“One of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And He said to him, “ ‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.””
Matthew 22:35-40 NASB
So many are tossing terms back and forth these days. I have heard of critical race theory, racial equity, and the one that caught my eye has been intersectionality, or the idea that we must consider that people are disadvantaged by various personal descriptions such as race, sex, religion etc. Slowly but surely, this is creeping into the church of Jesus Christ. The result is an attempt at making the Gospel relevant to people of the various groups. The net effect is that people are receiving a watered down Gospel message. People are not being saved and destined for hell.
The truth applies to all people: all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. There are no exceptions based on what one may have endured. It is clear. It is God’s version of intersectionality. We all need forgiveness of our sins, we are all sinners and bound for a Christ less eternity in hell. There won’t be segregation, no gated communities, or protected classes, just eternal damnation.
All of this is rising from a nation wide navel gazing session where white people of conscious are being driven to search for the racism within and affect some change. I am saddened as I have seen people I know to be kind and loving, rending their garments over being white. The irony is that people who have the desire to worry about such things are not the problem. The mere fact that they are concerned about it is an indicator that they have love for others.
The whole issue is one sided, with all attention on the white offenders and none on the offenses of the “innocents.” I represent multiple protected groups: I am a black man, I am aging, I am disabled. I am also a wretched man deserving of hell, if not for Jesus.
In God’s intersectionality, we have the solution: love the Lord with all of your heart, your mind and your strength and love your neighbors as yourself. When we love, all conflicts are settled, all racism ceases and we are unified by the Holy Spirit. We look out for each other, we live with concern for our brothers and sisters.
I remember years ago I met a man named Charlie West. He and I worked at Goodwill. He was the intact counselor and I was a workforce development counselor. The initial meeting was difficult. Charlie had grown up in Southern Missouri and had a very segregated upbringing. I could tell that he had strong racial opinions and relied on stereotypes to make sense of his world.
I was the only black man on staff at the time and he felt uncomfortable with me. We had a few petty conflicts in the beginning. At one point it was coming to a head and I walked up to him. This was the watershed moment in our relationship. Rather than getting angry and confronting him, I told him I was praying for him. At that moment the Holy Spirit took over and in time we became close friends, united in Christ.
We met at God’s intersection.
When you love the Lord, you will love your neighbor. How can you not. The very God we worship made our enemies and our friends. It is not ours to separate, but to love all. In loving, all disadvantage is swept away. To show any bias is sin.
“But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors. For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of all.”
James 2:9-10 NASB
Beloved, love your Lord by loving your neighbor as yourself. The two commandments are connected. You cannot profess to be doing one without the other.
Do not compromise with the Gospel. The word of God is designed to transform the lost to be inline with the values of God. We do not adjust the word of God to bring it in line with us.
“For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise.”
Galatians 3:27-29 NASB
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