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Creating Space for Multicultural Ministry

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Let’s take a voyage into the concept of space and explore this biblical, statistically stringent yet relevant topic of the Multicultural Ministry. In doing so, we’d like to intentionally allegorize the mission of the Starship Enterprise in relation to the Great Commission (Matt. 28:19) given to us by Jesus Christ.

Similarities between the Great Commission and the Starship Enterprise’s SPACE Mission:

In both there is a going out or a voyage – we must leave our comfort zone in order to effectively complete our mission. Jesus desired his disciples to reach all nations; the enterprise was to seek out new life and new civilizations. It is of utmost importance for us to reach people groups of different cultures, ethnicities, and nationalities. Jesus said, “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age (Matt. 28:20).” – The starship Enterprise declared, “to boldly go where no man has gone before.”

One day when Jesus was explaining how hard it is for the rich to enter the Kingdom of Heaven He likened it to a camel going through the eye of a needle. The scriptures say, When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and asked, “Who then can be saved? Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible. (Matt. 19:25-26)”

Maybe this is our dilemma, we’ve tried to solve a spiritual issue through feeble attempts and manmade mechanisms.

This is a bold yet spiritually accurate statement. Racism, classism, sexism, or whatever-ism that has been brought about by the fall of humanity since Genesis 3 is, at its core, sin.

These spiritual issues penetrate deep into the heart and soul of humanity. Star Trek took some big risks by including racial minorities in the cast in such prominent roles. The series also tiptoed around offending the NBC sponsors and censors. With the potential of a backlash from viewers in the Southern United States — the hotbed of racism in the 1960s — Star Trek presented a future of racial equality. By doing so, Star Trek helped advance the cause of civil rights in 1960s America.

If Star Trek took such a big risk by casting people of different ethnic backgrounds back then, our churches and ministries should take that same stance today. If we truly desire to reflect a biblical model of Multicultural Ministry, as the Apostle Paul declared we must, “…become all things to all people so that by all possible means we (emphasis added) might save some (1 Cor. 9:22). This includes empowering leaders of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds than the majority of our congregations. So, we can extend our reach into each and every community as we minister for the sake of the gospel, so that we may share in its blessings.

Multicultural leadership is a must in the politically and racially charged cultural context in our parishes today. It’s not popular, you definitely won’t please all people in doing so, but it’s biblical; and leaders in God’s church have a responsibility to do what’s best with what and who He brought through their ministries.

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