Over the past few years, there has been quite the discussion over a seemingly innocuous phrase: Black Lives Matter. The discussion has generally hinged on how one takes the phrase. Is the speaker referring to the concept of the lives of
black men and women mattering or is he referring to the organization called Black Lives Matter? Because of the semantic overload the phrase has taken on, the conversation doesn’t usually get very far. One side will insist someone repeat the
phrase without allowing for distinction while the other side will insist that the
appropriate phrase is “All Lives Matter” – a response I don’t find particularly
helpful in and of itself. This isn’t because I find it to be untrue - It is true. But
saying “All Lives Matter” seems to come across more as a change of subject rather
than addressing the most overlooked but most important aspect of the discussion.
There’s part of this phrase that is generally taken for granted but needs to be
addressed: Matter. You see, except for the rare person walking around in a funny-
looking white hood, everyone seems to accept the proposition that black lives do
indeed matter – and I’m in the group that accepts the proposition for those
wondering. However, the question no one seems to be asking is a seemingly
obvious one: why? Why do black lives matter? In fact, why do any lives matter?
The problem here is simple: The presuppositions our culture has adopted
have cut this proposition off at the knees. Actually, that’s a bit too generous of a
metaphor. It’s more accurate to say our culture has cut it off at the knees, doused it
in gasoline, and lit it on fire. But perhaps the metaphor didn’t need to be quite so
Regardless, why do I say our cultural presuppositions undermine the phrase
“Black Lives Matter”? The reason is because our culture has removed any grounding and foundation for the notion of anything mattering at all. Our society has been running on the fumes of a Christian foundation while wholly rejecting the framing that got us to where we are. We’re keeping the more culturally palatable things we like from the Christian worldview while throwing away the part of the worldview that made the palatable things possible. This is the major flaw in any movement that wants to argue for their cause on the basis of something having
worth or value. While everyone may accept the claims as true because they feel
good about them, your claims need to have a reason and grounding. From a
Christian perspective, meaning is given by God. My life has meaning because God
has given it meaning, purpose, and worth. But our culture has wholly rejected the
Biblical God. Sure, our politicians may throw out a religious platitude every now
and then, but even they operate with a functionally atheist worldview. So, if you
reject the God who provides meaning and makes sense of the worth we seem to
know exists, how can you make any claim of worth at all?
Yes, I am asserting that meaning, worth, and purpose in life are simply
subjective preferences when you remove the Christian worldview. “But” you might
say, “everyone believes in the inherent worth of human life.” Actually, that simply
isn’t true. Remember the guys running around in their mom’s white bathrobe and a
white traffic cone on their head? They don’t seem to believe that ALL human life
has worth – only some of it if any. And what about the most overused example in
the history of mankind: Hitler. If he believed all humans had inherent worth and
dignity, you could have fooled me. You don’t tend to snuff out millions of
innocent lives that you see as valuable.
So, here’s the question: what is your argument against the guy who dresses
like a bad Halloween ghost? When someone disagrees with your value assessment,
what standard do you appeal to? “I feel like what they’re doing is wrong” you say.
What do they care about that? “Well, everyone agrees with me” you might say.
But, on its face this is clearly not true because of the previously mentioned pointy-
hooded cosplayer. He doesn’t agree with you. What standard do you use to attempt
to change his mind? Not only that, but since when has right and wrong been
determined by majority opinion. The majority opinion has been responsible for
many of the greatest atrocities in human history. “Well, it’s the law” you may say.
Well, first of all, it isn’t actually illegal to not find value in human life. But, even if
it were, do you really want to hang your morality hat on governmental approval?
You know that slavery was once legal, correct? “But, it’s about what’s best for the
species” you say exasperatedly. Ok, so what are you going to say to the guy who
doesn’t care about the human race? “My behavior and beliefs aren’t good for
human flourishing. So what?” he will ask. And if that’s a devastating critique of
your belief system, you may want to work through your worldview more
If life is nothing but a series of random scientific accidents with no moral
agent giving purpose and value, we are ultimately valueless beings – black, white,
purple, or orange. Ironically, if they were consistent with their worldview, many
who are out in the streets protesting for BLM would have to admit that black lives
really don’t matter in any real sense. It’s ultimately nothing more than a subjective
preference. However, consistency isn’t really a thing our culture values very highly
So, what then of our proposition? Do black lives actually matter? Do any
lives matter? As a Christian, the answer here is really easy: Of course, black lives
matter. Black people, along with every other ethnicity in the human race, are
created purposefully by almighty God in His own image. This God strictly
prohibited the mistreatment of your fellow man. He constantly reaffirms the value
of human life throughout Scripture. Ultimately, He gave the greatest affirmation of
human value in His sight when He hung on a cross as a sacrifice for the sins of
men of every ethnicity. He also commanded that the gospel of forgiveness through
Christ be preached to “πάντα τὰ ἔθνη (panta ta ethne)” – every people group. He
is the God who declares that men from every tribe, tongue, nation, and people have
received this great mercy and grace.
Do black lives matter to God? Of course, they do. God has granted them
inherent value by creating them in His very image. With God, I have a foundation
to actually say black lives matter.
“Ok, then what’s the big deal?” you might ask. “After all, we still have the
same conclusion so it doesn’t matter, right?” Quite the contrary actually. So far,
we’ve established that black lives only matter because God has made it so. But
here’s the rub: if you want the God who gives you a basis to say that black lives
matter, you have to take the rest of God that comes with it – it’s a package deal.
You don’t get to just take the results of the Christian worldview without having the
Christian God. As we’ve seen in American society, when you get rid of the
foundational belief in God, the rest of the Christian virtues start melting away too.
This is where we get to the uncomfortable part for many. If God is the
grounding for the truth behind a claim like “Black Lives Matter,” then those
promoting such a notion must be subject to what God requires of them. “That isn’t
a problem” you might say. “They’re fighting for justice and God likes justice.
We’re all good here.” Well, not quite. While God certainly is the just judge of all
the earth who will do right, He actually has a few more rules than that.
This is where we must bring the BLM organization back into the discussion.
On the official BLM website, there used to be quite a bit under “what we believe”
that is no longer there. As a matter of fact, the entire “what we believe” section has
been removed. Luckily, I happen to have a copy of the manifesto. Would you like
to know the agenda of this organization? Here’s an excerpt: “We are self-reflexive
and do the work required to dismantle cisgender privilege and uplift Black trans
folk, especially Black trans women who continue to be disproportionately
impacted by trans-antagonistic violence”
Here’s another one: “We foster a queer-affirming network. When we gather,
we do so with the intention of freeing ourselves from the tight grip of
heteronormative thinking, or rather, the belief that all in the world are heterosexual
(unless s/he or they disclose otherwise)”
How about one more: “We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family
structure requirement by supporting each other as extended families and ‘villages’
that collectively care for one another, especially our children, to the degree that
mothers, parents, and children are comfortable.”
The promotion of transgenderism, homosexuality, and breaking up the
nuclear family are explicit values and goals of the BLM organization. I grant that
this isn’t anything new for American organizations. There has been a large
incentive for businesses to completely capitulate on these issues for quite a while
now. However, the main idea behind the BLM organization is the name itself:
Black Lives Matter. As we already established, this is not true unless you have the
God of the Bible. But what does this God have to say about the rest of this agenda?
Concerning transgenderism: God made it clear that He is the one who forms
a person in their mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13-14) – which just so happens to be
where your biological sex is determined. To suggest you are in the wrong body is
to suggest that the God who is the grounding for all reality made a mistake. The
transgender movement is a direct assault on God’s right to be sovereign. If you
believe black lives matter and want to live consistently with that belief, you must
reject the transgender movement.
Concerning homosexuality: God defined the parameters of human sexual
expression. God didn’t just say that homosexual acts were sinful, He said that any
sexual acts outside of the marriage between a man and a woman are sinful. God,
consistently throughout the Old and New testaments, declares that homosexuality
is a sin. The homosexual movement is a direct assault on God’s right to define the
parameters of the human sexuality He designed and created. If you believe black
lives matter and want to live consistently with that belief, you must reject the
Concerning the family: God clearly defined His design for the family. He
wasn’t open to the idea of a village raising your kids. In fact, He didn’t even
command for your church to raise your kids. Children are very specifically to be
raised and instructed by their parents: father and mother. In other words: it isn’t the
“Western-prescribed nuclear family” as much as it’s the “God-commanded nuclear
family.” This means the near 70% fatherless rate in the black population is a grave
evil that must be addressed. Yet the BLM organization seems to like that number.
They may even want it to be higher. “But it’s high across ethnicities” you say. Yes,
but we’re not talking about all lives, we’re talking about black lives, right? I was
told this is how the rules work. Either way, it’s quite clear that the sky-high
fatherless rate across America is a giant problem. It’s an assault on God’s right to
define what the family that He created is and should be. If you believe black lives
matter and want to live consistently with that belief, you must reject the erosion of
the nuclear family.
All this is not even to mention God’s commands concerning rioting, looting,
despising your neighbor for their wealth, despising your neighbor because of their
ethnicity, and much, much more. When people ask if you support “Black Lives
Matter,” the answer should be something like “Yes, I think all black lives matter.
That’s why I so strongly oppose the BLM organization. They’re living
inconsistently with their profession.”