Racism, antiracism, critical race theory, color-blindness, diversity, reconciliation. Discussion and debate on these issues abound in the church today. Regardless of what language or labels we use, a crucial question looms: What is the biblical call to racial unity and justice?
Recently, CT and Seminary Now convened a virtual roundtable featuring a dynamic panel of Christian thought leaders on matters of race, justice, and discipleship. Pastor Derwin Gray, author of How to Heal Our Racial Divide, and educators Christina Barland Edmondson and Chad Brennan, authors of Faithful Antiracism, were joined by New Testament theologian Darrell Bock, who moderated the webinar.
“Controversies surrounding discussions of race and justice are a part of our culture,” said Bock in his introductory remarks. “This is about more than being for or against an idea or debates about the nature of justice and its relationship to the gospel. People and major societal groups are impacted by this discussion and have been for centuries, leaving a residue of effects that involve all of us.”
Bock goes on to queue up a series of questions. How should Christians respond to the ethical call growing out of the gospel to love our neighbor? Can the race discussion be seen as an extension of our mission to show what God is like in the world? Should the church’s emphasis look more like reconciliation or antiracism?
Using their books as thematic springboards, the panel addressed these and other questions related to the biblical, historical, and contemporary challenges of racial division in America. View the recording of the event above. The roundtable begins in earnest at about the ten-minute mark.