Sound Off: A different view of ‘liberation theology’
November 23, 2010 · Updated 11:25 AM
By Clairann Haney
I strongly disagree with Mr. Hall’s analysis (Soundoff,Whidbey News-Times, Oct. 23) of the Restore America event and with his representation of liberation theology. Black liberation theology is an offshoot of Marxist liberation theology. In America it was prominently put forth by James H. Cone, a mentor of Jeremiah Wright, who was President Obama’s preacher for 20 years.
In Mr. Cone’s book, we are told the following: that there will be no peace in America until whites hate their whiteness; that the “resurrection” of Christ has to do with refusal to accept societal injustice; revolutionary action is a Christian, priestly duty; that the sole reason for theology (whatever it has to say about God) is to assist the oppressed to end bondage and interpret religious dimensions of revolutionary struggle; that the theology of the whites (and thus the government) can only mean death to blacks; that identification with the gospel of Jesus is only possible in light of the black condition; and that the “Jesus-event” is black persons’ recognizing that it is incumbent upon them to throw off their white oppressors by any means they regard suitable.
I would venture to say that most Christians prefer a color-blind theology where all people can approach the Lord as equal creations. Black liberation theology teaches that white theology is a theology of the antichrist — there is no non-partisan theology. Liberation theology is not rooted in the Hebrews scriptures as Mr. Hall suggests. While liberation theology supporters claim a basis in scripture, the theology itself dismisses the impact of scripture on its theology or any ethical decision making.
Liberation theology hijacks Jesus and transforms His message into something unrecognizable in the scriptures.
To many people this kind of worldview, when expressed in public, does appear to be clearly racist. When Glenn Beck heard these similar kinds of words coming from Mr. Obama, he did say that Mr. Obama was a racist. He later apologized for that statement, having educated himself about Black liberation theology. Mr. Beck said that he was wrong, and does not believe Mr. Obama is a racist (at heart). However, Mr. Obama’s worldview has been shaped clearly by 20 years of preaching from Jeremiah Wright and his personal connections with Marxist doctrine and theology.
The Restore America gathering featured prominently members of Martin Luther King Jr.’s family. I appreciate that, for clearly the young Baptist minister (not Black Liberation theology minister) did advocate a non-violent civil protest against injustices that were clearly happening in American society. Baptist doctrine is not Black Liberation theology. Baptist doctrine speaks to a color-blind society, as did Martin Luther King Jr.
In my opinion, the messages found in liberation theology are dangerous. They separate people based on class, ethnicity and color. They advocate violence especially among those who see it as God’s truth. It also redefines a basic truth of Christianity, which is not about humans struggling against each other based on color or status in society, but a personal relationship with Christ that uplifts each individual believer from their own human struggle against sin and evil in their lives.
I encourage you to educate yourself. Compare what you read in the Old and New Testament (the Bible) to Mr. Cone’s book, “A Black Theology of Liberation.”
Clairann Haney lives
in Oak Harbor.