Not long ago, when Southern Baptists in Knox County, Tenn., invited Walter Strickland to speak at one of their meetings, he wasn’t sure what to expect. Mr. Strickland, a theology professor at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, N.C., is one of the few African-American scholars teaching at a Southern Baptist seminary. He has made his career in the midst of a culture war: not the familiar clash between progressives and conservatives, but a battle within the ranks of conservative evangelicalism.
When he arrived, he “parked strategically by the exit, facing out,” he told me, in case he needed to make a quick getaway from the roomful of evangelicals who might not like what he had to say about institutional racism. Yet the Knox County Baptists kept him late, peppering him with thoughtful questions. “I almost missed my flight,” he said, laughing.
Many white evangelicals say they want to cultivate diverse congregations and dispel the liberal image of the racist, pro-Trump evangelical. “I think people are hungrier for this conversation,” said Mr. Strickland, who travels around the country to advise Christians on how to recognize and mitigate systemic racism. “The reality of Donald Trump and all the issues we’ve faced since his candidacy have really hardened the hearts of some, but it’s also ripped many people even farther away from conflating the Republican Party with the party of Christ.”
Some of the Christian right’s most prominent leaders have split over Mr. Trump’s racist, xenophobic rhetoric. They disagree over how to fulfill the earthly duties of Christians — especially the obligation to make this fallen world look more like the Kingdom of God foretold in the Book of Revelation, when people “from every nation, tribe, people and language” shall stand together “before the throne and before the Lamb.”
Last spring, two influential conservative evangelical groups hosted a splashy conference in Memphis called “MLK50” to “reflect on the state of racial unity in the church and the culture” on the 50th anniversary of the death of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. But other conservatives complained that the event was, as one writer put it, “dripping with critical race theory, intersectionality and cultural Marxism.”
A few months later, the prominent California evangelist John MacArthur, along with like-minded conservatives, published a proclamation denying “that the postmodern ideologies derived from intersectionality, radical feminism and critical race theory are consistent with biblical teaching.” More than 10,000 supporters signed his statement.
Conservatives’ theological objections to these discussions of racism and socio-economic inequality are hardly new. They echo the old fundamentalist charge against the Social Gospelers: that Christians who focus too much on trying to reform the unjust institutions of this world risk playing down the call to salvation in the hereafter — and also become pawns of godless social engineers.
They have adopted an evangelical version of the “colorblind conservatism” that has steadily gained traction since the 1960s, when Republicans began accusing proponents of desegregation and affirmative action of stoking identitarian conflict and “reverse racism.” “It is a startling irony that believers from different ethnic groups, now one in Christ, have chosen to divide over ethnicity,” Mr. MacArthur wrote last summer. “They have a true spiritual unity in Christ, which they seem to disdain in favor of fleshly factions.”
But this old debate has taken a new turn. Mr. MacArthur’s statement on social justice provoked a backlash from fellow conservatives, like R. Albert Mohler Jr., the president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville. He cautioned that “part of what it means to be made in God’s image is that we are accountable to divine justice and to seeking, through human flourishing, to see God’s justice reflected in a fallen world.” Mr. Mohler helped to purge his seminary of moderate faculty members in the 1990s, but last year he commissioned a report about the school’s complicity in the “horrifying realities of American slavery, Jim Crow segregation, racism and even the avowal of white racial supremacy.”
“A lot of the people I’d consider my spiritual fathers or heroes of the faith, people I look up to, for the first time that I can remember, there are serious disagreements between them,” Adam Robles, who helps lead a small church in Rutland, Vt., told me. He signed Mr. MacArthur’s statement.
Mr. Robles, who is Puerto Rican, started a YouTube channel in 2017 “to respond to the social justice stuff,” he said. “I’ve mostly gone to multiethnic churches in my life,” he told me. But he worries that as more Christians try “to attain this supposed ideal of the multiethnic church, they end up breaking the commands of God in other ways, showing partiality.” He said that criticizing the vogue for affirmative action and multiculturalism has become so politically toxic among evangelicals that he half-jokingly calls himself part of “the Evangelical Intellectual Dark Web.”
Do conservatives like Mr. Robles actually have reason to be on the defensive? After all, white evangelicals have been paying polite attention to racial justice and claiming to celebrate diversity for decades. Their intentions may be sincere, but their actions have generally seemed shallow. “You get solutions like: We’re going to hire an African-American person on staff; we’re going to change up our worship and music style,” said Will Acuff, who trained as a pastor before cofounding Corner to Corner, a faith-based nonprofit group in Nashville. “The churches gravitate toward the simplest things you can measure and quantify.”
Yet a vanguard of Christian consultants and community activists focused on racial justice is gaining a wider hearing in white evangelical institutions than ever before. Many of them have studied history, sociology — and that academic boogeyman, critical race theory, a conceptual framework focused on the power structures that help maintain white supremacy. They combine these tools with biblical arguments to challenge white evangelical assumptions about the role of the church in the world.
Radical thinkers have found their way into the citadels of white evangelicalism. Reading the black liberation theologian James Cone helped Mr. Strickland, the theology professor, see how white theologians often ignore the structural sources of earthly suffering. In 1969, the Rev. Dr. Cone admonished “new blacks, redeemed in Christ” to “say to whites that authentic love is not ‘help,’ not giving Christmas baskets but working for political, social and economic justice, which always means a redistribution of power.”
Courses in African-American theology have been on the books at moderate evangelical seminaries since the 1970s. But it is significant that Mr. Strickland has brought a thinker like Dr. Cone into the heart of the conservative Southern Baptist Convention. Mr. Strickland spent years studying in majority-white evangelical schools, where he mastered the idiom of the Christian right. When he speaks to conservative white congregations, he is careful: “While Cone’s ideas are in play, I don’t mention him by name, because I don’t want to put unnecessary stumbling blocks in their way.” Scripture’s authority comes first. “If I’m able to demonstrate that this black man in front of them has read the Bible, I gain credit with them.”
He walked me through the argument he used when he spoke at North Greenville University, a Baptist school in Tigerville, S.C. “There was the fall, and all we do now as God’s vice regents is influenced by that fall. So if we’re sinners in need of redemption, so, too, are all the things we create, like law, policy, procedure, practice. That right there is systemic injustice,” he said. “Before they know it, they’re nodding their heads. They’re agreeing that systemic injustice and racism are a form of sin. I get in the back door by walking around the linguistic land mines that are so charged in our cultural climate.”
At his own seminary, where he serves as associate vice president for diversity, Mr. Strickland leads a “Kingdom Diversity” initiative that has recruited more women and students of color (with scholarships). He has reformed faculty training, course curriculums and screened films like “13th,” Ava DuVernay’s 2016 documentary about mass incarceration.
Seminaries like Southeastern play a crucial role in shaping the mind-set of future pastors. There is already evidence that some church leaders are rethinking the traditional strategy of trying to win converts by persuading people that church is full of members just like themselves. “The homogeneous principle of church planting — once the norm — is out of favor,” Kevin Smith, a pastor in Chattanooga, Tenn. wrote in Evangelicals magazine. “Homogeneity is out and multiethnic is in.”
Churches seeking to diversify their pews can turn to a growing library of books and study guides, including “Multiethnic Conversations,” a curriculum written by Mark DeYmaz, a pastor in Arkansas, and Oneya Okuwobi, a doctoral student in sociology at Ohio State University and an ordained Pentecostal minister. “The cynical person would say white church attendance has been falling for years, and if you don’t bring in people of color, you’re not going to have churches,” Ms. Okuwobi told me. “I’m not going to say that there isn’t some of that.”
Ms. Okuwobi helped design an early version of “Multiethnic Conversations” for the church she belongs to in Cincinnati. Conversations were sometimes difficult. This was not a “seeker sensitive” program aimed at luring the casual church-shopper away from Sunday morning pajamas and Netflix. “I can remember being in the room with a good friend of mine, and she was probably uncomfortable with us talking about the history of race in America,” she said. “She said people should be happy they’re not in Africa dying of AIDS. As hurtful as that comment was, the opportunity to dig deeper, to understand what someone holds in their prejudices, was invaluable.”
Local bridge-building like this has been going on quietly for decades. Enoch Fuzz, minister of Corinthian Baptist Church, a majority-black congregation in Nashville, hosts a fellowship meeting every Wednesday at lunchtime intended to attract all colors and creeds. “When people meet one another flesh to flesh and face to face, there is an empowerment that comes from that,” he told me. Mr. Fuzz is not naïve about the capacity of a weekly interracial lunch to overcome structural racism, but he takes the long — biblical — view. “I see the pattern in the Old Testament,” he said. “We’re in a time when people are not listening to the prophets. But a time is going to come when we’re going to hear from God, and we’re going to do the right thing.”
During these conversations, I found myself almost persuaded that the steady accumulation of personal encounters, multiethnic Bible studies and new seminary programs might amount to more than flashes of good will. Maybe they really are paving the way for the slow political transformation of white evangelicalism. “I promise I’m not seeing this through rose-colored lenses. I get the emails, the trolls on Twitter, the mail at my house,” Mr. Strickland said. “But I think in 15 years, the evangelical landscape is going to be very different, politically.”
So far, most evangelicals who are keen to sponsor a conference honoring Dr. King are still a long way from supporting his whole vision for liberation, including socio-economic equity and workers’ rights. “Even when Christians realize the need for change, they often shrink back from the sacrifices that transformation entails,” Jemar Tisby, a prominent commentator on race and religion, wrote in his recent book “The Color of Compromise.”
The reformers I spoke to told me that sometimes they feel like giving up on white evangelical institutions altogether. “It’s an ongoing choosing. There have been several moments where I have been, like, What in the world am I doing here in Southern Baptist life?” Mr. Strickland said.
Ms. Okuwobi put the point starkly. “Evangelicalism may need to die for the church to live,” she said. “I don’t have a problem with that.” This is, after all, the season that calls Christians to remember: They have been brought out of sin into righteousness and out of death into life.
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Molly Worthen (@MollyWorthen) is the author, most recently, of “Apostles of Reason: The Crisis of Authority in American Evangelicalism,” an associate professor of history at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and a contributing opinion writer.B:
080期香港挂牌全篇【窗】【外】【阳】【光】【明】【媚】，【风】【景】【正】【好】。【病】【房】【里】【很】【安】【静】。【应】【静】【坐】【在】【床】【边】【认】【真】【削】【着】【手】【里】【的】【一】【颗】【苹】【果】，【待】【削】【完】【后】，【她】【还】【挺】【有】【成】【就】【感】【的】。 【倒】【不】【是】【这】【个】【苹】【果】【被】【她】【削】【的】【有】【多】【好】【看】，【而】【是】【好】【像】【很】【久】【她】【都】【没】【有】【认】【真】【的】【这】【么】【做】【过】【一】【件】【事】【了】。【好】【像】【离】【开】【鸿】【基】【以】【后】，【身】【上】【没】【了】【那】【种】【压】【力】，【她】【整】【个】【人】【就】【变】【的】【十】【分】【懒】【散】。 【其】【实】【认】【真】【是】【件】【很】【享】【受】【的】【事】，【当】【你】
【玉】【玺】【被】【苏】【萌】【的】【电】【话】【彻】【底】【吓】【到】，【立】【即】【订】【飞】【机】【票】，【三】【个】【小】【时】【后】【飞】【回】【到】X【市】。 【下】【了】【飞】【机】，【她】【先】【回】【公】【司】，【打】【算】【汇】【报】【下】【项】【目】【进】【程】，【然】【后】【让】【他】【找】【人】【替】【自】【己】【跟】【进】。 【张】【白】【的】【办】【公】【室】【里】【有】【人】，【玉】【玺】【顾】【不】【上】【是】【谁】，【直】【接】【敲】【门】【闯】【了】【进】【去】。 【张】【白】【看】【到】【她】【很】【是】【惊】【讶】，【惊】【讶】【程】【度】【不】【亚】【于】【当】【时】【告】【诉】【他】【自】【己】【怀】【孕】。 【三】【言】【两】【语】，【玉】【玺】【说】【完】【自】【己】
【翌】【日】。 【一】【大】【清】【早】。 【章】【飞】【等】【人】【便】【来】【到】【夏】【云】【小】【屋】【前】【方】【的】【空】【地】【上】。 【杜】【芸】【芸】【也】【来】【了】。 【腾】【鑫】【和】【徐】【若】【兰】【也】【不】【例】【外】。 【夏】【云】【从】【小】【屋】【走】【出】【来】，【看】【到】【章】【飞】【等】【人】【有】【点】【紧】【张】【的】【样】【子】，【不】【禁】【一】【笑】。 “【接】【下】【来】，【我】【打】【算】【带】【你】【们】【去】【北】【皇】【城】。” 【夏】【云】【来】【到】【章】【飞】【等】【人】【的】【面】【前】，【认】【真】【地】【说】【道】。 “【北】【皇】【城】？” 【章】【飞】【最】【先】【反】【应】
【最】【新】【消】【息】，【在】【距】【离】【地】【球】7【亿】【光】【年】【的】【霍】【尔】【姆】15A【星】【系】【团】【中】，【科】【学】【家】【研】【究】【小】【组】【使】【用】【了】【欧】【洲】【南】【方】【天】【文】【台】【的】【甚】【大】【望】【远】【镜】(VLT)【对】【霍】【尔】【姆】15A【耗】【尽】【的】【核】【心】【进】【行】【了】【新】【的】【观】【测】，【结】【果】【意】【外】【发】【现】【了】【一】【个】400【亿】【倍】【太】【阳】【质】【量】【的】【超】【大】【巨】【型】【黑】【洞】！【消】【息】【一】【经】【公】【布】，【立】【刻】【在】【科】【学】【界】【引】【起】【了】【轩】【然】【大】【波】！【如】【果】【这】【一】【观】【测】【证】【实】，【那】【么】【这】【个】【黑】【洞】【将】【是】【我】【们】【半】【径】【约】【为】10【亿】【光】【年】【的】【区】【域】【中】【最】【大】【的】【超】【大】【质】【量】【黑】【洞】！080期香港挂牌全篇【居】【然】【缓】【缓】【地】【闭】【上】【了】【眼】【睛】，【放】【下】【手】【机】，【双】【手】【捧】【着】【头】，【有】【些】【细】【心】【的】【观】【众】【甚】【至】【还】【发】【现】，【那】【双】【手】【好】【像】【在】【微】【微】【地】【颤】【抖】。 【这】【一】【幕】【让】【很】【多】【还】【在】【疯】【狂】【带】【节】【奏】【的】【水】【友】【们】【感】【到】【很】【诧】【异】【了】，【虽】【然】【他】【自】【己】【玩】【得】【很】【菜】，【然】【后】【被】【我】【们】【喷】【了】，【但】【也】【不】【至】【于】【出】【现】【这】【样】【的】【情】【绪】【啊】。 “【算】【了】，【算】【了】，【少】【说】【两】【句】【吧】，【好】【像】【居】【然】【这】【家】【伙】【扛】【不】【住】【了】！” “【水】
【就】【连】【杜】【若】【都】【听】【的】【一】【愣】。 “【这】【乐】【念】【怎】【么】【回】【事】，【这】【是】【阵】【前】【倒】【戈】【了】【吗】？”【业】【小】【花】【听】【的】【喜】【笑】【颜】【开】，“【她】【这】【决】【定】【可】【真】【是】【太】【好】【了】，【大】【祭】【司】【法】【印】【就】【在】【花】【魂】【堂】【里】，【等】【重】【启】【了】【法】【印】，【咱】【们】【来】【花】【鬼】【界】【的】【任】【务】【可】【就】【完】【成】【一】【大】【半】【了】！” 【杜】【若】【回】【过】【神】【没】【好】【气】，“【我】【倒】【希】【望】【这】【是】【真】【的】。”【可】【那】【有】【那】【么】【简】【单】？ 【果】【然】，【陆】【陆】【续】【续】【回】【过】【神】【的】【长】【老】【们】
【周】【瑜】【和】【孙】【策】【在】【陈】【到】【所】【率】【霸】【王】【骑】【的】【护】【卫】【下】，【来】【到】【了】【附】【近】【的】【一】【座】【山】【丘】【上】。【游】【侠】【儿】【说】【此】【山】【名】【为】【武】【雪】，【山】【并】【不】【高】，【只】【有】【不】【到】【百】【米】，【山】【东】【侧】【便】【为】【武】【陵】【郡】【城】，【汉】【寿】【城】。 【站】【在】【山】【丘】【上】【向】【下】【俯】【瞰】，【只】【见】【山】【脚】【处】【有】【无】【数】【茅】【草】【树】【枝】【搭】【成】【的】【帐】【篷】，【星】【星】【点】【点】，【分】【散】【在】【旷】【野】【之】【中】，【将】【远】【处】【的】【汉】【寿】【城】【团】【团】【围】【住】。 【汉】【寿】【城】【原】【为】【荆】【州】【治】【所】，【只】【是】【刘】
“【劳】【拉】【姐】【姐】？！”【朱】【利】【安】【看】【到】【劳】【拉】【立】【刻】【就】【兴】【奋】【了】【起】【来】。 “【太】【好】【了】，【看】【来】【没】【事】【啊】。”【劳】【拉】【看】【着】【两】【个】【小】【孩】【子】【的】【样】【子】【长】【舒】【了】【一】【口】【气】。 “【是】【的】..”【卡】【路】【诺】【怯】【怯】【的】【说】。 【艾】【玛】【走】【到】【两】【个】【小】【孩】【子】【的】【面】【前】“【你】【们】【两】【个】【都】【没】【有】【受】【伤】【吧】？” “【是】、【是】【的】..！”【卡】【路】【诺】【明】【显】【还】【有】【些】【惊】【魂】【未】【定】。 “【好】【强】！”【然】【而】【另】【一】【个】【孩】