I visited the campus of UVA one when I was a kid. It was a peaceful day, and I recall it as a mostly boring tour of a pretty campus and some pretty buildings. It was a history field trip, because something about Thomas Jefferson starting the college.
I remember those awkward history lessons about how when the college was founded people owned other people as slaves and treated them like animals. We knew this was wrong. When I was a kid, I knew racism was wrong, and if you asked me, I would tell you it’s wrong to drive a car through people for no reason.
25 years later I witness a terror attack in that same town.
How is white nationalism still a thing? Recently people nostalgic for a time in which men like Jefferson had a full vote and men with dark skin got no vote are feeling as if the country they longed for just might have a shot at coming back. They put their trust in a leadership that validated those feelings.
I don’t care about the color of my own skin. People who think their own skin color makes them superior to others are weak, filthy, stupid, and anti-God. They reject that all humans were created in the image of the creator. They are frauds and blasphemers.
But they need our love. Because they haven’t tasted of love enough to know its true power.
The ultimate fruit of white nationalism is terrorism.
White nationalism can go to Hell.
You judge a teaching by its fruits. Identity politics is murder. Jesus resurrects, granting us an identity beyond skin tone or nation of origin or gender or age or level of ability.
If we don’t turn our faces to Him, we will fail to solve any of this in any community.
Pray for people, even when they hate you.
Love people, even when they hate you.
To the betrayed and wounded, I want to tell you that America has failed you time and time again, and it will fail you time and time again. Empires and their politics will fail you. But the Kingdom of God is love. The Christ has a passion for you that exceeds the leaven of politics. See what empires cannot do.
See the face of Christ in others. Specifically, in the other.
God is love means we must condemn hate, and call it what it is.
Put yourself in other peoples’ shoes, because Jesus walked in our skin.
That is all I have to say today.