I am basing this on a few tweets, but have been thinking and praying about the #SBC17 decision to not denounce alt-right/white supremacy. And I think I understand the reticence. Hear me out:
I didn’t grow up SBC which I think may give me a different perspective than someone immersed in the culture all their life. But beginning in college up until now, I have had nothing but positive, supportive experiences with local, regional, national & international entities of the Southern Baptist Convention. I have met people who love Jesus and love His Word and desire to reach others with the gospel. I have had families and groups support mission trips and local service. I learned how to read the Bible and understand it in a Southern Baptist Church.
That’s why it’s so hard to denounce something about it. Perhaps it’s the same with those not wanting to denounce alt-right. Perhaps they’ve had nothing but positive experiences with this group. Perhaps they agree on many things and have supported each other in different endeavors.
But, and I say this with empathy, what if that is because everyone involved was white?
There is a reason God is opening His Bride’s eyes to racial tension and evil injustice and past and current hatred toward our brothers and sisters who are not of European descent. It is a stronghold from the pit of hell that must be denounced and resisted if we are going to move forward with Him in our generation.
This morning I happened to be ready to read Proverbs 8:13a: “The fear of the LORD is hatred of evil.”
I think there are two reasons this is so. The more you come to know Yahweh and His character, the more you begin to love what He loves and hate what He hates. His Spirit inside us begins to align our spirit and soul with His character.
But I think there’s another, almost scary, reason this is true: When you fear Yahweh, you understand that when He decides to move, you want to be as far away as possible from being on the side of oppressor. Because He will take up for the oppressed in a heartbeat. He will move in such a way as to make it obvious He is on the side of justice. Simply put, it’s a great reason to hate evil.
I don’t know what will come of today’s meeting. I don’t even really care if the decision is changed simply because of fear of bad press. Personally, I think that’s one positive of social media: we are less likely to get away with sin in a public way. Or if we do, it’s because we’re choosing a hefty dose of denial.
But I will pray this situation will open individual and groups’ eyes to racism and injustice in our hearts. We are often unaware until suddenly we are. May God move in an organization I know He longs to continue to use for His glory.