Racism vs. Offensiveness vs. Sin: Take your pick


Let me commend to you a post and numerous comments about racism on Scot McKnight’s blog: http://www.jesuscreed.org/?p=2239.  The dialogue there centers on the issue of stereotypes, racism, and using another’s characteristics for humor. One interesting point of dialogue caught my eye: Could using another’s ethnic identity be offensive without being racist?

If being an offense is a sin (and I would argue that it is–the Gospel is an offense to many be we should never be), then what impetus would we have to argue that something is sin but not racist. Seems the only reason to argue for one is that we see offensiveness as bad but not nearly as bad as racism. That is like being called a pedophile. Does our interest in defending against the claim of racism evidence a level of defensiveness (and therefore blindness) to the realities that racism is nothing more than systematic offensiveness–using another’s characteristics to put and keep them in a subservient position?

2 Comments

Filed under Cultural Anthropology, Race, sin

2 responses to “Racism vs. Offensiveness vs. Sin: Take your pick

  1. I just discovered your blog and I will be reading it often. I have been in ministry since 1990 and have been doing lay counseling and teaching since 1995. I am now pursuing my Masters in Biblical Counseling (which may take a while because I have a family, am the leader of a ministry organization and this often takes a great deal of my time). Even though I am pursuing (and have engaged in) Biblical Counseling, I have seen the ill effects it has had in the hands of some people who can be judgemental and less-than-gifted to help others. Your blog is refreshing and I also just viewed your PowerPoint presentation on Anxiety. It was very good! I enjoy your writing. It is clear and full of grace and quite intelligent. Thank you for taking the time to write these articles. My blog is a private one, so I talk about my own personal struggles and faith rather than purely about ministry, so if you visit, you’re likely to get a hodgepodge of subjects. 😀 Keep up the good work!

  2. Thanks for your kind words of encouragement. Lord’s blessings as you try to manage all that is on your plate!

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