Our nation has witnessed in the past decade a rise in racism that has left us scarred and divided. Left wing socialists, bitter anarchists, and political chameleons have pretended to champion the rights of minorities, inflaming impressionable youth, they have enslaved a generation to passions leaving them angry, bitter, scarred and hopeless.
Although we too often fail, the answer to a troubled society and a racially divided nation rests with the church and Bible believers. While the history of man is proof the natural man is hopelessly prejudiced; such is not to be the case for Christians. We are commanded, “Honor all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king” (1 Peter 2:17).
What do you suppose is the basis of the command to “Honor all men”? It is that fundamental truth found in the second paragraph of our Declaration of Independence, “We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal.” Every man’s worth is this, God created man and woman after His likeness and “crowned him with glory and honor” (Psalm 8:5).
Pro Football legend and Hall of Famer, David “Deacon” Jones, knew the prejudice of racism in America in the 1960’s and the bitter scars it could leave on a man’s soul. In his youth, Deacon witnessed an act of racial violence that took the life of a woman he described as an “elderly black church woman”. Deacon recounted in an interview, “Unlike many black people then, I was determined not to be what society said I was.”
Rather than be caught up in the racial prejudices and violence of his times, Deacon Jones settled on a life-dominating truth: “All men are created equal. After that, it’s up to you.”
When Hillsdale Baptist Church relocated to our new home in 2005, it was my prayer God would enrich our church family with a diversity that reflected our community and a love for others that would “Honor all men”. It is that principle that will dominate my challenge to our church family this Sunday as we celebrate our nation’s birth.