Imagery and Narrative: Reflections on Racism, the Flesh and the One New Man. by Michael Philliber
“Regarding the past, believers look with horror upon the sins of slavery and Jim Crow, and rightly condemn both institutions. But do they really think that many believers today would have avoided the cultural pressures that captured so much of the church at that time? Would most of today’s white Christians really have been among that small, persecuted minority in the antebellum American South who actively opposed slavery? (…) When today’s believers evaluate the sins of past generations, humility and empathy are always in good order, even as they speak the truth and hold to the standards of God’s Word. Christians might also consider what future generations will say about today’s church when believers look back at our cultural accommodations. All have sinned and Fallen short of the glory of God.”2Additionally, returning “racism” to the “works of the flesh” places our prejudices, and locates our congregations and denominations back into the rocky, rearing rodeo called “sanctification.” Here in this biblical framework of sanctification we find that “the work of God's free grace, whereby we are renewed in the whole person (both individually and collectively) after the image of God, and are enabled more and more to die unto sin, and live unto righteousness” (Westminster Shorter Catechism 35) is still being applied to us by God. Since these racial biases are part of the works of the flesh, which God is amending through his Spirit’s work, we become freed from faddish, state-of-the-art resolutions that are divorced from any recognition of total depravity and expect heaven-on-earth in our time. We become liberated to be freshly charitable and patient, knowing that ultimately the satisfying conclusion to the works of the flesh will finally come when Christ returns, when in the fullness of time the Father will “unite all things in Christ, things in heaven and things on earth” (Ephesians 1.10). All of these thoughts bring me to my conclusion with one more observation.
The New Imagery and Narrative: One New Man
The WWII Propaganda picture was accessed on 17 December 2018 at https://study.com/academy/lesson/anti-japanese-propaganda-poster-during-world-war-ii.html