I was pleasantly surprised to see one or two of Kerry Shook’s sons mention tonight on a Christian program that instead of looking to starving people in Haiti as examples of who to serve, American Christians don’t need to look any farther than the person sitting next to them, or living next door.
What a nice change from the usual “send us funds to build water wells in African villages” spiels one usually hears on Christian shows.
Shook’s sons were saying there might be people you (remember, their primary audience is Americans living in the United States of America) run in to every day, or who live down the street from you, or who work with you, who are going through a difficult time and could use your help.
Ironically, I’ve heard Native Americans and some black people say they regard Christianity as being a “white man’s religion.”
It seems to me that a lot of white, middle- to- upper- class American Christians have turned that upside down, to turn Christianity into a religion only for inner-city, dark-skinned, impoverished, or third- world- nation people.
I don’t recall Jesus Christ saying that His religion, or that care and compassion, are for everyone except for white, sober, middle class Americans – but that is how a lot of white, middle class Americans behave.
The Bible says that Christians are to help other Christians first, not Non-Christians (see Galatians chapter 6, verse 10, also 1 Timothy 5: 8). Most Christians ignore Galatians 6:10, in favor of Matthew 28:19 and James 1:27
In short, if you are a white, sober, middle class American going through some sort of problem, say, you are in grief from the passing of a loved one, you’ve been laid off from your job, your kid is robbing banks, or you’ve been divorced- whatever- and you go looking to another white, middle class Christian for emotional or practical support, you will usually get none.
They will even tell you that because you don’t have life as difficult as Africans who lack in-door plumbing or a homeless junkie down town, you have no right to support, compassion, or encouragement.
Galatians 6:10 and Matthew 7:12 are not in their Bibles.
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