Us and Them? Black and White? Or One in Christ?

Category: Excerpts
Topic: ,
Bible: Galatians 3:28

When we speak as Christians about “us and them”, isn’t the very nature of those pronouns divisive talk? The Bible doesn’t teach us, “black and white”, but Paul says in Galatians 3:28, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”

Here’s my question. Here we are, on Tuesdays, we’re seeking to deal with the racial issues that we’re confronting. And here’s one of the things that I would ask, or one of the things that would come to my mind. Isn’t this divisive talk? When we speak as Christians about “us” and “them,” isn’t the very nature of those pronouns divisive talk? I mean, look, to tell you the truth, I hate to hear when people in the church talk about “us,” and other people in the church as “them.” I hate it if I hear “black Christians” say “us” and “them,” or vice versa, if whites or Hispanics say “us,” or if orientals were to say that. “Us” and “them.” I hate it when I see in Romania, it’s the Romanians and it’s the Gypsies. It’s us and them. 

I hate it when… we got visited by, I remember, a Hindu couple came. Their parents were born in India. Maybe they were born in India and came here young – a couple. And they’d come over from Houston, and in Houston, they have their own “Indian church.” And it’s basically us and them. I hate that. That is divisive talk when we use pronouns like that. It should not be that way. Divisive use of terms. Using pronouns like that separates, it sets us apart.

When I come to Scripture, you know what it says in Galatians. You know that Paul told the Galatians there is neither Jew nor Gentile. That’s what he said. He said there is no circumcision and uncircumcision. He said there is no male and female. There is not a division like that. There is no slave and free. There isn’t that separation.

He says much the same thing when he speaks to the Colossians in 3:11. He says there’s not Greek and Jew, circumcised, uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free, but Christ is All in all. There isn’t that separation. And here’s what I believe is a reality when I look at Scripture and I think about partiality, and I think about race, and I think about ethnicity, certainly we would have to come to the conclusion that if we are growing in Christ and maturing in Christ and perceiving rightly and discerning rightly as we ought, the most fundamental reality about the pronouns that we use should be inclusive of every other Christian. 

I’ll tell you this, when we talk about us and them, the “us” ought to be me and my black brother, me and my Hispanic brother, me and my oriental brother. The “them” – my black brother’s lost family, my lost family. That is the greatest reality, brethren. We come out of a lost world where we identify with family, we identify with political groups, we identify with country, we identify as followers of sports teams. We identify with all these things that separate “us” and “them.” Brethren, the “them” – my Christian sister, the “them” is those that are lost of every gender. The “us” and the “them.” It’s those on the outside. “Them” is lost whites, “them” is lost Hispanics, “them” is lost men and women, “them” is lost African Americans, “them” are the lost whites, the lost orientals. That’s how it is. Our identity at the most fundamental level is Christ – Christ is all. Christ is all. Do you believe that? Do you really believe that?