Ye did run well?
The Apostle Paul in his letter to the Church at Galatia, asks a question about having been set free from the strangle hold of sin, and having begun the race of Christian service what now hinders them from obeying the truth?
I would also ask that of Black people today. Having been set free by the power of God despite barriers of racism and having begun this race for freedom, what now hinders us from obeying the truth that once made us free?
Speaking of truth, I read an article recently that a Presidential candidate told African Americans at a Baptist church in North Charleston to be afraid because they face barriers in economics, health and education. This candidate said also, “we have to be honest about systemic racism which is still a problem in America.” The audience roared with applause! This statement indicates that the responsibility for the problems that plague our community ( high level of crime, high level of poverty, high level of drug abuse, high level of fatherless/broken homes, high level of incarceration, high level of illiteracy, etc.) are all due to ‘barriers’ that have been placed in our way by ‘others’. Or in other words we are not succeeding because ‘others’ are keeping us from achieving the same rights and privileges that they are enjoying. Of course this Presidential candidate promises to bring down these barriers if they are elected.
Is this assertion true? Is what the candidate said ‘honest’ about what the problems really are in the African American (Black) community?
Are we in the condition that we are in due to ‘barriers’, and systemic racism? While it is true that racism and barriers still exist, are they the reasons that many African Americans (Black) families are failing to achieve success in America? I say NO.
Dr. Thomas Sowell notes the following:
- If poverty among blacks is because of whites (racism, barriers, etc.), why has the poverty rate among black married couples been in single digits every year since 1994, despite far higher poverty rates among other blacks?
- When the imprisonment rate of blacks with a college education is a fraction of the imprisonment rate of other blacks, does that mean that white cops check out the education of blacks before they decide to arrest them?
Dr. Sowell goes on to cite other examples that contradict the narrative that the failure we see in Africian Americans to succeed in this country is due to ‘barriers’. Just looking at the example given above, I ask how it is that black married couples, and blacks with a college education are able to avoid/overcome the barriers, and systemic racism that we are constantly told is the reason Black people cannot make it in America?
The truth is that the barriers that do exist today are nothing like the barriers that existed in this country fifty years ago when systemic racism was much more ingrained in public accommodations, public education, social, and corporate institutions. No one who lived during those terrible times could ‘honestly’ argue that the ‘barriers’ and ‘systemic racism’ are worse today that they were then. If the barriers are not worse, then what is the reason for the present predicament?
How did those that came before us manage to feed their families, clothe and educate their children, in the face of such heinous systemic racism, but we today are unable to do the same?
Back then ‘when ‘we were Black’ we took responsibility for the problems that plagued our communities no matter what the cause was? We did not believe that we could not achieve success in America unless someone else helped us. We believed that God would help us no matter what obstacle or barrier was in our way. (“We shall overcome some day…”) Because back in those days we did not rely (could not rely) upon the government, to take care of us, (free healthcare?) to clothe us, to feed us, or to educate us and our families.
Today that has changed dramatically. Now a very high number of Black people depend upon the help of the government for the basics of living and have come to believe that they are ‘entitled’ to this help due to the terrible legacy of racism and discrimination that still plagues our society today.
How did this happen? We did run well, (made a good start) but what now hinders us?
The lack of knowledge of the truth is what hinders us. It is time to tell the truth the whole truth, nothing but the truth? The truth is, we have left and lost our faith in God and placed it mistakenly in man (government) and political systems. This change in mentality now is what hinders us in our pursuit of the freedom we fought so hard to achieve.
But can we handle the truth? I pray that we learn to embrace the truth if there is ever a time we need to do so, it is now. We find ourselves back in bondage, not because of systemic racism, or barriers but because we have not been walking in the truth that has been revealed to us by God! “Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in my word, you are my disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:31-32)
We have been disobedient to the Lord who brought us out of bondage. We did not abide in His word. We sought our abode in words of men. We need to remember why we started. This struggle was not for us be treated ‘differently‘ or ‘special‘ by society, but it was a struggle to be treated ‘equally‘ ‘the same’ as others. This is consistent with the Biblical truth that we should love God and love our fellow man.
The struggle was to be no longer judged by the ‘color of our skin’ but by the ‘content of our character’. Unfortunately for many of us, the ‘content of our character‘ as a people is very much in question, and the judgement is harsh. Our character has been ” weighed in the balance and found wanting….” Our forefathers would be ‘ashamed‘ of how we have strayed so far from the truth, squandered the opportunities they gave us and destroyed the legacy that they left us.
Isaiah 55:7King James Version (KJV)
7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
It is time to repent people! Let us return to our God and He will have mercy upon us.
Bishop G. W. Manigault, II
Judah Ministries, International
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