John Piper: Racism Is a Human Issue, Not 'North-South Kind of Thing'

John Piper
Christian minister John Piper is seen in this photo shared publicly in 2012 by his Desiring God ministry on Facebook. |

Notable preacher and retired pastor John Piper has recently stated that racism is a "human issue" and cannot be merely divided into a "North-South kind of thing."

The chancellor of Bethlehem College and Seminary recently preached to the congregation of Passion City Church in Atlanta, Georgia.

In a sermon titled "The Plundering of Your Property and the Power of Hope", Piper spoke about the suffering Christians endure for their beliefs and practices.

Among the examples Piper discussed, one of them was the issue of "ethnic harmony" in the United States and abroad.

"Over and over again the inequalities crop up. Don't think this is a North-South kind of thing. It is a human issue," said Piper to those gathered.

"And then don't think America, think tribal animosities that take out millions around the world, right? Ethnic hostilities, almost all hostilities in the world are ethnic hostilities."

A native of the South, Piper added that he still sees racial issues even in his current residence north of the Mason-Dixon Line.

"I don't live in Greenville anymore. I live in Minneapolis. Race is the biggest issue in Minneapolis," continued Piper.

"I don't care how many wonderful laws have been changed in the last 50 years. There are people saying snide, dirty, low down, demeaning things behind others' backs at the place where you work to this very day."

Piper's comments came in advance of the nation observing Black History Month, a time when Americans remember and learn about notable African-Americans past and present.

This year's observance came as many moviegoers saw the hit film "Selma", which showcased a crucial part of the civil rights struggle.

"I saw Selma on Thursday night. I lived Selma. I was on the wrong side," acknowledged Piper in his sermon in Atlanta.

"The John Piper of age 19, or 15, and the John Piper of today, are worlds apart on the race issue. And I am so ashamed of the South I lived in. So ashamed of me."

Piper is not the only Christian leader to recently comment on the past and present racial conflicts in America.

Last month, a group of prominent church leaders from the different racial and denominational backgrounds came together for an event called "The Reconciled Church."

Held at the Potter's House in Texas and hosted by Bishop T. D. Jakes and Bishop Harry Jackson, "The Reconciled Church" featured several Christian leaders including Pastor John Hagee, Alveda King, Dr. Tony Evans, Dr. Samuel Rodriguez, and James Robison.

"In light of recent events and the stark increase in racial tension across the nation, The Potter's House will be hosting The Reconciled Church – an event aimed at addressing these concerns and offering solutions to the racial issues facing America today," read an advertisement for the event.

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