I enjoyed reading Gracism: The Art of Inclusion by Dr. David A. Anderson.
“The parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor.” -1 Corinthians 12:23
When people deal with color, class or culture in a negative way, that’s racism. But the answer is not to ignore these as if they don’t matter. Instead, we can look at color, class and culture in a positive way. That’s gracism. Pastor David Anderson responds to prejudice and injustice with the principle of gracism: radical inclusion for the marginalized and excluded. Building on the apostle Paul’s exhortations in 1 Corinthians 12 to honor the weaker member, Anderson presents a biblical model for showing special grace to others on the basis of ethnicity, class or other social distinction. He offers seven sayings of the gracist with practical examples for building bridges and including others. A Christian alternative to secular models of affirmative action or colorblindness, gracism is an opportunity to extend God’s grace to people of all backgrounds.
- The sin of racism is an equal opportunity employer (18).
- I define racism as speaking, acting or thinking negatively about someone else solely based on that person’s color, class, or culture (21).
- Am I perpetuating segregation among Christians and simply justifying it with my preferences and comfort (38)?
- A gracist is committed to lifting up others who are on the fringes, in the minority or in need of extra attention (47).
- Valuing community and fellowship over comfort is a practical way to process Paul’s statement about special treatment (79).
- Those groups who have come with honor deficits are first in line for greater honor from heaven’s perspective (88).
- I believe that when choruses of believers sing this phrase “I will stand with you” with passion and conviction for one another, true unity will amount (118).
- I seek isolation and protection from the ills of society, which includes the people who go with those ills. These are the people whom Christ was seeking to hang out with and touch (123).
- Christianity at its best is a faith that reaches across lines of comfort and convenience (157).
Travis Agnew serves as the Lead Pastor of Rocky Creek Church in Greenville, SC. His most recent book is Just (About) Married.