Oct 16, 2016
The sermon was delivered on Sunday, October 16, 2016, at All Souls Unitarian Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma, by Rev. Barbara Prose, Executive Director of Ministry.
At the first summit on religion and race, Moses and Pharaoh were the two main participants. Moses said, “Let My people go.” Pharaoh replied: “I do not know the Lord, and moreover I will not let Israel go.” Our world and work today is a continuation of that first summit meeting. Pharaoh is not ready to capitulate. The exodus began, but is far from having been completed. In fact, it was easier for the children of Israel to cross the Red Sea than for a black man to navigate the first 25 years of his life in this country without getting killed. As we continue to agitate, advocate and act for racial justice, let us not forget that the spirit of religion is to unite, and the spirit of racism is to divide. Before he died Moses said, “I have put before you life and death, blessing and curse. Choose life.” Theologian Reinhold Niebuhr wrote, “Race prejudice, a universal human ailment, is the most recalcitrant aspect of the evil in man….(it is) a treacherous denial of the existence of God.” So it is we who must choose between good and evil, religion and race, life and death, blessing and curse.
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