January 16, 2016

EDITORIAL: White Christians Need to Act More Christian than White

By Jim Wallis

Tamir Rice. Sandra Bland. Laquan McDonald. Freddie Gray. These young black Americans, and many other men and women whose names never made national headlines, were recent victims of state violence. But they were also victims of deeper structural racial sins that go back to the founding of our country. Despite all the chatter, and hope, a few years ago about the prospect of a “post-racial” America, our awareness and response to these sins still painfully falls along racial lines.

We’ve failed to realize the “beloved community” envisioned by Martin Luther King Jr. and defined by Paul in his letter to the Galatians (3:28): “There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus.” Too many Americans — particularly Christian Americans of my own generation — continue to worship at the altar of whiteness, defining themselves by their status as members of a temporary and illusory racial majority.

It has to end. And to begin building that beloved community, white Christians must start acting more Christian than white. To read the full editorial on The Washington Post, click here.

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