I grew up in the south. I spent most of my life in South Carolina to be specific. I lived in Charleston for several years and was heartbroken when I saw the news of the recent shooting. I have watched over the days following that tragedy and I am saddened by what I’m seeing.
The arguments are so strong. The emotions are running at a fever pitch. Everyone has staked their claims, made their stances clear, let their voices be heard.
I would like to pose this question… “What should my stance be as a Christian?”
This will likely NOT be popular, but here is the answer I believe I see from the scripture.
1- If I call myself a Christian and have accepted the wonderful gift of salvation, THIS is my heritage… “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:28)
God has transfered my citizenship to His kingdom and my heritage is now one of sacrifice and reconciliation. “For God so loved the world tat he gave his only begotten son. That whosoever believes in him would not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)
2- If I call my self a Christian, I must begin to understand that, sometimes, it is much more benificial for me to strive to be at peace with those who point fingers at me than to get up on my soapbox and “give them a piece of my mind.”
1 Peter 2:9-25 says this: “But you are the ones chosen by God, chosen for the high calling of priestly work, chosen to be a holy people, God’s instruments to do his work and speak out for him, to tell others of the night-and-day difference he made for you—from nothing to something, from rejected to accepted. Friends, this world is not your home, so don’t make yourselves cozy in it. Don’t indulge your ego at the expense of your soul. Live an exemplary life among the natives so that your actions will refute their prejudices. Then they’ll be won over to God’s side and be there to join in the celebration when he arrives. Make the Master proud of you by being good citizens. Respect the authorities, whatever their level; they are God’s emissaries for keeping order. It is God’s will that by doing good, you might cure the ignorance of the fools who think you’re a danger to society. Exercise your freedom by serving God, not by breaking the rules. Treat everyone you meet with dignity. Love your spiritual family. Revere God. Respect the government. You who are servants, be good servants to your masters—not just to good masters, but also to bad ones. What counts is that you put up with it for God’s sake when you’re treated badly for no good reason. There’s no particular virtue in accepting punishment that you well deserve. But if you’re treated badly for good behavior and continue in spite of it to be a good servant, that is what counts with God. This is the kind of life you’ve been invited into, the kind of life Christ lived. He suffered everything that came his way so you would know that it could be done, and also know how to do it, step-by-step. He never did one thing wrong, Not once said anything amiss. They called him every name in the book and he said nothing back. He suffered in silence, content to let God set things right. He used his servant body to carry our sins to the Cross so we could be rid of sin, free to live the right way. His wounds became your healing. You were lost sheep with no idea who you were or where you were going. Now you’re named and kept for good by the Shepherd of your souls.”
I refuse to argue whether or not the intent of any flag was racial, but there can be no argument that in several states, when desegregation was instituted, the Confederate flag was flown to show opposition to the integration of blacks into a society from which they had long been excluded.
Call it what you will… Racist, not racist, heritage, good, or bad… The fact is the Confederate flag is, at THIS time in history, a symbol of division, rebellion, and separation. How can I, as a Christian, having been given the ministry of reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:17-18), contend for or declare allegiance to such a symbol.
I honor every person who has laid down his or her life for the freedom I enjoy every day living in this great nation and I’m grateful for the time I spent living in the state of South Carolina and the beautiful region of our country called “The South” but I believe it’s time. Move that flag to a place where it can be viewed and honored for what it originally was… a battle flag. Perhaps in a Civil War museum or even a Confederate museum, but not flying at the highest governmental building in the state.
Remember… “One nation, under God, indivisible…” ?
Your comments are welcome but please keep it “civil”. (Pun intended…)