Teacher, What Is the Greatest Injustice of Them All?
When they hear, they will go away sad, because they had great conviction
The tension between identity politics and faith
Previously, the rebellious stage of a child’s development consisted of several years of pessimism toward one’s family, school, and even one’s own life.
We all went through that stage. But it was taken for granted because we were expected to grow out of it. And thankfully, we did.
However, that stage of pessimism has taken a dangerous turn. It has expanded beyond one’s immediate surroundings to include one’s country, if not the entire world, and we can no longer take for granted that this rebellious stage will subside.
This transformation has many causes and terms attributed to it, but I find that it can be most broadly understood as the development of a new religion: identity politics.
This new religion has been readily adopted by many because it emulates stories found in the Bible.
This resemblance stems from the Book of Genesis up until the Book of Revelation, which is where identity politics breaks off with perilous ramifications.
Where the history of man begins with Adam and Eve passing on sin via the apple, identity politics proclaims slavery as America’s original sin, which is passed on thereafter systemically.
Furthermore, we are told that God has set aside the Israelites as His own people. In comparison, Black people in America have piously been set aside not by God, but by an amalgamation of politicians, activists, and young people rebelling for rebelling’s sake.
Yet, this amalgamation is founded on a socially constructed idea of race, literally, man-made, and thus is more akin to the golden calf of the wandering Israelites than it is of the one true God.
And in this realization, it rejects the Messiah, which has them and their chosen people wandering in the desert evermore.
So, what is the greatest injustice of them all?
“‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ And Jesus replied to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.
The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself [that is, unselfishly seek the best or higher good for others].’ The whole Law and the [writings of the] Prophets depend on these two commandments.’” (Matthew 22, 36–40, KJV).
In their rejection of a Messiah, identity politics differs from organized religion in that they have no teacher, no arbiter of truth. Their opposition to organized religion’s hierarchy acts as a safeguard from criticism. If there is no arbiter of truth, there is no penalty for deviating from the teacher's principles.
If there is no arbiter of truth then all believers of this new religion are left to their own interpretation of the law. Accountability has been discarded and this is the origin of every decline in the Bible.
Did God really say not to eat from that tree? Were they supposed to wait for Moses or allowed to ask Aaron to make them a new god? Did Jesus really say to forgive seventy times seven?
Doesn’t the Old Testament God condemn those that harm the Israelites? Questions that are known of us, without the wisdom of God, the Holy Spirit, and 2,000-year-old institution, have the answer too.
In contrast to organized religion, identity politics and its believers have embraced disorganization.
What is the greatest commandment in the Law? They don’t have a template to choose from. What is the greatest injustice of modern times? ALL INJUSTICES ARE CRISES!
And a people without any vision nor any arbiter of truth are destined to ruin.
A new biblical response
What is a biblical response to this newly emerging religion of identity politics? Should I regard them as another simple profession of faith?
I would have remained without an answer if not for Billy Graham’s 1972 Charlotte message entitled: Their rock Is Not Our Rock, a message centered on finding lasting purpose and peace.
In this speech, which drew more than 50,000 attendees, Billy Graham described a generation in the midst of replacing the hard Rock of God with the soft rock of other gods.
He asks, “What are some of the rocks right now of young people?” Among the list, revolution for revolution’s sake and he accompanies this claim with an anecdote.
He recounts looking over the vast skyline of Manhattan with a popular activist of the time. The young activist told Billy Graham that they were going to burn the whole thing down.
Billy Graham responded, “What are you going to rebuild in its place?”
The activist replied, “We haven’t gotten that far…” to which Billy Graham answered, “Before you destroy the American ship, you better be sure you can build a raft!”
“And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.” (Matthew 7:26–27, ESV).
If you must choose one commandment to focus on, it should be the love of God before any other.
And if you must focus on one injustice before any other, choose the spiritual injustice, it is a crisis like no other. A crisis, if left unsolved, has the power to harm both body and soul, whereas the others may only harm the body. One is timeless were the others are simply of the times.