From Ferguson to Following Jesus - Doing Missions Amid Racial Conflicts

The events of the past several months in Ferguson, MOonly serve to highlight the racial divide that permeates the entire world… Whether in Northern Ireland, Western Europe, Iraq, Sub-Saharan and South Africa, India (cf. caste system), Central America, etc.… racial and ethnic conflict has endured for generations. Such hatreds are nothing new. The racial and religious divide was part of the history of the early church, such that the early Christian leaders were “surprised” that “God [had] granted even the Gentiles repentance unto life.”[Acts 11:18] In other words, their “racial outlook” blinded even Jesus’ closest followers to the fact of God’s love for the entire world.

And it’s here that the solution to racial hatred can be found… When you hear the news of another racial or ethnic violent event, pray that Jesus would be made central to the discussion and the foundation to the next steps. For Paul wrote that “there is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for [we] are all one in Christ Jesus.” [Gal. 2:28] Pray that Christians will be peacemakers amid the cries for violence and revenge. Pray that leaders will speak with both grace and truth. Pray that God grants us a vision to see Advent as God’s invasion to bring the “Prince of Peace” to our planet.