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Favoritism and Prejudice in Christian Pastors

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One day, two White Americans decided to visit a church whose members are not White Americans. At first, they were warmly welcomed by the church members and the pastor. And all appeared to be fine until the pastor, during the delivery of his sermon, displayed very inappropriate behavior: He said something to the two Caucasian visitors that put the spotlight on their race. No, he didn't say anything like, “You White people...” However, the two visitors, as well as everyone else, knew that he was calling attention to their race as he looked at, and pointed to them while speaking.

What's wrong with this picture? Essentially, the pastor, through his words, unnecessarily created two groups:

His non-White members (the majority)
A tiny group of two Caucasian visitors

When we divide people into groups, it sets the stage for us to interact differently with them, based on our attitudes toward them. There are times when we must have groups. For example, unbelievers and believers are not in the same category, just as children cannot be treated as adults nor adults as children. However, there was no legitimate reason at all for the pastor to single out the two visitors and put them into a category by themselves, based on their race. God's Word is simply to be delivered to EVERYONE. As ministers, it is NOT our place to judge or guess at what parts of His Word are more vital, necessary, interesting, boring, exciting, or edifying to certain groups of people. This is especially true when we don't know their background, nor what God is doing in their life in the present. And unless the Lord or the person himself chooses to reveal something to us about his life, his life is not our business.

As ministers, let us simply deliver God's Word to ALL people in a professional, unbiased, and Christ-like manner without favoritism or prejudice against the person's race, nationality, culture, economic status, physical handicap, marital status, religious background, gender, past sins, educational level, etc.

Neither an initial warm welcome, nor smiling faces, nor handshakes, nor hugs hide our unfavorable attitudes and opinions toward certain groups of people. And, as long as we harbor those attitudes, they'll repeatedly cause us to say inappropriate things, behave in inappropriate ways, and be disrespectful toward the people we dislike and/or view as less important than others. Those two visitors, as well as other visitors, never returned to that pastor's church, which continues to be stagnate in its growth to this day.

“...Yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more. And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law; to the weak became I weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. And this I do for the gospel's sake” (1 Corinthians 9:19-23).

“Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. Give none offense, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God. Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved” (1 Corinthians 10:31-33).


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