O God, you have bound us together in a common life. Help us, in the midst of our struggles for justice and truth, to confront one another without hatred or bitterness, and to work together with mutual forbearance and respect; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.– The Book of Common Prayer
Confused about what critical race theory (CRT) is and its implications for Christians? Are there negatives to CRT? Positives? If you read, watch, and listen to the resources below, you will have the beginning of a well-rounded understanding of what CRT is, what CRT is not, and how Christians should approach this theory.
BEFORE BEGINNING, we want to take the time to recognize that extremes exist on both sides of the CRT debate. There are those that use CRT as a religion and guiding moral principle while there are others that shun CRT unequivocally with no nuance. We are striving for a different approach with a both/and worldview, not an either/or worldview.
As Christians, we believe that we are obligated to be nuanced and kind in our discussions about polarizing topics while taking the time to actually learn about a subject.
READ: What is Critical Race Theory? / Faithfully Magazine editors
In clear and concise prose, the editors of Faithfully Magazine list the core concepts and roots of critical race theory in addition to the inception and current iteration of the backlash against critical race theory. With plenty of opportunity to dig deeper, this article is an excellent starting point to learn about CRT.
READ: How the Church can use Critical Race Theory / Tyler Huckabee
In easy to understand, straightforward language, Relevant Magazine’s Tyler Huckabee details the incarnation of the war against critical race theory, the varying definitions and key tenets of CRT, and how Christians should respond.
LISTEN: Race, CRT and Evangelism with Dr. Ed Uszynski / Theology in the Raw
In a vulnerable and nuanced discussion about CRT, politics, and the church, host Preston Sprinkle and Dr. Ed Uszynski discuss finding the “transcendent middle.” They also identify that the Christian approach to critical race theory is often met with a lack of empathy and theological understanding of justice . Skip to the nine-minute mark to get to the meat of the interview.
WATCH: Kingdom Race Theory / Tony Evans
Oak Cliff Bible (Dallas, TX) pastor Tony Evans looks at three aspects of critical race theory (CRT): the original definition of the theory, the crisis and confusion over it today, and how Christians should respond to CRT. Evans is a master at taking the complicated, layered, and fluid history of CRT and breaking it down into easily understandable terms. This is the best resource on CRT from a Christian perspective thus far.
Fortunately, there are a host of people who have taken the time to do a deep dive on CRT. Bradly Mason penned a six part series on it. The Bridge Church (Brooklyn, NY) teaching pastor Rasool Berry has written extensively on the topic, and UNC Chapel Hill professor Pat Sawyer wrote a three-part series . Danny Slavich has also typed out a lengthy, but helpful post.
We also highly recommend these two articles:
More curated content on critical race theory:
Big Brown Army host DeCruz and critical race theory expert Bradly Mason have an in-depth conversation where DeCruz asks several honest, poignant questions about CRT. Mason has clearly done a lot of research on CRT and we appreciated his nuanced answers. We particularly liked when he pointed out that as Christians we don’t have to accept or reject CRT part and parcel as we rarely do that with other issues. We also liked that he recognizes that before starting a conversation terms must be defined because the uses and definitions of certain terms can be very different to another individual.Read more
Although the podcast starts off a little goofy, Phil Vischer, Skye Jethani and Kaitlyn Schiess discuss the wholesale rejection of critical race theory in a meeting between six southern Baptist presidents. The real meat though is in the interview ( where we recommend you start — skip to 43:19) with David Fitch who says that critical race theory, and all critical theories for that matter, are good diagnostic tools, but they must not be divorced from a Christian view of justice. The interview provides a succinct, nuanced history of critical theory that does not throw the baby out with the bath water.Read more
In easy to understand, straightforward language, Relevant Magazine’s Tyler Huckabee details the incarnation of the war against critical race theory, the varying definitions and key tenets of CRT, and how Christians should respond.Read more