I’ve asked 10 Christians—5 black Americans and 5 non-black Americans—to share their reactions to George Floyd’s murder. Some people believe black Americans and non-black Americans—especially white Americans have entirely different reactions to injustices against Geoge Floyd and black men.
But as you read in part 1, and as you’ll see in this article, part 2—these individuals have different experiences, but because of Jesus Christ, their reactions and their hopes are not too different from each other:
Filtering my thoughts and emotions on this case has not been easy. I bring to the table previous experience as a police officer, as well as a Christian that believes in the authority and sufficiency of Scripture. First, as a former police officer, we were never taught to choke people. As my tactics instructor told our academy class, “If you go outside the tactics I teach you, I will be the first to testify against you at your trial.” I believe an injustice was done.
As a pastor, my authority is the Word of God. The Bible condemns murder (6th Commandment), stealing (7th Commandment), and bearing false witness (9th Commandment). Because all human beings are made in the image of God, murdering an image bearer is sinful. Also, stealing, looting, and destroying other people’s property is sinful as well and any Christian who engages in or encourages such criminal activity risks the sword of Romans 13.
Finally, false witness against the victim or police is sinful. As Christians we must mourn with those who are mourning while being committed to speaking truth because Proverbs 19:5 says, ”a false witness will not go unpunished, and he who breathes out lies will not escape” – Justin
First let me say that what happened to George Floyd was an unjust and wicked act of murder. Seeing it on video was hard to stomach and I can’t imagine how much worse it is for the Floyd family seeing their loved one’s death on full display. I am praying the Floyd family will receive comfort in the God of all comfort (2 Corinthians 1:3), and I pray the justice system will deal with the offending officers appropriately.
Nonetheless, I know I serve a just God that will not let sin go unpunished, whether on the cross with Christ or in eternal wrath. With that being said, I am heartbroken with the response of many Christians throughout social media.
It has become obvious that the subject of race, blinded by emotion, causes Christians (of all colors) to quickly fall into the sin of partiality and the sin of bearing false witness (the very sins they claim to be fighting). However, I think what bothers me most is the lack of outrage for the thousands of murdered minorities within the womb. The current outrage surrounding the death of George Floyd almost feels as if it is largely due to trend. The mass murder of black and brown people is nothing new. It happens daily at your local Planned Parenthood. – Diego
Fear is a powerful thing. It’s easy to see that in America right now. We’re afraid of our neighbours. Over the last few months, the coronavirus pandemic has made us afraid of our neighbours. And over the last week, George Floyd’s murder has made many of us afraid of each other.
As I white woman, some people fear me because they think I’m a racist. Since I have been silent about George Floyd’s murder on social media, I am told by some I am complicit to racism, even though I have been mourning and crying, at times uncontrollably, over the last week.
Because some protesting black neighbors are given a “free pass” to loot and destroy businesses and homes, I am tempted to fear all black protestors as thugs.
For days I have been thinking, how do we teach children to love their neighbor as themselves and not to fear them? Colossians 3:1-17 says we should put away fear and to put on love, “which binds everything together in perfect harmony.” I must remember my hope is not in America or this world, my hope is in Christ, who suffered and was sinned against in every way, yet he did not fear others, he loved them. My prayer is to be like Christ and bring love to my neighbors instead of fear. – Anne
As a multiethnic (Caucasian/Chinese) American, there was a time in my life where I would have been in lock-step solidarity with the current wave of protesters, and with the entire social justice movement in general. After numerous incidents of anti-Asian taunting throughout my childhood, and even being threatened and fearful for my life during an episode in college, I had grown to become extremely distrustful and inwardly prejudiced against most white people.
I harbored these views for most of my time in college, despite being half white myself. But by God’s grace and at the age of 24, I surrendered my life to Christ and distinctly remember sobbing mightily over all the things I’d held onto with my unforgiving heart for so long, this prejudice being among them. Now, it both saddens and disturbs me to see this entire movement spreading even within the body of Christ, that has an all-too-familiar ring of bitterness and unforgiveness to it.
Though I believe many to have good intentions, I feel what they are doing is only causing more division and ethnic discord, by their pursuit of worldly agendas and goals rather than heavenly ones. Christ has already accomplished for us the unity that so many claim they are seeking, for all who are indeed to be found in Him. And rather than ethnic reconciliation being the focus of the church, our first and primary goal should be to facilitate the reconciliation between lost and hell-bound sinners to a righteous and holy God through the proclamation of the gospel. – John
When the video of George Floyd appeared on my Facebook Newsfeed on May 25th, I cried; not because I was watching a black human unjustly killed, but because I was watching a human, made in God’s image, unjustly killed. I would hope any other human would respond this way.
Shortly after, some apologized for their white privilege. Others labelled white Christians hypocrites if they did not share Floyd’s story. Some called this tragedy a “white problem”.
First, I want to acknowledge the prevalence and ugliness of racism. Gospel-powered love and the transforming work of the Spirit are necessary to combat this sin. Christians ought to reject racism. However, I do not believe one should apologize for being white. I do not believe anyone should apologize for the colour of their skin. I’m not ashamed of my skin colour. I’m not ashamed of what God has given me. God has blessed me in abundance, and I am going to praise Him from who all blessings flow. Regardless of the colour of your skin, if you have been given much, much is required of you. Is it not hypocritical to publicly condemn racism with a Facebook post, yet never exercise compassionate action?
Yes, George Floyd’s death is my problem; not because I’m white, but because I am human. God created you, and me, fearfully and wonderfully. So, when a black man is murdered, please, allow me to mourn with you. And when a white man is murdered, I ask that you mourn with me. Let’s allow our hearts to break for the same thing that breaks God’s heart. And in our mourning, let’s look forward with firm hope that King Jesus is coming to execute perfect justice. Come, Lord Jesus. – Kerri-ann