Since the American inception, American Christianity has had its “issues..” It’s been pushed on to many cultures and too often, extremely hypocritical. I recently had a paradigm shift in my thinking in regards to what exactly is repulsive about American Christianity. It’s something that I think has always been there but it was something I personally could disassociate from Judaism and Christianity. The hypocritical whitewashing of these cultures, of the Jewish writings and of Yeshua (you may know Him as Jesus..) Himself have completely turned people away, specifically people of color from wanting to know who YHWH is and how His son Yeshua impacts our lives. I am writing this to believers and non-believers alike who are interested in these things. There are however portions of this writing where I am focused on making points to white America as well as to my fellow persons of color throughout the nation.
History of Hypocrisy
Let’s take a look at some historical reference here regarding Christianity brought to the Americas. European settlers were pushing Christianity on to the Natives while simultaneously performing mass genocide on them. The same people bowing their heads low in church on Sunday are the same people calling indigenous peoples illegal. Those European settlers were also stealing Africans from their home continent to bring them over to force them to build their empire. Now since there have been wars there have been slaves. That isn’t new, what is new is to establish an entire continent you aren’t warring with as your designated slave labor. The African slave raids and American slavery in general is an exceptionally cruel and hateful tradition that we have failed to accept accountability for as a nation. How is it even possible to have the harshest of slave owners absolutely resolute on being punctual for church each week? Frederick Douglass had harsh words in his Narrative for the white moderate of his time:
The slave auctioneer’s bell and the church-going bell chime in with each other, and the bitter cries of the heart-broken slave are drowned in the religious shouts of his pious master. Revivals of religion and revivals in the slave-trade go hand in hand together. The slave prison and the church stand near each other. The clanking of fetters and the rattling of chains in the prison, and the pious psalm and solemn prayer in the church, may be heard at the same time. The dealers in the bodies and souls of men erect their stand in the presence of the pulpit, and they mutually help each other. The dealer gives his blood-stained gold to support the pulpit, and the pulpit, in return, covers his infernal business with the garb of Christianity. Here we have religion and robbery the allies of each other — devils dressed in angels’ robes, and hell presenting the semblance of paradise.
-Frederick Douglass (Abolitionist, American slave)
Frederick also brought up the hypocrisy of the 4th of July, “America’s Independence” as it is nicknamed by the white moderate no less. 1776 represents freedom for the white moderate and them alone as it made no difference to the American slave or the Natives and yet, the rest of the nation is expected to pay tribute to this day when so few know about the black American independence (Juneteenth). So few know about how Mexico’s win at the battle of Puebla helped stave off the French soldiers. The same French that were supporting the Confederacy at the time. It’s no wonder then that Abraham Lincoln insured May 5th would be seen as a national holiday. Had Mexico lost that battle, the French would have marched right up into the American South to continue supporting the Confederacy and could have changed the course of our Civil war. Needless to say that Lincoln (as well as the Union and certainly black Americans) was very happy to hear that they won that battle. Fast forward a century and you still continue to hear the wailing of an oppressed people within our christian nation. This time Martin Luther King Jr had harsh words again for the still white christian moderate of his time:
I had hoped that the white moderate would understand that law and order exist for the purpose of establishing justice and that when they fail in this purpose they become the dangerously structured dams that block the flow of social progress. I had hoped that the white moderate would understand that the present tension in the South is a necessary phase of the transition from an obnoxious negative peace, in which the Negro passively accepted his unjust plight, to a substantive and positive peace, in which all men will respect the dignity and worth of human personality. Actually, we who engage in nonviolent direct action are not the creators of tension. We merely bring to the surface the hidden tension that is already alive. We bring it out in the open, where it can be seen and dealt with. Like a boil that can never be cured so long as it is covered up but must be opened with all its ugliness to the natural medicines of air and light, injustice must be exposed, with all the tension its exposure creates, to the light of human conscience and the air of national opinion before it can be cured.
-Martin Luther King Jr (Civil Rights Activist, murdered by the American Government)
It is no wonder that our nation’s christianity and interpretation of (white) Jesus has repulsed the masses. Black and brown lives simply have never been seen as equally important to white lives and it has completely permeated every aspect of our nation because we have allowed it to do so.
Whitewashing of Egyptians
One of the most bewildering hypocrisies of American christianity is to physically whitewash Jesus Himself and the disciples around Him. How does this happen on a wide scale level? Even if you’re not sure what He looked like, I think we can all agree Jesus certainly was not white. He was born in Israel (a country bordering Africa) so why is a white Jesus pushed so hard and for so long in America? What did people in the area during the time Jesus was on Earth even look like? The Egyptians during the time Jesus walked the Earth (as well as long after) were dark in complexion according to Aristotle who lived in 4th century BC:
“…those who are too black are cowards, like for instance the Egyptians and Ethiopians. But those who are excessively white are also cowards as we can see from the example of women, the complexion of courage lies between the two.”
-Aristotle (racist/sexist rant disguised as wisdom)
Now notice that he even named the Egyptians first before Ethiopians regarding their dark skin. Another enlightening statement comes from Constantine De Volney during the late 1700s when he visited Egypt:
“All the Egyptians have a bloated face, puffed-up eyes, flat nose, thick lips — in a word, the true face of the mulatto. I was tempted to attribute it to the climate, but when I visited the Sphinx, its appearance gave me the key to the riddle. On seeing that head, typically Negro in all its features, I remembered the remarkable passage where Herodotus says:
‘As for me, I judge the Colchians to be a colony of the Egyptians
because, like them, they are black with woolly hair…’
“When I visited the Sphinx, I could not help thinking that the figure of that monster furnished the true solution to the enigma (of how the modern Egyptians came to have their ‘mulatto’ appearance)
“In other words, the ancient Egyptians were true Negroes of the same type as all native-born Africans. That being so, we can see how their blood, mixed for several centuries with that of the Greeks and Romans, must have lost the intensity of its original color, while retaining nonetheless the imprint of its original mold.
“Just think that this race of Black men, today our slave and the object of our scorn, is the very race to which we owe our arts, sciences, and even the use of speech! Just imagine, finally, that it is in the midst of people who call themselves the greatest friends of liberty and humanity that one has approved the most barbarous slavery, and questioned whether Black men have the same kind of intelligence as whites!”
-Constantine De Volney (stating his revelation of humility)
This statement is epically revealing. Aside from the Sphynx clearly having black attributes, Constantine references the words of Herodotus (who lived in 5th century BC) and all three of these men (Aristotle, Constantine and Herodotus) came to the same conclusion. That Egyptians were dark skinned peoples with woolly hair, certainly of African descent and their lives together share a timeline from 5th century BC into the late 1700s AD!
Aside from these personal accounts of the men above. We have plenty of Egyptian hieroglyphs as proof of black Egyptians, not to mention that the Egyptian Gods tended to be dark skinned in their writings and as we all know and was mentioned above, white people don’t have black gods… It is also worth mentioning that Jesus was exiled into Egypt just after birth along with his family for some time so they must’ve at least blended in well with the Egyptians. That would also make sense because the Apostle Paul was once mistaken for an Egyptian by a Roman commander according to the Bible:
As Paul was about to be taken inside, he said to the commander, “May I have a word with you?”
“Do you know Greek?” the commander asked, surprised.
“Aren’t you the Egyptian who led a rebellion some time ago and took 4,000 members of the Assassins out into the desert?”
-Acts 21:37, 38
So there is certainly substantial evidence out there regarding Egyptians being black Africans. It is very important to accurately depict cultures and people, certainly regarding people of importance.
Whitewashing of Hebrews
America has read about and been told of this conservative white messiah when in actuality Messiah was black, born into a black society of Israelites. There are three passages in Biblical scripture where two different prophets are speaking about what Jesus’ physical appearance looks like. One of them being Daniel and the other prophet John the revelator. They roughly lived about 600 years a part. Daniel said this about Jesus:
His body looked like a precious gem. His face flashed like lightning, and his eyes flamed like torches. His arms and feet shone like polished bronze, and his voice roared like a vast multitude of people.
In Revelation, John describes Jesus:
And standing in the middle of the lampstands was someone like the Son of Man. He was wearing a long robe with a gold sash across his chest. His head and his hair were white like wool, as white as snow. And his eyes were like flames of fire. His feet were like polished bronze refined in a furnace, and his voice thundered like mighty ocean waves.
In the next chapter, Jesus describes Himself using the same terminology as John did:
“Write this letter to the angel of the church in Thyatira. This is the message from the Son of God, whose eyes are like flames of fire, whose feet are like polished bronze..”
If America was completely determined to shun the very idea of a black Jesus, it would make more sense to at least push an Arabic Jesus, instead of pushing a pasty pale version that most understand simply never could have been because science.. It’s even interesting that the name we use for Messiah, the word Jesus is the Latin form of the Greek Iesous. Which in turn is the transliteration of the Hebrew Yeshua. I’m not saying that this is a sin to use the name Jesus or anything like that. My point is that even in His name we have faulty information and little to no understanding and we should at least be attempting perfect accuracy of the One who saves the world.
Often in our American society, we are constantly looking at things through a very narrow, conservative white american perspective. According to Moses’ writings in Genesis:
Then the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nostrils, and the man became a living person.
So we learn from Moses that the first man Adam was made from the soils somewhere in East Africa. Considering the location and coming from the ground, it is logical to presume Adam would be a person of color. Here is a passage from the book of Enoch as well concerning Noah:
After a time, my son Mathusala took a wife for his son Lamech.
She became pregnant by him, and brought forth a child, the flesh of which was as white as snow, and red as a rose; the hair of whose head was white like wool, and long; and whose eyes were beautiful. When he opened them, he illuminated all the house, like the sun; the whole house abounded with light.
And when he was taken from the hand of the midwife, Lamech his father became afraid of him; and flying away came to his own father Mathusala, and said, I have begotten a son, unlike to other children. He is not human; but, resembling the offspring of the angels of heaven, is of a different nature from ours, being altogether unlike to us.
His eyes are bright as the rays of the sun; his countenance glorious, and he looks not as if he belonged to me, but to the angels.
-Enoch 105 1:4
So, in Enoch we find out a lot of information just in this short passage here. One of the things is that Noah may have been the first albino. Whether he is or isn’t, what is certain is that apparently there were no humans with light skin at this point judging from his father’s response. Lamech felt it was so unorthodox that he questions whether Noah is even human all together in verse 4! So what we’ve learned is that a pre-flood era Earth does not appear to have any white people on it yet (not counting the nephilim as they were the angelic offspring). Which then begs the question.. When exactly did white people start to show up on the Earth and how long have they been around? This is a more logical starting point and with this should be where we start from regarding ancient Hebrews as well as with Yeshua. If any presumed assumption is to be used, it should be the expectation that likely all of these ancient societies were full of dark skinned persons of color.
Canon of Scripture
Having grown up in America myself and raised a Christian, I can understand some being flat out appalled at my audacity to reference a book associated to the apocrypha (non-canonical Jewish writings). I once accepted the “cautions” to leave these books alone as well until I began studying Enoch to try and understand why it wasn’t part of the canonized Bible. Then I found out that it is. It is considered canon to some regions in East Africa. It was important enough to be hidden along with other scriptures found within the dead sea scrolls, as we now refer to them. Also, a New Testament author references the book of Enoch. So it was definitely a known piece of work that Jude considered divine according to his writings near the end of the New Testament:
Enoch, who lived in the seventh generation after Adam, prophesied about these people. He said, “Listen! The Lord is coming with countless thousands of his holy ones to execute judgment on the people of the world. He will convict every person of all the ungodly things they have done and for all the insults that ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”
-Jude 1:14, 15
How is it the book of Jude made it into canon but not the book that righteous Jude references? If Jonah made it into the Old Testament canon (a great example of what not to do when God commands that you deliver a message..), it would make sense that Enoch should have been among the popular canon as well. He was one of only two people (Elijah being the other) spoken of in Jewish scripture that never died because God was pleased with them.
So ultimately, if you don’t want to believe in Christianity or Judaism.. Ok. These are not white religions even though they’ve been whitewashed. These are black writings written by black authors about ancient black societies. The hope of society rests on a black King whose name is Yeshua. My hope is that people (and certainly people of color) would not be turned away from reading/studying about Yeshua and who YHWH is because of an image of a pitiful, whitewashed, conservative, dramatically alien rendition of Yeshua is being used along with a devastating, hypocritical form of love, and acceptance being shown that disregards persons of color. I would hope that people will understand that the dark skinned, woolly haired Yeshua, the Lion of Judah loves all peoples. I would hope that people would put aside what they have been told and research for themselves to find their answers. Be bold enough to challenge the status quo and do your own homework and find out and read about the Hebrews and the God of Abraham for themselves. When you read through the curses of disobedience in Deuteronomy 28, you find out the Africans stolen and brought to the Americas, the Natives and Hispanics may be part of the lost tribes of the original Hebrews under those curses, the Jewish diaspora. If that is so, we certainly should be acquainted with our own God and the God of our ancestors and His son Yeshua.