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A Conversation with Eric Metaxas & Greg Laurie: Biblical Perspective on Slavery and Racism

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
December 15, 2020 3:00 am

A Conversation with Eric Metaxas & Greg Laurie: Biblical Perspective on Slavery and Racism

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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December 15, 2020 3:00 am

History records many dark times of human suffering and tragedy. But God’s people have always brought light into the darkness. And today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie is with radio and TV host, Eric Metaxas as they discuss just what part the Church has played in combating racism, bigotry, and slavery. And we’ll discover that the spiritual moorings of America can be traced back to a certain preacher who planted the seeds of the gospel that allowed our republic to be born.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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The following message from Pastor Greg Laurie is made possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God. If you would like to know how you can become a harvest partner, just go to that's today. Pastor Greg Laurie speaks with father narrowed protections about a biblical perspective on slavery and racism.

We need to know that the way we have made progress against the abomination of slavery and against the horrors of Jim Crow laws was people of Christian faith and they said were to live our faith and were to be missing this way, but they were activists in God's way and is the dark times of humans tragically, God's people always rub my today on a new beginning.

Pastor Greg Laurie is with radio and TV host Eric but taxes as we discussed just one part of the church is played in combating racism, bigotry, and slavery and will discover that the spiritual moorings of America can be traced back to a certain creature planted the seeds of the gospel with public Greg Laurie to her about my friend Eric with Dr. Suzuki brings summary you got the white pants you got the blue socks. That's my skin.

I've got a doctor look at her. There's nothing they can do. I would have looked at a meeting I don't where I don't know if had a problem. It's a very good blue to have well I didn't always used to be that color. I take pills. Now we better get serious for so my goodness okay well if you don't know Eric obviously he's a New York Times best-selling author, you've probably heard of his books are read his books on Baja for Luther and of course his book on William Wilberforce called amazing Grace another book called, if you can keep you've written all these amazing books you attended Yale University and somehow Eric would taxes to was not raised really believing in Jesus Christ. In a moment where he committed his life to the Lord.

How did your conversion come about. Well, I was lost. Which is kind of the point of going to a place like Yale University.

They want to they want to teach you that life has no meaning but it's too painful to think about, so we will just distract you and teach you to avoid the subject of the meaning of life with the meaninglessness of life.

So get a really good job and you be distracted by by working hard and on the weekends.

There's like sports and alcohol in a few decades. It will be over and I was an English major, I did not get a good job and so I floundered. Try to be a writer, and in the midst of my floundering eventually got to a place where I was miserable genuinely lost, but not seeking God. I was sort of looking for the meaning of life. I don't what I was looking for. Sometimes I think people say so-and-so is a seeker. And the point is that you're just drifting your floater your drifting you don't know what you're doing you don't know if there is a meaning of life to discover in the midst of that hell. Long story short I met a man who said sharing his faith with me and I was very resistant to kill him. Just kidding. I was very resistant, but after a number of months I began slightly to listen and then one night the Lord spoke to me in a dream. People can the Lord completely and utterly blew my mind by speaking to me in a way in a dream that I knew if you listen to the dream I knew that it was miraculous.

It wasn't just a dream and I woke up it was game over. I know Jesus is Lord. The Bible is true and now my life has purpose and I love the way that you're taking your platform, urine, radio, urine television, obviously your prolific author and you've written quite extensively about different significant people that made a difference in their time. One thing that comes to mind is Rosa Parks tell us a little bit about why you chose her and what difference her life made. Well it's interesting in my book, seven men, I wrote about the story of Jackie Robinson and why he was chosen by branch Rickey the general manager of the Dodgers to be the first black American to play in the major leagues knows they specifically chose him because he was known not just to be a great ballplayer. He was phenomenal but he was known to be a man of deep Christian faith, and branch Rickey said if we really want to accomplish this great thing we have to be strategic.

The Scripture says be wise as serpents and a lot of times that many Christians who think like pumping on being wise as a dove. That's close enough.

No wise as serpents or branch Rickey says I'm to choose him because I know that I can bank on him getting the idea that he has to turn the other cheek when people curse him. Whatever he is obliged for the sake of the sport for the sake of his race. He's obliged to not do the thing he feels like doing what to say I'm gonna I'm going to love my enemy so that we can accomplish a greater thing, though he pushes away his own will, for the greater good. It's heroic. When I wrote seven women.

Rosa Parks popped in my It was a very similar case she was chosen in the I guess was 1954 Montgomery bus boycott. They kind of wanted to pick someone who they knew would serve as a symbol and a couple years earlier something similar had happened where a young African American woman had been kicked off the bus, but she'd been known to have loose morals.

She kind of cursed at the cops of the bus driver whatever they said when we do this we need to pick someone who is above reproach and beyond reproach and Rosa Parks was known to be serious about her Christian faith. A woman of great dignity of you know, serious morality, so when the picture they knew she would be a symbol and people would look turn and and and they would think all we want to persecute this dignified woman whose well-dressed and whose you know and she was willing to go through that hell for her people and not just for her people. Let's face it, for justice for what is right, but it came out of her Christian faith. The idea that she wanted to do this but it was her behavior as a Christian that allowed the powers that be to say we want her to be the face of this movement and I just think that we forget sometimes that the civil rights movement in America and the abolitionist movement against slavery was principally motivated by people of devout Christian faith. We need to know that the way we have made progress against the abomination of of slavery and against the horrors of the Jim Crow laws was with people of Christian faith, living out the substance of their faith by saying, according to the Scripture.

This is wrong and by the way, for some, he doesn't believe in the Bible.

I want to ask them is why you say racism is wrong, just as you say it's wrong right it is wrong according to what God says about his love. That's equal for every human being and so these people knew they were right and they said were to live out our faith in working to be activists in this way, but they were activist in God's way. Whether was Jackie Robinson or Rosa Parks or Martin Luther King. It was about a Christian witness. It was not about raging against the oppressor. It was not about you know killing the slaveowners in. In the case of abolition.

I wrote about Wilberforce is a classic case of how he handled that in the case of civil rights here in America. It was principally devout Christians behaving like Christians as they fought more Luther King Junior said you know when you're on this bus and if you're not ready to turn the other cheek get off the bus. If your troublemaker it off the bus. We can use you. You will you will send us backward and that's the difference between those movements and some of overseeing today.

There is some rage and some violence and things that is setting the cause backward and is confusing people than I was there people who are just looking at and thinking that that this is confusing. I don't know I don't what to believe. Martin Luther King in particular was very careful about managing the appearance of the movement so that people on the fence would look and say listen. Those are good people. There is no question that they are on the right side of this just just look at how their handling this persecution right. That's the power of love that is the power of nonviolence which is which is expressed as as love for one's enemies if you really want to accomplish something. Jesus shows us the way to do it and when we have done it that way. We have accomplished something and unfortunately right now. Some people ever really confused things so dramatically that I think it's it's setting things back in the country.

We have to we have to we have to do these things Jesus's way. He's the only hope to forgive those that have harmed us and persecuted us out with whoever we are and it is if we deviate from that we we just we not only don't get anywhere we move backwards your Greg Laurie will have more of his discussion with Erik my taxes in just a moment. We hear from Sony find Christ through the study of God's word dear Pastor Greg wake up to your voice on the radio each day. I've been a Christian since September 12, 1978 after hearing in Riverside, California while living in connection my employers told me they were praying for me for many years.

I did not believe that after hearing your life story all about Jesus. I begin to believe and made a decision to follow Jesus. Thank you Pastor Greg for all that you've done and continue to do for all of us need to hear the word daily. We hope Pastor Greg's words from Scripture continue to touch lives. And if you have a comment or story to share, send it to Pastor Greg's email address is that's great now. Pastor Greg continues his discussion with best-selling author Eric my taxes to be talking about Moses and how one man effectively because of his godliness, and personal integrity kept 2 1/2 billion people away from idolatry. Because when he left the scene and left Aaron in charge was the worst babysitter of all time, all hell broke loose him, Moses comes down from Mount Sinai holding the 10 Commandments in their dancing naked before a golden calf.

I mean how bad can I get but two names come to mind significant people. One very well-known maybe the other not as well-known, but the same name George George Washington and George Whitfield, George Washington, and George Whitfield, Washington we know Whitfield was an evangelist, but I argue in some of my books in my seven men booked my seven more men book and in my book. If you can keep it that America that George Whitfield was used by God as dramatically as George Washington to create what we call the United States of America that without George Whitfield and without George Washington, who, in case you're wondering was not perfect but God used both of these men so dramatically. You know sometimes you look at history, any sales, a group of people, but every now and again you say, even if it's a group of people.

There was a leader behaved in such a way that if he had not, or if she had not behaved in that way. There is no way this would've succeeded coming 1776 and the revolution should never have succeeded. I mean the facts are that the odds were stacked against them in such a way that unless God's hand was involved that it it ought not to have succeeded.

But Washington when I did my chapter in Washington. My first book 7 men. I was embarrassed because like so many things your people think as I went to yell like I and I know everything I I am secure enough to tell you I am stupid and ignorant on an infinite number of things and when I discover something late in life, like who George Washington really was.

I am ashamed that for all these decades.

I did not know who he was, in terms of the true greatness when you called the father the country he really was.

He keep almost in his person because of his aboveboard character enabled us to succeed and I talked about two examples in the chapter where he pushes down his own ambition for the sake of the greater good and it is so dramatic a sacrifice that you just think what I have been able to do that so it it inspires us to think that that's what greatness is and he does it twice. But George Whitfield it's a similar thing EP was a pure evangelist and he preach the gospel up and down the 13 colonies I joke around only half joking as usual. He was such an evangelist.

He preached so much to so many thousands of people so often for so many years that he makes Paul the apostle, and Billy Graham look like lazy agnostics. That's that's my joke and pause for laughter, but in all seriousness, he was so how I put it energized and anointed as an evangelist and he preach the simplest message, just like Billy Graham. The simplest message about the new birth. We must be born again, we must look to God not to man we have never personally should be.

Jesus but by doing that in the decades preceding the revolution revival broke out, up and down the 13 colonies and people like Benjamin Franklin looked at this and said you know what when people look to a higher authority which is God when they have a personal relationship. You don't need many cops to keep them from stealing. They don't steal because they think it's a sin they don't steal because the answer to a higher authority. We don't need big government, the people can govern themselves if they have virtue, and if they have strong faith as they get these revivals virtue follows crime goes down. Alcoholism goes down, so it led to the possibility of people being able to govern themselves because virtue is at the heart of self-government, which is something I also did know growing up and I certainly would been learned in college and want to put all this together. There is no question zero question that without the preaching.

Over the decades of this great great evangelist George Whitfield. There is no way the United States would've come into being because preaching the gospel is an egalitarian for its rights as were all equal in God's eyes, so you don't look at you look at the king of the magistrate or the governor differently. You hold them to account, but as you say, God holds them to account, just as he holds me to account were all equal in God's sight. It changes things.

And just to show you how much of an icon. This evangelist was for the American cause. When Benedict Arnold before he was a traitor when he was still on our side still a good guy.

He led his troops to make a pilgrimage to the grave of George Whitfield because he was seen to represent America. He was seen in fact they took some of his clothing office, grew something they open the crypt and they took off some of his clothing, which was still there because they wanted almost as an icon is as a relic because he represented the freedom of the gospel and the freedom that they were trying to live out politically and this was an evangelist. It was like yes he preached no that's all he ever did is preach the gospel of Jesus and obviously make that connection in my book.

If you can keep it that without him you don't have 1776. It it does not happen, raising another taking the statue of Billy Graham.

I know that I heard about that. So yeah what I mean to me that is the most appropriate yes right thing that could be done because Billy played not just a significant role as a great evangelist to America in the world but but really just for years. For decades I mean there's been no minister who is ever had a relationship with so many presidents starting with Pres. Truman right and going all the way to Pres. Obama and arguably with Pres. Trump because I was at Belize on 95th birthday party and then businessman Donald Trump was there since before he announces candidacy of the run for the presidency, but he had a relationship with Billy soberly from Truman to Tromp Billy played a significant role both Republicans and Democrats at some of the Democrats.

He had a greater influence on the via some of the Republicans very close with LBJ of very you know we had a relationship with Kennedy once during the Billy told me about amazing visibility do you have any regrets in life and he said yes.

I regret the fact that I did not go with the president on one occasion he was speaking at the prayer breakfast in Washington DC when you've spoken you've spoken of that when Pres. Obama was in office, but does so Kennedy was the president. So after Billy spoke.

Pres. Kennedy said to the Billy, would you drive with the back of the White House or some I want to talk to about Billy was very sick. You have the flu. Lisa, Mr. Pres., I'm afraid I would get you sick of I were to do this. Maybe I could do this you know in the future in the near future and JFK said okay that's fine and shortly after that Kennedy was assassinated how dollars and of course Billy says I regret that I didn't have the conversation because I wondered what he wanted to talk to me about, but you don't tell us what your thoughts are on a Billy now having this statute dedicated to all first of all, I can't neglect to push one more time, I booked seven more men because the seventh man in that book is Billy Graham. I didn't put them in seven more men because he was still living and I said I only put people who are not living in these Books. That's the only reason you're not in the book, but in all seriousness, Billy Graham, he's American Indian is usually called seven lame men. Seven. I look I I hope to write many more in the seven in the seven series, but I am I'm serious that when when he passed away. I thought I'm gonna write another book and he has to be in the book and putting him in statuary Hall in the capital. He's replacing some Confederate figure who was there. It really is appropriate because we have to remember that Billy Graham because of his faith in Jesus Christ integrated his crusades before you really had to do anything like that was a brave Christian witness against segregation against Jim Crow and that's the power of the gospel of the gospel touches everything it touches race relations. It touches how we do government. As I said we wouldn't have the freedoms we have in this country if not for a virtuous and religious people and all these things are connected. So any time anyone talks to me about religion is like the first thing I want to say is our faith should not be private and some little religious corner. The even our Constitution says that we have religious liberty to exercise our faith everywhere, not just in some little building up and then when you come out you bow to the secular authority of the state. Know your faith is supposed to be part of everything. It's must be reflected in everything you say and do in your life. Otherwise you you don't really have faith and that's something I think some people's struggle with and it's part of why I do a lot of what I do is because I just want to show it. It needn't always be our our faith needn't always be a religious thing, so to speak, you can just infuse every conversation everything very to very important that people think that fascinating conversation and pastor Greg Laurie and author Eric my taxes today here on the new beginning good insight on the men God used. To shape this country. Hopefully you got all of this discussion, but if you missed any part you can catch up by listening again online pet we are simply titling this program a conversation with Eric my taxes and Greg Laurie or you can get a permanent copy on CD by calling 1-800-821-3300. That's 1-800-821-3300 pastor Greg we announced a few months ago that more than 100,000 people had registered decisions for Christ. Just this year through harvest ministries and it's actually more than that now yeah now that's in spite of the church being shut down and the harvest Crusade this year being canceled.

Yes, it's sort of is if God said canceled shut down.

Watch this I mean he really showed up in a big way and it actually surpassed our goals.

Exponentially we see more people touched with the gospel this year than any year in our history. That's really true that if you know the Bible says when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Actually, the Bible doesn't say that, but to know the Bible does give us a much better Stephen Romans 828 for we know that all things work together for good to those who love God. Another called according to his purpose.

And so what we did as our listeners knows we pivoted but we found that we could not have our live event in the stadium as we always do and we've done for the last 30 years we created what we call the cinematic crusade. One person described it as the greatest evangelistic film that ever seen before. It was our goal to do something that was beautiful and artistic but yet had a gospel one-two punch in it and the result of that was our movie that we put out called a rush of hope, it was seen by thousands and thousands of people around the world. Thousands came to Christ as a result of it, and our hope is next year to do another movie. It's not title yet, but I'm already talking with your when brothers about our next cinematic crusade that were going to do with. Here's the cool thing. Now you can own your own copy of what we call a rush of hope. This beautiful film that had vignettes from other kingdom films in it like I can only imagine. I still believe in Woodlawn, along with the special sections that we recorded live concert with for King and country in Germany And a message that I did against one of the most beautiful backdrops of nature of ever seen in my entire life, and we've seen that this really moves people deeply. This is a tool you're going to be able to use again and again and again you can invite someone over and say watch this movie with me if not longer than an hour and then you can talk to them about how they can come into relationship with God. What a great tool to have in the holiday season, especially as were having our first Christmas in the middle of a pandemic. So not only will we send you this DVD copy of a rush of hope will also send a special information piece that shows you how to host a watch party that simply means that it tells you how to put an event on at your house using this film, inviting people over from your neighborhood or from your family or your workplace or wherever you want to do it whereof. You can show a DVD you can do this and also we have a downloadable version as well that you could join a tablet device or computer or even a phone.

We also in the special offer that we have right now.

Have a little evangelistic booklet called a rush of hope find answers to life's most important questions. It's all of this is in the special resource that we want to send you for your gift of any size and this is so we can finish 2020 strong. It's been a crazy year.

It's been a surprising year, but it's also been a very spiritually fruitful year. I will pray that 2021 will even be more effective in reaching people with the gospel lesson here harvest ministries you know were all about teaching the word of God for also about proclaiming the gospel and calling people to Christ because of your prayer and support we been able to reach more people in this last year than we breached in all of our years.

In doing this and were praying will reach even more next year. So as this year comes to a close. Would you prayerfully consider giving to us right now financially and I would ask you to give generously because when you do that we can reach even more people. And guess what, it will be spiritual fruit to your account and I would like to send you is my way of saying thanks is brand-new DVD copy of our cinematic crusade film. A rush of hope. Yeah, that's right. And if you haven't seen it. Don't miss out. If you have seen it course you know what a special movie.

This is so thank you for your generous year-end donation right now and will thank you tangibly with a rush of hope on DVD you can write a new beginning. Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514 or call 1-800-821-3300. That's 1-800-821-3300 or go online to Pastor Greg brings us another message based on the life of Moses received the power of one how one person can make a world of difference when heaven is guiding and empowering to the next new beginning possible by harvest partners, helping people everywhere know God sign up for pastor great free daily email,

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