There is a plethora of Christian literature on racial reconciliation. The market is not lacking perspectives from (primarily male) authors who encourage the Christian community to see the image of God in everyone, to celebrate difference, to listen to one another’s stories, and to intentionally make friends with people who are outside of our racial/ethnic groups. We see Christians hosting various panel discussions and dialogues about race, we see symbolic foot washings between members of different races, and we see hugs of forgiveness and “Christian brotherhood” shared between Black and White pastors. With all the effort Christian communities have put into talking about race and racial reconciliation, it makes one wonder why there seems to be no real progress.
So true. I sometimes worry we will never do the serious work needed. I know so many SDAs who simply thing the solution is to be colorblind and just love everyone no matter what color they are. As you point out in the review, this approach ignores the problem of whiteness. Most white people have never even delved deeply into what it means to be white, and not black. Thank you for the review.
I don’t find the gospel mentioned in this “theology of racial reconciliation” and how it may apply? I don’t understand why? This is a review so maybe it is in the book but just not mentioned? In other works of this subject within the context of Christianity the gospel is seen as the main component. This book certainly does not appear to.
A Christian perspective:
“Certainly the majority of Christians in America today would happily aver that good race relations are a gospel issue. They might point out that God’s saving purpose is to draw to himself, through the cross, men and women from every tongue and tribe and people and nation; that the church is one new humanity, made up of Jew and Gentile; that Paul tells Philemon to treat his slave Onesimus as his brother, as the apostle himself; that this trajectory starts at creation, with all men and women being made in the image of God, and finds its anticipation in the promise to Abraham that in his seed all the nations of the earth will be blessed. Moreover, the salvation secured by Christ in the gospel is more comprehensive than justification alone: it brings repentance, wholeness, love for brothers and sisters in the Christian community. But the sad fact remains that not all Christians have always viewed race relations within the church as a gospel issue.”
I contend that the use of the non-word “whiteness” as a perjoritive while absent the Christian component of the gospel of Jesus Christ is a gross misconception in the least. I could understand a non-believer using such vacuity but surprised here.
It is so enlightening to realize that white people dont understand their whiteness. As a white person it becomes my responsibility to understand my whiteness so as better to understand whiteness. And I need enlightened other white people to assist me who have completed that perfect circle of understanding. This brings me to the question of if the other races have problems understanding their color.