ἐκ παντὸς ἔθνους, Black lives matter

After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no man could number, from every nation — παντὸς ἔθνους —, from all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits upon the throne, and to the Lamb!” — Revelation 7:9-10 (RSV)

God will gather his people from pantos ethnous — every nation — around the throne of his Lamb. Kenyan, German, Chinese, Zulu, English — all nations will praise Christ in their own language and from their own culture. Black lives matter in this moment in history precisely for the same reason Hebrew lives mattered in Egypt. God is not colorblind! God’s favor and attention to the oppressed does not exclude others. The Church’s special attention to Black lives in this moment does not exclude her care for others. It is through God’s care of the Hebrews that all humankind is saved on the cross. In this moment, the Church’s attention and care towards our Black sisters and brothers will lead not just to their Exodus from systems of sin and oppression, but, through this Exodus, blessings for all of humankind. In Christ we are one Body. How glorious it would be and how great an offering to our Lord if we started acting like it.