Churches and the Dangerous Ministers of Multiculturalism

There's a danger in churches that embrace multiculturalism — rather than using truth to influence culture, they look to the culture to define truth.

By Mike Adams Published on August 29, 2016

Recently, a friend sent me a text after returning from church with his family. He had been a member of the congregation for two months and up to that point had been enjoying the sermons immensely. But then something strange happened that Sunday morning. One of the pastors, a young black man, decided to preach on the issue of race and criminal justice. My friend and his wife were so upset with the overtly leftist overtones in the message that they refused to take communion.

After getting the text, I placed a call to my friend to get some additional context. He described the sermon as one that endorsed the basic claims of Black Lives Matter without actually mentioning the group by name. I decided to follow up on the call by going to the church website to see if they had an article or blog post on the issue. Sure enough, they did. I read it and found two things that disturbed me enough to urge my friend to consider finding another church. I was also motivated to write a column warning readers about the dangers of similar churches.

The two specific problems I found on the church’s website were as follows: 1) The pastor claimed that the targeting of minorities for disparate treatment is an “undisputed fact” in our culture, and 2) The pastor described the church as one that aspired to be “multicultural.” The first of these two errors is minor. The second one is not. One cannot grasp fully the first error without a proper understanding of the second. Nonetheless, I will start with a critique of the first statement.

The claim that the targeting of minorities for “disparate treatment” within the criminal justice system is an “undisputed fact” suffers from only one flaw — namely that it is demonstrably false. The claim is disputed often, and rightly so. Within the context of police shootings of blacks, which was the specific context of the black pastor’s sermon, some basic statistical facts would cause any reasoned observer to reject the claim of disparate treatment.

It is true that blacks are disproportionately victims of police shootings. Although they are only 12% of the population, blacks constitute 25% of the victims of police shootings. But there is a pretty simple explanation for that: Blacks commit nearly half of the violent crimes in America.

All of that violent crime tends to bring the perpetrators into contact with the police. It is hardly disparate treatment to say that consequences are attached to the way you treat others. The black pastor may complain about how he “lives in fear” of being shot every time he is pulled over by a white officer. In reality, he has a much greater chance of being a victim of “disparate treatment” by another black man who wishes to kill him — sometimes merely for the “crime” of wearing the wrong colored shirt in the wrong part of town.

Given that black criminals commit nearly half of the violent crimes in America, one could say that the police are using considerable restraint with black suspects. After all, if only a quarter of the victims of fatal police shootings are black, and half of violent crimes are committed by black criminals, then they are actually under-represented as victims of police shootings.

Further, the data show that black criminals do not return the favor by showing a reciprocal level of restraint towards law enforcement officers. Consistent with their overall involvement in violent acts, black criminals are responsible for over 40% of the cop killings in America. It bears repeating: Blacks only make up 25% of the victims of police shootings, but black criminals are responsible for over 40% of the shootings of police.

It is now worth turning attention to the overarching question of why the pastor asserts that the targeting of minorities for disparate treatment within the criminal justice system in an “undisputed fact.” The answer to that question is pretty simple: It is because he’s the pastor of a “multicultural” church.

Multiculturalism doesn’t mean what you probably think it means. Every church is “multicultural” in the literal sense. Even the relatively homogeneous church of my youth was made up of people from different cultures. There was one black family and one Asian Indian family. There were also dozens of states and several regions represented in our congregation. Even though it was predominantly white it’s not as if people from other cultures were banned. All people were welcomed.

But that is not what “multicultural” means in the present context. When a pastor specifically claims that his church is “multicultural” and he infuses that term into the identity of the church it means something very different. It means that he is a truth denier and a slave to political correctness. Put simply, multiculturalism has come to mean an acceptance of cultural relativism. And that by necessity involves a rejection of the idea of absolute truth. Try squaring that with John 14:6.

In the final analysis, the multiculturalist does not care whether black men really are the victims of targeting by white cops. The multiculturalist only cares whether blacks perceive that they are victims of “disparate treatment.” If they say they are then his commitment to being “multicultural” obliges him to nod in agreement — or should I say nod in appeasement?

That is the problem with multicultural churches in general. They are not dedicated to using truth to influence culture. They are looking to the culture to define truth. It’s not the approach that was used by Jesus of Nazareth. In fact, it’s the polar opposite. But being a member of a “multicultural” church does have its advantages. It helps the follower’s self esteem and helps him retain popularity in “the community.”

In other words, it helps him claim to follow Jesus without risking cultural crucifixion.

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  • Johnny

    Amen. Many of our churches have forgotten Lk 6:26,”Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for their fathers used to treat the false prophets in the same way.” Instead the plan for winning lost soils is prattle such as ” they won’t care what you know until they know that you care”. Truth is no longer a factor.

  • MacroNana

    Thank you for very nicely, and politely making important points concerning a huge issue within the Christian community. Unfortunately, in my opinion, political correctness has raised it’s ugly head and taken a large voice in many denominations. If a church does not preach the Word of God, run!

  • Hmmm…

    Tremendous article, one that helps straighten out the curve trying to gain foothold in the church. One previous description akin to this is “seeker sensitive.” Christianity and its true path are narrow … and saved. It’s the broad, encompassing path that leads to destruction. We must safeguard our thinking because of the many that do go that way.

  • Oilfart1

    Has Mike moved on from Townhall? If so, I’ll need to make sure I check in here regularly.

  • Cindy Swanson

    How dare you judge a people when you have not walked in their shoes. How dare you assert your version of the truth without listening to theirs. How dare you criticize others without first critiquing your self. You think you understand the lament of our black brothers and sisters in Christ, but the very fact that you lump their stories under one label of multiculturalism indicates that you do not.

    I am a white evangelical, but I have heard enough stories from African-American friends and from African-American pastors at a leading evangelical seminary I once worked at to know that white evangelicals just don’t get it. They think they do, but they unequivocally do not.

    Evangelicals accuse our country of needing to repent of homosexuality and abortion, ignoring the much greater sin: the fact that our country was founded on the extermination of one race and enslavement of another. Without those two egregious sins, our country would be nothing today.

    I belong to a multicultural church and am proud of it. Our pastoral staff includes white, African-American, Chinese, Hispanic, and Cambodian. Our congregation is just as diverse. Liberal politically correct multiculturalism, you say? Ridiculous. As we say at our church, we love being multicultural because this is what heaven will be like.

    • disqus_nBMMez9Ikj

      Sounds like another person brainwashed by the political correctness narrative. You need to provide some actual thought to the situation rather than the tired mantra of “walk in their shoes”. We all walk in the same shoes when it comes to churches….and for that matter when it comes to the law. The facts Adams has listed trump your narrative.

      • Cindy Swanson

        Wow. Following that logic, a civilian has the right to tell a soldier returned from Iraq to buck up and quit the PTSD nonsense. And a man has the right to tell a woman in delivery to stop whining about the pain. What a childish emotion empathy is. And what a rude awakening heaven will be will all those colored people.

        • disqus_nBMMez9Ikj

          The difference is….the two situations you mention exist. The racial straw man is an overblown fabrication. There are few other countries that rival the US in racial equity and lack of oppression. All you have to do is read foreign news to see the prevalence of real genocide that is based on race.

          The race “problems” in the US are 95% due to the self destructive nature of black people. Heck, when I was in grade school the blacks were predominantly concerned with disturbing the class, not paying attention, and talking during class about sex (yes in grade school !!!). True there were blacks who were outside that behavior pattern and they did well, I was great friends with those guys…but they were the 5% and not the majority. And before you cry “poverty”, they were no better or worse off than their peers.

        • EX GOP

          Following our Constitution, the situations you describe are well within the rights of people.

          PTSD is, however, a verifiable and diagnosed condition. Pain during childbirth is something men don’t experience and as a result, don’t “walk in the same shoes.”

          We are not judged in heaven by our color, but by our souls. There will be no colored people- of ANY color, including white. Our bodies are meaningless after we leave this world.

    • EX GOP

      Why are the blacks referred to as African-American, but whites are “white”, not European-Americans, the Chinese and Cambodians not Asian-Americans and the Hispanics referred to as Hispanic-Americans? I work with several white people from Africa. They are “African-American”, or would you deny them their continent of origin simply to get on your soapbox?

      If we can’t all be considered “Americans”, then we have a problem of division, not inclusion.

    • Royce E. Van Blaricome

      How dare you open your mouth and spew all that PC nonsense. But thanks for proving the author’s point with your self-admission that you attend a PC church.

      “White evangelicals are unwilling to give up their comfort zones and the privileges they have because of being the white majority in this country.” Well, as a self-professed “white evangelical”, please show us that you lead by example and list below all the comfort zones and privileges you’ve given up? Do you live in the inner city? Perhaps you’d like to move to Chicago or Detroit? Have you given everything up to follow Jesus? Or is “You hypocrite!” in order?

      And while you’re at it, since you seem to enjoy being on the throne and exercising your faux omniscience, please list the Chapters and Verses that show God saying “our country was founded on the extermination of one race and enslavement of another” (which is a PC lie in itself – and where do lies come from?) is a greater sin that the systematic butchering of the most helpless humans so their body parts can be sold off for profit and the destruction of the God-ordained Institution of Marriage and the Family?

      I, and I’m sure others, will be waiting…

      • Rebecca High

        “Faux omniscience”. Where have I heard that before? Let’s hear your ex-wives stories, Roy baby. I’m not holding my breath.

        • Royce E. Van Blaricome

          Is that the best you can do with your devil tongue? I’d expect better from a self-professed witch. Too bad you’re not holding your breath – and your tongue too.

          And btw, when you graduate 3rd Grade maybe you’ll learn to read and can actually get my name right.

      • BRAVO!!!!

  • Vigilant2

    More and more we hear of ‘charges’ with this notion of blacks ” living in fear ” of police hovering, just waiting to assault innocent blacks. This is becoming the narrative on the Kelly Files on FoxNews, with Megyn adding female emotion to give depth and credibility to the unsubstantiated assertions. To seal the deal she refers to the ‘feelings of a very professional black friend ‘, one who certainly cannot be considered paranoid, or eaten up with a NYC narrative. It is all a PSYOP theme, based on propaganda and has now reached the standing of being given a seal of approval by the talking heads on prime time cable. The mantra is approaching urban legend status and it is toxic.

  • punditwannabe

    Mike, the church is going apostate, that’s why I don’t go anymore. One by one they’re all going Left, even the “evangelical” “foursquare” etc.

    • Royce E. Van Blaricome

      No, “The Church” is not going apostate and never will. Some “churches” are. However, that is irrelevant when it comes to the issue of what YOU will do with Jesus and whether YOU will obey Him. Christ has commanded His followers to be a part of a local body of Believers AND to submit to godly leaders who are over you.

      So, by your own admission, you are in disobedience and rebellion. Where do you get off talking about the church going apostate? That is what Jesus would call a Giant Sequoia Tree. And, if you continue to practice your disobedience and perhaps contribute to the disobedience and rebellion of others by making comments like you just did, you may well find yourself having the conversation with Jesus spoken of in Matt. 7:21-23.

      • punditwannabe

        Yikes!

  • alexguggenheim

    It is refreshing to read of some prominent push back on the issue of multiculturalism being pushed as a doctrine in the church.

    May I encourage you and your readers to explore my 5-part series on this errant doctrine invading the church via The Gospel Coalition and shared networks.

    I write at The Pedestrian Christian.

    You are so on target here. Thank you for your courage.

  • Milly

    The fact that there’s a debate on this period stems right back to what Christ doesn’t want us to do.

  • E.P. Samuelle

    your article is contrived full of emotion with limit factual content. you based your entire premise on a statistical fact that has nothing but situational relevance. Then you end on emotional opinion. You counseled a “friend” to leave a church based upon cultural differences. Where in the Bible is this given as a reason to leave a church? If anything you have defended separatism and segregation. This means instead of learning growing and changing (as a student and teacher) you push for these offended people to go somewhere that better agrees with their views and comfort…..’Not to bring peace but a sword’. I encourage you WRITER to expand your views….but I highly doubt that you will see this as another colorful rant. Many like you in my experience dismiss any truth that is not quantified by their experience and circle of invited truth. I pray for your open eyes and attentive ears.

  • Joel Stephen Shelton

    Truth has no culture. Attempting to define Truth by culture is putting convenient interpretations into the Word. Taking away from or adding to the Word/Truth is a losing game. The place where I have been going to (aka church [although not sure if the leader is actually a ‘called-out-one’]) for 3 years surprised me when the leader displayed the tenants and insisted that if one did not believe in them (of which one was Multiculturalism) then that place probably not where they should be. So off again on a search for a place that talks about the whole Truth without attempting to re-define it to accommodate today’s culture. Great article Mike.

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