Racism: What Thoughts or Feelings Come to Mind?
Gain better understanding of God’s heart for justice and oneness.
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When entering into conversations about racism or prejudice — judging or thinking less of someone based on their ethnicity or the color of their skin — it’s important to understand that while the Bible doesn’t mention those words specifically, it is clear on the overarching ideas, behaviors and characteristics of racism. Racism, prejudice and partiality — that is, showing favoritism to one group over another — are all sins. They are rebellion against God’s best for you and those around you (Ephesians 4:31-32; James 2:1-4).
So God created mankind in His own image, in the image of God He created them; male and female He created them. (Genesis 1:27, New International Version)
I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well. (Psalm 139:14, NIV)
“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” (Matthew 22:36-39, NIV)
God created everyone carefully and intentionally in His image. That means every person has value and importance because God says so. When you criticize, judge or make assumptions about God’s handiwork, you are also criticizing and judging Him.
Not only are you not to judge or think less of others, but Jesus says in Matthew 22 that you are to “love your neighbor” — anyone who comes across your path.
Racism and prejudice go against the very heart of God.
This topic can be painful and frustrating to everyone because we all have different understanding and experiences. Some have been hurt directly, some have seen it from a distance, and some don’t see a problem. It is important to approach this conversation with a humble heart, knowing that no one fully knows or understands it all.
The first step to moving forward is to pray that God would expose anything in your heart that is not pleasing to Him (Psalm 139: 23-24) then be honest with God and yourself about your shortcomings, frustrations and lack of understanding. No matter where you are on your journey toward reconciliation, God loves you and meets you there.
With that in mind, click the quote below that best represents where you are when thoughts or feelings about racism come to mind.