Christianity & Race

Most Christians don't know Martin Luther King Jr. spent the night of his assassination committing adultery. [1] Most would never imagine he also denied Christ’s divinity, [2] second coming, [3] virgin birth, and resurrection. [4]

Even fewer Christians are aware that anti-Apartheid leader Nelsen Mandela was a terrorist responsible for the deaths of hundreds of innocent civilians, [5] or that he never renounced violence against Euroethnic South Africans. [6] Most would be appalled to learn he cheated on at least two of his wives and fathered a daughter out of wedlock. [7]

Both King and Mandela are heroes of ethnic diversity. They are hailed as excellent Christian examples.

Just as the heroes of ethnic pluralism have been portrayed one dimensionally so the entire concept has been presented as the only Christian option. Churches are told they must ethnically diversify to be pleasing to God. To discourage this course is to be dismissed as a "racist."

Is this the only way to see it?

I. IS RACISM A SIN?

Interestingly, the sin of "racism" was invented in the nineteenth century. Before that time there was no concept in Christianity of racial bias being sinful. The terms "racism" and "racist" didn't even exist in the English language until less than 115 years ago. [8] [9]

While everyone would agree that hating another human being is a sin, the Bible simply does not support the idea that racial stereotypes and segregation are sinful.

Paul ethnically stereotyped the entire population of Crete when he affirmed in Titus 1:12: "Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons."

The Old Testament required a degree of segregation between ethnic Israelites and foreigners (Nehemiah 13:3: "As soon as the people heard the law, they separated from Israel all those of foreign descent.").

If segregation and ethnic stereotypes are sinful then both God and Paul are guilty of sin.

II. WHY DO CHRISTIANS AVOID RACIAL INTEGRATION? (Social Capital and Community Trust)

Many are afraid to admit it, but most everyone knows that racially diverse congregations simply don’t work.

Because they don’t work, people don’t naturally create diverse congregations. Sunday morning is the most segregated time of the American week. As Christian author Curtis Paul DeYoung commented: “Only about 5 percent of the nation’s churches are racially integrated, and half of them are in the process of becoming all-black or all-white.” [10]

Why won’t Christians integrate their churches?

Among the biggest reasons is that racial diversity causes a collapse in social capital. Social capital is defined as: "The network of social connections that exist between people, and their shared values and norms of behavior, which enable and encourage mutually advantageous social cooperation." [11]

A social capital collapse means the end of close knit community. This fact is elaborated upon in a 2013 paper published in the American Journal of Community Psychology entitled 'The (In)compatibility of Diversity and Sense of Community.' [12]

As Harvard researcher Robert Putnam discovered: "inhabitants of diverse communities tend to withdraw from collective life, distrust their neighbors, regardless of the color of their skin, to withdraw even from close friends, to expect the worst from their community and its leaders, to volunteer less, to give less to charity and work on community projects less, to agitate for social reform more, but have less faith that they can actually make a difference, and to huddle unhappily in front of the television.” [13]

Incredibly, research shows that in diverse settings even members of the same race trust each other less.

Do Christians want church community to collapse? Do we want volunteering to cease? Does God want church members to distrust one another? Do church leaders want the collection plates to come back empty?

If churches want strong community we must avoid racial diversity.

III. ARE WE REALLY THE SAME? (Intelligence & Genetics)

Despite what racial pluralists want us to believe, God did not create different racial groups to live together in common personal community. He intended for them to be separate.

Man tried to evade this truth in Genesis 11. After the flood, humanity built an enormous tower to avoid becoming spread out and divided. God had other plans. He divided the languages of humanity so they would permanently fracture into different groups.

God divided the ethnic groups with other means. The most obvious of these is genetics. The dissimilar genetic information which causes the races to look different also produces effects that are more than skin deep.

One of these differences is intelligence.

Despite common misconception, there are large differences in average intelligence between racial groups. In the United States, African Americans have an average IQ of only 85, and Latinos 89. The averages for European Americans and Asians are around 100. [14]

The intelligence gap between Afro-American and Euro-Americans has existed for at least fifty years without significant alteration. [15] In fact, this gap persists across socio-economic lines.

As a group, impoverished European American children have higher IQs than upper middle class African American children. [16] African American children adopted into upper middle class European American families have been shown to regress to the 85 IQ averages of all African Americans. [17] Even adoption has little effect on adult intelligence.

Most intelligence scientists agree these gaps are caused by genetic differences between the racial groups. Around 70% of intelligence is genetically inherited; [18] even if nutritional and income disparities were eliminated the Afro-American / Euro-American IQ gap would remain virtually unaltered. [19]

History confirms these intelligence differences. No sub-Saharan African society ever domesticated animals, [20] invented a written language, the plow, or the wheel. [21]

In sub-Saharan Africa, the average IQ is only 68. [22] This number is two points lower than the threshold for mental retardation (70). [23] This low level of intelligence explains the inability of Africans to bring themselves out of poverty. The higher IQ of 85 for African Americans was created by the mixing of European and African ethnic groups in the New World.

No amount of money or resources dumped into Africa will ever make a difference. A population with an average IQ lower than the mental retardation threshold will never be able to create a civilized society.

Similar lessons should be learned for the African American community. There is a huge intelligence gap between black and white Americans. No amount of programs or good intentions will be able to lift the "inner city" out of poverty or close the achievement gap.

Until we're capable of changing genes we will not be able to change economic position.

As politically incorrect as it might seem, there are large differences between the races in average intelligence. These gaps are not going away, and they produce differences in culture, economic success, theological concerns, and life perspective that will forever cause major conflict within a multiracial church.

IV. WHAT IS THE BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE ON ETHNICITY (Ethnicity as Extended Family)

The book of Genesis gives us a clear picture of how ethnic groups developed.

The Greek word translated "nation" is the word "ethnos," from which we derive our term "ethnic group." [24]

In Genesis 10, we find that each ethnos is an extended family. Verse 5: "By these were the isles of the Gentiles divided in their lands; every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations."

The Nation/Ethnos of Israel was united by its members being genetically descended from the physical man Israel (Jacob). Biblically speaking, the ethnos is simply an extended family.

Modern families possess houses and property reserved for them as private homes. In the same way, extended families, in the form of ethnic groups, have been given countries which serve as family compounds reserved for their members.

This principle is demonstrated most clearly by the Nation of Israel. God told the Israelites to drive out foreigners from their midst and create a homogeneous nation state.

If God supported the creation of ethnically homogeneous countries for his people in the past, why would he now require Christians to create the exact opposite?

Paul said in Colossians 3:11: "Here there is no Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all." The Lord has chosen his people from every class, geography, gender, and ethnic group on the planet. While the chosen people of God are now taken from every nation or ethnos (rather than the Jews alone) this does not mean they should all be represented in the same congregation or political state.

We quickly accept this reality when considering linguistic differences. Almost no one would argue that every language should be sung during the same worship service, or that the preacher should be interrupted every other minute for a translator to repeat him, but we fail to see how this principle also applies to communication issues related to cultural differences, intelligence disparities, and identity concerns.

The fact that God now includes both gentiles and Jews among his people doesn’t mean the genetic and cultural differences between them have been eliminated.

Favoring one’s own family is a good thing.

A father who distributed his wages equally to every family he came into contact with would be charged with neglecting his own wife and children. [25]

The apostle Paul claimed that if one didn’t provide for his extended family he could not call himself a Christian: "But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever" (I Timothy 5:8).

Fathers favor their children almost entirely because of the genetic connection they share with them. Using the same principle, God has designed two members of the same ethnicity to favor one another based on their own genetic similarities.

God expects Christians to favor their own ethnicity. He has designed humanity in this way.

Numerous scientific studies have concluded that infants as young as fifteen months experience ethnic bias. [26] God has infused into every person a healthy inborn desire to protect and trust their own extended ethnic families. This is the Biblical perspective.

V. CAN A RELATIONSHIP BE BUILT ON LIES? (Multiculturalism & Resentment)

No relationship can be built on a lie, but in modern times interracial relationships have been constructed on several large deceptions.

African Americans and Latinos are being told their economic and social failure should be blamed on white racism. European Americans are constantly held responsible for the failure of minorities.

Naturally, minorities believe white people hate them, and whites resent being held liable for situations they have little control over.

Ending racial and ethnic resentment requires that we begin telling the truth.

Firstly, human beings were not created by God to operate in multiracial communities.

Secondly, worldwide economic disparities between the African and European races have been caused by God designed genetic differences in average population intelligence (among other factors).

Thirdly, the Bible does not demand racial integration on the community level. In fact, God authored ethnic and linguistic division at the Tower of Babel.

Fourthly, racial generalizations and segregation are supported and used in the Bible. God does not condemn them as sinful.

The Bible portrays several exceptions to these truths. Rahab, for example, allied herself with another ethnic group and integrated into a new people. These exceptions can be tolerated and endorsed, but they are exceptions because they break the general rule. Integrating individuals is different than integrating entire groups.

Dehumanizing a group of people is wrong. Stirring up hatred is wrong. Multiracial societies are the cause of much hatred, resentment, and dehumanization.

Hopefully, all Christians will agree with the Bible that mankind was created from one man made in the image of God, but the Apostle Paul clearly states that God created ethnic distinction out of "one blood" (Acts 17:26). God turned "one blood" into many. Our common linage is no excuse for racial amalgamation.

The travesty of racial pluralism has continued for too long. A basic understanding of the scientific research on community and intelligence will lead one to decry the fantastically unstable foundations of the all pervasive social movement advocating for diversity.

Even the most cursory reading of the Bible yields many reasons to believe that racial and ethnic diversity is not a principle around which to organize society.

While multiculturalism may hold temporary sway in America and the West, the tide is turning.

Recent elections have seen citizens supporting identitarian parties in Britain (UKIP), France (National Front), and across Europe and America. [27] This rise in anti-immigrant ethno-national sentiment speaks to the failure of pluralism’s rebellion against God ordained ethnic organization.

The world is waking up. How long will the Church sleep in on the truth?


NOTES

"Race" verse "Ethnicity" - I've chosen to use race and ethnicity as interchangeable terms in this document. Although I am well aware of the differences between them I believe the overlap is significant enough to warrant this practice. Furthermore, the Bible’s description of the origin of the ethnic groups would also apply to the broader races (which describe groups of ethnos).

[1] Stone, Jeff. "Martin Luther King Cheated On His Wife & Other Lesser-Known Facts About The Civil Rights Leader For MLK Day." International Business Times. January 21, 2013. Accessed November 18, 2015. http://www.ibtimes.com/martin-luther-king-cheated-his-wife-other-lesser-known-facts-about-civil-rights-leader-mlk-day.
EXCERPT: "King even spent the last night of his life with a woman who was not his wife. In the chaos outside the Lorraine Motel, his advisers told the young woman to stay out of the ambulance to avoid tarnishing his legacy."

[2] King, Martin. "The Humanity and Divinity of Jesus." Stanford University. February 1, 1950. Accessed November 18, 2015. http://kingencyclopedia.stanford.edu/encyclopedia/documentsentry/doc_500215_008/.
EXCERPT: "the divine sonship of Jesus, the virgin birth, and the bodily resurrection… if we delve into the deeper meaning of these doctrines, and somehow strip them of their literal interpretation, we will find that they are based on a profound foundation. Although we may be able to argue with all degrees of logic that these doctrines are historically and philosophically untenable."

[3] King, Martin. "The Christian Pertinence of Eschatological Hope." Stanford University. February 1, 1950. Accessed November 18, 2015. https://kinginstitute.stanford.edu/king-papers/documents/christian-pertinence-eschatological-hope.
EXCERPT: "It is obvious that most twentieth century Christians must frankly and flatly reject any view of a physical return of Christ."

[4] King, Martin. "What Experiences of Christians Living in the Early Christian Century Led to the Christian Doctrines of the Divine Sonship of Jesus, the Virgin Birth, and the Bodily Resurrection." Stanford University. November 1, 1949. Accessed November 18, 2015. https://kinginstitute.stanford.edu/king-papers/documents/what-experiences-christians-living-early-christian-century-led-christian.
EXCERPT: Virgin Birth: "First we must admit that the evidence for the tenability of this doctrine is too shallow to convince any objective thinker. How then did this doctrine arise? … it was believed in Greek thought that an extraordinary person could only be explained by saying that he had a father who was more than human. It is probably this Greek idea which influenced Christian thought.”
EXCERPT: Resurrection: "In fact the external evidence for the authenticity of this doctrine is found wanting."

[5] Newman, Alex. "In Death, as in Life, Truth About Mandela Overlooked." The New American. December 1, 2013. Accessed November 18, 2015. http://www.thenewamerican.com/world-news/africa/item/17106-in-death-as-in-life-truth-about-mandela-overlooked.

[6] "Nelsen Mandela Sings about killing Whites." Youtube.com.

[7] Harris, Ruwaydah. "Love in a Time of Struggle: The Women in Nelson Mandela's Life." Aljazeera America. December 1, 2013. Accessed November 18, 2015. http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2013/12/13/love-in-a-time-ofstrugglethewomeninnelsonmandelaaslife0.html.

[8] Demby, Gene. "The Ugly, Fascinating History Of The Word 'Racism'" NPR. 2014. Accessed November 18, 2015. http://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2014/01/05/260006815/the-ugly-fascinating-history-of-the-word-racism.
EXCERPT: "The Oxford English Dictionary's first recorded utterance of the word racism was by a man named Richard Henry Pratt in 1902."

[9] Wilton, Dave. "1926 Words." Wordorigins.org. August 1, 2011. Accessed November 18, 2015. http://www.wordorigins.org/index.php/site/comments/1926_words/.
First Recorded Use: 1926.
Although some speculation remains, it appears that this term was first coined as a negative expression in the Russian language by the communist revolutionary Leon Trotsky.

[10] Blake, John. "Why Many Americans Prefer Their Sundays Segregated." CNN. 2008. Accessed November 18, 2015. http://edition.cnn.com/2008/LIVING/wayoflife/08/04/segregated.sundays/index.html.

[11] "Social Capital." Dictionary.com. Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition. HarperCollins Publishers. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/social-capital (accessed: November 18, 2015).

[12] Neal, Zachary, and Jennifer Neal. "The (In)compatibility of Diversity and Sense of Community." Michigan State University. November 1, 2013. Accessed November 1, 2015. https://www.msu.edu/~zpneal/publications/neal-diversitysoc.pdf.
EXCERPT: "recent…work… has uncovered a community-diversity dialectic wherein the contextual conditions that foster respect for diversity run in opposition to those that foster sense of community. More specifically, within neighborhoods, residential integration provides opportunities for intergroup contact that are necessary to promote respect of diversity but may prevent the formation of dense interpersonal networks that are necessary to promote sense of community."

[13] Putnam, Robert. "E Pluribus Unum: Diversity and Community in the Twenty-first Century The 2006 Johan Skytte Prize Lecture." Wiley Online Library. June 1, 2007. Accessed November 19, 2015. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-9477.2007.00176.x/abstract.

[14] Gottfredson, Linda. "Mainstream Science on Intelligence: An Editorial With 52 Signatories, History, and Bibliography." University of Deleware. 1995. Accessed November 19, 2015. www.udel.edu/educ/gottfredson/reprints/1997mainstream.pdf.

[15] Rushton, J. Phillip, and Arther Jensen. "The Rise and Fall of the Flynn Effect as a Reason to Expect a Narrowing of the Black–White IQ Gap." ScienceDirect. 2010. Accessed November 19, 2015. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160289609001561.
EXCERPT: "In an analysis of mathematics and reading scores from tests such as the NAEP and Coleman Report over the last 54 years, we show that there has been no narrowing of the gap in either IQ scores or in educational achievement."

[16] "Family Income Differences Explain Only a Small Part of the SAT Racial Scoring Gap." Journal of Blacks in Higher Education. 2009. Accessed November 19, 2015. http://www.jbhe.com/latest/index012209_p.html.

[17] Clark, Gregory. "Your Ancestors, Your Fate." New York Times. February 1, 2014. Accessed November 19, 2015. http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/02/21/your-fate-thank-your-ancestors/.
EXCERPT: "In America, for example, the I.Q. of adopted children correlates with their adoptive parents’ when they are young, but the correlation is close to zero by adulthood. There is a low correlation between the incomes and educational attainment of adopted children and those of their adoptive parents."

[18] Bouchard, David, David Lykken, Matthew McGue, Nancy Segal, and Auke Tellegen. "Sources of Human Psychological Differences: The Minnesota Study of Twins Reared Apart." University of Missouri. March 1, 2012. Accessed November 19, 2015. www.d.umn.edu/~jetterso/documents/ScienceMNTwinStudies.pdf.
EXCERPT: "Like the prior, smaller studies of monozygotic twins raised apart, about 70% of the variance in IQ was found to be associated with genetic variation."

[19] Gottfredson, Linda. "Mainstream Science on Intelligence: An Editorial with 52 Signatories, History, and Bibliography." University of Deleware. 1995. Accessed November 19, 2015. www.udel.edu/educ/gottfredson/reprints/1997mainstream.pdf.
EXCERPT: "If all environments were to become equal for everyone, heritability would rise to 100%..."

[20] Diamond, Jared. Guns, Germs, and Steele: The Fates of Human Societies. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1997. 389-400.
EXCERPT: Domesticated Animals: "First, as regards domestic animals, we’ve already seen that those of sub-Saharan Africa came from Eurasia, with the possible exception of a few from North Africa. As a result, domestic animals did not reach sub-Saharan Africa until thousands of years after they began to be utilized by emerging Eurasian civilizations. That’s initially surprising, because we think of Africa as the continent of big wild mammals…"
EXCERPT: Writing: "writing did not arise independently in the rest of Africa, where it was instead brought in from the outside by Arabs and Europeans" [After explaining it had arisen in non-Black North Africa and been imported from Arabia to Ethiopia].

[21] Souza, Dinesh. The End of Racism: Principles for a Multiracial Society. New York: Free Press (Google Books), 1995. 54.
EXCERPT: Wheel: "its [wheel] invention is usually credited to ancient Mesopotamia, where there is evidence of its use before 3500 BC. But more than 5,000 years later, the wheel was unknown in virtually all of Black Africa."
EXCERT: Plow: "Virtually no community in the Americas nor Black Africa knew about the plow until Europeans introduced it in the modern era."

[22] Lynn, Richard, and Gerhard Meisenberg. "The Average IQ of Sub-Saharan Africans: Comments on Wicherts, Dolan, and Van Der Maas." Science Direct. October 1, 2009. Accessed November 19, 2015. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160289609001275.
EXCERPT: "The four data sets can be averaged to give an IQ of 68 as the best reading of the IQ in sub-Saharan Africa."

[23] "Diagnostic Criteria for Mental Retardation." Accessed November 19, 2015. http://behavenet.com/node/21026.
EXCERPT: "Significantly subaverage intellectual functioning: an IQ of approximately 70 or below on an individually administered IQ test…"

[24] Piper, John. Bloodlines: Race, Cross, and the Christian. Wheaton, Illinois: Crossway, 2011. 152-153.
EXCERPT: “He made from one man every nation [Greek ethnos] of mankind to live on all the face of the earth.’ Notice two things from this text. First, God is the maker of the ethnic groups…Ethnic groups do not come about by meaningless, random genetic change. They came about by God’s design and purpose. The text says plainly, ‘God made every ethnos.”

[25] Aquinas, Thomas. "Question 26. The Order of Charity." Summa Theologica: The Order of Charity (Secunda Secundae Partis, Q. 26). 1274. Accessed November 23, 2015. http://www.newadvent.org/summa/3026.htm#article1.
The hugely influential Medieval Christian theologian Thomas Aquinas argued that Christians are obligated to love the people closest to them (their neighbors) more than those who are farther away. If a conflict of interests arises between a distant group (for example, third world refugees) and a closer group (for example, our families or physical neighbors) our obligation is to favor the interests of the closer group.
EXCERPT: "We must, therefore, say that, even as regards the affection we ought to love one neighbor more than another. The reason is that, since the principle of love is God, and the person who loves, it must needs be that the affection of love increases in proportion to the nearness to one or the other of those principles."

[26] Sommerville, Jessica. "Babies Prefer Fairness -- but Only If It Benefits Them -- in Choosing a Playmate." ScienceDaily. April 1, 2014. Accessed November 19, 2015. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140414134051.htm.
EXCERPT: "Babies as young as 15 months preferred people with the same ethnicity as themselves -- a phenomenon known as in-group bias, or favoring people who have the same characteristics as oneself."
EXCERPT FROM ORIGINAL STUDY: "Caucasian infants' social selections varied as a function of the race of the recipient advantaged by the unfair distributor. Specifically, infants were more likely to select the fair distributor when the unfair recipient advantaged the Asian (versus the Caucasian) recipient. These findings provide evidence that infants select social partners on the basis of prior fair behavior and that infants also take into account the race of distributors and recipients when making their social selections."

[27] Buchanan, Patrick. Buchanan.org. May 1, 2014. Accessed November 19, 2015. http://buchanan.org/blog/specter-haunting-europe-6416.
EXERPT: "A second telltale sign of the new populism is traditionalism and cultural conservatism, reverence for the religious and cultural history and heritage of the nation and its indigenous people."