Quotes to Chew on: Racial Reconciliation
Jesus perfectly embodied God’s heart for racial reconciliation. For example, most Jews of Jesus’ day despised Samaritans as racially impure and as heretics. They avoided physical or social contact with them if at all possible. Yet Jesus went out of his way to have contact with them, even touching some who were lepers. Moreover, he consistently treated them with respect, even making them the heroes in some of his stories.
Similarly, most Jews of Jesus’ day looked down on Gentiles and had a particular distain for the Romans, the group who ruled Palestine. Yet Jesus treated them as equals. Most remarkably, Jesus was willing to interact with and serve Roman centurions. These were high-ranking officials in the oppressive Roman military and were thus despised by Jews. Jesus went so far as to praise the faith of a Roman centurion as being greater than the faith of any Jew (Matthew 8:5-11)!
This sort of behavior was absolutely scandalous and revolutionary. It reveals that where God reigns, the Powers that fuel racism will be confronted and racial walls will be torn down. Where God reigns, God’s vision for a united human race will be in the process of being reconciled.
Boyd, Gregory A., The Myth of a Christian Nation: How the Quest for Political Power is Destroying the Church (pp. 114-115). Zondervan.