The Gospel: Beyond Racial Barriers

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For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. Romans 10:12

Perharps, humans rights are the most discussed and debated topic worldwide. Sinclair Ferguson, in his book Child in the Manager, wrote that “Equality is one of the big words of our time. Equal rights, equal opportunity,  equal remuneration, and of course equality of sexes. ‘Equality and justice for all’ is the slogan of our day as activists and politicians clamour for a fair and equal society'”¹

We live in a world of entitlements and ‘rights movements’ are ubiquitous. A plethora of legislation are in place by various bodies with the aim of protecting the rights of people. The most sensitive is the fight against racial discrimination. It manifests in various forms. I was born in 1978 and I grew up to witness stories of the apartheid regime of South Africa through the media; especially television and movies.

As the equal right movements rises to its crescendo, it is worth noting it is not a modern phenomenon though. Ancient civilisations encountered their own problems with racial discrimination. Even in first century Christianity for example, there was racial discrimination manifested in the upkeep of some widows: “Now in these days when the disciples were increasing in number, a complaint by the Hellenists arose against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution”. (Acts 6:1).

‘The Hebrews against the Hellenist– Greek speaking Jews’. This shouldn’t happen among Christians you may say, but right there in the bible, we see discrimination manifested. This clearly tells us it is an age old problem and its root is sin. All humankind are image bearers of God and we ought to love one another: “Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” (Genesis 1:26).

But as image bearers of God, do we love one another? The solution lies in the Gospel. In Christ, there is no Jew nor Greek nor Gentile nor babarian. There is no African, no European, no Asian, no American—–we are one body in Christ (see Ephesians 2:13-18). Legislation and human will may deal with the problem superficially, but the Gospel will uproot it from the heart of sinners. God is no respecter of persons. The Gospel breaks racial barriers. Jesus calls everyone — irrespective of your race or tribe or skin colour — to salvation through faith in Him. Come just as you are without one plea and He will receive you.

Behold a beautiful sight John beheld in heaven:

After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Revelation 7:9-10).

Notes

1: Sinclair B Fegurson, Child In The Manager (2015). Reprint, Edinburgh, Truth For Life (2016) Pg 107.

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