Skin Color, Partiality and the Power of the Gospel

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The gospel frees us to pursue change by honestly asking ourselves if partiality is something we tend to struggle with. (iStockPhoto)

The gospel frees us to pursue change by honestly asking ourselves if partiality is something we tend to struggle with.

In my opinion, there is no one who is immune to this temptation, including myself. Theoretically, we know that God created each of us with equal value and worth. We know that the gospel—the good news that Jesus came to seek and save the lost—is for everyone who would believe (Luke 19:10). Yet:

  • Are we living out these truths?
  • When we think about inviting a friend over for lunch, for example, what does that friend typically look like?
  • Do your friends look like you?

If you answered "yes," you are not alone. Most of us would too. The good news is we can fight this temptation. We can look to Jesus and love our neighbors as ourselves by laying down our comforts and reaching out to those unlike ourselves. We can repent of the sin of partiality.

God says if we confess this sin, He is faithful and just to forgive us and purify us (1 John 1:9). This will not be easy, but it is part of the mission. God's Spirit will enable us. We must step out in faith, but God will supply the grace. We must make the effort, but God is our strength.

Fighting Partiality

If you find yourself resonating with this post but are unsure of what to do, here are a few ideas for fighting the sin of partiality.

  1. Pray: Pray that God would give you opportunities to reach out to those unlike yourself. Pray that God would give you his loving eyes for others.
  2. Evangelize: Ask God to provide opportunities to boldly proclaim Christ to those around you. Get uncomfortable.
  3. Hospitality: Pursue diversity in your home. If you are tempted to only associate with "certain types of people" this might be a great opportunity to love your neighbor as yourself and invite others into your life.

How will you begin fighting partiality today?

Taken from Trillia Newbell's blog post "Skin Color, Partiality and the Power of the Gospel" at Used with permission. This post and these ideas have been adapted from Trillia's new book United: Captured by God's Vision for Diversity (Moody Publishers, 2014).

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