Today we honor Martin Luther King Jr., an American Baptist minister, activist, humanitarian and leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement.
Nearly fifty years after his death, Dr. King remains one of the most influential and inspirational figures in American history. People still turn to his speeches, sermons and letters for inspiration and guidance on how to better live together in harmony - in fact, his "I Have a Dream" speech, delivered in 1963, established his reputation as one of the greatest and most influential orators in American history.
But while he is primarily remembered as a civil rights activist, Dr. King was a devout Christian who famously stated, "We must keep God in the forefront. Let us be Christian in all our actions."
Today, let's reflect on the life and legacy of Dr. King. Here are eleven inspirational quotes from Dr. King that provide insight, hope - and remind us of the role faith can play in social justice.
1. "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."
2. "There is so much frustration in the world because we have relied on gods rather than God. We have worshiped the god of pleasure only to discover that thrills play out and sensations are short-lived."
3. "The end of life is not to be happy, nor to achieve pleasure and avoid pain, but to do the will of God, come what may."
4. "The gospel at its best deals with the whole man, not only his soul but his body, not only his spiritual well-being, but his material well-being as well."
5. "The early Christians rejoiced when they were deemed worthy to suffer for what they believed. In those days the Church was not merely a thermometer that recorded the ideas and principles of popular opinion; it was a thermostat that transformed the mores of society."
6. "The hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict."
7, "Forgiveness is not an occasional act, it is a constant attitude."
8. "It is cheerful to God when you rejoice or laugh from the bottom of your heart."
9. "I just want to do God's will. And he's allowed me to go to the mountain. And I've looked over, and I've seen the Promised Land! I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight that we as a people will get to the Promised Land."
10. "When I took up the cross I recognized its meaning. The cross is something that you bear, and ultimately, that you die on."
11. "The God whom we worship is not a weak and incompetent God. He is able to beat back gigantic waves of opposition and to bring low prodigious mountains of evil. The ringing testimony of the Christian faith is that God is able."