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Charleston Shooting: Only Christ's Love Will Replace Hatred in America's Heart

by Todd A. Smith

 

The Answer Has Always Been There

 

The more I contemplate ways to eradicate hate and racism in the world, the more I realize that the answer has always existed.


Yes, I still stand by some of my solutions mentioned in articles past like body cameras for police officers, correcting those who spew racist rhetoric, voting, participating as jurors, etc.


But the only way to eradicate hate and replace it with love is through Jesus Christ.


The Charleston shooting, which included the deaths of nine church members including South Carolina state senator and pastor Rev. Clementa Pinckney, at the Emanuel AME Church by Dylann Roof, brings back memories of the four little girls killed in 1963 while they attended Sunday school classes at 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala.


According to CNN.com, “The White man spent an hour in a prayer meeting at the historic African-American church in Charleston, South Carolina, on Wednesday before he opened fire, Charleston police Chief Greg Mullen said Thursday morning.


“Nine people were killed—six females and three males, Mullen said.  Three people survived, including a woman who received a chilling message from the shooter.


“‘Her life was spared, and (she) was told, I’m not going to kill you, I’m going to spare you, so you can tell them what happened,’ Charleston NAACP President Dot Scott told CNN.”


A couple of weeks ago, my pastor Ralph Douglas West at The Church Without Walls in Houston stated that it does not matter if we change laws or not.  If people do not change their heart and accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior then nothing significant can be accomplished in regards to bringing people together.


His thoughts are absolutely true.


Speeches, articles and legislation will never end racism and hate in this country or abroad.


We abolished slavery and we still have hate and racism.


We ended segregation and we still have hate and racism.


We even elected President Barack Obama as the nation’s first African-American president and seemed to have gotten more racism and hate than we had prior to his election.


Laws do not matter as much as the love, or hate, that people carry in their heart.


We need more people who adhere to Christian principles, and when I say Christian I do not mean church members and pastors who simply go to church every Sunday and believe some of the things taught in the Bible.


We do not need more religious folk.  We need more folk with a relationship with Jesus Christ.

 

We need more people with Christ-like love, compassion, forgiveness and open-mindedness.

 

Only then can a White man see a Black man as his brother, and vice versa, because they acknowledge the brotherhood they have in Christ.

 

Only then can we not resort to violence when violence is inflicted on us and instead put retribution in God’s hands.

 

Unfortunately, we live in a society that thinks we need less God and more secularism.

 

That secularism is what leads to less morality, more hatred, more discrimination and more violence in our society.

 

The excessive amounts of mass killings, whether racially motivated or not, that have become commonplace in America begins with darkness and hatred in the heart of the perpetrators.

 

Until that is replaced with love, we can never replace hatred and discrimination with acceptance and equality.


This article was published on Friday 19 June, 2015.
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