I told myself I wasn’t going to say anything in regards to Charleston, but the Holy Spirit is pressing heavily on my heart so I must speak. My heart is saddened for so many reasons. Whenever things like this happen my heart can’t help but to think about the reality of life and death. The issue here is not really racism…the issue is SIN. Sin is the root of every evil thing. Sin is the root in which racism has stemmed from and has decided to show itself. I see so many post saturated with hate, headlines saturated with racial supremacy, and pictures depicting a disdain for a particular race. The devil has blinded us to believe that this is a black and white issue when in fact it’s way deeper than that. It’s a sin, heart, and spiritual issue.
In no way am I trying to ignore the fact of racism or the fact that it is a reality in America and has been a reality for many years. Being a young African American female, I understand that the black race has suffered a great deal throughout the years and has dealt with many hardships. And my heart grieves for those reasons. However, beyond me being a black woman, I am first a Christian woman and child of God. Because of that fact, I must speak that which God would want me to say.This matter is a spiritual issue and as a Christian I am compelled to speak that of Christ.
Here are the hard cold physical facts. On 6/17/15 nine black individuals lost their lives in a church in a matter of seconds by a white male. Now here are the hard cold spiritual facts. On 6/17/15 nine souls lost their physical lives in a church in a matter of seconds by another soul. I’m sure those individuals didn’t wake up that day thinking, “Oh I’m going to die today.” They probably went to church ready to attend bible study with no idea that death was about to knock on their door. Skin color may have distinguished them and Dylann Roof but the common denominator of having a soul united them.
You know when I first saw the headline on the news my first thought was not, “Oh wow, I can’t believe that white guy killed all those black people.” My thoughts were, “Man, I pray Dylann Roof may come to repentance and obey the gospel of Christ. And I really hope those individuals who lost their lives obeyed the gospel of Christ and that their souls were truly saved before they died.” You’re probably thinking, “Ashley! Of course they were saved, they died in a church!” My friend I have come to tell you that the physical location of your death will not determine the spiritual state of your soul. Just as the physical way in which you die will not determine whether you go to heaven or not. A saved soul is still a saved soul whether they die in the most horrific way or the most peaceful way. As the same a lost soul is still a lost soul whether they die in the most horrific or peaceful way. Some may be thinking, “Man that white boy Dylann Roof is going straight to hell for what he did!” My friend I’m also here to tell you that God’s forgiveness and love is still available to Dylann Roof as long as he’s still breathing. God still loves Dylann Roof as much as He loves you. Is God pleased by his actions, definitely not. God hates sin. But God still has the ability to love the sinner.
“But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.” –Romans 5:8
I’m not writing this to try to put someone in heaven or hell. Only God truly knows where the souls of the individuals who lost their lives went. I’m writing this to help US realize the reality of life and death and not FOCUS on the wrong thing here. We are so busy getting mad and angry at a particular race, or Dylann Roof, when we are totally blinding our hearts to the true spiritual issue at hand. Which is the world is in need of Jesus, His saving grace, and the gospel of Christ. When I look at this matter I see the spiritual realm and the true spiritual warfare of it all. Satan is using the sin of racism to blind us to the truth of God’s love and the obedience to the gospel of Christ. When God looks at us, He does not just see physical skin color. He sees our hearts and our souls. For our souls is who we truly are.
“The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”-1 Samuel 16:7
When Christ came, died, was buried and rose, His sacrifice demolished the concept of racial division. In Christ Jesus we are a new creation, a new people. Galatians 3:28 says, “There is neither Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Christ’s church and people are not a particular skin color, they are a group of souls who have chosen to obey and follow Him. We should use this situation as a means of drawing us to the cross of Christ. WE should be praying fervently for the families of all those individuals that lost their lives as well as the soul and family of Dylann Roof. We should also use this situation as a means of proclaiming Christ, demonstrating Christ and living for Christ. We should not be using this time to stir up hatred within our hearts or to focus on the sin of racism. WE should focus on the solution which is Christ Jesus and the obedience to His gospel.
»The solution to the world’s problems is Christ. The power is in Christ and in His gospel.«
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes.”(Roman 1:16)
When we demonstrate Christ, we demonstrate His love. We seek to save the souls of the lost and take the blinders of racism off the hearts of people. We seek to open them to the newness and love of Christ Jesus. We seek to be kind and loving to ALL MEN no matter their ethnicity (Eph 4:32). We seek to not to overcome evil with evil but to overcome evil with good (Rom 12:21). We forgive our enemies and flood them with the kindness and the tenderness of Christ Jesus (Matt 5:43-48). When we live Christ we show that true peace, joy, and contentment can only be found by living a life righteously for God. We don’t waste our lives getting drunk, lying, stealing, fornicating, or “playing church.” We truly live for Jesus because we realize the seriousness of life and death. WE realize that today is not promised but death is a promised reality. WE stay in a state of readiness for we know that our death day or Jesus’s return could come at any time.
“You must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect Him.”-Luke 12:40
I’ll leave you with this my friend. The situation that happened at Charleston is indeed a tragedy. However, what’s even more of a tragedy is if we don’t use the situation that happened at Charleston as means of bringing us closer to Christ Jesus.
WE can pray all day. But prayer without action is meaningless (James 2:17). Forgive, love, and live for Jesus. I want to encourage you to allow this situation to cause you to think about the state of your soul. If you were one of the nine in the church that day, could you honestly say you obeyed the gospel of Christ and sought to live a life for God? If someone were to take your life today, would you be ready? Is your heart filled with anger, rage, and hatred? Do you seek to harm others with physical crimes or harsh words? Is your heart filled with the love and forgiveness of Christ or are you harboring around hatred and disdain? We shouldn’t seek to kill others with our weapons, our thoughts, or our hatred. We should seek to give others life by presenting them with the love, light, and gospel of Jesus Christ. Remember, obeying Christ and living for Christ is all that matters in this life. When death knocks on our door it will be too late to make our wrongs right. Be Encouraged.
“What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?”- Mark 8:36
“It is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes the judgement.”-Hebrews 9:27