Black Liberation Theology: The Enemy Within
By: Erik Rush
Sincere apologies from this columnist to those sufficiently sick of the Barack Obama/Rev. Jeremiah Wright story that they are a hairâ€™s breadth from an uncontrollable fit of projectile vomiting.
On March 1, 2007, when Rev. Wright blasted me, Sean Hannity and Alan Colmes for being too ignorant to even presume to speak on theology because we had not studied Black Liberation Theology (BLT), through his belligerent, imperious egomania, he effectively flung open the door for much of the potentially damaging scrutiny now being directed at this dubious gospel.
Black Liberation Theology is nothing new; it has been festering largely unseen within the Church since the â€˜Sixties. Indeed, it is likely that it would have remained â€œhands offâ€ if not for the Obama/Wright controversy, lest messengers be upbraided for attempting to deny blacks their religious freedom. â€œAttackingâ€ black churches isnâ€™t exactly politically-correct, be it with words or molotovs.
A Hidden Heresy
In the last year, and particularly since the airing of Wrightâ€™s sermon excerpts, certain biblical scholars and real theologians have seized upon the opportunity to publicly compare and contrast BLT with mainstream Christianity. As it happens, there was a substantial amount of information out there on the subject prior to Obama/Wright; now thereâ€™s little doubt it didnâ€™t get nearly the amount of attention it merited.
One essay that has gained exposure in the last month or so is The Truth about Black Liberal Theology by Dr. Robert A. Morey, founder the California Biblical University and Seminary in Irvine, CA. Moreyâ€™s study is probably the most direct and succinct primer on the subject.
â€œThe fundamental ideas of BT did not come from black thinkers but from such white European thinkers as Hegel, Darwin, Marx, etc. It is Euro-centric in its ideology although it is Euro-phobic in its rhetoric. Black liberal theologians are in reality “Uncle Toms” still licking the boots of their white, Marxist masters at such bastions of white liberalism as Princeton, Yale, Harvard, etc. They are the slaves of Karl Marx.â€
- The Truth about Black Liberal Theology, Dr. Robert A. Morey
A point Iâ€™ve made many times in response to those who claim that black conservatives are Uncle Toms, race traitors, and things of this nature: Black civil rights activists (BLT proponents included) have long since been corrupted by the agenda of far Left whites, an agenda that has done infinitely more harm to black Americans than good. The individuals who engage in the aforementioned invective seldom have a solid working knowledge of the history of the United States, but with BLT, pundits and pastors are validated with an almost unlimited supply of credentials toward promoting this insidious movement.
â€œThe goals of BT are to turn religion into sociology, Christianity into a political agenda, Jesus into a black Marxist rebel, and the gospel into violent revolution. They are more interested in politics than preaching the gospel.â€
- The Truth about Black Liberal Theology, Dr. Robert A. Morey
This is evidenced in just about every excerpt weâ€™ve seen of late; Jeremiah Wright, James Meeks and Otis Moss (Wrightâ€™s successor) seem wholly invested in accentuating the negative in every meaningful area of blacksâ€™ lives, from their self-perception, to their worldview, to the evil of their â€œoppressors.â€ No doubt their advocates will accuse this columnist of having cherry-picked â€œsnippetsâ€ of sermons to deliberately place said pastors in an unfavorable light.
â€œReducing black identity to “victim” distorts the reality of true progress. For example, was Obama a victim of widespread racial oppression at the hand of “rich white people” before graduating from Columbia University, Harvard Law School magna cum laude, or after he acquired his estimated net worth of $1.3 million? How did “rich white people” keep Obama from succeeding?â€
- Wright’s Theology as Victimology, Anthony B. Bradley
Another brilliant study of BLT was done in several essays and a dissertation by Anthony B. Bradley, an assistant professor of theology at Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis, MO. Excavating the roots of BLT, from Jeremiah Wrightâ€™s beloved James Cone, the chief architect of black liberation theology, to the contextual present, Bradley explains how BLT is about as far from New Testament Christianity as it could be. In the above paragraph, he refers to Rev. Wrightâ€™s assertion that â€œBarack Obama knows what it means to be a black man in a country controlled by rich white people.â€
â€œThe Black Churchâ€
Pastors such as Wright speak of â€œThe Black Church,â€ but there is no black church, or white church, or any-other-ethnicity church if the discussion remains confined to bible-based Christianity. The salvation of Christ transcends ethnicity, period. Those who embrace hatred, racism, judgment, etc., are either spiritually immature or have an unspoken, malignant agenda.
The â€œblack religious traditionâ€ referenced by Wright and other BLT proponents is not traditional, unless one counts the Marxist-infused â€œtraditionâ€ established in the â€˜Sixties. Certainly black Christian Americansâ€™ experiences have been socially and spiritually unique unto them. BLTâ€™s â€œblack churchâ€ as a cultural phenomenon however, is not the church that maintained blacks through the ignominy of slavery and segregation, bringing them through these not only with a sense of dignity, industry and self-worth, but grasping the gospel with far more dedication and understanding than many whites.
Pharisees in â€œThe Black Churchâ€
Like many people, I never heard the kind of swill proffered by Rev. Wright in a black church, and so did not identify BLT with churches in which the congregants were predominantly black. One might wonder why black pastors themselves do not speak out against BLT.
Well, take the story of Rev. Lainie Dowell, a Five-Fold Minister from Columbia, Maryland with a long history in the church and very impressive credentials in her own rightâ€¦
â€œWhen it was not popular to do so, 20 years ago, I spoke out against the same kinds of rantings about white people preached by my black pastor and other black colleagues. In an attempt to intimidate me and shut me up, he conspired with cohorts and filed false police reports and court documents to have me arrested inside the church.â€
- Rev. Lainie Dowell, April 17, 2008
So much for the question of why black pastors might not challenge BLT; gangsterism and conspiracies to discredit enemies using the law and the press are right out of the Marxist playbook. Being arrested inside oneâ€™s own church would likely stand as a pretty dissuasive example for a dissatisfied clergyman or clergywoman. For the record, Rev. Dowellâ€™s pastor (also named Wright, no relation) not only preached Black Liberation Theology, but had a strikingly similar religious background to Rev. Jeremiah Wright.
When challenged by lay people, these pastors become belligerent and switch to â€œPharisee modeâ€ â€“ pointing to their credentials, their degrees, the contention that no one but they can understand black religious and social history in America and relate it to a black congregation. We already have an example of their modus operandi when challenged by colleagues.
Faith Devoid of Faith
Finally: The incongruence with mainstream Christianity aside, Black Liberation Theology doesnâ€™t even make sense. Churches and pastors which espouse BLT could not exist without one essential element: A white oppressor. The more one studies this heresy, the clearer it becomes that this element is even more important than Christ Himself.
Where then, one may ask, is the salvation of Christ in this theology? Theoretically, let us suppose that we awake one morning to find that everyone is black. Who is the oppressor then? Where is BLTâ€™s credibility? They seem to know who their enemy is now however, it isnâ€™t the same one that Christians at large acknowledge.
Dr. Morey maintains that BLT is of that Enemy, the devil. Many Christians may agree. Non-Christians may view it as general corruption of the church as an institution of cultural stability via far Left social engineers. The calculated outcome for practical purposes is the same.
In parts of America, there are enclaves of white supremacists who embrace forms of â€œChristianityâ€ that foster perverted, quasi-Old Testament views of black Americans as latter-day Canaanites or the cursed descendants of one of Noahâ€™s errant sons. Some other doctrines are even more bizarre. I would wager that 99 percent of whites in America find this as disgusting as I do. I submit that Black Liberation â€œtheologiansâ€ ought to be viewed in precisely the same light, as both extremes are undeniably racist and can have nothing but deleterious effects on the harmonious progression of American society.
When I was in grade school, every now and then one of the other kids, having discovered I was of mixed race, would ask: â€œIf the whites and blacks had a war, what side would you be on?â€
I never answered these questions. It is profoundly sad and speaks to the sickness of our society that some of these people reached adulthood to find there were actually so-called religious organizations that were more than happy to sustain their spiritual, moral and intellectual retardation.