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selah
02-21-02, 06:59 PM
My friend "Julie" who is white transferred to a nearly all-black high school when she was a sophomore. She has a learning disability, but the school paid no attention to her records and sent her straight to the honors classes. They assumed because she was white, she was most likely richer than the normal students at their school and therefore smarter. In my high school the proportion of white students was significantly higher in the honors classes, and the proportion of minority students was significantly higher in the remedial classes.

I don't believe racism is as blatant as it used to be and I definitely believe our country is on a path towards equality. I just see evidence everywhere that we haven't reached the point where we are truly equal.

What do you think this means for us as Christians? Should we just ignore it? Should we pray for justice? Should we actively engage in some sort of behaviors to stop it? Or should each of us act on our own conscience and direction from the Spirit?

Interested in your thoughts
Kathryn

Orpheus42
02-21-02, 07:41 PM
Not my whole thoughts... But go to the Urbana website (linked in my signature) and click on "past Urbanas" and then "2000", go to Thursday, December 28 pm session, and... really you need to watch everything, but especially Brenda Salter-McNeil and Alex Gee.

E-Nygma
02-21-02, 09:46 PM
This is not meant to be antagonistic, in any way, shape, or form.

The question should be, do we really believe that God is in control and knows everything that is going on? Or do we feel that He somehow needs our help?

selah
02-21-02, 09:56 PM
I see what you're saying, but would ask another question in return. If God wanted to eradicate prejudice between humans, would he just speak that into existence, forcing everyone to suddenly be equal? Or would he work slowly, using people as his "hands" to do his work?

Caretaker
02-21-02, 11:34 PM
Or would God change hearts, so that in the words of our Brother Martin we can look at the content of one's charactor, rather than the color of ones skin.

Confucious said if you can change the heart, you can change the world, for if you can change the heart, you can change the home, if you can change the home you can change the community, and if you can change the community you can change the world, all by changing a single human heart.

We should seek a new heart in Christ, so that our own ego and selfishness is crucified, and we can get our priorities straight. Number one in our heart should be our Lord, number two our families, number three our communities, with our own selfish desires as far down the list as possible. If we can get our priorities in order with the will of God we might be surprised how quickly we could realize true happiness and contentment. To love the Lord with every fibre of our being and to love others as we love ourselves.

Breni Sue
02-22-02, 12:50 AM
No, God does not really require our help. I do believe that He knows all and sees all that is going on. And I think that it hurts Him deeply. However, I also believe that He expects us to actively do our part to rid the world of evil. The way the world is now is not the way He meant for it to be. This is why He has commanded us to go out there and make disciples of our fellow men and women by speading the Gospel. If we want to learn and grow as followers of Christ, we must be willing to do this - and submit ourselves to His will and allow Him to work in us. God could do it all on His own I'm sure, but I believe He would rather do it through His children. :)

E-Nygma
02-22-02, 01:05 AM
Originally posted by kipepeo
I see what you're saying, but would ask another question in return. If God wanted to eradicate prejudice between humans, would he just speak that into existence, forcing everyone to suddenly be equal? Or would he work slowly, using people as his "hands" to do his work?

Both.

But I am reminded of a scripture.
The wrath of man does not work out the righteousness of God

Now, I know that we're not talking about any wrathful actions, but the concept is the same. What we want isn't necessarily what God wants, or us doing it when we deem it necessary may not be in God's timing.

Discrimination is wrong, but so is reverse discrimination in the name of equality.

selah
02-22-02, 01:07 AM
I agree with both Drew and Kyrie. My statement was not intended to say that I believed God couldn't do it all on his own, but rather that God doesn't do it all on his own. He uses his children to do his some of his good work so that we might be blessed as well in the process.

E-Nygma
02-22-02, 01:12 AM
Originally posted by kipepeo
I agree with both Drew and Kyrie. My statement was not intended to say that I believed God couldn't do it all on his own, but rather that God doesn't do it all on his own. He uses his children to do his some of his good work so that we might be blessed as well in the process.

I agree, however, we must be careful of what action we take on in the name of God. Throughout history many injustices have been done to countless millions in trying to rectify the injustices of mankind only to actually be working against God.

If God is trying to teach you a lesson through social injustice and I try to do away with that social injustice, I'm attempting to be in opposition to God by doing away with God's method of teaching. So where I'm thinking I'm doing God's work, I'm actually in opposition to His work.

selah
02-22-02, 09:50 AM
"I agree, however, we must be careful of what action we take on in the name of God. Throughout history many injustices have been done to countless millions in trying to rectify the injustices of mankind only to actually be working against God. "

Are you talking about something specific enough that you could give me examples, or are you just assuming this has happened?

I think that we as Christians should always seek to be led by the Spirit instead of our own intentions and desires. That applies to all of life, and this situation specifically. If you do something in the name of God, make sure he actually asked you to! So we're in agreement there.

E-Nygma
02-22-02, 10:50 AM
Originally posted by kipepeo
Are you talking about something specific enough that you could give me examples, or are you just assuming this has happened?

Assuming this has happened? Right now in the current enviornment of the U.S., the worst person to be (in terms of opportunity) is a white straight male. Lesser qualified "minorities" are placed in positions over more qualified applicants that happen to be "the majority" for the sole purpose equal rights.

We have women's legal clinics. We have black business magazines. We have Asian community centers. We have The Gay/Lesbian League. We have Hispanic health clinics. But if we had a white straight men's club, it would be labeled racist, sexist, and homophobic. And would most likely be closed down (if it ever got to the point of being built or opened). And the justification? The white straight male has had his day. Now, it's time for equal access. So, reverse discrimination in the name of equality.

I think that we as Christians should always seek to be led by the Spirit instead of our own intentions and desires. That applies to all of life, and this situation specifically. If you do something in the name of God, make sure he actually asked you to! So we're in agreement there.

That's a good rule of advice, but too often it means I do what I want, for what I deem a good and just cause, and attempt to justify it with being "led by the Holy Spirit".

Multimom
02-22-02, 10:53 AM
In regard to Does God need our help.

"Faith without works is dead."

If you have faith but do nothing with it then your faith is dead faith.

God expects us to "go and teach" "make disciples". So how can we sit back and watch unjustice and not move in some way to right it.

I like the song that says "We are His hands, we are His feet".

And another says "Who will be Jesus to them."

Another says, "you're the only Jesus some will ever see."

I believe that in honor to him we must show ourselves to be his hand extended and battling injustice is one way to extend his hand.

E-Nygma
02-22-02, 11:02 AM
I agree. However the change that Jesus focused on was personal, inward change. He never advocated social change for the sake of social change.

Remember, render unto Cesar that which belongs to Cesar?

It is through inward, personal change that the most effective social change takes place,

Breni Sue
02-22-02, 12:08 PM
Matthew 25:31-46 "When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on His right hand, "Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.' "Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, "Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?' And the King will answer and say to them, "Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.'
"Then He will also say to those on the left hand, "Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.' "Then they also will answer Him, saying, "Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?' Then He will answer them, saying, "Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.' And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."

While I agree that Jesus focused a lot on inward (heart) changes, I do believe that social change was something He also very much advocated. We are to put the needs of others ahead of our own and make a positive impact on the world - while at the same time keeping Christ as the center of that world - if we want to see the kingdom of heaven.

Breni Sue
02-22-02, 12:16 PM
We have women's legal clinics. We have black business magazines. We have Asian community centers. We have The Gay/Lesbian League. We have Hispanic health clinics. But if we had a white straight men's club, it would be labeled racist, sexist, and homophobic. And would most likely be closed down (if it ever got to the point of being built or opened). And the justification? The white straight male has had his day. Now, it's time for equal access. So, reverse discrimination in the name of equality. Kind of like how we have a Miss Black America although they are allowed to participate in the regular Miss America pageant with everyone else. And if there were ever a Miss White America contest, it would be racist. Don't get me wrong, I'm not prejudiced in any way, but I do see where you are coming from here.

selah
02-22-02, 02:34 PM
Assuming this has happened? Right now in the current enviornment of the U.S., the worst person to be (in terms of opportunity) is a white straight male. Lesser qualified "minorities" are placed in positions over more qualified applicants that happen to be "the majority" for the sole purpose equal rights.

We have women's legal clinics. We have black business magazines. We have Asian community centers. We have The Gay/Lesbian League. We have Hispanic health clinics. But if we had a white straight men's club, it would be labeled racist, sexist, and homophobic. And would most likely be closed down (if it ever got to the point of being built or opened). And the justification? The white straight male has had his day. Now, it's time for equal access. So, reverse discrimination in the name of equality.

I agree that this is happening, however I don't really think it's as severe of a problem as most people make it out to be. Perhaps that's because I'm a woman. But I've noticed at my college how all the scholarships are for native americans, african americans, etc. and how an average white student really gets the short end of the stick. This is just one example, but I don't really whine about it or worry about it.

A wise teacher of mine once put this into perspective by saying, "Affirmative Action came about because after years and years of legalized and socially-accepted discrimination against minorities, the climate of the country remains slightly racist even today. So, in order to try to balance the scales, we're going to give minorities extra priveledges for a while to reach equality ultimately."

I'm not sure I completey agree with that stament, but it is one perspective. While it is tough to deal with some "reverse prejudice" against me because I am white, I also am glad that the race/ethnicity-specific scholarships and other priviledges are available. I don't think we ever have to worry that white people will truly be treated as a minority group. And maybe God wants to use it to teach us something ...

selah
02-22-02, 02:36 PM
I just edited and it re-posted my message ... dunno why... so ignore this!

svensky
02-22-02, 04:15 PM
A wise teacher of mine once put this into perspective by saying, "Affirmative Action came about because after years and years of legalized and socially-accepted discrimination against minorities, the climate of the country remains slightly racist even today. So, in order to try to balance the scales, we're going to give minorities extra priveledges for a while to reach equality ultimately."
I think we will discover in the long term that this sort of thing will do far more harm than good.
It will firstly contiue to encourage a victim mentality among various disadvantaged groups.
Secondly, it is a form of rascim that says, the quality of your work doesn't matter, what really matters is the colour of your skin.
Affirmative action is one of the worst ideas ever IMHO.
A better solution would be to better enforce hiring strictly on merit (again up to a point).

Jason

selah
02-22-02, 04:24 PM
I agree Jason. I've always believed we should try to focus on making hiring practices, selection processes, etc. completely "color-blind." Rather than focusing on differences and hiring based on race and getting an equal number of blacks, hispanics, asians, and whites--we should have hiring practices that have nothing to do with race at all.

some say affirmative action is an intermediary step between where we are and where we want to go. I haven't formulated a strong opinion about whether that's true or not.

E-Nygma
02-23-02, 01:42 AM
Originally posted by Kyrie Eleison

While I agree that Jesus focused a lot on inward (heart) changes, I do believe that social change was something He also very much advocated. We are to put the needs of others ahead of our own and make a positive impact on the world - while at the same time keeping Christ as the center of that world - if we want to see the kingdom of heaven.

Actually, this just proves my point better. He was saying that whatever you do, do it as unto Him. He never said to set up a program that would force others to give a part of their income to feed the poor. When we are to do it, it is to be done out of a willing and generous heart, not out of a government sanction command.

Codger
02-23-02, 04:31 PM
Dear ILJ,

Over the past few years I have seen the Lord’s hand in cleaning up the Church - mending relationships with the black community. Doesn’t he always start with us? But the real problem is not just racism - it’s much, much greater than this. Racism is only one tentacle of a greater monster called “The-pride-of-life.” I have never considered myself to be racist - but please allow me to tell you what happened. This event was the most severe correction and rebuke that I have ever received from the Lord's hand and there have been many over the years.

On May 3rd 1998, I was standing Sunday morning in the local congregation of BCF - while A black guest pastor was giving the final sermon of a three part series on Racism. Part way through the service - I started to get an infrequent prophetic word which surprised me. Here is the transcription of that word.

Beloved the day is surely coming
The hour will suddenly appear
When the Lord shall descend from
Heaven with a shout
And with the voice of the Archangel
And the dead in Christ shall rise
And those who are alive and remain
Shall be caught up to meet him in the air.

And on that great day - all of the Lord’s people
Will be with him, yes, including those who
Were once in this life, maimed, disfigured
The disabled – those who were slow of mind
Those who were troubled in speech.
Those who suffered in poverty and old age.
The simple, the uneducated, the uncomely,
The unattractive, the unlovely.
And yes - the oppressed peoples of color will be there
And all those who held to his promise –
All those who clung to his name.
In that great day none will be missing,
Not one shall be lost.

But I say to you – you who in the secret
And hidden places of your heart have
Looked down upon such as these
And you are offended at them
And you have even removed yourself from
Their company because you didn’t even consider
Them worthy of your presence

To you I say – in that great day when the Lord
Gathers his people to himself
When you see such as these walking
With the Lord in their perfection
And when you see with your own eyes
How much the Lord has always loved them,
And how he has treasured and cherished them
In that day you will be utterly ashamed
And in that day no one will say a (Negative) word
to you.

And so, before this great day overtakes you
Come and stand before me, says the Lord, for I desire
To circumcise your heart more completely
And if you will repent then I will reach down
And I will strike those secret and hidden
Places of your heart with the sword of my spirit
And I will sever this pride and this haughtiness
From you and I will cause them to rot and to consume
Away within you even as you stand upon your feet
And I will give you a spirit of brokenness and a
Contrite heart full of compassion and mercy.
And come walk with me for I desire to reveal
To you the fullness of what the Scripture means
When it says “God is not a respecter of persons.”


It took three days for the implosion to hit - in one instant I suddenly realized this was for me! The Lord was showing me how I secretly look down on people around me because of their education, social status, color – how I patronized the handicapped. I was doing all the things he said. I didn’t realize that all of these people were greatly loved by him and they soon will be restored fully to what he wants them to be – life is short.

I was thrust into an intense grieving which lasted two full weeks before it started to taper off. I’ve never been the same since. When you are shot with the Lords arrows, it seems like you always walk with a limp afterward. My whole attitude changed not just toward blacks, but toward everyone around me that I always looked down on. The last paragraph of this word was added about six months later which indicated to me that these words would go elsewhere.

The scripture that came to mind during this process was…

Proverbs 20:27 (KJV)
The spirit of man is the candle of the LORD, searching all the inward parts of the belly.

Proverbs 20:27 (NASB)
The spirit of man is the lamp of the LORD,
Searching all the innermost parts of his being.

The Lord uses our spirit to search our inward being for things that are displeasing to him.

Lord show us these things. Amen

Larry

Breni Sue
02-23-02, 07:04 PM
Codger, that was a beautiful testimony! :)Originally posted by E-Nygma


Actually, this just proves my point better. He was saying that whatever you do, do it as unto Him. He never said to set up a program that would force others to give a part of their income to feed the poor. When we are to do it, it is to be done out of a willing and generous heart, not out of a government sanction command. True. But nobody said anything about setting up government programs or anything like that. I have always believed in the saying that charity begins at home.

Caretaker
02-24-02, 01:49 AM
Dear Brother Larry, an absolute amen and praise God for your awesome testimony. Our God is truly an awesome God.

Our Lord said that whatsoever you do unto the least of these, you do unto me. The poor and those in desperate need must be helped. Would it not be truly marvelous if the Body of Christ were to provide so much help that the government programs would become obsolete? Food, shelter, clothing, childcare, medical assistance, financial assistance, freely given to those in need, with the Good News that we do this in the name of Jesus, and He is Savior and Lord of Lords to all who come to Him. What a message we would send, and what a fantastic revolution in word and deed, as we could turn society upside down.

God bless each precious caring heart for Christ

E-Nygma
02-24-02, 02:33 AM
Originally posted by Kyrie Eleison
True. But nobody said anything about setting up government programs or anything like that. I have always believed in the saying that charity begins at home.

One of us has missed the point of this thread.

From my understanding, the origional post was a question about should christians get involved in activism (which promotes government involvement), or work to relieve the social ills on a personal, individual level.

To which I responded, the question really should be do we believe that God is in total control (which dissuades the concept of a Christian social activism).

So, the argument is one of social activism, or allowing God to remain in control.

E-Nygma
02-24-02, 02:42 AM
Now, for the other side of the coin

There is a movie that came out a few years ago that is very enlightening regarding this subject. It starred John Travolta and Harry Belafonte and was named WHITE MAN'S BURDEN.

If you get the time, check it out...it really is good.

Breni Sue
02-24-02, 03:04 PM
Not to put words in Kipepeo's mouth, but my understanding here was that she was asking what we as Christians can do to curb racism. Here is the quote:What do you think this means for us as Christians? Should we just ignore it? Should we pray for justice? Should we actively engage in some sort of behaviors to stop it? Or should each of us act on our own conscience and direction from the Spirit?
In other words, should we

1.) stand by and do nothing
2.) pray that it will end
3.) take action, or
4.) rely on the Holy Spirit for direction?

Nothing was suggested about any kind of government involvement. One can take action to stop prejudice without government programs or anything like that. I believe that God expects us to follow steps 2 through 4 - We should pray for an end, while at the same time looking to the Holy Spirit to lead us towards what kind of actions we should take. And if you look through these posts, you will see that most of us actually agree with you on this! :)

selah
02-24-02, 04:46 PM
Thanks for the clarification Kyrie--that was exactly what I meant.

Whether or not government programs are appropriate/beneficial for Christians to be invovled with is a whole other issue ...

trixiepup
02-26-02, 03:52 AM
here is a link to an article that we had to read for class. it is really interesting and relates somewhat to the discussion at hand.

http://www.spokanehumanrights.org/ccrr/packet/article.htm

HeatherlyButterfly
02-26-02, 05:38 AM
Originally posted by Orpheus42
Not my whole thoughts... But go to the Urbana website (linked in my signature) and click on "past Urbanas" and then "2000", go to Thursday, December 28 pm session, and... really you need to watch everything, but especially Brenda Salter-McNeil and Alex Gee.

that was one of the best nights...