Saturday, December 3, 2016

Is God White?

A few Sunday mornings ago, while waiting for the football game to come on, I was flipping channels and ran across 2 Pastors debating if God was White or Black. 

It really struck me as sad that two very well educated and devoted men would be concerned with something so unimportant and be getting it so wrong.

I am White (I prefer Celtic if I have to use a label, but for this discussion White will do). I naturally tend to think of God in terms of being White, but I know my African American friends see him in terms of being Black and, naturally, my Hispanic friends see him a little darker than I do, my Asian friends see him with Asian traits, my Native American Friends see him with long dark hair in a ponytail, and so forth. The point is that we all tend to project the traits with which we are familiar.

So who’s right? Is God Black or White, or Tan, or Olive, or Red, or Yellow or what?

I think it’s safe to say that he’s all of those things. There are very few references in the Bible to guide us on the subject but he does very clearly say that he made us in his image. If that’s true and he made all of us, then it naturally follows that all of those traits are somehow a part of his image. No, I don’t know how that works. But there are one hell-of-a-lot of things I don’t understand. I just take them on faith (a word the two Holy men debating the subject seem to have misplaced).

The only time in the Bible when we actually see God, he very cleverly avoids the whole question by appearing as a burning bush. Do you suppose he did that on purpose so that all of his children, in all their various colors and shades, could relate to him?

I tend to think that’s part of what he had in mind. Of course, he also knew that a burning bush was kind of scary and the God of the Old Testament was definitely a scary guy. He wanted to “put the fear of God” into us (and in my case the Old Testament does that very well).

So all of this heavy, religious thinking brings me back to the same conclusion. We are all right and we are all wrong. The day will come for each of us when we find out, but until then it’s not important. His message is what is important. That message is consistent in every major religion in man’s history: Strive to be and do good, love your fellow man (and all God’s creation), and have faith. It is only when men acting as 'holy men' (Priests, Rabbis, Pastors, Imams, etc...) start interpreting his message for us. Claiming the message is only for us because we have been chosen, and one group is therefor better than other groups, that the whole thing starts going wrong...(distrust, hatred, violence and war always seem to be the outcome).

So, is God White or Black? Yes, he is.

Live Long and Prosper...

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