“Was Jesus a Racist?” or is that even the right question

In a recent Associated Baptist Press article, Miguel De La Torre, associate professor of social ethics at the Iliff School of Theology in Denver, asks the question, “Was Jesus a Racist?”

He states in reference to Matt 15:21-28, “No matter how much I try to redeem the text, I cannot ignore the fact that Jesus called this woman of color a dog! I am forced to ask the uncomfortable question: Was Jesus a racist?” He implies that Jesus was in fact a racist who learned from a Canaanite woman.

An “uncomfortable question” is certainly right because if Jesus were a racist, then He was not sinless. Is 2 Corinthians 5:21 true or not? It states, “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” Did we have a perfect sacrifice die on the cross as a substitute or was Jesus simply a good man trying to overcome the social evils of His time?

The Bible clearly teaches that Jesus is the sinless, perfect second person of the triune Godhead who was tempted in every way and did not sin. Perhaps Torre has a different view of Jesus.

Torre continues stating that this woman demanded “an equal place at the table of the Lord. . . . She demands to be treated as an equal. . . . she was entitled to a healing.” Sounds a lot like the culture of our age with demands and entitlement.

I am fairly certain that if we truly encountered the living God, we would not feel anything other than remorse. Finally he states, “Jesus learned something about his mission from this woman of color.”

While I understand the various views concerning the kenosis theory, I am not comfortable claiming that Jesus learned about His mission from a human. Any theory contending such comes very close to emptying Jesus of His Divinity and the question no longer is “Was Jesus a Racist?” but the questions becomes, “Was Jesus God?”

In fact this is really the uncomfortable question. If Jesus is truly God, then Jesus was no racist.

1 Comment

  1. readingitright

    July 30, 2009 at 2:15 pm

    Suppose I was a new christian and I read this posting… Where you have it saying, “Is 2 Corinthians 5:21 true or not? It states, “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.â€� is grossly irresponsible!!! However, it did force me to open my bible and read for myself.
    I am not a new christian though, and have to point out that your Jesus did practice racism towards that woman in Matthew chapter 15. How much more plain does the Bible have to make it that He was sent to the lost tribes of Israel FIRST and foremost?
    The MOST HIGH EHYAH, or I AM THAT I AM, specifically told his people all through out history not to intermingle and cavort with foreigners, for they would corrupt his people and lead them down a road of sin and destruction by way of customs and following false gods even of wood and stone(ie. the christmas tree as described in Jeremiah chapter 10, verses 1 – 5.
    Please, if you are going to save your own soul and the souls of those whom you minister to, teach them correctly… learn and teach the laws the are in the first 5 books… create postings on here that are gramatically correct and are not misleading!
    In Matthew 5: 17, He says, “Do not think that I have come to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fullfill”.
    So, He was a racist, and dont forget that He was a “hue- man” on a mission from His Father!

    -all responses and theories are welcome on my blog with texts from the Bible.

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