It has been said that socially Evangelicalism is five to ten years “behind” the broader culture. John Warwick Montgomery once remarked that America was where old German heresies went to die, meaning that eventually the intellectual refuse of the elite came to infect the American church no matter how reluctant the bride of Christ in the United States might have initially been to such doctrinal fads.
Back in the 90’s, Evangelicals looked on in astonishment as Postmodernists from lofty chairs in academia went about undermining the notion that one should not be judged by the color of one’s skin but rather by the content of one’s character. Instead. these deconstructionists suggested that one should be assessed primarily as a member of one’s herd and judged in light of either the sins or disadvantages of one’s forefathers.
As a result, whereas in years previous those of certain backgrounds struggled to take their place in and recognized as full members of society, the trend reversed itself and those skilled in exploiting past resentments were able to shame the majority into allowing certain demographic classifications to cordon themselves off as they saw fit while denying this proclivity to the members of the most numerous group. Though conservative Christians initially bucked such a trend by admonishing that it is ultimately the individual that Jesus died and rose from the dead for and will whom be judged, they too are now succumbing to this social pressure.
Among Evangelicals eager for the accolades of the elite, one popular refrain invoked to show just how tolerant certain leaders can be is that 11 am Sunday is the most segregated hour in America, bemoaning the fact that most Christians prefer to worship with members of their own ethnicity even if they do not harbor blatant ill will or hostility to their fellow coreligionists of different backgrounds. Upon closer examination, one will see that it is a condemnation few ashamed of being White are reluctant to level at minorities as well.
Despite the fact that many denominations do not have the demographic ratios those so obsessed with race to prove to the world that they are not obsessed with race clamor for, a number of them do have memberships consisting of a variety of ethnic groups. But instead of capitalizing on this situation by not harping on racial differences and allowing believers to find their own dynamic equality, those running these religious associations as their own private ecclesiastical syndicates refuse to let sleeping denominations lie and hope to accrue power for themselves by playing the same racial spoils game popular in more liberal circles.
Commemorating the birth of the Lord of all mankind and the Savior of believers from every nation, tribe, and tongue, one would think that all Christians could celebrate Christmas without reference to color. However, even this cherished festival is degenerating into a front for radical social engineering.
On December 2, 2006, the Mid-Atlantic District of the Church Of The Nazarene held an African American Christmas Dinner. To those conditioned into embracing such directives from their handlers without question, such an affair might not seem all that out of the ordinary. But unless chitterlings and collard greens are going to be the main course on the menu, does an African American Christmas differ all that appreciably from the Christmas of any other American group?
As to whether or not a denomination should be hosting such a function, we should ask ourselves would it be appropriate to convene a “Caucasian” or more precisely, a “European American Christmas Dinner”? If the prospect of such an event leaves you a bit squeamish (as it probably should), then why do we put up with or, shall we say, tolerate such extravaganzas when they are convened for groups more favored by the ruling clique?
In James 2, the believer is warned against showing favoritism and in I Corinthians 11, the church is admonished regarding these matters in reference to the Lord’s Supper and meals eaten in His name. If this command applies to something that may be earned such as wealth, how much more so in pertaining to a characteristic the individual has absolutely no control over.
Frederick Meekins is an independent theologian and social critic. Frederick holds a BS in Political Science/History, a MA in Apologetics/Christian Philosophy from Trinity Theological Seminary, and a PhD. in Christian Apologetics from Newburgh Theological Seminary.