Race, Cross, and the Christian
by John Piper
Genocide. Terrorism. Hate crimes. In a world where racism is far from dead, is unity amidst diversities even remotely possible?
Sharing from his own experiences growing up in the segregated South, pastor John Piper thoughtfully exposes the unremitting problem of racism. Instead of turning finally to organizations, education, famous personalities, or government programs to address racial strife, Piper reveals the definitive source of hope—teaching how the good news about Jesus Christ actively undermines the sins that feed racial strife, and leads to a many-colored and many-cultured kingdom of God.
Learn to pursue ethnic harmony from a biblical perspective, and to relate to real people different from yourself, as you take part in the bloodline of Jesus that is comprised of “every tongue, tribe, and nation.”
“The bloodline of Jesus Christ is deeper than the bloodlines of race. The death and resurrection of the Son of God for sinners is the only sufficient power to bring the bloodlines of race into the single bloodline of the cross.”Tweet
First Edition 2011
Crossway Books (Wheaton, Illinois)
John Piper has given us an exquisite work on the matter of race. He addresses the issue with biblical and theological soundness coupled with personal sensitivity and practical advice. This is a must read for those who wish to pursue unity God’s way.
—Tony Evans, Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship
Piper bequeaths an outstanding—and at times, risky—work on race and ethnicity, thoroughly soaked in the biblical Christian Hedonism worldview. I found that Piper’s personal testimony from the 1960s until now and his exploration of critical thinking of African American writers past and present demonstrate the complexity of dealing honestly with the topic for the evangelical who seeks to honor the Savior. He is right: on race, ‘we have fallen together.’ The only question that remains is whether or not individual members of the evangelical church in America will take deeply to heart this sincere analysis of the cross of Christ and race and then become a steadfast holy force for undoing the problems of racism in North America and the world.
—Eric C. Redmond, Reformation Alive Baptist Church, Temple Hills, Maryland
Americans have been turning to organizations, education, famous personalities, and ultimately government in an effort to address the on-going racial strife in our nation. In 2008 many hoped that the election of an African-American president would finally bridge this ongoing racial divide. Today, we are left wondering why racial tensions have not abated. John Piper argues from specific biblical texts that the only solution powerful enough to overcome racial strife and bring about racial reconciliation and harmony is the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is this gospel that announces that, through his blood, Jesus has demolished the dividing wall that separates humanity along racial lines and has brought all ethnicities together as brothers and sisters into one body—the church. Yet Piper does not end there. He carefully shepherds us through the various implications of gospel thinking in relation to race and ethnicity. In this sense, the book you hold in your hands is so much more than a book about race and ethnicity. Bloodlines is a prime example of how we Christians are to do the hard work of renewing our minds by replacing old ways of thinking with gospel ways of thinking. Read this book and let it serve as a model of how to prepare your mind for action and think soberly about God, your sin, Christ, the gospel, and one another for the sake of your soul, Christ’s church, and God’s glory.
—Juan Sanchez, Preaching Pastor, High Pointe Baptist Church, Austin, Texas
For years, I have yearned for a biblically sound, theologically anchored resource on race. God has answered that prayer. Leaping off the pages of Bloodlines is the power of the gospel to overcome and defeat racism and a call to cross-centered, holy justice in our attitudes and actions toward those who are not like us. This is an important, foundational work and I am sure it will be used of God to remind all of us of the power and precious, priceless dignity of the gospel.
—Crawford Loritts, Senior Pastor, Fellowship Bible Church, Roswell, Georgia; author, A Passionate Commitment