A prejudice is a personal thought directed against individuals of a certain minority, whether it be skin colour, gender, religion e. t. c… For example being anti-Semitic means you have a prejudice against Jews because you don’t like that minority of people. Some people can take there prejudices a step further and take action against those they feel a prejudice towards, such as Adolf Hitler did with the Jews where he murdered six million Jews across Nazi occupied Europe because he felt a prejudice towards them.
Prejudices can be sparked by things such as racism and sexism, which themselves really are prejudices but are the reasons why some people feel against certain groups of people. Racism is a prejudice towards a race of people, such as different skin colours and people from different religions, people can also be discriminated because of racism, and this is where segregation comes in where people are divided accorded to race. Sexism is a prejudice towards the opposite sex; it can also be discrimination in such cases where a man is chosen for a job rather than a woman simply because she is a woman.
Racism and sexism can cause people to feel hurt, alienated and angry as they are seen as inferior because of something they can’t change. Christians believe prejudice is morally wrong because God created all humans as one so therefore they are all equal. There is evidence of this in the bible as shown in the references below: Genesis 1:26 “Then God said, “Let us make man in our likeness… ” All humans were made in the image of God, meaning they were all equal as they were created as one image. Leviticus 19:33-34 When an alien lives with you in your land, do not ill treat him.
The alien living with you must be treated as one of your native-born. Love him as yourself, for you were aliens in Egypt. I am the Lord your God. ” Christians must not discriminate a person because they are an alien to their land. Christians must remember that their ancestors (Jews) were once foreign in Egypt and so they would not like themselves to be treated with such disrespect as the Jews in Egypt were. Agape The principle of agape states treat others as you yourself would like to be treated.
Christians should therefore put themselves in the shoes of a person of a discriminated race and see how they feel to be treated in a negative way; therefore they should treat alien races as they themselves would like to be treated. Colossians 3:5-11 “Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian slave of free, but Christ is all and is in all” There is no divide between people, whether from different countries or backgrounds, all that matters is that Christ is with them. Galatians 3:26-28 “You are all the children of God by believing in Jesus Christ.
All of you who were baptised into Christ have put on Christ as if he were your clothes. There is no Jew or Greek. There is no slave or free person. There is no male or female. Because you belong to Jesus Christ you are one. ” In the eyes of the God it doesn’t matter whether one is male or female because everybody is created as one, there are no divides to separate different people because there is no such thing as different people, everyone is equal. James 2:9 “But if you show favouritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers. ”
Discrimination is a sin; you should not choose somebody over another person because of their race, looks, background e. t. c… The clear message here is that Christians should follow equality and treat others as they themselves would like to be treated no matter the race, background or nationality of the person. However is it true that the Christian Church has always fought for equality? In the past there have been such quotes from people such as Martin Luther. “Women should remain at home, sit still, keep house and bring up the children…
If a woman grows weary and at last dies from childbearing, it matters not let her die from bearing, she is there to do it. ” Martin Luther 1483-1546 This obviously shows that the views on women have changed over the time, seeing as this was 500 years ago; the discriminations against women have lessened. However even in biblical times women were viewed as inferior. Paul, one of Christ’s own disciples, said women are inferior to men because man was created first and the woman was created out of a rib taken from the man and the only way women can save themselves is by having children.
Such opinions have disappeared over the last under century and women can now do the same things as men in modern society. Jesus, who lived in a strong patriarchal society, considered men of equal importance to men. They played a big part in his life and it was rumoured a few of his disciples may have been women. It is also said that Christ first made himself known as the messiah to women; he said they were fit for more than domesticity and he first appeared to women after he rose from the dead after his crucifixion. This tells Christians that they should treat women with respect to follow in Jesus’ footsteps.
Another debate about sexism is the fact the Roman Catholic Church and the Greek Orthodox Church refuse women to ordain. If the roles of men and women are to be equal, then why can’t women become priests in these two churches? Some Christians would respond to this by saying God has different intentions for the roles of men and women, and this is just a reflection of women not being allowed to ordain. In cases where Christians are discriminated, they are always encouraged to forgive. In the case of Peter and Linda Biehl, where there daughter was murdered in South Africa due to her presence in a strong black community.
They managed to forgive and there are many teachings for this such as the Lord’s Prayer: “Forgive our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. ” This tells Christians that, in order to be forgiven by God they must reconcile with the people who have sinned against them. This can obviously be extremely hard in certain cases, such as this case with the loss of a daughter, but Christians should aim to do this because Jesus reconciled with his own killers who crucified him and so they must follow in his footsteps.