An Update based upon some of the best shows of the ’90s.
Law and Order (Tom Skinner’s Urbana ’70 Address). I’m working on some reflections on the emergence of Black evangelicalism in the later half of the 20th century. An excerpt from one of the most important addresses given by an African-American evangelical in an evangelical gathering.
Now, during this great upsurge in revolution and rebellion that has been going on, there have been great numbers of evangelical Christians who have joined the hoot and cry for “law and order.”
But how do you explain “law and order” to a mother who stands at the foot of her bed watching her baby lie in a blood bath, when she knows that that baby would never have been bitten by the rat in the first place, and the rat would have never been in the building, if the landlord to whom she had been paying high rent had been providing the kind of service she deserved for the kind of rent she was paying?
How do you explain law and order to her when she knows the building code inspector, who represents the city administration, who is supposed to check out violations in buildings, came by that building the day before but was met at the front door by the landlord who palmed a hundred dollars in his hand, and the building code inspector kept going? Now that is lawlessness.
But the point is, we never arrest the landlord. We never lock up the building code inspector. But I tell you who we do lock up. We lock up the frustrated, bitter, sixteen-year-old brother of that two-week-old sister who in his bitterness takes to the street and throws a brick at that building code inspector. Then we lock him up and say, “We gotta have law and order!”
Friends: It was great to see some friends when I returned to Boston to preach at Eastern Nazarene College’s Spring Revival. I’m back in Boston on two different occasions in the spring. Hope to catch up with others during those visits. I’ll be speaking at the Ethnic America Conference (in April) as well as Gordon-Conwell Center for Urban Ministerial Education (CUME)’s Graduation Banquet. We’ll also be swinging by Boston during the summer as I’m scheduled to speak at a family camp in New Hampshire in July.
In Living Color: Randy Woodley, author of Living in Color and a frequent contributor to this blog is on his way to Chicago. He will be one of the participants at 4days4justice. Got a sneak another plug for 4days in here somewhere.