In his autobiography, Mahatma Gandhi speaks about his fascination with the teachings of Jesus Christ while in college. During this time, India was under a caste system. Meaning, whatever social class you were born in, whether rich or poor, you stayed in. The system separated people and locked them into their status. But when he heard the teachings of Jesus, he thought that Christianity could be the answer to India's caste system.
He made his way to a Christian church to hear more about the teachings of Jesus. But when he walked into the church, an usher said, “You can’t worship here. You need to go worship with your own kind.” Gandhi walked out and never attended another Christian church. He figured if there is a caste system within Christianity, then he didn’t want to become a Christian.
At the heart of that story is the sin of elitism. Elitism is an attitude of superiority that lifts some people up while demeaning others. It is a mindset that uses illegitimate criteria by which to judge people. It judges people based on false conclusions and ungodly perspectives, making some superior, while treating others as inferior. It makes illegitimate distinctions among people based on race, class or culture. Elitism will always kill unity within the body of Christ. Instead, we must get rid of elitism through love. We must love others, no matter their race, culture or class, and we must consider their needs as more important than our own.
What ways can you tangibly love people who are different from you?
“In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.”
I John 4:10-11 NKJV