For context, read yesterday’s post.
As I said last night, there doesn’t seem to be much grace here. That’s observation #1.
Observation #2 is that current identity thinking (which I usually label “intersectionality”) is problematic for Christians, because our identity has to be centered in Jesus Christ.
Now: THAT is a problematic statement, because my whiteness always influences how I understand my identity in Christ. I get that. People of different colors, different ethnicities, different backgrounds won’t agree with everything about how I understand my identity to be centered in Jesus Christ. Location determines a great deal of what we see, how we perceive, etc.
In Ephesians 2, Paul writes:
He [Jesus] himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace, and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility.Eph 2.14-16
One clear implication of Ephesians 2 is that God wants us to transcend identity politics–whether white American middle-class identity politics or sub-saharan lesbian identity politics.
This is a struggle for us, because our flesh/ego/self-righteousness finds empowerment in identity politics and the grievances of our group. And again: I’m talking about the self-righteousness & empowerment-by-grievance that come from finding your identity in ANY political identity other than Christ.
Whatever your political class. Even if it’s being a patriotic white middle-class American.
You think patriotic white middle-class Americans don’t find empowerment in self-righteousness and grievance?
Jesus transcends all that. And our struggle as his followers is to stop building our identity on belonging to any political class and build our identity on him, our place in him, a place that is together with Jesus followers from every other political class.