There are some scriptures worth remembering while we’re coming to grips with these mad times. They are God’s reminders to people on both sides of the divide, and they couldn’t be more relevant, or needed, than they
“He that answers a matter before he hears it, it is folly and shame unto him.” Proverbs 18:13
I don’t jump to conclusions, I pole vault. Like lots of folks, I’m raw and frustrated, making me also quick to pronounce a guilty verdict and recommend the death penalty.
What’s harder (and godlier) is waiting for all the facts to emerge after something terrible happens.
That goes against the grain. We want swift justice which means swift identification of the wrong and the wrongdoers. But sorting through a nightmare takes time, a fact worth noting the next time another person is shot, another protest gets out of hand, or another politician says something amazingly stupid.
Premature reactions are never smart. If we’re going to be outraged, let’s be outraged about what we know, not what we presume.
“A false balance is abomination to the LORD: but a just weight is his delight.” Proverbs 11:1
We’ve all got our Jerk lists. The groups we oppose, the leaders we hope get thrown out, you know what I mean. In America’s modern melodrama we’ve developed an addiction to booing the villain when he walks onstage. Worse yet, I really am afraid we are falling in love with hating.
But there’s no justice in assuming someone’s guilty or villainous just because they belong to a group you’re politically or socially at odds with.
If some members of a group have committed wrongs in the past, you’re wrong if you conclude that anyone from that group who’s accused of wrongdoing must be guilty. That is, according to scripture, an unjust balance and therefore an abomination.
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:28
Racism is an evil which has birthed some of the worst crimes against humanity over the centuries. The fact that the word “racist” gets thrown around too easily – and it does – doesn’t make the sin itself any
If you denigrate any person by stereotyping them or making false assumptions about them because of their race, whether it’s the majority or minority race, then you’re guilty of racism. You’re also guilty of denigrating the God who designed the races with equal value, thereby intending them to be equal in treatment.
“Be not overcome with evil, but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:21
Saying you value health, then deliberately breathing in the germs of a sick person, isn’t smart.
Likewise, saying you value love, then breathing in the hatred of sick people by hating them back or obsessing over them, isn’t smart. So while considering what one person can do about evil, consider the value of keeping it from infecting you, and thereby making you part of the problem.
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12
The problem is, ultimately, spiritual.
That doesn’t mean action isn’t called for at every level to address these problems. In fact. we’d all do better to consider less hand-wringing and more hands-on action.
You have to decide, of course, what sort of action that would be, and which of our many current problems you want to do something about.
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Example: just this morning I realized it’s not helping anyone for me to talk in my living room about the outrageous abuse so many police officers are taking. I’d like to see more concrete, public show of support for them, so I’ll explore that today, because that’s an area of concern to me. You’ve got yours, too. So let’s both do more doing, less talking, even less stressing.
But let’s do that remembering the ultimate source of the problem is spiritual wickedness, which we fight with spiritual weapons. So let’s never forget the power of prayer, nor our mandate to pray.
To that end, responding to what has come from God’s mouth to us, here’s what’s going from my mouth to Him this morning:
Lord, show Your hand and Your heart in the middle of this madness.
Strike down racism wherever it exists. Expose it and give us wisdom to combat and prevent it. Expose false accusations of racism where they
exist; confirm true accusations where they exist. Bring healing, reconciliation, and commitment to peace.
Restrain the lawless. Protect our cities. Reform our leaders at every level, and give every citizen the wisdom we need to live responsibly, protect
what You’ve given us, and resist evil without fearing it.
Bless and provide every need for the families of all of the killed and the wounded, whoever and wherever they are.
Protect and encourage our police nationwide. Expose and restrain the few who abuse, and strengthen the many who serve us honorably. Heal the hearts of people who view them as enemies, and establish real justice where real injustice exists.
Give all of our leaders, from the President to our local mayors, wisdom, conviction, clarity, and hearts set to do Your will.
Calm our own hearts. Let our anger be righteous anger, not wrath, correcting wrongs without retaliation or hate.
And have mercy on this wayward and wounded country.
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