Vice News Panel On Being Asian in America, Bigotry Defined, and Wild Stories in Genesis

Vice News Panel On Being Asian in America, Bigotry Defined, and Wild Stories in Genesis The Garrett Ashley Mullet Show

I really am enjoying my current read-through of the Bible. At a chapter per day, starting in Genesis, many details are standing out to me in new ways now, compared with the last time, in my teenage years, nearly twenty years ago, before so much life experience, studying history, and following the news cycle.

Take for instance what Joseph says to his brothers, when they come begging for grain during the famine, but don’t yet recognize him, and he is testing them:

He said to them, “No, it is the nakedness of the land that you have come to see.” And they said, “We, your servants, are twelve brothers, the sons of one man in the land of Canaan, and behold, the youngest is this day with our father, and one is no more.”

– Genesis 42:12-13 (ESV)

That is, Joseph accuses his brothers of being spies, and engaging in a covert espionage mission, to see whether Egypt is vulnerable to invasion. Presumably Joseph doesn’t really believe what he’s suggesting, but levels the charge to frighten the kin who hated him and sold him into slavery in the first place. And if that was the intent, the desired effect was achieved.

But now consider Proverbs 25:2.

“It is the glory of God to conceal things, but the glory of kings is to search things out.”

Now ponder with me the question of what the story of Joseph and his brothers here can teach us about human nature, for instance, that would be helpful for assessing the Chinese spy balloon business, or Vice News asking Asian Americans whether America is racist.

For starters, we should realize that sometimes insincere accusations and questions are issued and posed so as to catch others off-balance, test them, or neutralize them.

From the very pious student of Genesis in particular, or God’s Word generally, I may hear that we need to stay focused on theology, and contemplating the character of our Creator. But to anyone who would say such things, I will counter that the Bible is not only profitable for knowing God, but is also given to us for studying the heart of man, to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves, just as Jesus commanded us to.

Thus we become wiser in our anthropology, as well as our theology. Knowing our own hearts better, as well as the hearts of those in our context, both friends and enemies, we can understand ancient and medieval history better, as well as the freshest kind of history, that modern kind which is being written every day, and shows up in news media headlines and app alerts before its final form is inserted into textbooks.

That includes the back and forth between the likes of Tulsi Gabbard and Mitt Romney. When we are no longer naïve, we can appreciate the practical utility, particularly in the view of savvy players, of disingenuous accusations of treason, for nothing more than talking publicly about rumored ulterior motives which foreign powers might have for military incursions in neighboring countries, including CIA-ran bio labs in Ukraine, which may or may not be part of Russia’s reason for invading that country.

And by the way, let’s do consider the definition of bigot, not just the way it’s typically used, or who is called this thing, and by whom. Realize that bigotry has everything to do with hateful forgone conclusions and prejudice – that is, prejudging – based on one’s own presuppositions before entering into a conversation, or observing externalities.

When we realize this is what bigotry is, and therefore what a bigot is – someone marked by bigotry, or prejudice – then also we must come back to what we are supposed to do instead of judging by appearances, according to Christ.

“Judge with right judgment,” he said. And so we should.

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