacting as the disciples did, we need to respond like our Savior.

Jesus' disciples wanted to angrily call fire down from heaven to destroy the Samaritans. They wanted revenge but didn't realize from what spirit they were speaking. But Jesus harshly rebuked them.

And Jesus' response becomes even more astonishing! In Luke 10:25-37, a lawyer asks Jesus, "Who is our neighbor?" It is here that Jesus tells the story of the Good Samaritan. Will Ford points out that even when we have been on the receiving end of racism, we need to respond with a right spirit. "Let me tell you about the good police officer," "Let me tell you about the good Black man," or "Let me tell you about the good white man."

To receive hope and healing for your heart, listen to the rest of Will Ford's story in this week's Fire Starter podcast episode.

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