Rev. Tony Evans, pastor of the 10,000-member Oak Cliff Bible Church in Dallas, Texas, on Sunday delivered a biblically inspired sermon entitled "Race, Culture and Christ" that has been viewed on YouTube nearly 160,000 times since then. He started with an appeal to God, saying people need Him today at a "level that is beyond the ordinary."
"We need the supernatural extraordinary now, because You have allowed it to be clear that we have human limitations. So we cry out to You, Lord, for wisdom and knowledge and understanding, starting in this house," said Evans.
The pastor first compared what needs to occur in society now to the Olympics, during which every four years when elite athletes compete to be viewed as the best, but when the medalists stand on the platform, they represent a bigger country, a bigger kingdom; it's not just about them.
"God has a kingdom. It's made up of citizens. Some black, some white, some red, yellow, Spanish backgrounds. His intention was never that the individual uniqueness would cause them to lose sight of the flag flying over them. The flag of the cross," said Evans.
He said America in particular is reaching an all-time low in this issue of race, culture and class. "Just under the surface there is this ever-bubbling problem that has gone unresolved."
"We have voices about which life matters. All life is created in the image of God. All lives matter," said the pastor.
"However, underneath the banner that God has created all people in his image, there are inequities that must be addressed. For example, the life of the unborn matters. And so there is this emphasis on injustice in the womb. But that injustice in the womb must be under the umbrella that all life matters. Black lives matter, as a subset of all lives matter. So any injustices to a particular group must be addressed specific to that group but under the banner that all life is created in the image of God."
Evan believes that once one extracts any specific scenario and removes it from the umbrella of God's creation, one is creating their own independent cause. "There is no discussion of sociology that, at least from a Christian point of view, shouldn't be plugged into theology; that is God's view of it," he said.
"God is not calling any of us to give up how he made us. He is not expecting us to use how he made us to relate inappropriately to people he has made different than us. God is not asking you to be anything other than what he's made you, as long as you submit to how he has made you, to how you relate to other people who he has made different than you," said Evans.
He said it is technically incorrect for someone to call themself a "black Christian," or a "white Christian," or a "Hispanic Christian."
"Then you make your color or culture an adjective. It's the job of the adjective to modify the noun. If you put Christianity in the noun position, and your color or culture in the adjective position, you have to keep shaping the noun so it looks like the adjective that describes it. So if your color stays in the adjectival position, you got to keep shaping Christianity to look black or to look white or to look red," he said.
Evans said humans are operating on illegitimate standards that are not rooted in God, but rooted in culture, rooted in history, in background.
"And all of that may be facts, but the question we must ask is: Is it the truth? You can have facts, but it not be the truth. The truth is an objective standard by which reality is measured; it's God's point of view on any subject. Just because you were raised a certain way. Once how you were raised disagrees with what God says, how you were raised was wrong!" he proclaimed.
"If our pulpits were right, we would have solved this problem of racism a long time ago. Slavery would have been solved, Jim Crow would have been solved, segregation - all of this would have been solved," said Evans.
"But because the pulpits were anemic and allowed to take place the evil in America, we are still fighting that evil today! Because pulpits were silent biblically on this issue, maintaining a manifest destiny ideology that was in contrast to biblical theology! But that also explains why the Civil Rights movement was able to change it, because the church got out in front of it."
Evans drummed out: "Truth overrides tradition! Truth overrides color! Black is only beautiful when it's biblical!"
"You must be Christian first. If we could get enough Christians to be Christian before white, Christian before black, Christian before Spanish, it doesn't take 240 years to fix this. It takes about two minutes and 40 seconds," said Evans.