Though we do not want to think about it, and some will deny its existence, there is a worldwide phenomenon happening right now. It is ripping apart nations, communities, and even families.
It’s called “Identity Politics.”
It is dangerous. Those who engage in it are contributing to the destruction of our great nation. Those who promote it in government, the media, and international relations are doing so for their own political and financial benefit.
But they are playing with fire.
Why do I believe “Identity Politics” is so dangerous? Well, Jesus Himself thought it threatening enough that He warned us that in the last days it would be prominent.
He said that in the days just prior to His return, “…nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.” (Matthew 24:7 NASB). To modern ears, those sound the same, but Jesus made an important distinction. “…Kingdom against kingdom….” means country against country. “…Nation against nation….” means people group against people group.
People group can also mean “race” or “tribe.” Usually, these “people groups” identify with one another because of race, but people groups can identify with one another because of gender, language, or many other things.
Though much — if not most — of identity politics is instigated and manufactured for the express political benefit of the Leftists, nonetheless it is fracturing the United States.
At last week’s demonstration against free speech that took place on the Boston Common, a woman was photographed carrying a protest sign. It read: “My heroes are queer immigrant female people of color.”
That’s identity politics in a nutshell.
In the last century, identity politics resulted in Jim Crow laws, segregation, and the systematic exclusion of African-Americans from U.S. politics. It was the philosophy that engendered the Ku Klux Klan and Planned Parenthood.
For a while, it seemed to mostly disappear, but in the last few years it has made a roaring comeback.
The site of its most dramatic resurrection may surprise you: American universities. Judging people based on their race or gender permeates academia.
White nationalists saw this and rejoiced. So did the newest group of public racists — black supremacists. They had both been judging by race all along, but now they have seized upon identity politics for their own exploitation. And with great success. Identity politics now dominates the mainstream media and reaches into the Congress itself.
But God has a better way. The Bible gives us three reasons not to participate in identity politics.
First, we are all sons and daughters of Adam. Acts 17:26 says, “He has made from one blood every nation (people group) to dwell on all the face of the earth.” President Trump observed that very thing in his inaugural address, “…whether we are black or brown or white, we all bleed the same red blood….”
Second, we are all made in the image of God. What better reason to treat everyone with dignity and respect?
Third, Jesus Christ died for the sins of everyone. I John 2:2 tells us, “He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.”
Jesus Christ paid a ransom that we can never begin to fathom. And He paid it for every person born into this world. That makes each of us priceless.
Galatians 3:28 says that in Christ, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” (NASB)
Ephesians 2:14 tells us, “For He Himself is our peace, who has made them both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation.” (KJV)
In these days of rage and fear, Jesus alone is our peace. Despite our outward differences, in Christ we are one.
But identity politics is not confined to America. It is raging through societies and countries across the world.
In the last decade, we’ve seen a new surge in Jews returning to the Holy Land from Europe. Just as the Bible predicted. But they are not doing it because they want to fulfill Biblical prophecy. They are fleeing to Israel because Europe has once again become a dangerous place for them.
Nazis again roam the streets of Germany. French Jews are attacked in their own businesses.
A recent study by YouGov shows that 33% of Jews in Britain have thought about leaving Britain. They no longer feel safe there.
40% of British Jews say that they hide their faith. They’re afraid of anti-Semitic attacks.
No doubt the arrival of massive numbers of Muslim migrants has contributed to the increase in animosity toward British Jews. But I’ve documented on previous Reports the anti-Semitic beliefs of several British leaders. And it seems to be getting worse. Last year’s election of a practicing Muslim as mayor of London does not bode well for any reversal of the tension that Britain’s Jews are beginning to feel.
In the United States, people on both the Left and the Right have expressed outrage over the anti-Semitism of the neo-Nazis in Charlottesville. But the rising hatred of Israel and the Jews on American college campuses promises to pose an exponentially greater danger to American Jews and the State of Israel than all of the neo-Nazis in America ever will.
Add to that the growing anti-Jewish sentiment of the far Left and I see the potential for new persecution of Jews in America.
There are almost as many Jews here as there are in Israel. I believe many of them may soon decide it’s time to go to the land of their Fathers. Sadly, Charlottesville and Boston may be a preview of things to come.
Finally, on this week’s program, I want to tell you about the greatest hellfire and damnation sermon ever preached.
It was the Sermon on the Mount.
In it, Jesus declared that it wasn’t just what you did on the outside that was a sin. He said that sin includes what goes on inside your heart and mind.
The highly religious of His day were stunned to hear that “good works” were not enough to get them into heaven.
Jesus showed that the Law of the New Testament went far beyond the Law of Moses. It focused on the thoughts and intents of the heart!
In fact, it is the most definitive and exacting law ever given to man. It is impossible to live up to and fulfill to the letter.
In fact, it is so difficult that the most influential of all of Christ’s followers — the Apostle Paul — was reduced to utter despair. He cried out, “Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death?” (Romans 7:25 NASB)
That’s bone-deep despair!
You see, the law makes all of us realize that there is no human effort that can save us. It points us to Christ because it does not permit us to hope in ourselves.
But thanks to a merciful God, Paul’s despair is immediately followed by hope! In the next verse he said, “Thanks be to God through Christ Jesus our Lord! … There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 7:25-8:1 NASB)
When we are “in Christ Jesus,” the law is finally done with us. So why can’t we let go of it?
If the Law of Moses was impossible to keep (and it was), what on earth makes us think we can keep the laws of the New Testament (that demand purity of thought as well as deed)? That’s a million times tougher!
The Jews in Paul’s day tried to be righteous by obeying the Ten Commandments. Today, we’ve made a list of rules for being a “good Christian.” It doesn’t work.
Galatians 2:21 makes it perfectly plain: “If righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly.” (NASB)
So how can we live a righteous and obedient life? Romans 10:4 tells us, “Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.” (NASB)
The answer to a righteous and obedient life is to walk in the Spirit. The Holy Spirit will produce God’s righteousness within us!
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