A Time to Kill
Ever see the great drama story portrayed in the movie, A Time to Kill?
When you think of Travon Martin, what do you think? What do you do? What upsets me most in watching the media debacle over this tragedy is the silence of the church! If this was a blond beautiful well-to-do white kid, from the right family… and a vigilante shot him, there would be outrage.
It’s the damned silence that gets me – why is the church so damned silent!? Why are we not outraged and vocal over it!? Why do we get vocal (individuals – saints who follow the Living God) over such insanity…. Neighborhood Watch is just that – eyes and ears – alarm system for the police, not the brown shirts who enforce law, as they interpret it. Why is this so confusing for people?
Why are we so silent?
Back to A Time to Kill. I suggest to you with two quotes:
“And until we can see each other as equals, justice is never going to be even-handed. It will remain nothing more than a reflection of our own prejudices.” ~ character Jake Tyler Brigance
“America is a wall, and you’re on the other side.” ~Carl Lee
A friend of mine, Ryan, wrote on this subject this week. One poignant statement he made was, “…black parents often feel compelled to share with their adolescent young men the hard racial realities that come with being a black man in America. This talk may involve the necessary lessons in appropriate behaviors to assume when aggressively approached by white male authority figures, especially law enforcement. This unimaginably tension-filled conversation is one that a loving black parent painfully recognizes could literally result in life or death.”
Racism is rampant yet, in spite of huge leaps forward. There is still a sizable number of people who believe the President is Muslim, because of an ethnic name, though he’s been a member of his church in Chicago for years. We presume, judge, simply don’t FEEL moved to speak up, say anything, when we observe injustices.
This is the key – we don’t feel. Shame on us, the church, for our omission, for it is as great a sin as our commission. There is, in spite of American individualism, which defines and is a lens through which we understand the Bible, a collective judgement accompanying and preeminent to our individual judgement for our societal, collective church sin.
How do we number ourselves with the Christ (1 Corinthians 10) when we are exhorted to have communion with Christ and each other, and that we cannot partake of the communion with demons… meaning we cannot follow Christ and submit ourselves to the worldview, behaviors and values of the world, of Satan’s kingdom.
As we approach Good Friday, every person claiming to be under the Kingdom’s rule, under the blood of Christ, covering our door posts, I urge that we repent of our racism, and embrace people different from us, be it color, ethnicity, faith or lack of, politics (can you believe I need to include that in this blog?), orientations or any thing else and actually become in nature like Christ (Philippians 2.5-11).
May I close with a reminder… “Let him with no sin throw the first stone.”