Xenophobia is just a part

All of us are aware of the current breaking news in South Africa and it is and has been a concern on everyone’s mind. It is very saddening to hear and even much more to watch video clips from several incidents. And yes, we all must speak up and with one voice stand against such evil. Thus, far a lot has been said and suggested and I must say that many good analyses have been drawn and good suggestions offered too. I however would like to diverge your focal point from South Africa and raise a problem that is bigger than South Africa, as we pray for South Africa and for all of us worldwide to respond rightly.

At the center of the crisis, we see the extent of man’s sinfulness. I am of the opinion that easily such evilness as happening in South Africa is so narrowly perceived, and therefore, such view misses the reality of evil/sin worldwide. Hence, this is only attributed to such evil as tribalism and racism (which is what xenophobia boils down to). The point that I’m trying to establish is that this is not only a South African problem, but this is our problem, all countries are guilty of this, and South Africa is just expressing what we all do in a different form, and we are to be blamed for what’s happening for its not a self-cause.

Allow me to point out one cause that leads to such great evil as Xenophobia, and to prove my point expressed above I will also point out one form of Xenophobia that is ever so rampant but ‘angelized’ as no evil at all.

  1. We have forgotten who we are,

Much worse than the title is claiming, we are foolingly-educating ourselves into what we are not, and what we will never be. Identity and value has now become a subjective opinion rather than an objective fact. Therefore, I am what I feel like, and self-esteem and my success has become my greatest concern even if it means belittling you. 

When identity fall and became anything, so did human value and worth. However, this is not to surprise us because we have been feeding ourselves with lies. And therefore the monster that we have created has turned to its creator. Claiming to be more civilized than the ancient world, we however turned out to be conflict generators. My point is here, we have forgotten and left God our Creator, and consequently being made in the image of God has been lost. Men are no longer men as defined by God, no are women and humans in general. Thinking we are wise we have convinced ourselves that we are just here on earth by chance. We are merely a product of random change. Is this not what is feed into our schools, even sadly into our primary schools. The wisdom of our education is that we are merely animals like the rest, but on top of the food chain! And that natural selection befalls on us determining who will survive. The fit and strong survive and the unfit and weak die. Even in our Universities, the so called highest place of learning has become the chief in foolishness. Even our cultures have not been innocent when it comes to teaching us. They too have not defined us the same way God defines us.

We are no longer made in the image of God, and therefore, human value and worth is defined by our feelings and circumstances. In my opinion this is the greatest cause of most evil that we see happening. Devaluing God inevitably leads humans to great evils such as the happenings in South Africa.

2. We have an unending civil war,

Much worse than the suggested title, we have an educated or a ‘civilized’ civil war. As I stated above, this point is to help us know that what is happening in South Africa should not surprise us, for we (every country) are doing the very same thing. The civilized civil war I’m referring to is abortion. Aware of the various definitions of abortion, I am using this term excluding from it that which is done legally by medical practitioners in a case where both lives, mother and child are in serious conflict with each other and if nothing is done both lives can be lost. Consequently one life is saved rather than losing both. I think the above mentioned case is not to be called abortion and meaning and value of it is often confused and lost when it is termed as abortion. Well, allow me to stop with that defense for that is a matter for another day. But by abortion, in this writing I am referring to the unwarranted act of murdering babies for the reason of unwanted pregnancy, no matter how it came about. 

Life begins at conception, and that means that at that particular moment there is a baby, there is new life (Psalm 139:13–16; Luke1:44). Any other different opinion especially those who only refer to a living baby as a fetus, merely a thing, are contradicting themselves, for you cannot say that it is just a fetus (not living) while at the same time trying to stop its growth. Only living things grow. But what horror how we have educated and convinced ourselves into innocence! Every year in every village, town, city and country thousands of babies are being murdered every year. In my personal opinion this is the worse xenophobia attacks ever, but how sad the silence. 


Therefore the reality,

This article in no way is meant to reduce the tensions we have, or excuse them. However, it is to raise a bigger problem that we have, and to clearly point out that this is not just a black South African’s problem but is a human problem. Thus, the world is not becoming a better dwelling place; for even our defenseless babies are silenced to death before they attempt any speech. Much more than only wondering why the South Africans are doing what they are doing, we must acknowledge all our folly systems and foolishness that we termed knowledge. We must critic our worldviews and search for what is incorruptible and void of any mortal influence. Just as the fear of God is the beginning of the true knowledge and wisdom (Proverbs 1:7), the denial and rejection of God is the height and the root of all foolishness (Psalm 14:1–3). When people have rejected God and God’s Word, they lose sight of their true identity as God’s image bearers. In our rebellion against God, men try to redefine the Truth in order to redefine morality. Consequently, defenseless babies are killed; the rich mistreat and abuse the poor; the poor envy the rich; those who have different skin color think that they are more human being than those who have a skin color different from theirs (racism, apartheid). In this world, sin is the hardest taskmaster. The denial of God is the greatest evil in this world. And many thinking to be wise became fools. If you turn away from God, your end will only be misery and warfare (Romans 1:18–32). Therefore, what we are seeing happening on around the world daily is no surprise at all. “The greatest folly of men and women at this moment is not the folly of making hydrogen and cobalt bombs, but the folly of thinking that by anything they can do themselves they can bring real peace. It is the forgetting of God; it is the belief in themselves and in their own innate powers”.[1]

This is a global problem. Sin, unhappiness and wretchedness is our daily bread and are not confined to any one stratum of society. In essence there is no difference between the so called developed world and the so-called undeveloped world. They are all equally in this warfare of evil and equally unhappy. “People may have elevated and exalted positions and yet be the victims of jealousy and envy, malice and spite and pit tines, and their moral lives and relationships may be foul”[2].

Let this be clear to all human beings that the fear of God builds mankind; but the denial of God destroys the individual, the family, the communities, and even the nations. If the xenophobia, tribalism, racism, abortion and other evils are sins, then the answer to those problems should start with repentance. As we turn to God, we must seek forgiveness of our sins and true salvation through the faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Once we became followers of Christ, we must allow God’s the Holy Spirit to renew our minds with the Word of God, so that we can think biblically and then live biblically. Then only can we understand our true and correct identity, and then inevitably relate to other people regardless of who they are or where they came from based on our common identity in God. We will no longer discriminate each other according to ethic groups, nationality, etc, we will leave as one in Christ (Colossians 3:5–17). This is the good news of the gospel, the divine solution for our broken global village.

Failure to repent (turning away from wickedness and then turn to God and to godliness) and believe the Lord Jesus Christ, we will continue to live in our daring sins, and then continue to be destroy by it and destroy others with our sinfulness. But ultimately and seriously, sin will eternally separate us from God and face the righteous wrath of God in hell (John 3:16–21, 35, 36). “Money will not succeed in bringing about peace – but neither will intellect and understanding, knowledge and learning, education and culture, nor will acts of Parliament. I am not denouncing these things, but am simply saying that they cannot give us peace because, unfortunately, to be learned in not to have peace. Great understanding does not give us peace”[3]. All these human makings have not helped us, nor have they reconciled us; no wonder, only the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ stands.

What are the implications for the Christian and non-Christian?

For the non-Christian, those of you who have not yet repented and believed Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, repent today and now. Be reconciled to God through Christ who died and rose for your sins.

For the Christian, by the enablement of the Holy Spirit who indwells in you and according to God’s Word (the Bible), we must live according to the gospel (Galatians 5:1–22; Colossians 3:1–17). We are called for peace, to be peace markers, rather than promoters of evil and violence (Mathews 5:9; Mark. 9:50; Hebrews 12:14; 1 Peter. 3:9–11; 5:7; 1 Thessalonians 5:15); “so then let us pursue the things which makes for peace and things by which one may edify another” (Romans 14:19).

Conclusion

At the center of all these kinds of evil happening in the whole world is the sin of pride rooted on the denial and rejection of God and of God’s wisdom (God’s Word). Xenophobia is just another kind of expression. The fundamental problem of man is sin; other factors that contribute to violence and other sinful practices are merely manifestations of the root problem. However, we are not without hope, for in the midst of darkness, the glory and light of the only begotten Son of God is to us revealed and given (John 1:1-5). God has provided the solution to man’s cardinal problem. We receive this gift by faith alone, as we commit ourselves and wholeheartedly trust Christ for who he is and what he has accomplished for us (John 3:36). This true saving faith comes through hearing the gospel (Romans. 10:9–17). Returning to God through Christ Jesus is the solution to man’s problem of sin.

Dear Christian, as we are trying all possible and correct means of combating these evils of Xenophobia, abortion, and other kind evils, we should never forget that the fundamental problem of man is sin, and the true solution is the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. Thus we must believe the gospel, live out the gospel, and preach the gospel.


[1] Lloyd-Jones, M. (2005). The all-sufficient God. Carlisle, PA: The banner of truth trust. p. 11.

[2] Lloyd-Jones, M. (2005). The all-sufficient God. Carlisle, PA: The banner of truth trust. p. 10

[3] Lloyd-Jones, M. (2005). The all-sufficient God. Carlisle, PA: The banner of truth trust. p. 10 �

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