Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Biblical Racism

I don’t know about you, but I get annoyed when someone tries to use the Bible to support their own racial bigotries. I’m also tired of the so-called “tolerant” crowd claiming that the Bible is primitive and prejudiced. The simple fact is this - the Bible was way ahead of its time concerning ethnic issues!

Have you ever heard someone claim that the mark of Cain (Genesis 4:15) was dark skin? Believe it or not, that is still being taught! Or, how about the “curse of Ham?” Did you know that people are teaching that Ham’s curse was black skin? That is truly unbelievable to me!

First of all, read Genesis 4:15! “And the Lord set a mark on Cain, lest anyone finding him should kill him.” Tell me, where in this verse is skin color? It was simply a mark, that’s all! Besides, this passage is irrelevant for modern racists, since Cain’s family line was wiped out in the flood!

But what about the curse of Ham? It is true, after all, that Ham is the ancestor of the African people groups. Could there be something to this argument? Not at all! Read what Noah actually said! Genesis 9:25 says, “Cursed be Canaan; A servant of servants He shall be to his brethren.” Canaan was Ham’s son - Ham was never cursed! In fact, part of Canaan’s curse was to serve his brothers, the rest of Ham’s kids - including the Africans’ ancestors! Ham’s sin in Genesis 9 brought a curse on his son Canaan, who was probably already following in the footsteps of his father. But notice that it was the Canaanites that bore this curse. Besides, there is no reference to skin color!

Another argument racists use is that God forbid the Israelites to intermarry with other races. Well, yes and no. God forbid them to marry the Canaanites - but not because of race or skin color! it was an issue of loyalty, the Canaanites were pagans! But you often see Canaanites who did give their loyalties to God. Rahab was one of them. So was Uriah the Hittite, one of David’s mighty men. God wasn’t concerned about racial purity, he was concerned about spiritual loyalty!

For more information about God’s view on intermarriage, check out this post.

You see, God does not care about ethnicity, color, or culture. We all came from Adam through Noah! Acts 17:26 says, “And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their pre-appointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings.” God breaks down man-made barriers again in Galatians 3:28: “There is neither Jew nor Greek (racial discrimination), there is neither slave nor free (social and economic discrimination), there is neither male nor female (gender discrimination); for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

In God’s eyes there are only two races. You can already see that at the end of Galatians 3:28 - “you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Spiritually speaking, all those in Christ Jesus are one race. That means those who are not in Him are the other spiritual race.

Let’s go to 1 Corinthians 15:45-49 to examine this further. “And so it is written,“The first man Adam became a living being.” The last Adam (Jesus) became a life-giving spirit. However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual. The first man was of the earth, made of dust; the second Man is the Lord from heaven.  As was the man of dust, so also are those who are made of dust; and as is the heavenly Man, so also are those who are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly Man.”

Do you see the two spiritual races here? We were all born into the race of Adam - that is natural humanity. Everyone who belongs to this race shares the same fate, to die and be judged for their sin. But those of us who were born again, who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, have been born into a new race - the “last Adam’s” race! We are no longer merely natural humans, we have a recreated spirit! When our body dies, our spirit goes to be with Jesus! Our fate is to spend eternity with our Savior.

These are the only two races of people God sees. Aren’t you glad that this kind of race can change? You don’t have to live your life in Adam’s race anymore! 1 Corinthians 15:22 says, “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive.” There you have it, the fate of both races. Which one do you want a part of?

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