Cover 2018-10-28

Ron Writes


When we sing “Just a Little Talk with Jesus,” it never enters our minds that the song writer was Cleavant Derricks. Not only that, but as one historian remarked, most people don’t know that Derricks was a black man. His music first started to be published by Stamps-Baxter in the 1930’s. Sadly, the historian also noted that considering the atmosphere in the Jim Crowe South during the first half of the twentieth century, many wouldn’t have sang his songs had they known he was black. Derricks, Tommy A. Dorsey (“Precious Memories,” “Peace in the Valley”), and other black writers wrote songs of the hardships of life and a sustaining God. These songs spoke to the common man.

Scientifically speaking, we are all shades of the same color. Melanin is the pigment that determines skin color. Some just have more or less melanin. Biblically speaking, every human is of “one blood” (Acts 17:26). We all bleed the same color. We are all descendants of the first man, Adam. All of us are created in the very image of God (Gen. 1:26-27). In fact, the Bible doesn’t even use the word “race” in reference to people (Ezra 9:2 refers to “seed’). “Race” is a meaningless word. All have sinned and all have need of the gospel of Jesus. Here’s how the Bible pictures the mankind of Christians: “After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches were in their hands” (Rev. 7:9).

Martin Luther King once called the worship hour on Sunday mornings “the most segregated hour in America.” In Christianity and in America, the word “race” should be a meaningless word. Racism occurs because we live in a culture that tells us that having a different color or genetic makeup is a big difference and is a problem. These teachings must be eradicated from our way of thinking. Racism has no place in Christianity. Just like Mr. Derrick’s color is invisible when we sing his song, color needs to be invisible when we live our lives.