Friday, February 17, 2006

Weekly Bible verse(s)

Peace and Blessings,

Lord willing, i'm going to try to post a bible scripture or two every week that I think speaks to a Christian perspective towards the issues discussed on this site as well as scriptures that I personally like. Feel free to comment to the post and include your favorite scriptures or those that you feel may apply to the issues discussed on the site. For this week (as well as next week because this post is at the end of the week), i'll start it off with Isaiah 61:1 which reads:
"The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has annointed and qualified me to preach the Gospel of good tidings to the meek, the poor, and afflicted; He has sent me to bind up and heal the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the [physical and spiritual] captives and the opening of the prison and of the eyes to those who are bound."

Source: New King James Amplified

This is one of my favorite scriptures because it speaks to the revolutionary aspect of Christianity, where Christians are agents of social change and advocates of human rights. In an article I read this week for a class i'm taking on the New Testament, the author argues that to understand the plight of people of African descent in America( perceptions, resistance, understanding, etc...), we must understand the different ways in the Bible has functioned within Africans and people of African descent throughout history (especially during slavery). In addition, he argues that people of African descent manipulated the Bible to fit their social experiences during different periods in history. In other words, their meaning of the Bible during the early years of slavery is different from that of later years of slavery, from once they were free, etc...Now while I agree with his first argument that how he view America is related to our understanding of the Bible, I have an issue with the use of the word "manipulation." In my opinion, it was the Europeans (and anyone else) who used the Bible and Christianity to justify slavery who manipulated the Bible, not Africans. Africans and people of African descents' interpretation of the Bible during different periods in history are not examples of manipulations but a succession of scriptural truth. God does not like individuals manipulating His word for the exploitation of others in the name of greed. Moreover, Jesus' ministry was about healing and empowering the oppressed and marginalized. He emphasized the importance of and commanded us to love one another and to put others before ourselves. Neither of these commands could be achieved by using the Bible to justify slavery. Until next time...speekonit

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