This past Sunday, we began to tackle Ephesians 2:11-22 in our Sunday morning gathering. In this passage, Paul deals with the Jew vs. Gentile racial & ethnic hostility that was present in the 1st century. He dealt with it on a couple of different levels: historical redemptive level and a more personal, local church level. In other words, how do we understand the Jew/Gentile relationship from the big picture perspective and then how does that play itself in the church, the "one new man" (Eph. 2:15), on a very personal level.
A big question for us to ask in applying this: If the barriers and divisions are broken down between Jew and Gentile in Christ, how much more should this "unity" apply with respect to all races and ethnicities today in Christ (Gal. 3:28)?
I can hear some of the murmuring already..."well, as long as..." OR "well, we worship here & THEY worship there..." OR "well, you just don't understand..." OR "This is the south..." Honestly, save it. Are there some obstacles that must be overcome? Certainly. Are there some deep & honest conversations that must be held? Yep, sure thing.
However, I bet if we would start at the foot of the cross with the Gospel, we might make a little more headway than we've made. Sure, there is a hypersensitivity prevalent in our culture is an obstacle, but it is not insurmountable.
Well, more to come...