MLK50 Conference: John Piper Says God Used MLK to Open His Eyes to His Own Racism

In the closing speech of the MLK50 Conference in Memphis on Wednesday night, popular theologian John Piper seemingly questioned Martin Luther King Jr.’s theological beliefs but stressed that God used the Civil Rights hero to open his eyes to his own “inexcusable” blind racism.

Piper, the 72-year-old founder of and chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary, gave the closing address at the two-day conference hosted by the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission on the 50th anniversary of King’s assassination.

After preaching for nearly 40 minutes on the idea that Jesus Christ created the universe and all things in it for His glory, Piper closed with an exhortation in which he shared his own thoughts on King’s legacy and his own struggles with racism in the past.

“As a very young southerner growing up in Greenville, South Carolina, in the 1950s and ’60s, my sin — aroused, shaped by the toxic segregationist, racist air I breathed — blinded me to the truth of the beauty of the racial, ethnic unity and harmony and justice of the [Bible],” Piper explained. “It was as though Colossians 3:11 didn’t exist in the Bible.”

The verse states: “Here there is no Gentile or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.”

“I am thankful to God that He made Martin Luther King the main human instrument in the renovation of that [segregated] world,” Piper said. “With that same human instrument struck a blow of conviction across my blind conscience. Mine was a pervasive and inexcusable blindness.”

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Source: Christian Post