Hundreds of Christian evangelicals, including well-known pastor David Platt, gathered at the nation’s capital on Sunday to protest racism in America. Those in attendance sang Christian songs and held signs with Bible verses pertaining to God’s love for all people everywhere.
Concerned that there weren’t enough outspoken Christian voices against racial injustice, Faith + Works DC helped many evangelicals get involved in the protests in Washington over the weekend. One of those participants was pastor of McLean Bible Church in Virginia, David Platt.
“We pray that you would forgive us for our history and our present,” Platt prayed. “We praise you, in particular, today, Jesus, as this group, for taking the judgment we deserve.”
Thabiti Anyabwile, pastor of Anacostia River Church introduced the former president of the SBC’s International Mission Board. Anyabwile is a well-known evangelical that has spent much of his time in ministry speaking out against racism.
Protesters sang songs such as “This Little Light of Mine” and “Because He Lives” and prayed as they marched across the Anacostia River toward downtown.
Pastor Anyabwile took a few moments to share his thoughts on how the church has “fallen behind” in speaking out against racism.
“This iteration of civil rights is not located in the church. The church is playing catch-up…,” he said. “One skill we don’t have as a country or a church is conversation. We’re unpracticed at that and so we’re wrestling with hope.”
Prior to the march during a video sermon, Anyabwile urged Christians to stop ignoring the “cries of the blood of black bodies.”
“Blood spilled unrighteously cries into the very ears of an all-powerful God. God hears it,” he said as he preached about Cain and Abel. “This country is storing up wrath for the day of wrath.”
“Indifference can no longer be the Christian response to what we’re seeing in the world,” he emphasized. “It is a lovelessness, it is more than a hatred. It is an evil to be indifferent in the face of such suffering and injustice.”
He called out fundamentalists and evangelicals within Christendom that try to excuse themselves from any conversation related to racism.
“So many Christians who pity themselves in the midst of conversations about blood flowing in the streets. Fragile white people can’t bear to have racism pointed out,” he said.
“We are where we are because this country and white evangelical Christians have twisted the theology of the body so that they can own black bodies. Our blood flows in the street crying out to God and God answers… to announce His judgment.”