WHEN IT COMES TO RACISM, it doesn’t look like we’ve made much progress in the past 4,000 years.
Racism in the Bible
Yesterday I was reading the Bible story of Joseph and his brothers. His 10 older brothers sold Little Bro Joe down the river into slavery in Egypt. During the next 20 years of Joseph’s life, he rose to become a top official in Egypt. He reported directly to the king.
When his brothers came down during a drought to buy grain, he served them a meal while he watched them to see if they had become better men than they had been big brothers.
I found it interesting how Joseph set up the seating at the meal. He ate at one table by himself. His servants ate at another table. And his brothers ate at a third table “because Egyptians despise Hebrews and refuse to eat with them” (Genesis 43:32).
When Jacob moved his family down to Egypt so they could weather out the drought beside the Nile River, he told them “You live here in the region of Goshen, for the Egyptians despise shepherds” (Genesis 46:34).
It was a segregated world.
It still is.
I have seen it close to home in the past week.
On the campus and in the local courthouse.
Racism on campus
At the University of Missouri in Columbia, black players on the football team decided the racism was serious enough that they were going to boycott all future games unless the president of the university resigned. He did.
Those football players had the backing of their coach, a childhood acquaintance of mine, Gary Pinkel. We went to the same junior high, high school, and college. He was a good kid. And I’m proud of the action he took recently in support of his players. That was risky. And it still is risky. This could cost him something down the way.
Racism on trial
In the county courthouse a judge sentenced F. Glenn Miller to death for the killing of three Christians he thought were Jews.
Two of those victims attended my church: a grandfather and his 14-year-old grandson, Dr. William Lewis Corporon and Reat Griffin Underwood. They had gone to the Jewish Community Center that Saturday so young Reat could audition for a contest. They were both shot to death in the parking lot.
The shooting took place while my Bible study group and I were 16 blocks north taking part in a Jewish Passover Seder in the home of a Jewish lady who attended our group.
We were clearing the tables in her home when this lady got a call from her daughter who was working that day at the Jewish Community Center. Everything got frantic there for a while.
Could racism be like a lot of other sins:
- it always tugs at us
- it’s always the easy way
- it’s the direction we drift unless we make a decision to paddle our boat in the opposite direction.
For more about racism
- Hitler came to my Passover meal
- KC shooting of folks in my church
- “Discrimination,” Complete Guide to the Bible Student Edition, page 45
- “Discrimination,” “Prejudice,” Complete Bible Handbook, pages 110, 193
Blog subscribers who win books this week
- Marguerite Harrell
- Charlotte Kirby
I give away free books each week to randomly selected subscribers to my free blog and quarterly newsletter. The Chosen Ones get the option of selecting my new release: A Quick Guided Tour Through the Bible – among about half a dozen other titles.
Holiday discount: A Quick Guided Tour Through the Bible
There’s a holiday price drop on the e-book edition of A Quick, Guided Tour Through the Bible.
The e-book is available for $9.99.
They will pull the plug on this offer sometime before Thanksgiving.
This is the promo I have been waiting for. I’m getting the e-book edition for myself at this price.
Now, I’ll be able to use the book on my phone and on my tablet.
Here are the links you can use to get the book:
Well, I don’t know anything about the situation at MU, other than what I’ve read. From the back pew, it seems to me it may be an unhealthy thing for the college president to yield to an athletic team’s demands as quickly as he did. I see long term repercussions in this. As far as racism’s nastiness and its refusal to go away, I think there is a deep seated need in many of us to feel like we are better than someone else. Anyone shaking his/her head at this, you may not be as immune as you think.
Stephen M. Miller
Hi Tom. Young people are often the ones who force needed social change. I know they certainly were when I was in college during the Vietnam War era. The Middle Aged and the Senior Adults don’t seem to have the energy and the drive that it takes to confront The System.
And that won’t do us well now that companies are starting to cut pension benefits. I have a brother-in-law whose pension got cut 49%. Folks need to push back on that. We might need to recruit some college students.