The White Western hegemony of the Gospel and how that is ending.

A picture of Amerigo Vespucci, bringing civilization and Christianity to a savage new (to Europeans) world. (Sidenote: This did not end well for the Native Americans.)

Recently the first WeekFOUR event took place.  WeekFOUR is the student group I started with Matt Schuler as a platform for student voices at Fuller Theological Seminary to be heard and as a space for the incredibly diverse and experience-rich Fuller student body to impact, shape and challenge each other more intentionally.

My motivation for starting this group came after I watched a panel discussion hosted at Fuller and some elements of this discussion were actually found in the WeekFOUR talk that I gave (it will be uploaded and available soon).

As a prelude to a much larger post on race that should be coming out in a couple of weeks I wanted to write on something that I have been thinking about for some time: the White Western hegemony of the Gospel.

First, you may want to watch their talk here:

To begin I must explain my belief that the Gospel is always transmitted through and expressed by a culture. But what do I mean by this?

In regards to the Gospel being transmitted by a culture…

Whenever God has interacted with humans, God has done so in understandable terms.  God did not speak to Abraham in English or Italian, nor did Jesus use parables that had to do with industrialization or computers.  God meets people in their culture in their time and space in history. People then retell the stories and record them in some fashion in an effort to transmit these encounters and their meaning to other people or future generations.

Throughout this entire process culture plays an important role.  Cultural values, views, understandings, idioms, language, expectations, social conventions, etc. color this process both in what was originally received from God and in how it is transmitted. This is why people from another culture can often fail to understand the stories or parables of another culture. This is why we must study the original culture, the ancient social and political context, and the ancient languages the Bible was written in to really figure out what is going on. 

The Gospel (by this I mean the sum total of the Biblical witness, the story of the Creation of the world, the covenants made by God, the history of the people of Israel, the fulfillment of these covenants in Jesus, the redemption of humanity through Jesus and the future fate of the world and humanity) has always been and continues to be transmitted through culture. Jews explained it a certain way to Jews, Romans explained it a certain way to Romans, Europeans explained it a certain way to Europeans, etc.

In regards to the Gospel being expressed in a culture…

Hand in hand with the fact that the Gospel is always transmitted by a culture is the fact that the Gospel is always expressed in a culture. Whenever humans respond to God or respond to the Gospel we do so in ways that make sense to us. A Spanish-speaking Christian does not pray to God in English or Swahili. A culture that has a robust value on embodied expression of emotion in dancing and singing does not naturally worship God, expressing emotions such as gratitude and happiness, by standing completely still and reading in unison from a hymnal. The specific practices, theology and daily life of any given Christian community will be the Gospel as understood and expressed by that culture. What we actually see, think and do as Christians is not the Gospel per se but ways our specific culture has seen fit to express the Gospel as we understand it to the world and embody that Gospel as people and individuals.

Two grave and persistent dangers: forgetting and assuming.

Problems arise when we mistake the cultural expression of the Gospel from a culture to be the Gospel. This often happens naturally over time as the stable Christian community transmits the Gospel to the next generation. The next generation is raised in a cultural expression of the Gospel and knows nothing else.  They naturally assume what they experience is the one right way the Gospel should be expressed and responded to. They assume what they know is Christianity, with any alterations being heresy or sub-standard. They assume what they know is Christianity, with any alterations being heresy or sub-standard.

As the generations roll on we come to think, consciously or unconsciously, that how the Gospel has been expressed in our culture is how it should be expressed in all cultures. When we do this, whether we realize it or not, we forget the distinction between the Gospel and our culture. We then show up on the missions field in another culture and do not just tell them to believe in Jesus, we tell them that to believe in Jesus they have to look like us. This is a situation that some might call cultural or theological imperialism/colonialism.

But why do I bring this up?

Phyllis Tickle has suggested in her book The Great Emergence and at the panel discussion at Fuller that Christianity goes through an identity crisis and dramatic changes every five hundred years or so.  This happened first in the Dark Ages, second during the Great Schism in 1057 (where the Western and Eastern Church divided), third during the Reformation in the 1500’s and now in what she would call the Great Emergence.

At least since the Reformation, and most likely for several centuries before that, the Gospel has been in a state of captivity to White Western culture and the White Western imagination and understanding of faith. What I mean by that is the cultural expression of the Gospel within White Western culture has had a hegemony on how the Gospel should be expressed. In other words, the “Christianity” many are familiar with is actually the Gospel as it is has been understood and expressed within White Western culture. As the Gospel has spread throughout the centuries everyone has been expected to understand, express and respond to the Gospel in the ways White Westerners have understood, expressed and responded to the Gospel.

Evidence of this hegemony and part of the reason this hegemony has been so complete and powerful is that White Westerners have had an near monopoly when it comes to holding positions of power, authority and influence in Christianity. Across the various Christian churches, denominations, sects and communions, for centuries the most prominent and influential theologians, leaders, speakers and Christian communities have been White Westerners, most of them male.

This is not just an assumption but a fair assessment of history. All of the titans of the Reformation, all of their peers, and all of the leaders of new and old expressions of Christianity that went out from Western Europe into the Americas, Africa and parts of Asia have been for White Western Europeans, again most of them male. This trend has continued rather consistently throughout the last several hundred years. Surveying all of the “big names” (or as I like to call them, “super-apostles”) in the contemporary Christian culture in the the United States and in Western Europe, one can see that they are almost exclusively White Westerners. Shane Claiborne, Rick Warren, Mark Driscoll, Bill Johnson, Jim Wallis, John Piper, Pat Robertson, the late Jerry Falwell, Donald Miller, James Dobson, Tim Keller, Randy Clark, N.T. Wright, Tony Campolo, John and Carol Arnott, Brian McLaren, Rowan Williams, Heidi Baker, Michael Horton, Mike Bickle, Kevin DeYoung, Rob Bell, the late Billy Graham, Bill Hybels, Joel Olsteen, and others are just some of the household names that represent a variety of expressions, movements and theological streams that are prominent in the U.S. right now…and they are all White Westerners. Beyond Protestant circles, while the U.S. has finally seen a black President, the Roman Catholic Church has still not seen a non-White Pope even though the Catholic church has existed and thrived in many non-White contexts for centuries.

The consequences of this have often been that what it means to be Christian has become blurred what it means to be a White Westerner and many of our past missionary endeavors and our current missionary practices have been thoroughly guilty of cultural and theological imperialism.  We think we are communicating the Gospel but we are really communicating our cultures understanding and expression of the Gospel. In this we are not just presenting a pure Gospel and trusting the local followers of Jesus to respond to it, but we are forcibly remaking them into our image.

Only in the last hundred years or so in the West have we seen non-white Western theologians, pastors and leaders come to prominence, though they have still been heavily marginalized and are still the minority. Black, Latin American, Asian, and female theologians, leaders and speakers have indeed been gaining traction very slowly but arguably some have only risen to places of influence by adopting the Gospel as it has been expressed in the White Western culture.

Why this hegemony is about to end.

One of the greatest areas of risk and opportunity in the Great Emergence is that Christianity is breaking free from this cultural hegemony of the Gospel. The balance of power is shifting away from White Western Christians to non-Western and non-White cultures in Latin America, Africa and Asia. Numerically, especially with the rise of Pentecostalism and the Charismatic movement, the balance is shifting drastically even as Christianity in Europe is seen as culture more than an actual faith and Christianity in the U.S. is in decline, division and disarray. Soon, theological prominence will shift as a rising tide of leaders and theologians who grew up outside of White Western culture, will attend non-Western seminaries, and begin producing and disseminating their works that will be instantly available to the global village. This is in some senses already happening as many Christians are now increasingly aware that non-Western and non-White churches have existed, they are coming into contact with them, and coming into contact with their thought and theology through the internet. I would suggest the interest in the Eastern Orthodox Church is just one example of this.

The loss of control over Christianity and the prospect of large changes in Christianity frightens some White Western Christians. Used to their cultural expression of the Gospel being privileged above all others they are quick to accuse and label others expressions as poor misunderstandings of the Gospel, misreadings of the Bible or even heresy. In the Fuller discussion, Tony Jones very transparently admitted that this was his own reaction in regard to the rise of Pentecostal Christianity in the Global South. However, even many White Western Christians are beginning to recognize this cultural hegemony, the problems with it and the need for change.

This may be a very good thing and a very bad thing for the Gospel and the Christian Church as a whole.

On one hand, I want this cultural hegemony to be broken. It is culturally and theologically imperialistic.  It also has limited our understanding of God, the Gospel and what it means to be a follower of Jesus in this world.  I expect the diversification and proliferation of thought and leadership to other cultures to bring greater depth to our understanding of God. I think Christians from other cultures will be able to see the many problems with our cultural expression of faith that we are blind to, and will eventually have equal footing from which to speak those truths into our lives. I think Malawian Christians and Vietnamese Christians and Chinese Christians and Iranian Christians and Mexican Christians, etc. will also have a lot to teach us from how they come to understand, express and respond to the Gospel from their own culture, not replicate or adopt the ways White Westerners have done so (or how these understanding will be given a voice). If the Gospel is understood to be a diamond, for the last several hundred years we have only been looking at one side of it, and to see the true beauty and majesty of the Gospel, we need to look at the other facets as well.

On the other hand, White Western Christianity is by no means monolithic.  The story of Western Christianity in the last five hundred years has been a story of endless schism and we now have over 30,000 different Protestant denominations.  Will breaking free from the cultural hegemony of White Western culture produce 30,000 more different denominations in the African Church and the Latin American church as well?  In the Reformation people broke away from the Catholic Church and refused to accept it as authoritative so the Reformers really could not stop people breaking away from their teachings or refusing to accept their authority.  After all, if the Roman Catholic Church could be wrong, so could Luther or Calvin. In the same way, will we see endless fractures as people break from the hegemony of the White Western culture find they too are unable to stop people breaking away from them?  Probably.

In this time of great change no one can predict the future, but several hundred years from now I think what it means to be a Christian will probably be very different than what we think it means now and we will be better for it.

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About Speakfaithfully

I am figuring out life and faith and taking other people along with me on my journey. Sometimes as fellow travelers, sometimes as hostages.
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10 Responses to The White Western hegemony of the Gospel and how that is ending.

  1. Reblogged this on armswrappedaroundthesun and commented:
    It speaks for itself. Thankful for my friend Kevin and his gift for writing.

  2. jrlookingbill says:

    Thanks so much for posting the video. I was thoroughly skeptical that this could tie in with any perspective on Pentecostal expressions, which is my background and almost completely contrary to the way by which I understand my faith, or to multi-culturalism. The first commenter really pushed a good conversation into a more embodied light.

    I hope hegemony is about to end – my favorite expression of church thus far has been the one in which I am the minority (although still privileged, so it had a ‘safe’ limit I suppose) but am challenged consistently by a community – or at least hegemony which can serve a colonialism – no matter which culture is winning in that scenario.

  3. Jin roh says:

    Perhaps small really is beautiful. By that I mean, maybe the west should stop sending missionaries and concentrate inward a little.

    I once read a book by a Japanese Theologian who was a Missionary to Thailand. Makes more sense to me.

  4. Arlin Edmondson says:

    While it is important to not conflate our culture with the Gospel, this article never gives a solid or Biblical definition of the Gospel.

    In fact, in that entire video (as far as I can recall) and certainly in this entire article SCRIPTURE IS NOT QUOTED EVEN ONCE!

    A vague description of the general plan of redemption is given as a pseudo definition at one point, but this is entirely unsuitable to the issue and topic at hand, which does require serious consideration.

    This is unsuitable because in an issue as important and serious as this, good distinctions and clear, precise definitions are absolutely required.

    For this we must turn to the scriptures.

    I find it is oft true that those who speak most about contextualization of the Gospel and better expressions of the Gospel and not letting culture effect the Gospel know least from the scriptures what that Gospel actually is. They have identified a real problem; however, without giving clear distinctions in the definition of the Gospel, the contents of a real solution are impossible to realize.

    The Gospel is, as to those things of first importance, that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures; again, the good news of salvation is that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem, and that this is received only through that repentance of sins and belief in the name of the Son of God.

    In the forgiveness of sins we have the propitiatory sacrifice of Christ in substitution for us, taking the wrath of God in our place, and willfully dying the death we deserve under the rejection of the father.

    It was the will of the LORD to crush him:
    He was pierced for our transgressions; He was crushed for our iniquities; upon Him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all; He was stricken for the transgression of His people.

    It was the will of the LORD to crush him, he has put him to grief.
    When His soul makes an offering for guilt – the will of the LORD shall prosper in His hand. Out of the anguish of his soul he shall see and be satisfied.

    For “by his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant,
    make many to be accounted righteous, and he shall bear their iniquities.” (Isaiah 53:11 ESV)

    “…he bore the sin of many, and makes intercession for the transgressors.” (Isaiah 53:12 ESV)

    In this article, beyond the simple category errors, the oversimplifications, and the dangerously Hegelian and post-modern loss of good distinctions evident in a plurality of places throughout the reasoning and structure of this article, an underlying theme emerges towards the end in the promotion of the ideas of Phyllis Tickle both in the video and in the article.

    That theme is that we must deconstruct our theological beliefs and practices, rather than consider whether or not they are Biblically justified. Yet, the scriptures should be our starting point; and again, the article and the speakers in that video does not quote the scriptures once.

    To the content of the article; at once point it says:
    “A culture that has a robust value on embodied expression of emotion in dancing and singing does not naturally worship God, expressing emotions such as gratitude and happiness, by standing complete still and reading in unison from a hymnal.”

    This is a false dichotomy and a category error.

    The underlying assumption is that hymn-singing and corporate unison and order are merely matters of culture. They are not.
    The other assumption is that gathered ‘worship’ is about expressing ‘YOURSELF’ and expressing ‘YOUR EMOTIONS’ it isn’t.

    Further, worship is not music, worship is defined biblically, and we are commanded to minister in hymns, songs, and spiritual songs and are given at least 150 examples of how to do this in the scriptures. Each of these examples are remarkably theological; far more so than the tripe often sung in churches today.

    Now,
    regarding the video and the article in specific reference to ’emergence’:

    “Phyllis Tickle has suggested in her book The Great Emergence and at the panel discussion at Fuller that Christianity goes through an identity crisis and dramatic changes every five hundred years or so. This happened first in the Dark Ages, second at the Great Schism in 1057 (where the Western and Eastern Church divided), third at the Reformation in the 1500’s and now in what she would call the Great Emergence.”

    This is just an incoherent mess of anti-history primarily derived from the distortions of Phyllis Tickle and her convoluted philosophies.

    This woman’s teachings are incredibly dangerous; not least of which is her syncretistic tendencies.

    As an example of the confusion she espouses, in a sermon at Mars Hill Bible Church (formerly pastored by Rob Bell) Tickle claimed that communion was ‘”feeding the god within you”‘.
    Such incredible mysticism and false teaching has no place in the christian church and those ‘teachers’ who espouse it must be firmly rebuked.

    Neither Tony Jones nor Phyllis Tickle nor any major teaching member of this emergent liberalism (merely a recapitulation of old school theological liberalism, which was largely informed by Hegelian philosophies and other liberal theologians who fundamentally undermined and rejected core doctrines of the faith) should have any word or say in the faith.

    These men and women must be rejected from the assembly, expurgated from the gathering, and considered anathema.

    Rather than listening to these, we must contend for the faith:
    ‘For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
    Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.’
    (Jude 1:4-5 ESV)

    • Kevin says:

      Arlin,

      Thanks for taking the time to respond and post your thoughts.

      This article is about culture and the Gospel, not my beliefs on what the Gospel are. That will probably be another post all together, to which I am sure I will make your blood boil and make you label me as a heretic.

      I resisted defining the Gospel in this post precisely because the traditional definition of the Gospel, which you have presented, I believe is representative of one way one culture has come to understand the Gospel. I want to encourage people to read the Bible for themselves and trust the Holy Spirit to guide them into truth. I do not want them to be fed what has been traditionally understood to be the Gospel, because this Gospel is, as my whole post articulates, actually one expression and understanding of the Bible that comes from predominantly one culture.

      I also avoid quoting scripture not because I do not think scripture are not authoritative or formative but because I do not approach scripture like many White Westerners do, nor do I want to fall prey to using scriptures completely out of context and out of the stories and letters they are part of as White Westerners pastors and theologians are fond of doing in order to support whatever it is they happen to believe about God.

      Know that I grew up with the “Gospel” you describe and understand it well. I grew up with the Heaven’s Gates and Hell’s Flames/Evangicube/Roman’s Road/Four Spiritual Laws Gospel that was formed by Reformed theology and American evangelical pragmatism (especially under Charles G. Finney). I think this communication of sin, atonement, and eternal fate is a very shallow, very thin understanding of the stories contained in the Bible and the stories surrounding Jesus. This “Gospel” represents a White Western propensity to systematize everything and make everything nice and neat. In this way it has turned the very Eastern stories about God that should shape our understanding of and relationship to God into a series of doctrinal beliefs and theological statements that people have to assent to in order to be Christian, or the right kind of Christian. This type of “Gospel” ignores large amounts of scripture, the very scriptures that you claim to value so deeply. This type of thin “Gospel” is also ripe for abuses and has been historically used by many to support all sorts of evils and injustices completely antithetical to Jesus Christ.

      Your criticisms of my words on culture and worship show that while you pay lip service to “not conflating our culture with the Gospel” you have absolutely no idea how to thoroughly conflated your beliefs are. How worship is expressed is a deeply culturally influenced value. I do not think Native American Christians have to stop being Native American and start singing hymns written by dead white men two hundred years ago to worship God properly. I do not think Africans who dance in worship should be charged with emotionalism or whatever else you imply. And if you read the scriptures, that you profess to value so much, you will realize that there were very free and at times scandalous expressions of worship, such as David worshiping almost naked, that do not fit a rigid mold for what worship that many Christians (apparently including yourself) make it out to be, nor do they have some deep theological or pedantic message to inform the community that you think worship always must have.

      Sincerely,

      -Kevin

      • Brandon says:

        How convenient, the westerner is able to refute the interpretation of the white westerner, because it reflects the viewpoint of a white westerner who is, on account of being a white westerner, unable to see anything through anything but the lens of a white westerner. So glad the white westerner (more or less) from california is able to set us white westerners straight on our blindness to the true gospel.

        Really though, your method of exegesis requires no consistency, no faithful understanding of scriture, and is completely subject to the feelings of the individuals. It is therefore completely subjective, and cannot convey any sense of actual truth, if in fact you even believe in absolute truth. No true believer will be able to take this seriously.

      • Kevin says:

        “How convenient, the westerner is able to refute the interpretation of the white westerner, because it reflects the viewpoint of a white westerner who is, on account of being a white westerner, unable to see anything through anything but the lens of a white westerner. So glad the white westerner (more or less) from california is able to set us white westerners straight on our blindness to the true gospel.”

        Everyone has cultural/contextual blindspots. These can be overcome through critical thinking, education and additional experiences and interactions with other cultures, if you are open. I still have cultural blindspots but I believe I am ahead/beyond the average person who has never stopped to consider such things.

        “Really though, your method of exegesis requires no consistency, no faithful understanding of scripture, and is completely subject to the feelings of the individuals. It is therefore completely subjective, and cannot convey any sense of actual truth, if in fact you even believe in absolute truth. No true believer will be able to take this seriously.”

        As I have said before, this post is not an exegesis of scripture or a piece of theology. It is a discussion of the intersection of culture, Christianity, theology. No one approaches, reads, interprets and applies the Bible from a vacuum, we all do it from our context. My central argument is that Christianity has primarily, if not exclusively, been developed from a Western context for centuries and this has shaped what we understand the Gospel to be. I believe this will change as the demographics within Christianity shift towards the East and South and our understanding of the Gospel will change with it as well.

        In short you are accusing me of bad exegesis and a relative understanding of truth and interpretation, which are regular ways used by conservatives to discredit people they do not agree with, when I am really on a different topic all together.

        If you want to think more about the intersection of culture, exegesis and Christianity, instead of just stay in your current mode of thinking, I would suggest you check out The Foolishness of The Greeks, or the Gospel in a Pluralistic Society by Leslie Newbigin.

        All the best,

        -Kevin

      • Arlin Edmondson says:

        “What is the Gospel?” and “How do you know that?” are fundamentally theological and exegetical questions. You can not divorce these matters from scripture and theology.

        Kevin said:
        >>”In short you are accusing me of bad exegesis and a relative understanding of truth and interpretation, which are regular ways used by conservatives to discredit people they do not agree with,”<>”If you want to think more about the intersection of culture, exegesis and Christianity, instead of just stay in your current mode of thinking, I would suggest you check out The Foolishness of The Greeks, or the Gospel in a Pluralistic Society by Leslie Newbigin.”<>”when I am really on a different topic all together.”<>”I believe this will change as the demographics within Christianity shift towards the East and South and our understanding of the Gospel will change with it as well.”<<

        Based on the teachings of… wait for it… other White Westerners!

        The Gospel believed in the East and the South is the same historic Gospel believed since the first century, which we both now profess and call you to believe.

        The meanderings of 'White Westerners' like yourself, Tickle, Jones, and so many others who agree with you and disagree with a whole host of Christians from the East, the South, and other ethnicities within the US?

        Also, last I checked, Newbigin is White, Western, and even Male. The three taboos of the theologically confused.

        -Arlin

      • Arlin Edmondson says:

        The previous message got messed up by HTML.

        Again:
        “What is the Gospel?” and “How do you know that?” are fundamentally theological and exegetical questions. You can not divorce these matters from scripture and theology.

        Kevin said:
        “In short you are accusing me of bad exegesis and a relative understanding of truth and interpretation, which are regular ways used by conservatives to discredit people they do not agree with,”

        That is a purely ad hominem argument. You have simply dismissed his point on the grounds of him being a ‘regular conservative’ when you have never even met the man.

        You also don’t even deny either claim of his, which simply acts to make his point stronger.

        Kevin said:
        “If you want to think more about the intersection of culture, exegesis and Christianity, instead of just stay in your current mode of thinking, I would suggest you check out The Foolishness of The Greeks, or the Gospel in a Pluralistic Society by Leslie Newbigin.”

        And this is a remarkably pompous and arrogant statement! Positioning yourself as the great intellectual and thinker who is far further along in the road to wisdom than Brandon, you act as if he has certainly never opened his mind to other views outside his own, as if you not only have but are so much further along as to help those poor conservatives who are still stuck in their older understandings out of that ‘White-Western’ quagmire.

        Again, I wonder what you would say to my dear Ugandan Christian friends who would despise your claims as unscriptural and dangerous, because they hold to the same understanding and the same Gospel that I and our brethren around the world do?

        Kevin said:
        “when I am really on a different topic all together.”

        You are on an issue that is fundamentally related to exegesis and truth.

        Kevin said:
        “I believe this will change as the demographics within Christianity shift towards the East and South and our understanding of the Gospel will change with it as well.”

        Based on the teachings of… wait for it… other White Westerners!

        The Gospel believed in the East and the South is the same historic Gospel believed since the first century, which we both now profess and call you to believe.

        The meanderings of ‘White Westerners’ like yourself, Tickle, Jones, and so many others who agree with you and disagree with a whole host of Christians from the East, the South, and other ethnicities within the US?

        Also, last I checked, Newbigin is White, Western, and even Male. The three taboos of the theologically confused.

        -Arlin

  5. Arlin Edmondson says:

    Kevin,

    Again you have refused to interact with the scriptures, claiming that you don’t have to because you don’t read the Bible “like many White Westerners do”. The ironic reality of your response is that you are just as western as anyone else in this discussion. You are simply influenced by White Westerners like Phyllis Tickle and Tony Jones as well as many other Westerners.

    You are in no position to rant about western cultural influences.Rather, your racially charged, bigoted, ignorant, and horridly arrogant comments sadden me and are truly a blight upon the Church. You have failed to respond meaningfully to a single word I have said and in so doing I fear that you would label my beloved brethren in the Reformed community of all ethnicities with horrific titles and names because they agree alongside me with the truths I expressed in my first reply. What epithets would you cast against Voddie Baucham, or Thabiti Anyabwile, or Patrick Harrison, or so many others?

    You have offered nothing that is anything other than something entirely ‘White and Western’. You have simply maligned a particular group and tried to stick them with that label when ‘Western’ fits you just as well. You have given no defense of your claims, proven not a single point you have made, and demonstrated an entire unwillingness to interact with the Biblical texts. The entirety of your comments, as long-winded and unsubstantial as they were, boil down to a Straw Man fallacy and an overarching Ad Hominem attack against the position of anyone whose skin tone is light, including your own.

    In other words, you have simply found a cheap and ignorant way of labeling a theology you disagree with as ‘racist’ and have essentially sidestepped actually trying to refute it from the scriptures (because you can’t) and hid behind that charge of racist ‘hegemony’ instead.

    By couching your refusal to deal with the authoritative word of God in a bigoted and highly racist dismissal statement, you have further demonstrated that you truly have nothing to offer the Christian Church and should, for the good of the faith, officially leave as you are not one of us to begin with. We love our own. We don’t dismiss them because they bare a particular skin tone or geographic location. So, please stop naming yourself among the community of faith you clearly hate and then perhaps you won’t have to deal with ‘white westerners’ anymore, except, perhaps, when encountering that dastardly device known as a mirror.

    “Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us. But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge. I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and because no lie is of the truth.” (1 John 2:18-21 ESV)

    Who could be more clearly a liar and a denier of the Son than one who refuses to deal with God’s word by making it a race issue?

    You truly sadden me with your reply. Again, it also pains me to think of the racist comments you might voice towards Reformed and theologically minded men who are of Asian or African ancestry and hold firmly to the same things I believe. What insults and names will you label them with for embracing what you have falsely called a ‘White-Western’ understanding of the Gospel?

    Furthermore, I am simply astounded that you, in spite of your claim of having a Masters in Theology, can lump Reformed Theology and Charles G. Finney into the same category! This in spite of the fact that we all universally condemn him as a heretic after the ilk of Pelagius!

    The Gospel as I have presented it, accurately from the scriptures, is entirely Eastern in its understanding. The legal terminology and organized structure is in fact quite Jewish and in accord with the Ancient Near East from whence it originated as well as the Roman Society it filtered into.

    You sir are the one advocating White Western ideas, not me, and not the historic protestant Reformers. You are advocating White Western hegemonization of the Historic doctrine of the Penal Substitution of Christ for our sins.

    Your shallow argumentation and banal refusal to interact with the scriptures demonstrates that your ideas truly are as vapid as they sounded to begin with.

    Moreover, the racist divisive and obnoxious manner in which you refer to ‘White Westerners’, repeatedly, only betrays your disdain for the many non-White Reformed and Historically Evangelical Christians who hold to the same Gospel that I do, and the Church has for two millenia since it was articulated by Paul, firstly Salvation from our sins through Christ’s substitution in our place for our sins:
    “Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.
    For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.”
    (1 Corinthians 15:1-5 ESV)

    And the resurrection we are promised, bought through Christ’s death for us:
    But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ. Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For “God has put all things in subjection under his feet.” But when it says, “all things are put in subjection,” it is plain that he is excepted who put all things in subjection under him. When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things in subjection under him, that God may be all in all.
    (1 Corinthians 15:20-28 ESV)

    That is the Gospel we have received and freely preach to all ethnicity from all ethnicities, that God may be all in all. That is the Gospel you profane.

    Repent of your sins and believe the Gospel,

    -Arlin

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