Racism is a problem that is ongoing, not only in America 2022, but has been for thousands of years. Wasn’t it, in part, racism that Pharaoh’s wife accused Joseph of impropriety (Gen. 39:17)? Wasn’t it, in part, racism that kept Jonah from wanting to preach to those horrible Assyrians? Wasn’t it racism that caused the Jews and Gentiles of the early church to look down on or to avoid each other (Gal. 2:11-ff)? Is this really what God wants?
As Paul took the gospel to the Gentiles in Athens, he looked around and saw that men who were made in God’s image had made gods everywhere in man’s image. Paul’s sermon focused on the “Unknown God.” Notice some things he said in this sermon (Acts 17:26-27) that have to do with our current issue of racism.
We are of one common blood (Acts 17:26). He made from “one blood” every nation of men. Blood has one color no matter the skin color. Blood is not racist—it is not a mark of superiority, it is a mark of humanity (Ps. 139:14).
We all are of one common earth (Acts 17:26). He has made us from one blood every nation of men to dwell on the face of the earth—with pre-appointed times and boundaries of dwellings. God’s care extends from the highest peaks of the Himalayas to the deepest jungles of Africa. From the arid regions of California to the coastal wetlands of Louisiana. God created these places different from each other although they are part of one planet! It is truly foolish to think one’s self superior simply because of ancestry or geography.
We have one common purpose (Acts 17:27-28). The goal of humanity is to seek God. The promise of this verse is that “He is not far from every one of us.” We are His offspring. God wants us to look not to ourselves and see our differences in order to magnify those. Instead, He wants us to look to Him and see His glory and magnify Him.
We have one common Savior (Acts 17:29-31). I appreciate that we are not told what color Jesus is, lest anyone try to prove racial superiority by that. Instead, He is the One who is the solution to racism. He is the One who makes His people one (Gal. 3:27-28). If we, as humans, are looking to any other source for racial solutions, we will miserably come up empty every time!
Graeber Road church of Christ