Jurgen Moltmann on Black Theology

“Black theology opens up for the theology of the whites the unique chance to free itself from the constitutional blindness of white society, and to become Christian theology. If we listen seriously to the stories of blacks, if we try to understand black theology, we begin to see ourselves and our own history through the eyes of the people who have suffered and are still suffering under our culture and our church. The person who has incurred guilt can no doubt admit his guilt, but only his victims know what suffering his injustice has caused. So we only become free of our own blindness if we see ourselves through the eyes of our victims and identify with them, because it was with them that the Son of Man already identified himself (Matthew 25). White Christians should not, one day, have to ask unsuspectingly, ‘Lord, when did we see you black?’ Christ lies before their door as a black. Black theology makes our own task clear in the struggle against the evils of racism, which oppress both the victims and the perpetrators, even if in different ways.

But people who are personally involved with black theology are also asking whether to describe blacks only as victims of the ruling whites does not fixate them on the whites in a way that has negative consequences. Black people in America are more than merely descendents of the black slaves. They have also brought into America their own culture and their own forms of religion. So whenever black people in America remember who they are, this brings to the surface their rich culture, even though in many cases it has been suppressed.”  (Experiences In Theology: Ways and Forms of Christian Theology, emphasis added, source)

As a black man, living in North America, and who continues to witness the evils of racism, I do appreciate this piece from theologian Jurgen Moltmann.  Though he is not black, he does speak to the black experience with intelligence and accuracy.

Moltmann appears quite sensitive to the black experience inside and outside of the church–an experience that is real indeed.

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3 Responses to Jurgen Moltmann on Black Theology

  1. Craig Benno says:

    Evils of racism. Is it ironic to hate racism with a passion.

    Like

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