“The Help” is undoubtedly a fascinating and excellent movie based on one of the darkest periods of this nation’s recent past. Yet if the only thing we take from it is how far we’ve come from those days of racial prejudice and how much better off we are than those Southern women with the effrontery to treat others with disdain, then it’s time to give ourselves another think.
Peter didn’t think twice about shucking off his new religion and returning to the old when the Judaizers showed up. Instead of appearing to be on the “outside,” he coddled to the circumcision party, giving offense to the Gospel. There is prejudice. It was born of sinful pride, and we each have more than enough of that to go around ourselves.
Nope. We aren’t like those women in that movie. Not us at all. And yet when was the last time we scrambled to be first in line, clawed to be first at the table, shouted to be first to make a point? When was the last time we were frustrated when the other person was “too stubborn” to hear what we had to say, while all along, we, of course, were spoke with perfect clarity and sense?
Prejudice isn’t a matter of degree; it’s a state of fact. We commit prejudice because we cannot fear, love or trust in God above all things. Therefore, we break the Eighth Commandment against others, daily and much; we pre-judge them based on our own criteria of the way things ought to be. It’s hardwired into us. It’s called original sin from which we cannot free ourselves. We may struggle against it, but we lose. Even our covetousness simply hides our prejudices. We want more so we won’t be like them; we desire less so we can appear to be more like these. Who can free us from this body of death? Thanks be to Christ Jesus that He already has!