A Statement on Racism

Like many of you, I have watched with sadness the terrible events that have taken place over the last several days in our nation. I was shocked and angered when I watched the video of George Floyd’s arrest and death. The disregard for human life was hard to witness. As well, I am appalled by the acts of violence by a small number of rioters who have hijacked peaceful protests. Instead of honoring the life of Mr. Floyd, these rioters are producing fear, division, hatred and further racism.

Make no mistake - racism is sin. It is blasphemy against God who created each of us in His divine image. We cannot justify or rationalize racism, bigotry, or prejudice in any way. Each is ungodly, inhumane, and stands arrogantly against the life and teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ.

There is no way the government can fix this problem. Nor can one's politics provide healing. It never has and never will. This is a problem of the human heart. It is a spiritual problem.

What a difference we would see in our world if people reacted in accord with an understanding all humans are equal before God, and all are sinners in need of salvation. All of us need to build our thinking on the absolute authority of the Word of God, judging all beliefs and attitudes in light of the clear teaching of our Creator. God reminded Samuel of this when He said, “For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” 1 Samuel 16:7.

We may make statements, but change will only come through the choices we make each day. We may say things through tweets or posts, but real change will only be seen through our conduct toward one another. None of this will go away with violence, but only by developing relationships with each other, working together, and resolving to press forward together in the spirit of Christ, who is the Prince of Peace. We are the ones that must be faithful to call upon God to give us His guidance and provide His pathway to healing in our nation.

Jesus Christ is the only answer to this problem, and we must start with ourselves. Let us examine our own hearts and with the help of the Holy Spirit, rid them of all hatred. Let us pray for the Lord’s healing for our troubled nation. Let us pray to see others as Christ does - loving them so much He gave His life for them. Let us pray for peace. Let us pray for God to use these troublesome times to bring salvation to a lost and dying world!

Pastor Steven L. Kyle

Hiland Park Baptist Church

Panama City, FL