When Is Then

Theatre III – Code Red Christianity

(Excerpted from Harlem Meets Mayberry)

“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you _________.”  Almost everyone can correctly fill in that blank, but not so many know the answer to the follow-up question:  When, exactly, is “then?”

According to Jesus, freedom comes with knowing the truth (Jn. 8:32).  Freedom from racial dissonance will thus begin to be realized as more and more people embrace the truth about racial dissonance.  But when will we know the truth?  Jesus says, “then you will know the truth.” So again, the question becomes, “When, exactly, is “then?”

To answer this question we must back up one small step.  Starting in John 8:31 we read, “To the Jews who believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teachings you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth…”

So then, believing Jesus will not set us free.  Believing in Jesus will not set us free.  Only being disciples (followers) of Jesus will set us free, and we become disciples of Jesus—Basic Christians—by holding to Jesus’ teachings.  So—tada!—“then” is when we actually do what Jesus tells us to do.  “Then” is when we become Christians who hold to the red words.

This is not wordplay.  This is not me trying to be cute or clever.  This is fundamental.  This is the key to freedom from bondage of every kind, including the bondage of racial dissonance:  In order to be set free we must hold to Jesus’ teachings.  We must be Basic Christians.

Now that we know when “then” is, we must concede the obvious:  Being set free is not a one-time event, it’s a process.  Just as some food and drinks are an acquired taste, freedom is an acquired condition.  The more of Jesus’ teachings (red words) we know, the more we have to hold onto, and the more we hold onto, the weaker the grip of bondage.  This is simple, spiritual physics.

When it comes to racial dissonance nobody, has all the answers because nobody has been set totally free by perfect cooperation with Jesus.  Nobody includes you, me, black leaders, white leaders, Caesar, everybody.

This chapter is the first of the Red Racial Dozen, one of the 12 chapters focused on nuggets straight from Jesus.  This chapter and its companions make up a sort of “starter set” to combat Red Word Deficiency and to be used against the darkness of RD.

At the back of this book you’ll find an additional 99 red-word nuggets without commentary.  Coupled with the Red Racial Dozen, that makes a total of 111 nuggets being served to you on a silver platter.  May I suggest that, whatever your age, that you make it your business to memorize, internalize and exercise one Red Nugget for every year you’ve been alive?  If you’re 30, have at least 30 nuggets locked and loaded.  If you’re 92, have 92 nuggets in the chamber.  If you’re 112, get into the Bible and find an extra nugget to go along with the 111 you already have!

Racial Dissonance is darkness, and darkness can’t be scooped away.  It can only be driven out by light.  Jesus’ teachings are light, and they are thus our only effective weapons against the darkness of RD.  Each time we learn and hold onto another of Jesus’ teachings on race, we acquire another “flashlight,” another weapon that can be trained upon another dark hiding place of racial dissonance.

Only in paradise will we be set completely free, because only there will we “know fully, even as we are fully known (1 Co. 13:12).”  Only there will we live in perfect cooperation with Jesus.  Only there will we know and be set free by the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

Prior to paradise the best we can do is get in the game.  Let’s begin to enjoy the process of being set free by degrees.  Let’s cash in on the excitement of acquiring light from Jesus and shining it into every crook and cranny of racial dissonance we can find!

Red Racial Nugget #1:  “If you hold to my teachings, then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (Jn. 8:31-32

Be street smart yet harmless.  Peace.

Tommy Libre

Thomas P. Scribbins, a.k.a. Tommy Libré, is an inspirational writer and businessman living in what Mayberry calls “Hotlanta” and Harlem calls “The A.T.L.” A former engineer and roofing contractor who has worked his way down the ladder, he is married to Kathy—his “Trophy Babe” for the past 37 years—and has three grown sons. Harlem Meets Mayberry will be published around Christmas by Xulon Press. After that, Tommy will turn some of his attention to his next book—“Code Red Christianity”—and some to his lifetime dream, which is to open a substance-conquest ministry called Ugly Orphans. At Ugly Orphans, the cool softball T-shirts will be just the beginning of the fun. WooHoo!