Darrow Miller and Friends

Racism Is in the Human Heart

  1. Racism and Black Lives Matter: Worldview Reflections
  2. The Human Race, Antidote to Racism!
  3. Two Forms of Racism
  4. Postmodern Racism: Ideological Social Justice
  5. What is “Whiteness”?
  6. Racism Is in the Human Heart
  7. Three Important Distinctions Regarding Racism
  8. Hope in the Midst of Racist Despair
  9. Envy, Emulation and Racism
  10. Envy, Emulation and Racism, part 2

Racism is alive in America. When it rears its ugly head it needs to be challenged, where it has harmed people we need to walk beside them, they need to know our compassion.

There are racist whites, Asians and blacks. Some whites and Asians are racist toward blacks. Some blacks are racists towards whites and perhaps Asians. Some lighter-skinned Latins are racist toward Latins with indigenous blood.

I was teaching a workshop in Latin America when a young woman of mixed race—black and Spanish blood, came up in tears, before 150 students, to confess the racism in her family. She was one of several children and in the middle of the pigmentation line. She felt inferior to her lighter siblings and looked down on her siblings who were darker.

The global phenomenon of anti-Semitism is another dimension of racism. Throughout history, wherever Jews have gone, they have been hated. Anti-Semitism is again raising its ugly head in Europe and North America.

There is racism in America because there is racism in the human heart. In the past, America has practiced systemic racism. Mostly, this is not true today. The work of the Civil Rights movement and the leadership of Dr. Martin Luther King helped bring a cultural and policy shift in American life.

However the anti-racists are themselves racists. They see “whiteness” as racist. What could be more racist? By their thinking, a white person can only be accepted if he becomes woke, accepts the narrative of BLM and bows the knee to Critical Race Theory. In this framework, the United States is no longer unified around allegiance to the constitution, the vision of liberty and the American flag as a symbol of freedom. No, whites must bow the knee before the ideology and agenda of the BLM organization.

Evil in three forms

Antifa, the fascist antifascists, shows a similar irony. These are  postmoderns using fascist tactics against those whom  they consider fascists.

From a biblical perspective, all human beings are sinners. Sin is rooted deeply in our hearts and lives.

A clear teaching of the Bible is that, because of Adam’s original sin and our own moral choices, we are each sinners (Genesis 6:5-6; Matthew 15:19; Romans 3:23). This is personal moral evil.

Evil has three faces. Personal moral evil is the most fundamental. Then there is natural evil: floods, earthquakes, famines, etc., The third level is institutional evil such as systemic racism, manifested in slavery, Apartheid, anti-Semitism, etc.

All three forms of evil are to be fought, beginning with the sin in our own heart as well as its manifestation in the institutional evil of racism. While this will mean a change in policies and institutions, a change in laws and policies is not enough. Why? Because behind the institutions are people and ideologies. Without changing people’s ideas, values and hearts, you may change the laws of a state or the policies of an institution, but you will not solve the problem of racism. The solution must change the human heart leading to change in the culture. Without change at the level of culture, the old culture will simply form new racist institutions. Without love replacing envy and hatred in the human heart, racism will continue to raise its ugly head.

This is counter to the prevailing mood that institutions are evil but humans are basically good. Because we are all are sinners, we are all capable of racism. Personal moral racism leads to racist institutions. But one can demolish an institution without rooting out the racism in the heart.

Racism is rooted in the human heart

The thoughtless mood of the day is to tear down institutions and deconstruct history. Some believe racism will disappear as a result. So we have riots and looting, burning down buildings and businesses, dismantling or defunding police forces, destroying national monuments, and even deconstructing history, as with the New York Times 1619 project. Unchecked, these will result in anarchy which in turn will bring a new police state.

Why? Because the root of the problem is the human heart. American actor Denzel Washington stated in an interview,

You can change the law, but if you go home and teach your son how to hate every day, doesn’t matter what law has been changed until you teach your son how to love, then the law is not going to change the way your son feels.[1]

Two great Russian novelists understood this more clearly than most Christians do today.

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (1918–2008), wrote in The Gulag Archipelago,

If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?

Leo Tolstoy wrote, “Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”

Yes, institutional evil needs to be addressed wherever and whenever it exists. However, evil institutions will arise without addressing the evil in man’s heart. Only the cross of Christ has the capacity to deal with that evil.

Atheism drives racism

Both the old and new forms of racism are derived from the same a-theistic (against Judeo-Christian theism) faith. And these views are radically distinct from the Judeo-Christian worldview.

As Francis Schaeffer said in The Christian Manifesto,

These two worldviews [Judeo-Christian theism and a-theism] stand as totals in complete antithesis to each other in content and also in their natural results —including sociological and governmental results, and specifically including law. …. It is not that these two worldviews are different only in how they understand the nature of reality and existence. They also inevitably produce totally different results. The operative word here is inevitably. It is not just that they happen to bring forth different results, but it is absolutely inevitable that they will bring forth different results.

The atheistic worldview of secularism and the theistic worldview of the Bible articulate very different concepts of human life.

On the atheistic side, the Darwinist posits that we are simply animals or complex machines, the product of a cosmic accident, while the Cultural Marxist holds that the world can be divided between evil oppressors and innocent victims, and that the oppressors can be identified by their skin color. Atheism grounds both the old and new concepts of racism.

Theism, on the other hand, affirms that we are the very image of God, that human life is sacred and was created for a divine purpose. There is absolutely no ground for racism. All lives matter!

  • Darrow Miller

[1] Video: Black Wisdom Matters – Part #3 – State of Racism in America: https://www.google.com/search?ei=hIwQX6XtL4rm-gTl4JXYDw&q=Black+Wisdom+Matters+Pt+3+State+of+Racism+in+America

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Darrow is co-founder of the Disciple Nations Alliance and a featured author and teacher. For over 30 years, Darrow has been a popular conference speaker on topics that include Christianity and culture, apologetics, worldview, poverty, and the dignity of women. From 1981 to 2007 Darrow served with Food for the Hungry International (now FH association), and from 1994 as Vice President. Before joining FH, Darrow spent three years on staff at L’Abri Fellowship in Switzerland where he was discipled by Francis Schaeffer. He also served as a student pastor at Northern Arizona University and two years as a pastor of Sherman Street Fellowship in urban Denver, CO. In addition to earning his Master’s degree in Adult Education from Arizona State University, Darrow pursued graduate studies in philosophy, theology, Christian apologetics, biblical studies, and missions in the United States, Israel, and Switzerland. Darrow has authored numerous studies, articles, Bible studies and books, including Discipling Nations: The Power of Truth to Transform Culture (YWAM Publishing, 1998), Nurturing the Nations: Reclaiming the Dignity of Women for Building Healthy Cultures (InterVarsity Press, 2008), LifeWork: A Biblical Theology for What You Do Every Day (YWAM, 2009), Rethinking Social Justice: Restoring Biblical Compassion (YWAM, 2015), and more. These resources along with links to free e-books, podcasts, online training programs and more can be found at Disciple Nations Alliance (https://disciplenations.org).