Sundays’ Message on MLK Day Revisited

I have received a lot of good feedback from the sermon God’s Plan For Racial Unity that I preached in recognition of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. As I stated in the sermon, we don’t want to use a church service to glorify a man.  However, Dr. King personifies million of people in America who decided that it was time to change, thus birthing the American Civil Rights Movement. This movement was based off non-violent protest.  This movement was birthed out of churches and by the involvement of ministers.  As I mentioned in the sermon, 24 ministers in Montgomery, Alabama, were arrested in 1956 during a non-violent protest. 1

In my sermon I believe I mentioned that Dr. King was a Harvard graduate.  That is incorrect.  He actually graduated from Morehouse College (1948), Crozer Theological Seminary (Chester, Pennsylvania, 1951) and a Ph.D in Systematic Theology from Boston University (1955). 2

At the conclusion of my sermon, I summarized King’s conclusion on the nature of sin in relationship to his liberal theology. Here is the actual quote that I find remarkably clear:

It was mainly the liberal doctrine of man that I began to question.  The more I observed the tragedies of history and man’s shameful inclination to choose the low road, the more I came to see the depths and strength of sin . . .  The more I thought about human nature the more I saw how our tragic inclination for sin causes us to use our minds to rationalize our actions. 3


1  King, Martin Luther, and James Melvin Washington. I Have a Dream : Writings and Speeches That Changed the World. 1st ed. [San Francisco]: HarperSanFrancisco, 1992, 11 .
2 King and Washington, xxiii and xxiv.
3 King and Washington, 56.

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