Churches Are Called to Unify Because the Body of Christ Involves Every Nation
Dr. Tony Evans once said, “When I heard Martin Luther King's speech, 'I Have a Dream,' I reflected on the fact that much of the success of that movement was driven by the unity of the church.”
This inspires us as the church today to remember that Jesus came for the world. God’s plan of redemption is for all the nations, that every tribe, tongue and people group would know Him (Revelation 7:9). When we ostracize and segregate, we are only fooling ourselves. We try to create an environment that looks nothing like heaven will. There will be no dividing lines or separate bathrooms in heaven; this is not the way of God, but the way of Satan. Dr. King knew this, put His faith in the Lord and took Christ-like action.
How Can We Celebrate MLK Day?
Maybe you have never celebrated this day before because it has not meant as much to you personally. However, I want to challenge people to ask questions and learn. Racism is still an issue in the United States and around the world today. It is important that we educate ourselves and honor those who deserve to be honored in the faith.
1. Take time to read one of the books written by Martin Luther King Jr. himself. (Letters from a Birmingham Jail or Why We Can’t Wait)
2. Talk to others who have experienced racism about their encounters, and genuinely learn from them. Be a listener.
3. Watch or read the “I Have a Dream” speech.
4. March in a peaceful parade.
5. Read Scripture verses that address racism.
6. Pray. Do this alone or try to get a group together to pray for unity in the church and in our nation.
7. Brainstorm ways that your local church can be more unifying and create an action plan for the year.
8. Learn more about getting involved with Be The Bridge or Equal Justice Initiative. (Remember to seek to learn before forming an opinion.)
9. Check out Pastor Tony Evans’ material on unity in the church such as Let’s Get to Know Each Other
Racism is still a problem because sin exists. We do not need to be a part of the problem, but as believers we should point people to the solution of Christ. We can mirror Christ in how we care. As we ask the Lord to help us love well and be the example to the world, may we know our efforts for understanding and unity are not wasted.
Psalm 89:14 says it well, "Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; Mercy and truth go before Your face.”
This MLK Day, may we honor a man well worth our respect who led the way with Jesus and did what was right. His mission of unity continues with us, the people of God.
For further reading
How to Be the Bridge: Practical Steps to Racial Reconciliation
What Does the Bible Say about Racism?
What Does the Bible Say about Unity?
What Does the Old Testament Say about Social Justice?
Bible Verses About Racism and Prejudice
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