McLean Bible Church Pastor Mike Kelsey Suggests Sold-Out Christians Should Support Slave Reparations

Months after David Platt announced that he was stepping back from his role as the primary leader of McLean Bible Church and that Lead Pastor of Culture and Preaching Mike Kelsey would be taking his place, we have begun to see some of the fruit of that transition, and it is maggoty to the core. 

Mclean has been subject to much scrutiny over the years, largely because they ramped up their promulgation of critical race theory, standpoint epistemology, and social justice in light of George Floyd’s death.  

Much of the cause of the criticism comes from Platt and Kelsey, with Platt saying that he is part of the problem in propagating racial injustice on account of his white skin, telling congregants who “can’t live” with the fact that their church family may be members of the Democratic party, who may vote for them, campaign for them, fundraise for them, and even run for office under their banner, that they should leave the church, and engaging in struggle sessions through their church course The Gospel, The Church, Justice and Race (GCJR)

As for Kelsey, he was subject to much scrutiny after he expressed that it was difficult for him not to ‘torch all white people’ and that he was scared to run to the block and back as a black man in his white suburb neighborhood.

In a recent sermon on Nehemiah, Kelsey floats the idea of slave reparations past his congregation, suggesting that if they loved the “whole counsel of God, ” they would be willing to be on board.

Now, this raises a question about how we’re supposed to apply this today. I know what some of y’all are thinking, like, especially in light of the modern debates here in our country about reparations for slavery. And thankfully, I’m out of time. I am.

But let me just say this, let me say this, certainly the principle of restitution is here in Scripture; that justice requires not just stopping injustice, but repairing or rectifying that injustice in appropriate ways. This is why in the New Testament when the tax franchise owner Zaccheaus becomes a follower of Jesus, he commits to actually repaying everyone he defrauded fourfold.

At the same time, though, you can’t draw a straight line between passages like this and any specific form of reparations today. That conversation requires a whole host of moral, legal, economic, and practical considerations that honestly are above my pay grade. It’s a worthy conversation. You just can’t jump immediately from Scripture to ‘this is what that should look like today.’

But I hope it’s clear as we study this passage and as we study the broader teaching of scripture that God calls us to make personal sacrifices for the sake of justice, not to just agree with the idea, but at some point, if we’re going to follow Jesus, if we’re going to obey the whole counsel of God and become a people who reflect God’s just character, it’s going to require something of us.

It’s going to require that we give some things up. It’s going to require that we make some sacrifices in order to get involved and to reflect the character and kingdom of God in caring for the vulnerable, the poor, the oppressed.

In some ways, I want that to challenge us. I want the weight of that, the weight of this passage to sit on our hearts as the authoritative word of God and to allow all of us to just allow and be open to how this Holy Spirit might be wanting to grow us and shape us and lead us. I want this to challenge us.

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3 thoughts on “McLean Bible Church Pastor Mike Kelsey Suggests Sold-Out Christians Should Support Slave Reparations

  1. The notion of reparations is like socialism/communism/social justice. They may sound good…for about a nanosecond, but upon ANY objective examination it becomes painfully obvious that they are stunningly stupid ideas. However, the biggest problem here is that all of these ideas require forcibly imposing them onto the entire population, all with lethal results, and done in the name of justice and compassion.

  2. Pastor Kelsey isn’t advocating “justice,” but extortion. His position isn’t biblical, because according to Deuteronomy 24:16 and Ezekiel 18:20, fathers shall not be put to death or bear the iniquity of their children, and vice versa.

    Since the original wrong would be forcibly taking Pastor Kelsey’s ancestors from their homeland, the only proper reparation would be to pay for their one-way passage and permanent resettlement back in their ancestral homelands.

    As for the fear he feels in his white suburban neighbourhood, it seems that Pastor Kelsey, like Comrade Kaputnick, grew up with “white privilege.” I turned that video off before it even reached the 3-minute mark. Pastor Kelsey doesn’t offer any facts to justify his fear, just an impression. Maybe there’s something supernatural (a demon of fear?) in the hoodie itself, since he didn’t feel afraid until he put it on. If Pastor Kelsey is so uncomfortable living in his white suburban neighbourhood, why is he there? Why doesn’t he move himself and his family back to the neighbourhood that his parents moved away from?

  3. Sorry founding members of MBC. Your church has been stolen from you and there is no possibility of redemption. At this point the only thing you can do is to save your own soul (and perhaps the souls of others) and flee.

    My deepest regrets

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