The recent death of George Floyd was unjust, inhumane, and heart-breaking to view. His death has resurfaced memories of past hurts and injustices, fears about the future, and anger about long-standing injustices against black people around the world. The Christian faith teaches that God created humanity in his own image and that every individual is precious to Him and should be shown the dignity and respect which flows from that. Any manifestation of racism is against the will of God.
While recent events demonstrate that we are living far from God’s original design for us, there is good news. This is that God has enacted a salvation plan that deals with His image having become corrupted in each of us due to our rebellion against Him. The Bible teaches that He sent His son, Jesus, fully God and fully human, who unlike each of us lived a perfect life. This included breaking down racial and ethnic barriers through his teachings and his encounters. Despite his complete innocence, Jesus Himself was tortured and crucified by acts of human rebellion. But God turned Jesus’ death on the cross around for good. For through it, Jesus took upon Himself the punishment all who believe in Him deserve for their rebellion against God.
The resurrection of Jesus provides a sure hope of new life and paves the way for those who believe in Christ’s saving work to be both progressively and ultimately fully restored. God has promised that this gift of salvation will be given to great multitudes of people from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, signalling the intrinsic value that God places on all His creation. So we call on all Christians to speak up for justice, listen to, empathise and stand with those in need, to repent of any wrongdoing and keep forgiving (as God has forgiven us). Together we can work for freedom and reconciliation, bringing comfort, healing, and hope.