God is amazing! Nothing shows this more than at the cross. I hope this broadcast is a blessing to you. If you would like to follow me on Periscope you can find me here: @Travis_C_Berry
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After the Grand Jury came back with the decision not to indict Darren Wilson, Ferguson erupted. And as I was watching, I couldn’t help but ask one question: How did we get here? Why is the tension so high? Why are people looting and burning down local stores? Obviously, there were peaceful protestors on the streets of Ferguson, but those voices were quickly overshadowed by broken windows, burning cars, and looting.
As I engage people in conversation about last night’s events it almost always comes back to one thing…race. For the sake of clarity, I am a white man in his late 20’s, and my color is used to silence my voice due to recent events. And therein lies the problem. When we boil cases like Ferguson, and others, down to a simply white and black issue we actually dehumanize everyone involved. When people say, “You are white and can’t possibly understand what we are going through.” That ends conversation and creates the impossibility for us to move past race. When white people refuse to engage with the pain and hurt that some communities feel and only focus on the looting and burning, we do the same thing. So, how can we fix it? How can we create a society that treats human beings as human beings? How can we move past the color of our skins and focus on what makes us uniquely human? Glad you asked!
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” -Genesis 1:27, ESV
True compassion and understand will never happen unless we all realize one simple truth: We are all made in God’s image.
All of us have value and worth because God blessed us with it. God is the one who gave us life, and gave us purpose. Yet, we are so quick to make everything racial instead of making it about the human race. As Christians, we grieve with and pray for the Brown family. Not because he was a black kid shot by a white cop, but because he was a human being shot by another human being.
We pray for the Wilson family. Not because a white man tried to enforce the law and shot a black boy, but because he is a human being who shot another human being. We pray and grieve because everyone involved is just like us…human. And if we are going to actually move past the colors of our skin it will come through the power of Jesus Christ himself.
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” -Galatians 3:28, ESV
As a Christian, I understand that when I stand to worship the Creator of everything, I am also standing with people from every tribe, tongue, and nation. And the beautiful thing about the Gospel is that it brings people together under one banner, Jesus, who transcends color, language, and nationality. And when we, as human beings, realize our unique worth given by God and our oneness in Jesus Christ, we will be able to move past racial distinctions. Because in Christ, there is not white or black, have or have not, male or female, we are all one.
Thanks for Reading,
I wasn’t going to comment on the events of last Friday because so many have. So, why have I decided to blog on the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary? There have been many people asking a form of this question, “Why did this happen?” This is a question that has been asked many times, in many situations. When Hitler perpetrated his crimes, people asked the same question. Kony’s reign of terror in Uganda still elicits this question. At the end of the day, Christians need to answer this question with honesty. And the honest answer should strike fear to the hearts and minds of everyone. The answer to why these atrocities happen is:
The heart is deceitful above all things,
and desperately sick;
who can understand it? -Jeremiah 17:9
The reason tragedies, like the one in Connecticut, happen is because the everyone has a heart that lies to them. Everyone’s heart tells them that they need something that they actually don’t need. Everyone’s heart tells them that somethings are right when they are actually wrong. The human heart is inherently deceitful. Not only is the heart a liar, it is “desperately sick”. “Sick” could also be translated as wicked. The human heart is deceitful and extremely sinful. This condition of the human heart is why tragedies happen, and the most sinister part is that every person has this sinful heart.
You and I suffer from a wicked heart, and there is only one cure for a wicked heart…Jesus’ death and resurrection. Jesus is the only person who can cure us from our wickedness. Jesus is the answer to the question of how can I be cured from my wicked and deceitful heart. While tragedies will continue to happen, Jesus can cure you of your wicked heart. Romans 8: 1-4 says:
1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. 3 For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, 4 in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
Though we have hearts like those who perpetrated the evil shown on December 14th, we can have our hearts transformed by Christ’s sacrifice. And one day, the perpetrators of sin will be judged justly for the evil in their hearts. Check out “When Justice Fails” for a deeper discussion of God’s justice in the light of evil.
When it is all said and done, those who are in Christ Jesus will be saved from wickedness, and those that aren’t will suffer the justice wrath of a holy God. I pray that God draws you to the truth of his son and sets you free from the bondage of your wickedness as he did for me!
Thanks for reading.