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The fallacy of Critical Race Theory

The fallacy of Critical Race Theory
Posted on March 3, 2021  - By Godly John

In the previous article, we considered what Critical Race Theory (CRT) is and if it is compatible with the Bible. We saw unity in light of what it means to be a Christian, which lies in contrast to what CRT — or social justice or the world — tells us. 

As Christians, our unity is found in Christ — not in any common social construct such as race, nations, or cultures. This unbreakable unity transcends everything that we were born into, whether as a man or a woman, an American or an Indian, rich or poor, growing up in a loving home or in an abusive home — even our own sins and idiosyncrasies (Galatians 3:28).

In this article, we explore the underlying basis for our unity a bit more: our reconciliation to Christ as the basis for our reconciliation to one another.

A desire for justice

If there’s one thing that all mankind is clear about, it is that we are not equal. We are not equal historically, economically, culturally and on many other fronts as well. We’re born unequal and through the course of our life, we suffer both natural and manmade evils. Sometimes, we are the ones perpetrating evil against others.

Mankind, being made in the image of God, has a built-in desire to see no one wronged. We yearn for justice. When we see injustice, we rise to defend the helpless. This is a good thing because it reveals our God-given moral consciousness. A desire to see justice, to see a reconciliation between the victim and the perpetrator and wrongs righted, and a desire to see the world set right are reflections of God’s image in us. 

But here’s a news flash: everyone wants to see their own version of justice. And that has always been the problem with man. Man sets up his own moral scale by which he measures and dispenses justice. And of course, if justice is subjective, the kind of justice pursued will be subject to the prevailing cultural climate — a pet project of some crusaders where true ‘justice’ may never occur at all. 

Here’s a news flash: everyone wants to see their own version of justice

The issue is that the world’s idea of justice or reconciliation is truncated because it looks at issues exclusively from a temporal perspective.

What social justice actually does

Over the years, many ideologies have been rolled out by the world; they have failed miserably. The rise of social justice language and CRT is just another example that will inevitably fail. Why? Because of its worldview. 

Inherent in the worldview is the perspective that man is ‘intrinsically good’ and free from the effects of sin. It promotes a view of society as being perfected if only these solutions were implemented. Its assertion that the reason for inequities among racial groups is because of oppression and systematic racism is inherently problematic, because it does not solve oppression but merely implements it in the other direction. Those identified as ‘privileged’ will now be oppressed and systematically disadvantaged.  

While many of the problems identified and criticisms made by these modern movements are broadly on point, the solutions proposed do not solve the ‘problem’. They merely move the problem from one party to another. While one aspect of a problem has been reconciled, other aspects remain unaddressed. 

While many of the criticisms made by modern movements are broadly on point, the solutions proposed do not solve anything

While we can distribute wealth amongst people by taking from the rich and giving to the poor or removing people from certain races from positions of power and replacing them with people from other backgrounds, we’ve yet to address the heart of why such disparities occur. This is the deficiency of every man-made ideology. It doesn’t go wide enough or deep enough. 

Scripture’s diagnosis and solution

From start to finish, Scripture says that man’s key problem is his broken relationship with God. It is from this point onwards that we see disparity and conflict arising between men due to the curse that was placed on mankind in the garden of Eden. 

Sin is at the root of all of man’s issues. What started as a break in the vertical relationship with God has ended up in damaged relationships in the horizontal realm. It is a refusal to honour God, obey His law and give glory to Him that leads to us committing injustices against each other (Romans 1:28-32).

This is what Jesus came to restore. He came down to the earth, incarnated as a human, so that He might be the perfect, sinless substitute for sinful men and commit himself to God’s just wrath. He stood in our place and took upon Himself the punishment that we deserved. But death could not hold Him down. He rose again, victorious over sin and death. 

He has given us His righteousness in exchange for taking away our unrighteousness, thus leaving us with no excuse to not reconcile with each other. Even when we sin against others, Christ’s righteousness covers it all. It is in this fact — that all Christians have the righteousness of Christ — that we have the basis for true reconciliation between each other (Colossians 1:19-20).

And because we have been reconciled, we reconcile with those around us (2 Corinthians 5:18).

What started as a break in the vertical relationship with God has ended up in damaged relationships in the horizontal realm

What does this mean for us?

What are the practical implications for us in dealing with these ideas and worldviews? How does the truth of our reconciliation in Christ affect us?

  1. No one is guilty of who they are. We are each born into a sinful world. We may believe our particular ‘culture’ or ethnic group is less sinful than others. But the truth is that we are all born equally sinful because of our first parents. Every nation or people group has perpetuated sinful practices from the beginning and, in the sight of a holy God, we are all the same (Romans 8:9-18).
  2. Practices such as pride, racism, murder, and theft are not just sinful because some good people made a mistake. They arise out of a sinful heart (Mark 7:20-23). Only the gospel can give people a new heart.
  3. We must forgive when we are sinned against and must not seek vengeance when they have sought forgiveness. Holding a grudge past the point of forgiveness testifies to the fact that we have never truly experienced true forgiveness ourselves (Colossians 3:12-14).
  4. We remember that everyone’s past is sinful but grace has erased the guilt of that sin. At the cross, each of our sinful pasts has been forgiven and blotted out (1 Corinthians 6:11). We are new creatures, for whom our previous life no longer defines us. Knowing Christ does (Philippians 3:4-7).

The modern social justice movement teaches that the gospel is insufficient to resolve the sins humans have done and that, ultimately, we will only find true peace and reconciliation through its perpetual cycle of victim shaming and woke atonement. CRT, as we have seen, is unable to reconcile the core problem affecting not just one race but all people, while the gospel brings true reconciliation. A reconciliation that provides justice by not just setting right the wrong, but the wrongdoer. 

And if justice and reconciliation do not happen in this life, we have the hope and assurance that in the coming age Christ will bring His righteous wrath and perfect justice. 

So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. We love because he first loved us. If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen.

And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother. 1 John 4:16-21

Godly John

About Godly John

Raised in the Middle East, now living in Melbourne, Australia, Godly John is married with one son. A former agnostic, he is now involved in lay teaching ministries at his local church, and loves thinking about the intersection between reformed theology, philosophy, culture and ethics.



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