fault lines: The Social Justice Movement and Evangelicalism’s Looming Catastrophe
A Review by Jack Kettler
By Voddie T. Baucham Jr.
Salem Books (2021)
Voddie Baucham Bio:
Dr. Baucham holds degrees from Houston Baptist University (BA in Christianity/BA in Sociology), Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (M.Div.), Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (D.Min.), an honorary degree from Southern California Seminary (D.D.), and additional post-graduate study at the University of Oxford, England (Regent’s Park College).
Unfortunately, many Christians have been asleep and are just now waking up to the subject matter in this book and the gravity of the coming “earthquake” to use the author’s words what the author documents in this book will come as a shock to many. Becoming an ostrich or using a rip van winkle approach will be of no avail.
Abbreviations and important words encountered in the book:
Critical Social Justice (CSJ)
Critical Race Theory (CRT)
Ethnic Gnosticism (EG)
Important chapters documenting and exposing the antichristian religion and worldview promoted by (AR), (CSJ), (CRT), and (I):
Chapter Four – A New Religion
Chapter Five – A New Priesthood
Chapter Six – A New Canon
“That same passion has driven me to explore, analyze, and warn against yet another cult: the cult of antiracism.” (66)
“This new cult has created a new lexicon that has served as scaffolding to support what has become an entire body of divinity. In the same manner, this new body of divinity comes complete with its own cosmology (CT/CRT/I); original sin (racism); law (antiracism); gospel (racial reconciliation); martyrs (Saints Trayvon, Mike, George, Breonna, etc.); priests (oppressed minorities); means of atonement (reparations); new birth (wokeness); liturgy (lament); canon (CSJ social science); theologians (DiAngelo, Kendi, Brown, Crenshaw, MacIntosh, etc.); and catechism (“say their names”).” (67)
The author coined the term “Ethnic Gnosticism” and should be considered:
“Ethnic Gnosticism has three basic manifestations. First, it assumes there is a black perspective all black people share (unless they are broken). Of course, no one will admit this since it is obviously racist. However, this is exactly what Ethnic Gnosticism advocates. Second, it argues that white people’s only access to this perspective comes from elevating and heeding black voices. Finally, it essentially argues that narrative is an alternative, and ultimately superior, truth.” (93-94)
The cult of antiracism and Christ’s forgiveness cannot be harmonized:
“As we saw earlier, the term “antiracist” is loaded. It has a very specific meaning—part of which includes the idea of works-based righteousness. White people are not called to look to God for forgiveness. They are not told that Christ’s blood is sufficient. No, they are told that they must do the unending work of antiracism. And this work must be done regardless of their own actions since the issue at hand is a matter of communal, generational guilt based on ethnicity.” (129)
Similar to this is obtaining forgiveness in the environmental religion by sorting trash.
Baucham exposes the dangers of a “new canon” by the cult of antiracism and its extrabiblical literature and the attack on the sufficiency of Scripture.
“The idea that we need a new canon to be able to decipher what the Bible says, or more specifically, what it means regarding race, is quite troubling. This attack on the sufficiency of Scripture should serve as a call to arms.” (130)
The religion of antiracism is essentially the same as other cults. The Bible cannot be understood without the help of extrabiblical literature and interpreted by a new priesthood or special enlightened leaders.
“James Lindsay, one of the leading academic critics of the Critical Social Justice movement, offers a warning that the Church should heed is noted by the author:
For the foreseeable future, online outrage mobs are going to happen, and they will… eventually target your organization. Your only chance of resisting them is to maintain a positive, anti-fragile, team-oriented internal culture that acts as a counterbalance that gets you through the storm (think about it like boarding up your windows against a rhetorical hurricane). That requires making use of organizational leadership to cultivate the right internal values—broadly liberal and anti-victimhood—and to treat them like a condition of employment or participation in your organization. Then, you can stand against this obnoxious pressure and keep fulfilling your organization’s missions and purposes, as a team.” (204-205)
The author makes clear; there is nowhere to hide from the catastrophe that has been unleashed:
“It is important to note that, in the Critical Social Justice view, the hegemonic power in the United States of America must include, but not be limited to, all of the following: white, male, heterosexual,9 cisgendered,10 able-bodied,11 native-born, and Christian. That’s right: Christianity is part of the oppressive hegemony!12 And according to some, it is the most pernicious aspect of it; it has and maintains “privilege,” and contributes to oppression.” (207)
(CSJ), (CRT) and (I) have made inroads into many churches and seminaries under the guise of increasing racial sensitivity, awareness of past societal sins. If this was all that is happening, few could argue with it. However, as Dr. Baucham thoroughly documents, antiracism has all the hallmarks of a religious worldview. If seen in this light, the fundamental assumptions or presuppositions of the movement can be evaluated Biblically in terms of a Christian worldview apologetic. If this approach is taken, the trap of trying to escape the charge of being insensitive racially can be avoided.
Dr. Voddie Baucham is one of the contributors and signers of the Dallas Statement on Social Justice and the Gospel. This statement can be found online.
Dr. Baucham’s book is the gold standard on (CSJ), (CRT), (I) and should be widely read by Christians and politicians everywhere.
“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)
“To God, only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ forever. Amen.” (Romans 16:27) and “heirs according to the promise.” (Galatians 3:28-29)
Mr. Kettler has previously published articles in the Chalcedon Report and Contra Mundum. He and his wife Marea attend the Westminster, CO, RPCNA Church. Mr. Kettler is the author of the book defending the Reformed Faith against attacks, titled: The Religion That Started in a Hat. Available at: www.TheReligionThatStartedInAHat.com