Sermons

Summary: Competition is as much a vice in the lives of believers with no redeeming virtues as it is a virtue in the lives of believers.

FOR JESUS’ LOVE 18

Leadership Traits

By

Dr. Gale A. Ragan-Reid (November 25, 2017)

“So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon Peter, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep. He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.” (St. John 21:15-17, King James Version [Christ’s charge to Peter]}

Greetings in the Holy Name of Jesus,

My sisters and brothers, I am here to tell you that there is no single truth as the murkiness of the depth of the soul darkened in the competitive nature of man, throughout the ages. And as dismal as all of that sounded to the uplifting of the human spirit, there is faith, for hope is not deferred or unequivocally lost. Most importantly, we know that hate came out of love and the sting of sin is the law. More importantly, we know that grace is of God. However, we are taken aback in the words of President Lincoln, here in the United States of America, when he spoke the Gettysburg Address (November 19, 1863), “Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.” If my memory serves me correct for my fourth grade assignment was to memorize President Lincoln’s speech, The Gettysburg Address, then, I beg the difference of what that first line in our great president’s speech meant, presumably to the recent immigrants---those who were a part of the melting pot--- of the time and those recently freed out of slavery, notably African Americans more so than the other immigrants.

Why in God’s heaven, here on earth---America, did the Civil Rights Act (April 9, 1866, 14 Statute 27-30) not make a difference [There were subsequent variations, however, The Civil Rights Act of 1866 granted citizenship and the same rights enjoyed by white citizens to all male persons in the United States "without distinction of race or color, or previous condition of slavery or involuntary servitude." pbs.org/reconstruction], immediately following the enactment of the Emancipation Proclamation (January 1, 1863)---a federal proclamation, so that the words spoken in the Gettysburg Address

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resonated in the freedom won during the Civil War (1861-65), in the daily lives of former slaves, for without the Civil Rights Act 1866 making a difference to guarantee the liberties---freedoms in the Constitution of the United States of America in our daily lives---those with reprobate hearts and minds used arguments questioning the power of congress to enact such an act, which gave state governments and local governments power to pass laws to re-enslave African Americans, therefore the 1866 Civil Rights Act became the Civil Rights Act of 1871---still arguably passed but not enforced beyond federal power?[It was enacted to protect African Americans and others that were in slavery.wikipedia.org] It took another 100 years give or take a year or two, for the USA to enact the Civil Rights Act 1964 and to ensure the leadership of America represented African Americans [“The Voting Rights Act, signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson (1908-73) on August 6, 1965, aimed to overcome legal barriers at the state and local levels that prevented African Americans from exercising their right to vote under the 15th Amendment (1870) to the Constitution of the United States”, history.com/topics/black-history/voting-rights-act], the Voting Rights Act 1965 (August 6, 1965) prohibited racial discrimination in voting followed the Civil Rights Act, ---all of 100 years since the Civil War (1861-1865), which gave the States of America the rule of law in the civil liberties of the newly freed slaves and the reign of what became known as the Jim Crow and Jane Crow era---Black codes, practiced in the States, throughout the USA. Understandably, we see clearly now that the years of Reconstruction, led by men of ill-repute in high offices, “for we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” [Ephesians 6:12], in a movement that used any means necessary to force former slaves back in bondage---chose to disenfranchise African-Americans so as not to rightfully share the wealth of America---even the promised wealth of 40 acres and a mule were denied to African Americans in many states. Many southern preachers spoke to their congregations that former slaves were Ham. Most African Americans did not understand that those in the knowledge of what they were doing---did not mean Noah’s son Ham, but that the states and local municipalities used the Babylonian law under Prince Hammurabi (1780 B.C.) to rule our daily lives and illegally denied our rights under the Constitution of the USA, so the Gettysburg Address spoken by President Lincoln did not resonate in the lives of former slaves, in particular African Americans, only in general, did it resonate in the lives of those the populous saw fit to let in, publicly denouncing Jews and African-Americans.

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