Destructive Reactions to Injustice

The article above by Samuel Sey points out that police brutality is a problem that transcends racial lines and that rioting is neither a typical nor appropriate response. The rioting we are currently experiencing, he argues, is not in response to police brutality but rather in response to perceived racist police brutality. After Ahmaud Arbery's killing earlier this month, Mr. Sey made the following statement: 

"Injustices against black men are not synonymous with racist injustices against black men. And if we react to these injustices in a careless and slanderous manner, we’re not just guilty of sin, but we’re also guilty of contributing to the divisions, tensions, and anxieties in our society.”

Unjust Judging

The heart of this matter is practicing unjust judging. This was practiced by the police officer that put his knee on George's neck, it was practiced by rioters, and it is practiced by people on social media presumptuously speaking out on the issue. We don't know enough information to start indicting the police officers nor punish all police officers in-general for the actions of a few. This is why we have a justice system that will ideally involve multiple positions such as impartial jurors, a just judge, and thorough detectives to gather evidence (Romans 13:1-5). 

As for us, we are to judge with right judgement (John 7:24, 1 Cor 6:2-3) and someday we will each be judged by God and will have to give an account for every word we say so we should choose our words carefully out of fear and reverence for God (2 Cor 5:10, Mat 12:36, Proverbs 8:13, Proverbs 1:7, Job 28:28, 1 Peter 2:17). has more to say about this:

"Superficial judgment is wrong. Passing judgment on someone based solely on appearances is sinful (John 7:24). It is foolish to jump to conclusions before investigating the facts (Proverbs 18:13). Simon the Pharisee passed judgment on a woman based on her appearance and reputation, but he could not see that the woman had been forgiven; Simon thus drew Jesus’ rebuke for his unrighteous judgment (Luke 7:36–50)."

Taming The Tongue

We are each also commanded to tame our tongue. In the modern world of social networking, it has become very easy for people to quickly say what they are thinking while avoiding the typical relational repercussions that occur when people speak in-person to one-another. In fact, the Bible says that if anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person's religion is worthless (James 1:26). Examine your heart: do you quickly respond with cutting remarks? Do you examine the evidence at-hand and then draw a conclusion from it? Or do you simply say whatever you are feeling in your heart which is desperately wicked? (Jeremiah 17:9, Matthew 15:18-20, Romans 3:10-18). No matter how good we might think we are, no matter how pious or self-righteous, no matter how involved we are in a church, we all have sinned and fallen short of God's standard (Rom 3:23, Rom 3:9-20). If we will admit to God that we have in-fact sinned, He is faithful and just to forgive us but if we lie to ourselves and say we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us (1 John 1:9-10). 

You can read more about taming the tongue here: 

Can We Fix Racism? What should we be saying about George Floyd?

The answer is no -- we cannot fix racism. What should we do? We should do what we always do: share the good news of the Gospel. God fixes the heart when we turn from sin and trust in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior (Acts 3:19, Mat 4:17, Acts 17:30, Romans 2:4, Matthew 3:8, John 3:16-18, Romans 1:16, Mark 16:15, Acts 2:38).