It is without question that the Black Church has come a long way since the days of slavery and legalized segregation. Through its trials and tribulations, the Church has stood its ground as a social and spiritual resource for African American communities. Yet, with these acknowledgments comes the question of what exactly the Black Church should look like in the twenty-first century.
In his book, Standing True to Our God? A Young, Evangelical’s Perspective on Reformation in the Black Church, J. L. Moore highlights several examples of how facets of the modern black church experience are not reflecting the teachings of Christ and His apostles. In the spirit of love and appreciation for the Black Church in America, he implores African American Christians to strongly consider the need for biblical reformation in five crucial areas:
* Denominational Modification * The Lost Focus of the Black Church * The Nature of Biblical Teaching * The Diversity of God * The Pauline Principle
Pastor Fred Luter, the first African American President of the Southern Baptist Convention, stated, “I would make this book required reading in every seminary and Bible College in this country! Mr. Moore’s wisdom, insight, research, convictions, and biblical knowledge are evident in every chapter…reform is desperately needed in our churches today.”
According to Pastor Rodney Maiden of Providence Baptist Church in Cleveland, Ohio, “Standing True to Our God? presents a clear understanding of the need for the Church to stand true to the Word of God. In a day and time when many are veering from the Word, Mr. Moore remains true to sound, biblical teaching…”
The Black Church in America is the most victorious institution in the African American community. Yet, when it is compared with sacred scripture, we find that the Black Church is falling short in very significant areas. Nevertheless, there is a message of hope for those within the Black Church who are willing to embrace the call for biblical reformation.
What should the Black Church look like in the twenty-first century according to biblical teaching? Believe it or not, there are stimulating answers to that crucial question.
“I have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the New Testament dream. I have a dream, that one day, the Black Church will rise up, and live out the true meaning of its anthem: shadowed beneath thy hand, may we forever stand true to our God.” — J. L. Moore; adapted from Dr. Martin Luther King’s Speech: ‘I Have a Dream’
For more information and to contact Mr. Moore, visit www.jlmoorepage.com.