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Dr. Tony Evans on Why We Need Black History Month: ‘Tolerance Is Still a Far Cry From Reconciliation’

Tony Evans BHM
The Urban Alternative, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Dr. Tony Evans argues in a recent article that Black History Month can promote unity within the church and within the country. Evans has been the senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas for more than 40 years, and his church’s website describes him as a “relevant expositor”—communicating solid, biblical truths while staying in tune with the current culture.

“We have limited the degree to which God’s presence will flow in us and through us because if what we call unity is not transforming individuals, churches and communities, then it is simply sociology with a little Jesus sprinkled on top,” said Evans in the article.

Tony Evans Explains How Black History Month Can Help Foster Unity in the Church

In a Feb. 21 article published by RELEVANT, Evans evoked quite a few emotions as he recounted the reasons we all—regardless of ethnicity—need Black History Month. The pastor welcomes conversations surrounding racial reconciliation. Evans explained that the subject of race “often only lurks in the shadows of Christendom.”

“Black/white relations and racial reconciliation across any racial barrier needs to be a ‘front and center’ subject—I say that in light of the emphasis God Himself places on His body living, acting, moving, communing and serving in oneness and unity in His Word,” Evans said.

Our country, and even our churches, have become divided. Division among people is not a new thing. In Ephesians 2:14-15, Paul reminds us how Jesus himself “reconciled racially divided groups.”

Evans went on to discuss how unity—a “oneness of purpose”—and racial reconciliation are interwoven. “The reason we haven’t solved the racial divide in America after hundreds of years is because people apart from God are trying to invent unity, while people who belong to God are not living out the unity we already possess,” he said. “The result of both of these situations has been, and will continue to be, disastrous for our nation.”

Evans’ son, Jonathan, used to play on several teams in the NFL as a fullback. Evans used the analogy of a football team, with dozens of members and only 11 athletes allowed on the field at a time, to paint the picture of a church. “We are each gifted with certain strengths and skills,” he said, “but unless we intentionally (and with race in America, we must be interventional) bring these together under the overarching purpose of God, we will continue to run in circles on the field and never cross the goal line together.”

On Facebook, Evans wrote,

Only when we define ourselves and see our relationships in light of the absolute authority of Scripture and the overarching rule of God in our lives can we begin to place salve on the open wounds that have kept America in general and Christians in particular in a perpetual state of disunity.

With 1.6 million followers on social media, Evans has received thousands of reactions and comments on his posts regarding Black History Month.

One said, “Love this expression of love and Truth with all my heart, let us not only hear but bring into full action daily.”

“With the help of the Holy Spirit the church can be what it is supposed to be,” added another.