(ThyBlackMan.com) The 2017-18 NFL football season is barely a month old and already it has been swamped in controversy. The storm centers around language the President of the United States of America used when calling for league players “to be fired” for protesting during the national anthem. The president referred to these players as “sons of bitches”, not only casting a negative tilt to an otherwise peaceful demonstration of a few players, but also by appealing to a centuries-old racial antagonism that is at both the core of his support and of American Exceptionalism.
Yet there’s a greater lesson embedded in this rampant controversy, one that permeates what we believe as Christians to be our duty as it relates to civic engagement. Often, in the actions of what we
Would Christ take a knee with Colin Kaepernick? Would He promote substance over symbol? What would Jesus do?
When we survey it carefully, the fact is biblical evidence suggests that Christ would indeed kneel in protest of any institution or country or system that would deny human beings basic rights. Jesus Christ demonstrated this attitude and backed it with action throughout the New Testament gospel accounts. He constantly restored the finer elements of human life – sight, life, loved ones – much to the chagrin of the civic and religious power-brokers who opposed him and back to where God as Creator intended them. We know that Jesus Christ often ‘took a knee’ for and with humanity.
In Philippians 2:9, the Apostle Paul writes of Jesus, Therefore God also highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name…so that at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow and every tongue that He is Lord…”
Before this superlative declaration, however, Paul reminds us that Christ indeed ‘took a knee’ for humanity when He “humbled himself, took on the form of humanity and became obedient to the cross.” Now it is our turn to ‘take a knee’ for others, to show that we can make a difference right now right here.
Taking a knee for Christ means we rededicate ourselves to service for others. This attitude is characterized by three attitudes. One, it means we humble ourselves. Trust me, we have enough pride in high places; our country is riddled with haughty, pride-filled people. We are in dire need of its opposite. Two, to take a knee for Christ is to stand and seek peace, justice and dignity for every person regardless of race, nationality, color or economic location. Thirdly, to take a knee for Christ is to place substance over symbol. America is full of symbolism. Symbolism, though, is a band-aid for the deep, racial wounds that have been a part of this country since its inception.
Taking a knee for Christ is radical action but its steps are rooted in human virtue. Paul list some of those steps in the verses preceding the exaltation of Jesus Christ; simple things like doing nothing from ‘selfish ambition, look not to our own interests and regarding others more than ourselves’.
A long time ago those simple virtues seemed to happen without notice. Today, they do not occur with much happenstance. We must go back to those days. We must endeavor to make change happen.
Will you take a knee for Christ?
Staff Writer; W. Eric Croomes
This talented brother is a holistic lifestyle exercise expert and founder and executive coach of Infinite Strategies LLC, a multi-level coaching firm that develops and executes strategies for fitness training, youth achievement and lifestyle management. Eric is an author, fitness professional, holistic life coach and motivational speaker.
In October 2015, Eric released Life’s A Gym: Seven Fitness Principles to Get the Best of Both, which shows readers how to use exercise to attract a feeling of wellness, success and freedom (Infinite Strategies Coaching LLC, 2015) – http://www.infinitestrategiescoaching.com.