A Biblical View Of Race And Other Areas In The Culture: Today we’re talking about topics that we cover in the new book, This Precarious Moment, as well as specifically diving into the topic of race. It’s important to not only have the right perspective on current issues of the day, but to know the practical solutions for those issues! Too often we’re looking for national solutions when we need to be looking at the individual level! Tune in now to learn more!

Air Date: 02/25/2019

Guest: Jeff Klingenberg

On-air Personalities: David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton


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Transcription note:  As a courtesy for our listeners’ enjoyment, we are providing a transcription of this podcast. Transcription will be released shortly. However, as this is transcribed from a live talk show, words and sentence structure were not altered to fit grammatical, written norms in order to preserve the integrity of the actual dialogue between the speakers. Additionally, names may be misspelled or we might use an asterisk to indicate a missing word because of the difficulty in understanding the speaker at times. We apologize in advance.

Faith And The Culture

Rick:

You’ve found your way to the intersection of faith and the culture. Welcome to WallBuilders Live! We’re talking about today’s hottest topics on policy, faith, the culture, what’s going on in the world of politics, and entertainment, and these different areas, and what can we do to have a biblical perspective, a constitutional perspective, and a historical perspective as we address those issues.

We’re here with David Barton, he’s America’s premier historian and our founder at WallBuilders. Tim Barton is with us. He’s a national speaker and pastor and president of WallBuilders. And my name is Rick Green, I’m a former Texas legislator.

You can find out more about all three of us, and the program, and the ministry, at WallBuilders.com and WallBuildersLive.com. So, we’ve got a radio site there at WallBuilders Live. That’s just so you can get quickly to all the stations across the country, you can get into the archives and listen to programs from the past few weeks.

And then over at WallBuilders.com, that’s where we have a wealth of information available to you. I’m talking about incredible tools that you can use to equip and inspire yourself, your family, the people in your life, and your church. You can host classes there with your tea party group or your church to study the Constitution, study the founding of the country. All of those things are available at WallBuilders.com. I encourage you to go there today.

And then also you can make a donation there. That helps us to continue the program and expand it. Great interviews and educational opportunities. Allows us to train young leaders, pastors, legislators, all the things we’re doing to restore America’s Constitution. You can be a part of it by making a donation today right there at WallBuilders.com.

Later in the program. Pastor Jeff Klingenberg will be with us. Guys, today we’re hitting one of those, shall we say, touchy topics. I know it definitely gets people riled up or sometimes they just back away because they don’t want to address a tough topic like this.

Six Major Cultural Issues

Tim:

Well, Rick, I think there’s several things that are politically divisive that are hot topics. In fact, dad, you and Jim Garlow wrote a book that’s been out for several months that there’s actually six topics we talk about in the book that are something that is a major cultural issue that can be divisive topics for some people. A lot of times people are looking for answers, how do we solve these problems? And in the book, the six things that you guys dealt with, and I don’t even remember the sequence of how they fall in the book, I know there’s different categories.

But in the book, we dealt with the topics of Israel, of racism. We talked about that millennials and really the coming generations. We talked about the issue of God and government, we talked about the church, and what was the sixth one?

David:

And the sixth one to be immigration.

Tim:

Okay, so, well, and certainly, that is a divisive topic for many right now.

David:

Oh, is that in the news?

Tim:

I feel like there might have been a government shutdown related to some of this thought of immigration with building a wall. Rick, as you mentioned a hot topic, I think most of these topics from the book could fall in that category.

And actually, by the way, the book is called This Precarious Moment and I think it’s one of, dad, the best things that you have done with WallBuilders, one of the best books we have. Because not only does it give a biblical and constitutional perspective to the issues, it gives the current data and the stats on the issues. So, you are presented truth from a cultural perspective, you are presented truth from a biblical perspective, and then you are presented with practical solutions of what individuals can do.

Whether Nine Or Ninety Nine

Tim:

So, it’s not just that we need the federal government to step in and solve the issue of immigration, and we don’t just need the federal government to step in and solve the issue of Millennials, or to solve the issue of government, and God, or church, or whatever the situation is. There is something that as as a reader – whether the reader is 9 years old or ninety nine years old, there are practical things they can do to make a difference. So, this is why I think it’s one of the best books we have because it is so practical and really does give such great knowledge so that we can have an educated conversation.

And the dialogue can be not just based from emotion and opinion, but based on actual fact – this is what actually, culturally, is true, statistically this is true, biblically this is what the Bible says. It really is a game changer in a lot of ways for understanding the reality of the situation and biblical truth. And then also the practical solutions.

David:

Yeah, the practical solutions are really what stood out to us because all of these issues are in the national news. As you pointed out, we’ve got a government shutdown over immigration that went on. We’ve got race relations that have been a real issue with police and other things.

So, one of the things that I think really is wrong about the culture today is we keep looking for national solutions and we keep focusing on “government needs to solve this” or “we need to pass a law on this”, or we need to do this. And there’s so much of this that can be solved at the individual level. And we just don’t focus on individuals the way we did throughout American history. So much of American history is filled with stories of individuals at their local levels making a difference.

In the book, we specifically went into what every single individual can do to solve this problem and turn it around. So, today we thought a good thing to talk about would be race relations because that is definitely in the news. We keep seeing professors really poking, and prodding, and trying to keep things stirred up here. It’s become very divisive,  hard to find social media posts where there’s not some aspect of racial relations pulled into it. So, it really is a big issue.

Diving Into This Precarious Moment

Rick:

So, later in the program pastor Jeff Klingenberg will be with us to dive a little further into this issue of race. But guys, before we do that let’s dive specifically into the things you covered in the book and where we are culturally on that issue.

David:

When you look at the issue of race relations, one thing to understand is that racism is a sin. And I think we can all agree on that. This is not what God wants, it is not His plan, He does not want racism, it is a sin. Now–

Tim:

Yeah. And, by the way, it’s worth noting – the Bible does not talk about God choosing a specific color of people. In fact, if you go back to Genesis, when God created Adam and Eve he doesn’t say what shape, size, or color they were which is significant because human value does not come from shape, size, or color, or tribe, or ethnicity. That’s not where value comes from. The value comes that we were created in the image of God and we are all God’s kids.

Which, by the way, guys, it was pretty cool in Trump’s State of the Union when he talked about the unborn children who were made in the holy image of God. I don’t know that a president has ever really defended unborn life in that same way. Very cool.

But that’s the whole point is it doesn’t matter what shape size or color you are. You were made in the holy image of God. And therefore, to say someone is less valuable or more important based on the color of their skin, based on their ethnicity, or their tribe, that’s not godly and it’s not a biblical position.

David:

It is not and it is a sin. But by definition, a sin is something that applies to all humans. Period. It’s not a sin just for white people to do something with black people in the way of racism or slavery. As a matter of fact, if you look at history, history teaches just the opposite of the white privilege kind of thing that we emphasize so much today.

Not Just White On Black

David:

If you look back in history there is no race that did not at one time enslave others or was themself enslaved. And this is not just white on black. We were just in the Middle East, Tim and I just got back from the Middle East, and it’s amazing the way that Kuwaiti Arabs treat Palestinian Arabs – huge racism and they’re both Arabs.

Tim:

Their skin is basically the same color, but because they’re not from the right tribe or people group– and the same thing if you go back to the Hutu the Tutsis, right. These tribes in Africa–

David:

All black tribes in Africa–

Tim:

–and they were black tribes in Africa. Yet because one tribe wasn’t part of the other tribe, you’re less valuable, so we’re going to target you and you have this massacre, bloody mess.

Well, this is not– racism is not just one people group against another throughout history. It was always there’s a specific colored group is oppressing a specific color group not their color. No, racism is, dad, as you’re pointing out, is a sin. Sin impacts everybody. And that’s the history of humanity.

Now, there’s no doubt that Anglos, that whites, have suffered with this as well. But the point is in America we talk about it like it was only the Anglos who have struggled with this sin. As opposed to pointing out the truth of history saying, “Wait a second, no, no, no, racism can impact any people anytime.”

In fact, even right now with ISIS, ISIS will enslave people who are not as religious of Muslims as they perceive themselves to be. And they can be the same color of skin and  it’s things that we don’t even fathom that same notion anymore. But today we think that racism was a sin of the past, or that even slavery was a sin of the past, that whites enslaved blacks. Not recognizing that today there are more people in slavery today than at any point in the history of the world.

Not A Sin Of The Past

Tim:

So, this is not a problem that has been resolved as far as the world’s perspective, but it is something, again, recognizing this is not just the sin of Anglos, or the sin of white Europeans. No, this is sin that impacts the entire world.

David:

Part of solving this is remembering what the Bible says about race. And it doesn’t say anything about race. It’s not a big deal to God. God says very clearly when you see, for example, what he says in 1 Samuel 16:7. It says, “The Lord looks not as man sees.” You’ve got the prophet Samuel out looking for the person that’s going to be king and you have King Saul in there, but that’s not the right one.

So, Samuel goes to the house of Jesse and at the house of Jesse he lines them all and says, oh, this is the guy that looks right. Eliab he’s going to be the guy who–

Tim:

He was the oldest son.

David:

He’s the oldest. He looks like a warrior.

Tim:

Not the right one.

David:

He’s got the build. No.

Tim:

Maybe the next brother because he looks good too – not as good as Eliab, but he looks good. Nope, not him either. Goes through all the sons and none of them are good enough. Finally he says, “Hey dad, Jesse, are there any more sons?” He says, “Well, I’ve got one in the field, but there’s no way it could be him. He’s the kid.” Well, David comes in and sure enough it’s David.

It’s Not What’s On The Outside

David:

And that’s where Samuel puts forth a principle concerning how you look, your physical appearance. It says, “The Lord sees not as man sees. Man looks on the outward appearance, the Lord looks on the heart.” God didn’t care what David looked like on the outside. That’s what humans care about is what he looked like. God cared about what was on his heart.

And that’s the way you handle race. It’s not what’s on the outside. Those distinctions, that’s not the significant part. As a matter of fact, Acts 17:26 says, “God made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth.” We all have a common ancestor. I don’t care what you look like, or what your face looks like, what your color of skin is, we are all from the same ancestors, we’re all cousins in that sense.

In fact, when you look at what– here’s a great report from DNA scientists talking about race. It says, “All races share 99.99% plus of the same genetic materials. Which means that a division of race is largely subjective.” Why focus on the one one thousandth of one percent when there’s so much else to focus on? And that’s the way God does it. He looks at the inside- not the outside.

Tim:

So, part of the solution has to be going back to see the way God sees, right? We don’t look at the outward appearance – we look at the heart. So, if we’re going to get back to doing it the way God wants it done, we thought this would be a great opportunity to ask a pastor what would be, maybe, the biblical approach.

And Pastor Jeff, we’ve actually had him on the show before ,and he briefly mentioned on the show before about a story from his dad from the Korean War. And we thought, “Okay, this story would be a great story to share.” And then give the perspective from a pastor of really how do we help bring reconciliation where there is such division? That’s why we asked Pastor Jeff to be on the show.

Rick:

Stay with us, folks. Pastor Jeff Klingenberg when we return on WallBuilders Live.

Constitution Comedy

Hey, all your patriots out there that would like to see more Americans study the Constitution and understand the source of their freedom. How do you get people to pay attention to patriotism, the Constitution, the importance of being good citizens. Well, the answer is two words: Brad Stine. You make it fun, you make it fun to learn.

My friends, this is Rick Green from WallBuilders live, and Brad and I are bringing the comedy and constitution tour to you. We’re doing a live stream across the nation on March 23rd, 2019. Visit ConstitutionCoach.com, and you can sign up to bring this program to your church. You can stream it into your home or your local club. However you’d like to bring it. It’s an opportunity for you to bring the Comedy Constitution to your community, which will fire people up to study the Constitution. It’ll educate, entertain, equip, and inspire folks to accept protect and purposely pass the torch of freedom. Check it out today at ConstitutionCoach.com.

Moment From American History

This is TimBarton from WallBuilders with another moment from American history. In the early seventeen hundreds the Reverend John Wise preached that all men were created equal, that taxation without representation was tyranny, and that God’s preferred form of government was the consent of the governed.

All of which is language recognizable in the Declaration of Independence. Why? Because in 1772 the Sons of Liberty led by Founders Sam Adams and John Hancock reprinted and distributed the Reverend Wise’s sermons.

Four years later, much of the Declaration reflected the language of those sermons by John Wise.  In 1926 on the 150th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, President Calvin Coolidge affirmed, “The thoughts in the Declaration can very largely be traced back to what John Wise was saying.”

Few today know that the Declaration was so strongly influenced by the Rev. John Wise. For more information on this and other stories go to WallBuilders.com.

Rick:

Welcome back to WallBuilders Live. Thanks for staying with us today. Our guest today, Pastor Jeff Klingenberg back with us. Pastor, always good to have you, bro. Thanks for your time today.

Jeff Klingenberg:

Good to be with you my friend.

Rick:

Hey, man, David and Tim were talking about your story of your dad’s military experience and we’ve been talking a little bit about the– just the race relations in our country. And David’s new book This Precarious Moment addresses this issue. But you’ve got some interesting perspective on this one.

Jeff Klingenberg:

Yeah. My dad grew up in a small town in southern Illinois and was drafted into the Korean War. And there was only one black man in the town he grew up in. He said he wasn’t prejudiced. There were people in town that were, but my dad’s– my grandpa, my dad’s family wasn’t. The black man was the handyman in town, so people gave him odd jobs to do.

Fast Forward…

Jeff Klingenberg:

Fast forward to the Korean War. He’s in the battle and he was in the army. They’re digging the trenches, digging the foxholes, as they called them, and he said he ended up in a foxhole with a black soldier from I think was Alabama and with a South Korean soldier. And they were– I think, if I remember right, they were stuck in that foxhole for most of three days because they were pinned down. So, that’s when he gave his life to the Lord.

What prompted him to share that with me is my junior year in high school I was voted King for homecoming and the Queen for the first time voted for homecoming was a girl named Suzette Bond. And if I remember my history right a lot of the freed slaves in Mississippi that worked the plantations took the last name Bond because the Bond was paid for them or they didn’t have to pay the bond to be able to actually enact their freedom. And when the industrial revolution hit many of them moved north to Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, and took factory jobs.

So, anyway, fast forward my dad’s experience in the Korean War to me being elected King, Suzette that being elected Queen, and what I say, Rick, is I didn’t grow up in the hood, but I grew up right next to it. So, my dad was a welder, we didn’t live, obviously, in the nice part of town. No offense to welders out there, but just wasn’t the salary in those days to allow you to live in the nice part of town. And government housing came in just seven houses away. And mostly, I think predominantly, black people moved in.

Now, in that day, Rick, you could say black and it wasn’t offensive.

Rick:

Yeah.

Just Cared They Were Shooting The Same Direction

Jeff Klingenberg:

They called me white, or called me a cracker, and I just laughed and I’d call them my black friends. And I became friends with them. It wasn’t that big of a deal. But escorting Suzette through the homecoming weekend, I guess I was a little nervous about it. And my dad pulled me aside and he said, “Jeff, listen, I was in the Korean War, dug a foxhole, spent three days in that pinned down, we couldn’t get free, and I didn’t care what color the skin was with the soldier that was in that hole with me. All I cared about was they were shooting in the same direction I was.”

Rick:

Wow.

Jeff Klingenberg:

And when he when he came back from the war he said it was forever changed. So, he said,

“Jeff, listen, she deserves all the respect and all the honor you can give her. She deserves to be treated like a queen. You do everything for her like I’ve taught you to do for your mom and your sister – open the door for her,, bless her, give her your arm when you walk, and she she is worthy of that honor.

So, we didn’t have prejudice in our home growing up, Rick. Some of it ties back to an experience my dad had while in war and a revelation he had that the color of a man’s skin doesn’t matter. When you’re saving each other’s life, it for sure doesn’t matter at all. That really impacted me and my brother.

Rick:

Yeah, yeah, no doubt about it. How do you address this as a pastor, Jeff?

Jeff Klingenberg:

Well, we’re getting ready to have a current event series and I’m going to address it with one of our pastors who’s mixed race Hispanic, and one of our pastors who is mix black with Sri Lankan. So, he was raised in Germany, his dad was in the military, married a Sri Lankan lady when he was stationed there, and he’s one of our pastors. So, we’re just going to tackle it head on.

A Deception Of The Enemy

Jeff Klingenberg:

But I think it’s the deception of the enemy to get us to divide over the pigmentation of skin.

Rick:

So true.

Jeff Klingenberg:

Obviously, there are cultural differences, but spiritually speaking, we’ve all been saved by the same Lord and we’re all going to be in the same Heaven.

Rick:

That’s right.

Jeff Klingenberg:

And I think there needs to be a respect, a kindness, a friendship. I think the insecurities need to be diminished and just dismissed. I don’t ever, when I meet a black man at the gym, or in a public place, or at a sporting event, I don’t ever say, “I’ve got other black friends.” It’s like–

Rick:

Right.

Jeff Klingenberg:

–it’s like I just said, hey, I’ve got to diffuse this because we’re different.

Rick:

Yeah.

Jeff Klingenberg:

No, you don’t. You don’t think or live that way. You’re like, “How’s it going, man? Good to see you! This your seat? Well, this is my seat. w\We’re going to enjoy the Cowboys win in this game today. And we just need to be normal and quit focusing on our differences.

Our media is deceiving us big time. They’ve got to sell airtime, and they’ve got to sell social media time, and that’s the biggest controversy and the biggest deception we got going today. They’ve magnify it every chance they get and they’re not helping anything.

All Part Of The Human Race

Rick:

Yeah. No doubt. They prefer the voices that would divide. They give very little airtime to uniting voices like yourself. And MLK’s niece, Alveda King, who’s so, so, powerful–

Jeff Klingenberg:

Yeah.

Rick:

–on this topic, we did that episode with her once and went to MLK’s church. And she’s standing there looking at my kids who are all very white and says, “You guys are my brothers and sisters–”

Jeff Klingenberg:

Right.

Rick:

“–I’ve got white brothers and sisters, black brothers sisters, yellow brothers and sisters.” She said, “We’re all part of the same race. We’re all part of the human race.”

Jeff Klingenberg:

That’s exactly right.  

Rick:

And just really expressed what I hear when I go back and read or watch MLK speeches, the same thing – that it’s not the color of the skin, but the content the character. And that’s exactly what you’re describing. You meet somebody, no matter what color their skin is, you’re looking past that–

Jeff Klingenberg:

Yes.

Rick:

–and it’s not about that. But, man, your dad’s lesson was spot on.

Jeff Klingenberg:

Yes.

Let’s Look At What We Have In Common

Rick:

You’re not worried about the color of skin, you worried about if everybody’s shooting the same direction as you.

Jeff Klingenberg:

That’s exactly right. And I hope it doesn’t come to that in America. I hope we don’t have a crisis that causes us to unite. I pray we can lay down our differences before a difficulty forces us to.

There’s a great book out now called The Third Option written by a former pro football player who’s a pastor now in San Diego. And he spoke the message of the book as it was being released at the Gateway Conference last October, Gateway Church here in Dallas. And, man, it was powerful. It was just– Miles McPherson.

Rick:

Miles, Yeah, yeah.

Jeff Klingenberg:

Oh, it was powerful. The book is powerful, the message is powerful. He– full time–as he was communicating and sharing about it I thought there is somebody of a different ethnicity than me that has the same thought patterns – why can’t we all look at what we have in common and quit looking at what we– how we’re different.

Rick:

Amen. Amen. Good stuff.

Jeff Klingenberg:

So, yeah, Dad blessed me when I was– was I 16 years old? Is that how old you are when you’re in junior high school? It’s been a while since then, Rick.

Rick:

That sounds right.

Jeff Klingenberg:

He blessed me by giving me a good lesson on how to honor a different ethnicity.

Character Over Color

Rick:

Yeah. That’s good, man. We’ll recommend both those books today – This Precarious Moment and then The Third Option by Miles McPherson, have links today at our website. Pastor Jeff, always good to have you, brother. Thanks for your time today.

Jeff Klingenberg:

Many blessings to you, bro. Have a good day.

Rick:

Thanks Pastor Jeff, look forward to having you back again. We’re going to jump right back in with David and Tim Barton.

Guys, some great perspective there and it’s exactly what you were saying. And I would encourage people to read the book that you’ve got as well on This Precarious Moment and specifically that chapter.

Tim:

Yeah. I thought it was a really interesting perspective the story of how his dad going to war really shaped his perspective even on the race issue. Because at the time of the Korean War, right, this is kind of the civil rights era of the movement. This is when MLK– his whole push for recognizing the content of character instead of just the color of skin.

David:

And this is when you’re coming out of 100 years of segregated military. This has been a really tough time. You go back to the Civil War, they made some efforts to break down segregation, but then it got back in again. And then at the end of World War II you had Truman and Eisenhower that said, “We’re not going to do this.” And then now you go immediately into the Korean War. You’re right on the heels of enforced segregation in the military.

Tim:

Well, and what a perspective his dad must have had to realize when you’re in the foxhole with people who are very different than you, but you’re under fire – literal physical fire – people are trying to kill you, and you realize at that moment, “You know, what they look like isn’t nearly as important as what direction their guns are pointed.” If they’re shooting at the same bad guy there can be a level of unity and I think it’s such an incredible perspective.

Let’s Look At The Perspective

Tim:

Even, as he mentioned, when he was the homecoming king. But recognizing, hey, just because someone looks different doesn’t mean you treat them different. So, when his dad says, “Jeff, you treat her just like you would mom or sister.” Which also I thought was telling because when I heard that I thought, well, that also means, presumably, that you know how to treat your mom and sister the right way, right? That you’ve learned to be respectful, and to be loving, and to be kind, and all these sayings.

But the perspective is we don’t treat people differently. And I love the fact he said that in their church, they’re going to do a series on this. They’re going to look at cultural issue.

David:

I love the fact they’re modeling it because he’s actually bringing people of different color from himself up and they’re all going to have that discussion where everybody sees that.

Tim:

Who were on staff at the church, by the way.

David:

That’s right.

Tim:

Right. So, this is a very biblical picture of we’re all God’s kids.

David:

And, by the way, I love the fact he’s tackling this head on. Because other people kind of talk around it or make allusions to it. He’s doing a full service right in your face. And I say that in a good sense – not combative. But he’s making a very visual, very practical, application of something that’s in the culture that needs to be addressed.

Biblical Answers To Every Issue

Tim:

Right. This isn’t a situation to avoid. This is something that we need to figure out how can we help bring reconciliation and healing. There is great division. And where there is strife there is often hurt, and there is pain. But God is a God who can bring healing to that hurt and that pain. And God can use us to be instruments in the midst of that and I think it’s great that he is making an effort.

And there’s so much more in the book This Precarious Moment. There are so many practical steps and solutions, there is so much content. I would highly recommend. That’s something you can find on the WallBuilders website, WallBuilders.com, you can find that resource, and it is such great information for practical steps of what we can do to make a difference.

A Biblical View Of Race And Other Areas In The Culture

Rick:

There are biblical answers to every issue in the culture including this one. And that’s the approach we’ve got to take. That’s what this book does, This Precarious Moment, it takes that biblical, constitutional, historical, perspective, but that Biblical answer of what’s happening. Or how to answer that challenge in the culture and how to respond to it with a solution that God has given us, so let’s apply that. Check that out at WallBuilders.com.

We appreciate you listening today. Be sure and visit both of our websites – WallBuilders.com and WallBuildersLive.com, and consider making a donation to help us continue this great program, these interviews, and all of the ministry of WallBuilders. We appreciate our partners out there and the folks that have joined our team by coming alongside us on a monthly basis with a donation or even if you could do a one time donation. We sure appreciate it.

Thanks for listening today. You’ve been listening to WallBuilders Live.