Reading While Black is not, in the end, just about Black Christianity, Black church history, or Black Biblical theology. Rather, it is a significant contribution to the larger Christian conversation over what it means to be the multi-ethnic body of Christ.
We had some solid ideas for serious change in America back then. Like putting the Amish in charge of Homeland Security and melting all of our weapons into garden tools and enacting the biblical year of Jubilee, where property is redistributed and financial debts are forgiven. We were dead serious about some of those ideas (and still are). A lot has changed
There is nothing gratuitous about the arts right now. They are not added, they are essential—like spirituals in the hell of cotton fields, anti-war songs of the 60s, AIDS blankets and inner city murals and poetry that says what everybody’s tired souls are feeling.
Jesus is someone who really made a change where he was, and his love was sacrificial. If that's the Jesus that we teach, especially in my Evangelical spaces, that would be a game-changer for the way people view politics, for the way people view how change should be done in our country.
I began with Charles and asked him, “As a Choctaw man who follows Jesus on the Red Road, are there parallels that you see between the politics of the White church today and the politics of the White church in the days of the Choctaw removal?”
Politics, however, is not synonymous with partisanship. Politics is the conversations we have with each other about the decisions we make about how the polis will be led. In fact, our founding president told us that if it ever gets to be too partisan, we will no longer be able to govern. We are at that point.
And in their haste to expedite the birth process, they end up playing not the role of a good birth companion, but of an abuser, an oppressor, of someone who forces a birth too soon. This is the opposite of solidarity.