The evolution of racism - Todd Dionne

We are One Blood. That's what Ken Ham, Carl Wieland and Don Batten conclude concerning the human race in their book "One Blood: The Biblical Answer to Racism."

The authors demonstrate that, from a biblical perspective when you hate someone of a different "race," you actually hate your own family. From a Biblical perspective, there are not many races of people; there is one race of people -- the human race.

A person, who believes the Bible and is from a Christian tradition, ought to have no problem with this statement. Unfortunately, there are those who have attempted to use the Bible to justify their racist beliefs. But there is no justification for those beliefs on the basis of Scripture.

Now, there may be Scriptures that can be used, out of context, and twisted in attempt to prove such beliefs, but racism's root is not to be found in the Bible. I have personally heard that "races" should not intermarry, because God forbid Israel from intermarriage. Well, unless you are a Jew, that cannot be applied to Gentiles, neither is it ever commanded by Christ or his disciples.

Jesus essentially eliminated the line between Jews and Gentiles when Paul declared that there is "no difference between Jew or Greek." I have also heard a sermon preached by an obviously ignorant and wrongly motivated preacher that "equally yoked" not only refers to Christians marrying Christians, but he went further than Scripture, by saying that rich and poor, fat and thin, and black and white should not be married.

I think he was really trying to softly say he didn't agree with interracial marriage of any kind. But that was his sordid and sinful opinion that has no business coming from the pulpit. Those who attempt to use the Bible to prove their racist beliefs have a greater problem. They have a "heart" problem.

If Ken Ham and the other authors are correct, and there is only one race, and the proper term that should be used to describe the differences of human ethnicity is "people groups." People are grouped according to likeness, and that likeness can be anything from skin color to religious beliefs, etc. But most often, it is used by Christian anthropologists to describe ethnicity. This term recognizes all people as equal in value in the eyes of God, and recognizes that there is no such thing as a superior, higher-evolved race.

Now, this brings us to where the term "races" originated -- in the humanist and godless philosophy known as evolution. After Darwin wrote, "Origin of the Species," other people began to take his philosophy (not science!) to its logical conclusion. The logical conclusion as Hitler believed and demonstrated, was that his race had evolved higher than other races, so the "survival of the fittest" became the rallying cry for murdering Jews, Gypsies, Christians and other people whom he saw as potentially corrupting the gene pool of the higher race.

Evolution then, not the Bible, is the greatest culprit in the promotion of racism. I encourage you to go to answersingenesis.org, to research these claims further.

The Bible, as "One Blood" points out, teaches that every people group upon the earth can trace its ancestry back to two families. The first family we encountered as we go back in time is Noah's family. After the earth was destroyed by the flood, Noah, his wife, his family and his children's husbands/wives were the only surviving humans. They repopulated the earth after its destruction. But from Noah, we can trace our lineage all the way back to the first two people created, Adam and Eve. All descendants of Noah were from these first two people.

Now, I know that there are scoffers, skeptics and even Christians who read this and have become inflamed, but let me make this appeal. The truth presented in Scripture about origins is the only thing that makes sense when you consider the later claims of Scripture concerning Christ's atoning death. God said that Christ died for the whole world. How could this claim be made, if there were different races that evolved apart from each other?

You would then encounter another issue. Paul stated, "Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man's obedience, the many will be made righteous (Rom. 5:18-19 ESV)."

Essentially, you would be removing a major foundation of Christian teaching about sin and salvation by denying that humans are of One Blood. You would have to deny Christ's atoning death for the whole world, and you would be declaring that all men do not have a sin nature, which is clearly a heretical position, according to Scripture.

I hope that I have compelled you to, at least, do some research yourself. Go to the web site I suggested. Let me say this. I have heard it stated that only those in power can be racist, but that is a delusion. Power only allows those who may be racist a greater ability to express their racism. Racism is a heart issue and because "all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God," all have the potential to hate in this way.

Jesus said, "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you ... (Mat. 5:43-43 ESV).

Racism is a heart issue fueled by a godless philosophy and sin nature. When the Lord said to "love your neighbor has yourself," you should understand that people of other ethnic groups are your neighbors and brothers. We are One Blood.

Rev. Todd Dionne is pastor of Corinth Baptist Church in Jonesboro.