Your heart will literally sink. Last month, a video circulated online of a large man beating up a 65-year-old woman. The woman was a Filipina on her way to church in what turned out to be the latest of the increasing hate crimes against Asians in the US. This comes on the heels of a confessed gunman who shot and killed 6 Asian women, out of his 8 victims, in what he claimed was his battle against temptation.
Even as overall hate crimes declined, attacks against Asians in the US increased by as much as 150 percent in 2020. Much of this is attributed to a wrongful sense of blame against Asians, the Chinese in particular, for the global pandemic. The irrational thinking behind this points to the true nature and root of this crime—sin and wickedness. Racial discrimination comes straight from hell.
This sin is not unique to the US or to this generation. Racial discrimination is a universal problem whether it is division in South Africa, the persecution of the Rohingya in Myanmar or the Uighurs in China, or the plight of the Maoris in New Zealand. History is a record of man’s condemnation for racial hate crimes against his brother in the form of wars, slavery, or the Holocaust.
Racism goes against the very nature of Creation: Every person was made in the image of God (Genesis 1:26–27). Any form of discrimination devalues, distorts, and belittles a person’s God-given value. Division was a direct result of the Fall in Genesis 3. Since then, man has divided, fought, and discriminated over race, gender, religion, social status, and other reasons. Discrimination is a cultural manifestation of idolatrous sin, which has become institutionalized over time. It is the exact opposite of the Greatest Commandment to love God and our neighbor (Matthew 22:36–40). Because it is spiritual at its root, only the gospel, which restores individuals and communities to their original purpose and adds them into a spiritual community, is able to bring real and lasting unity (Galatians 3:28). The Cross is the answer to the crime of racism.
As part of Every Nation (EN), Victory sees the outworking of its mission to help fulfill the Great Commission as the planting of ethnically diverse churches. We intentionally build in a way that reaches locals primarily but welcomes all cultures in a community. Many of our churches all over the world are at the forefront of local efforts to bring reconciliation and understanding among all races through discipleship, humanitarian efforts, dialogue, and political action. Our church in Myanmar is home to the varied tribes that make up the nation. EN India is where students from all the states in India are being discipled. Our churches in the US and South Africa are witnesses to peoples of different color worshiping together. EN Guam is where islanders from the entire region are discipled together.
We want our churches to be a reflection of heaven here on earth (Revelation 7:9). Let’s take a moment to pray for racial healing in our world today.
Pray for those who discriminate against other races globally. Ask God for a spirit of repentance and deliverance upon them. Pray for a revelation of God’s purposes and created order on all sides. Pray that the tragedy of racial sin leads peoples and nations to repentance towards a spiritual revival. Pray for healing and forgiveness for the victims and that this would lead them to God.
Pray for the churches and spiritual leaders in nations that suffer from racism. Ask God to give them wisdom and leadership to be salt and light during these times and for divine opportunities to share the truth of God’s word. Pray for churches to be at the forefront of reconciliation among peoples.
Pray for the governments of these nations to be able to provide protection and justice for the victims. Pray that they would be able to restore order and contain the hate and violence.
Pray against the socio-economic discrimination in the Philippines. The division among our people is not so much racial or regional as it is socio-economic. Intercede for genuine unity and for the privileged to use their resources to help uplift our countrymen from poverty.
Every Nation is a global family of churches and campus ministries, of which Victory is a founding member.
We are called to make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:19). This is the reason we value world missions as a church and persistently pray for the nations every month.
To learn more about recent events related to racial issues, you can check the news and resources in the links below.
- Pastor Steve Murrell’s video on racial reconciliation and the Church
- William Murrell and Justin Gray’s video on race, injustice, and discipleship
- New York Times article on the viral incident about a Filipina attacked in Times Square
- Inquirer article on the attacker of the Filipina in New York
- CNN article about the gunman who shot and killed 6 Asian women
- Voice of America article on the spike of hate crimes targeting Asian Americans in major US cities