The past few weeks have brought to the surface all manner of questions surrounding race relations in the UK. Whilst there are no easy answers, the following conveys the views of the CtR leaders in response to this issue:
We are called to love. Jesus taught his early disciples to ‘love one another as I have loved you.’ Jesus’ own life was marked by a sacrificial love for all those he met. The ultimate call on all of our lives is to generously love our neighbour, regardless of their race, age, gender or sexuality.
We are called to be diverse. One of the clearest values of the early church was its diversity. People of all manner of cultural backgrounds found a home in Jesus’ church. Paul states that, ‘There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.’ Regardless of our background, we should recognise and seek our common unity in Christ.
We are called to seek justice. Across the bible, God asks that his people would seek the values of his Kingdom. Wherever we encounter, read or see injustice, the Christian response is to bring light, hope and freedom. As it was written in Isaiah, ‘Learn to do right; seek justice, Defend the oppressed, take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.’
We are called to humility. Nobody is perfect. We have all fallen short. We are all in need of God’s mercy. Therefore, when we listen to one another’s stories, we should be as generous, kind and non-judgmental as possible. As we do this, we hope that God would lift us up to become his light to the world: ‘Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.’
(1 Peter 5:6)
We are called to pray. In the midst of one of the most challenging periods in our country’s recent history, we need to turn to our heavenly father for direction, counsel and wisdom. Despite the current difficulties, we should not forget this wonderful truth: ‘This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.’
(1 John 5:14)
In addition to the above, Steve has recorded a short video response. You can this here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xWn4MNKJ8pg&t=2s
Matt, Steve and Lucy
(Elders of Christ the Rock)
Verse of the day