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A message to the white protestant church
Lenten Reflection from Rev. Lawton Higgs


2 Corinthians 5:16 NRSV
“From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view, even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we know him no longer that way.”
 
2 Corinthians 5:16 The Message
"Because of this decision we don’t evaluate people by what they have or how they look. We looked at the Messiah that way once and got it all wrong, as you know. We certainly don’t look at him that way any more."
 
Phil. 3:4b NRSV
"If anyone else has reason to be confident in the flesh, I have more:"
 
Phil. 3:4b The Message
"we can list what many might think are impressive credentials."

The White Protestant Church in Alabama has failed God. We evaluate people by what they have and how they look. You have to be born straight, out of a white, thin, rich belly from a white male, as a white male to count. We no longer see our Christ as a poor, brown, unattractive, Jewish, Palestinian, peasant as the embodiment of God’s rule among us, as the spokesperson and demonstration of the Queendom/Kingdom of God.

It is no longer our desire to follow him in the ethic of the Sermon of the Mount.  We have become satisfied to make him an idol on the pedestal of a non-ethical creed and to try to use him in a magical way to manipulate God to satisfy our human desire for possessions, place and power while abusing the creation. We have no desire to preach good news to the poor on our doorstep, liberate the oppressed immigrants, free the poor black mass of incarcerated prisoners or cancel suffocating student debt to build a compassionate and just society.
 
We are satisfied to think our eternal salvation is accomplished by holding some illogical, irrational opinion about Jesus and the Bible but never knowing Jesus and following Him or ever reading what the Bible says about social justice and living it.
 
The White Protestant Church in Alabama can list for itself what many would consider impressive credentials while it exists in a morally corrupt, racist, ignorant, poverty ridden, oppressive, punishment oriented, war-seeking society that shows no resemblance to the word and work of Jesus. The White Protestant Church in Alabama is the political power base that elects politicians who work to keep this morally corrupt society in place.
 
Therefore, it is time for us to reengage the words and work of Jesus and the Apostles and the Prophets and to know that highfaluting ideas and opinions about Jesus and the Bible do not provide any safety, security or salvation.

We must come to a faith that works by love, striving for communities that embody the reign of God Jesus modeled, seeing every human being as a precious child of God and seeing all creation as a holy place to use, enjoy and preserve, not a place to abuse.
 
We need a Moral Revival built on the solid rock of Jesus’ words worked into our lives.  A Moral Revival that restores our brokenness and through compassion leads us to establishe justice for all and heal the creation.
 
R. Lawton Higgs, Sr.
 
3/9/16
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