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As a Christian, preacher, American, and Black man, I am amazed at how quickly we can move away from the radical essence of the Gospel, placing it in a benign and opaque category. Under every context, next to every sin and vice, the power of the Gospel is proclaimed. Paul said to the church at Rome, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek” (Romans 1:16 ESV). The Gospel is the power of God and delivers salvation, emancipation, and liberation to all that embrace and believe. The Gospel is the euangelion, the good news of Jesus Christ, and the powerful announcement of His ability to save.
The last two days have been an emotional whirlwind and a revelatory experience. The Church of Christ in America might not be fully identified with Evangelicalism doctrinally, but it is culturally. This was a hard and even embarrassing revelation for me to embrace. What is happening in America regarding race, racism, white supremacy culture, and white supremacist action is beyond disturbing. Related to race relations in America, I live in a constant state of outrage. It does not mean I am out of control or off-balance, but as a Black Christian preacher, husband, father, educator and more, I remain concerned.
Will the Church Speak?
As Churches of Christ, how do we collectively respond to the terrorism and hypocrisy that cuts through racial lines with tremendous force? We witnessed terrorism, insurrection, desecration, and chaos around and inside the State Capitol building on January 6, 2021. Where is the prophetic fire of the church? It does not have to first be a message to the world; where is the message to the flock? How is the man of God within Churches of Christ systemically helping members understand these times from a deeply coherent biblical discourse? I am not too fond of the phraseology, but we hear a lot about Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the secular world. However, know assuredly that the radical concept of equity is Biblical. About David, the Bible says, “…David reigned over all Israel. And David administered justice and equity to all his people” (2 Samuel 8:15 ESV).
A 2020 Biblical Youth Investigation
By: Zion Saheli, Dream Hudson, Jason X. Heard, Khyla Gaston, Aaron Featherstone,
Hannah Jefferson, Samari Nash, & (Dr. Ammar Saheli, Class Teacher)
This essay, written by a collection of Northern California Christian youth during the COVID-19 – year 2020 pandemic, is designed to provide a brief, yet intimate look at the connections and inner-workings of the Holy Spirit. The Christian youth connected to this essay engaged in a seven-month study of the Holy Spirit and they are sharing their results with you. Enjoy! A special word of thanks to all the participating youth and the parents that made it possible for them to attend and engage.
We have been on a wild presidential ride for the past four years, and the journey will continue through the next few days, weeks, or even months as counts finalize and court proceedings cease. Regardless of the final count, it seems clear, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will occupy the White House and lead the USA for the next four years. For some, this new reality is deeply anxiety-provoking and frightening, and for others, it is a non-issue, only more of the same, the essence of political power-play. For others, it is a massive sigh-of-relief while they look forward to a brighter American future.
According to Shelby Steele, “Black America has been confronted with a new problem: the shock of freedom.” I am not impressed with any of the political gangbanging of the conservative Right, progressives, or liberal Left. Read the rest of this entry
It was on this day, 19 years ago, that I started pastoring at the West Oakland Church of Christ. It is beyond my comprehension as to why God selected me for the role and vocation. From birth to age 30, I was raised and groomed at the Uptown Church of Christ (San Francisco), where my father also served as an elder.
Made In America: Influences of The Prince of the Power of the Air
Observing the culture and climate of American and global maneuverings over this year has forced me into more perspicuous thoughts and reflection. The recent assassination of Nipsy Hussle pushed me to the brink of this raw and brash narrative. As my latest book, Eerie Silence: Race/Racism Explored Across Educational, Theological, and Justice Continuums Amidst America and Beyond, writing is therapeutic and Dr. James Taylor described my project as a force of thought. This is my first essay since Eerie Silence, and it is time for expression. Read the rest of this entry
September 15, 2018
This Open Letter letter is primarily for but not limited to:
Mike Rawlings, Dallas Mayor
Brandon Birmingham (292), Dallas Judge
Renee Hall, Dallas Police Chief
Dallas Police Department
T.C. Broadnax, Dallas City Manager
Dallas News Media
Texas Ranger Division
Faith Johnson, Dallas District Attorney
Those who act in silence
An Open Letter: Justice for Botham Shem Jean and his Family