With the recent 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s death, many evangelical Christians have been celebrating his life. The Gospel Coalition hosted the MLK50: Gospel Reflections from the Mountaintop conference, lauding his life and work, and calling on the church to reflect on racial unity then and now.
Martin Luther King Jr’s theology was very liberal. In papers he wrote during his time at Crozer Theological Seminary he made his views clear. He said that the evidence for the Virgin Birth is “is too shallow to convince any objective thinker.” He stripped the doctrines of the divine sonship of Christ, the virgin birth and bodily resurrection of all literal meaning, saying, “we [could] argue with all degrees of logic that these doctrines are historically and [philosophically] untenable.” In another paper he wrote:
[A] supernatural plan of salvation, the Trinity, the substitutionary theory of the atonement, and the second coming of Christ are all quite prominent in fundamentalist thinking. Such are the views of the fundamentalist and they reveal that he is oppose[d] to theological adaption to social and cultural change. … Amid change all around he is willing to preserve certain ancient ideas even though they are contrary to science.
He did not believe these doctrines even though the Bible taught them. Instead he rejected them as superstition because they did not fit his notions of modern science. The doctrines he was rejecting are fundamental to Biblical Christianity.
After graduating from college, we do not see a radical change in King’s theology, or a repudiation of his former unorthodox views. Although he did not explicitly preach these liberal beliefs, his messages were still consistent with them. His message would fall under the banner of black liberation theology – he preached a form of Christianity that was reworked to apply to physical freedom of the slaves. The central theme of his Christianity was not Jesus Christ, the son of God coming to earth, it was the deliverance of the Israel from their slavery in Egypt. In his famous “mountaintop” speech, when he was listing the seminal events of history, he mentioned the Exodus, not Christ’s death and resurrection.
Liberation theology is a secularization of Christianity, using the Bible as a framework to speak to people’s longing for freedom. It is an abandonment of the message of the Bible. Instead of applying the full breath of scriptural to the hearers, it constructs a new theology to appeal to your worldly needs. This fits perfect with King’s denial of fundamental beliefs in the supernatural events scripture records. He didn’t need to believe them if he was just repurposing a few events from scripture to construct his own story of the world.
There is substantial evidence that Martin Luther King Jr.’s private life and character was unworthy of a minister of the Gospel, or even of a Christian. The FBI monitored him for many years, wrongly and unconstitutionally using their surveillance powers to get damaging information to discredit him for political purposes. This monitoring included following him on his travels around the country and placing recording devices in his hotel rooms. The FBI claimed to have evidence, both anecdotal and on audio recording of King committing adulteries on many occasions. They even went to the point of sending him an anonymous letter threatening him with the release of this information and encouraging him to commit suicide. The FBI records on King will remain sealed until at least 2027.
We do not have to take the word of the FBI to believe that MLK was not a man who lived a righteous life. Dr. Ralph Abernathy, a close friend of King’s, admitted as much in his book, And the Walls Came Tumbling Down. He wrote that even the night before his assassination, King had committed adultery with multiple women. The consensus among historians is that Martin Luther King Jr. was repeatedly unfaithful to his wife.
It is right to commend and remember King for what he got right, including the equality of all nationalities and non violent protests against injustice. But we must not ignore his failings. As with any other historical figure, we must be honest about King, complementing and emulating what he did well, and condemning him where he was wrong. Christians must not forget, in their rush to crown him their hero, that he lived a wicked life and denied the very basics of orthodox Christianity. It is deceptive and wrong for evangelical Christians to claim King as a brother in Christ, when all the evidence suggests that he was not.
Well, if he did not accept the divinity of Christ nor accepted Him as His savior, then MLK would probably be experiencing an eternal separation from God in a place called Hell.
Yes sir Mr Benjamin u are correct…..
you idiot there is no heaven or hell it’s all here and now the bible is a lie all made up stories theres facts if you want the truth let’s start with there are no grave sights for ANYONE in thee bible no MOSES no SAMPSON no DAVIV OR GOLIATH no NOAH no ADAM OR EVE no JOHN THE BAPTIST no DECIPLES no MARY OR JOSEPH no JESUS no grave sights for anybody in the bible it’s all a lie do some research for yourself
You’re only fulfilling what the Scriptures says. “The fool has said in his heart that there is no God.”
How do you know? Are you omnipotent?
How do you know there is not a God? Are you omnipotent?
God gave us who are now Christians faith, “not of our own selves it is the gift of God.”
I do not take credit for knowing God. He allows us to know.
You do not have to be an expert (like a scientist, a preacher, a pope, or king) to know
if God exists or not. If you did not have any of the 5 senses, God would still let that
person know Him if they wanted. You don’t have to be an adult. You can be a kid and your parents not Christians and you never meet another Christian and still come to Christ.
The Truth is not hidden. People who live pre-historic style in the jungle are just as morally capable of determining right and wrong as any so-called civilized society.
The same goes for knowing Jesus.
God is real “democratic” that way.
You know the only thing that exceeds your ignorance is your hubris.it’s going to be a terrible surprise for you to wake up after you’ve crossed over that threshold of death and to realize that you’re in hell. So you can sit there with your little attitude about there’s no God the Bible says a fool has said it is hard there’s no God but of course you don’t believe the Bible so you wouldn’t believe that of course. But you can’t look at nature and not believe there’s a God? You’re just a self-deceived individual who thinks he can spout a few words on the internet and people go look how wise and intellectual he is so cosmopolitan. Oh you’re a sinner worse than that you’re an idiot that would mean you’re ignorant. So you just keep spouting off when you look at them all powerful God you will then your knee and your mouth will confess.
You know the only thing that exceeds your ignorance is your hubris.it’s going to be a terrible surprise for you to wake up after you’ve crossed over that threshold of death and to realize that you’re in hell. So you can sit there with your little attitude about there’s no God the Bible says a fool has said it is hard there’s no God but of course you don’t believe the Bible so you wouldn’t believe that of course. But you can’t look at nature and not believe there’s a God? You’re just a self-deceived individual who thinks he can spout a few words on the internet and people go look how wise and intellectual he is so cosmopolitan. Oh you’re a sinner worse than that you’re an idiot that would mean you’re ignorant. So you just keep spouting off when you look at them all powerful God you will then your knee and your mouth will confess. And by the way while I’m having it there’s more historical facts of Jesus of Nazareth through the historians not Christian scholars historians like Josephus and we have on George Washington. but maybe you don’t believe George Washington was real either? By your statement I would say you didn’t.🤯🤯🤯🤯
Your ungodliness is evident from the first words out of your mouth. You step in calling people insulting names. Yet we are supposed to believe you over the Holy Bible that was penned by godly men who died for their faith. Men who were eyewitnesses of the truth that they wrote about. For me, your surly, obnoxious attitude makes me certain there is a hell and that you will likely spend all eternity there. Of course this need not be the case if you repent of your sins and trust Christ.
BTW, it doesn’t necessarily affect your believability, but if you want your troll-ish ranting views to be taken more seriously you might want to work on your spelling and grammar. First off, it is gravesites not “grave sights”. And really, what is your point? Do you seriously believe that we should know where the graves of Adam and Eve are? Are you an archeological expert on ancient burial practices? Obviously not. Many people believe they know where the empty tomb of Jesus is located and reportedly the tomb of Mary is in Ephesus. The tomb of Christ’s disciple (not DECIPLE) Thomas is in Chennai, India. But what does it matter where their body was buried? Their spirit and soul is in heaven. Instead of attacking the Bible, I would suggest you read it and ask God to help you understand it.
Even Atheist Historians will tell you that Jesus Christ did in fact exist in the region and time period he was said to live in in The Bible. The difference is whether you believe He is the Son of God and our Lord and Savior or not. There is literally no debating whether Jesus Christ of The Bible existed or not. Christ’s existence has been proven.
There is evidence for the existence of God, the work of Jesus, and the beliefs of the early church, for anyone who is searching. Why, there’s even evidence for the benefit of punctuation!
Are you sure beyond measure of doubt that such a place called hell exists. Yes the Bible may say so but are these really God’s own words or men’s interpretation of God?
The existence of hell is clear from the words of Jesus concerning the narrow path. Matthew 7:13-14 ” Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”
The reference to destruction is talking about spiritual destruction (eternal spiritual death) in hell while the narrow gate that leads to life is referring to eternal life in heaven.
If you do a study with an exhaustive concordance on the word hell, it is mentioned 54 times in the King James Version. Every word in the Bible is inspired by God. It is His word, not man’s. If you look at the original texts, you will find a similar number of times that hell is mentioned.
“Beyond measure of doubt” is a pretty low bar. My answer is yes. This is not because I have been there, but then again you don’t have to experience something to be able to say something about it. You only need deducible evidence. The Bible has credibility not simply because it says something is true or false but because it stands up to literary criticism. It also gains credibility by it’s statements being externally verifiable. This happens all the time in archaeology, literary history and natural sciences.
You don’t need to see hell or go there to know it’s real any more than you need to taste poop to know it’s a bad idea to eat it.
Simple people … The Europeans STOLE / TWISTED / CREATED the stories in that FICTION BOOK called the BIBLE 2 control the masses!!!
Making assertions with no evidence isn’t logical. We have thousands of manuscripts to refer to and many can be dated to very specific times. The Isaiah scroll is such great proof of the validity of the Bible. He prophesied that in Isaiah 53 of Jesus’s suffering on the cross to take away sins (Psalm 22 also prophesied this as well as others). That Isaiah scroll was dated (even by secular atheist scholars) to be in the 2nd century BC. So roughly 200 years or so before Jesus was crucified that particular scroll was written by a scribe who had another earlier version. I guess those people you say twisted stories to control the masses had a time machine, traveled back and edited that scroll. (Im not trying to be rude, just showing you the error in this thought).
I would encourage you to do some research on how the Bible came to be. Also, we have thousands copies of manuscripts written over hundreds of years dating back to the first century AD. You can find many online as there is a big project going on by Dan Wallace (a Greek NT scholar) to make photo copies of all the manuscripts. This way when the claim that Scripture has become corrupt over the course of many years, it can easily be proven that’s not the case. Are there some textual variants? Sure, but we have so many copies and many early ones and can easily see if someone added something to it. Most variations are very minor and do not chnage the meaning of the text whatsoever. If you were to study this, you would come to the conclusion that the Bible is accurate. It has even lead to thousands of archaeological digs that uncovered ancient findings -too many to put in this message!
For some reason, there is an emerging false accusation that Jesus never existed. Its crazy that many could be that ignorant. I am not sure if thats what you think. Just in case, look at a few Roman historians from the 1st century, such as Josephus and Cornelius Tacitus. For one thing, these are not Christians so there is no bias. But also these guys record Jesus being some sort of sorcerer which tells me they saw miracles they can’t explain. They also recorded Jesus being crucified and guess what else? The tomb was empty! They make the assertion (with no facts) that disciples must have stolen the body. In the Bible many witnesses saw Christ after he was resurrected. So, in history, we know Jesus walked on this earth, he was crucified as the Bible says and as the bible accurately predicted many times over the course of thousands of years in the Old testament. My question to you is ‘WHY?’ Many atheists or other religions know these facts I have given you as they dug deeper and saw that secular foes of Jesus recorded these things. Many times their statements are derogatory which shows no bias on the Christian faith, they were against it. These atheists often say “Well Jesus was just a cult leader.” I would love to know any man who could withstand just 10% of the pain he experienced without ever recanting, and never telling them to stop. “Like a lamb led to the slaughter he never opened His mouth.”
Now, many times I find that objections are based on a false idea of what Christians believe. They think we go to church and try to be good so that we can avoid Hell and obtain God’s favor so we can go to Heaven. This faith is not moralism. Everyone has morals, but we break them all the time. Morals is another evidence of God as even the Bible affirms The Law is written on every man’s heart.
So what do we believe as Christians? We believe we are a weak people, full of sin, guilty before a Holy Holy Holy God, and His righteous wrath for our wickedness must be satisfied because God is not like a worldly judge who may sweep things under the rug sometimes. God is a perfect Judge and everyone we have wronged including God Himself has accumulated a debt we cannot pay. Its funny how everyone screams “Justice for this and justice for that”, but we never say “Enact Justice on me for my crimes”. Its because we know deep down we are hypocrites and we know we have racked up debt that we cannot undo. But God’s plan to save sinners was that He would come in the flesh (as a man) in such a humble way. He wasn’t the rich king on a Chariot coming to conquer the world as many think of a king in this world. He came as a baby born from a virgin, he grew up and not once sinned although He was tempted in every way we are and then some. He claimed to be God and proved it by miracles that even the unbelieving secular Roman historians cant explain away. He also made the bold statement that He can forgive sins. They took Jesus by night but He knew they were coming. People like me and you mocked Him, spit on him, ripped his beard out, humiliated him by stripping his clothes off, crowned him with painful thorns to mock his kingship, whipped him to the point of exposing His ribs, never begging for His life. Then the nailed him to the cross among other law breakers as if he was guilty of sin. An innocent man, and perfect Holy God, suffering unimaginably. Some think this is the worst part, and although that is intense physical pain, that wasn’t the worst part. He cries out to His Father in heaven, who for all eternity He as had perfect unity with, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” I can’t understand what Jesus was experiencing spiritually as he bore the sins of many and taking the punishment I deserve on Himself. Jesus felt the righteous wrath of God. Jesus laid down His life for sinners in order to save them. He atoned for every sinner who will has turned to him by faith and who will turn to Him by faith. This is called grace. We deserve wrath for our sins. The second we think we are pretty good, the more we need to focus on the holiness of God. We will always see we are a wretch when compared to God. So all though we deserve wrath, Jesus who was a perfect sacrifice in every way stepped in the place of sinners who will repent and took that wrath. It the most selfless act and for centuries Christians have given up their own lives to share this Good News (Gospel) with the world. Now when I sin, its a burden and I hate it because he has changed my heart with his Gospel by the power of His Spirit. As Spurgeon once said “How can I continue to do the very thing that killed my best friend.” Although there is still sin that I fight to kill, I and other believers are under grace and will never experience the wrath of God. Grace is a gift. Salvation is a gift of God. This is why Christians worship Jesus. He is God and what a gift He has given, and what a cost He paid. He took our sins on Himself and gave us His righteousness. We did nothing to earn it or deserve it. You can receive this gift just by faith. Think of faith as confidence (con fide in the latin means “with faith”). Its not just about believing if its true, its about having confidence in his finished work on the cross, and his resurrection. I pray that if you find yourself on your knees one day crushed by your own sins, you will remember the Good News of Jesus Christ and will place your faith in him and that you will find peace unimaginable, clarity in this fallen world, and joy in the Lord that is unlike any fleeting pleasure the world could offer. This joy and love towards God will produce obedience to the point you would rather die than to recant. Paul and Peter both died for this message under Nero’s reign. As they are in the presence of the Lord now and forever, I can assure you they do not regret giving their lives. Turn to Christ today and live.
You have your head on backwards. Totalitarian governments have always opposed the free publication of the Bible because it teaches there is a God and that mere human government is not the highest authority. That our human rights come from our Creator and not from the government. The gospel of Jesus Christ is a liberating truth. It is founded on the eyewitness testimony of men who would rather die than deny it. Jewish men, BTW, not Europeans.
Opiods and atheism are the religion of the duped proletariat
That’s not necessarily how it works. Lets use Hitler as an example. Hitler did some very bad things, like mass genocide, but that doesn’t mean he was send to hell. No one can know where someone goes in the afterlife (heaven, hell, or purgatory) because it is completely determined between God and the person. Before Hitler took his life out of fear, he could have confessed to God that he was truly sorry for the actions that he did. Although very unlikely, it could have happened. So, taking that into consideration, MLK, being as persistent as he was with racial segregation and for the good of all people, could have had a change in heart before he was assassinated. Nobody will everrrr knowwwww
A Christian would never take their life. If you truly believe that you are a child of God and you claim to love God and understand the purpose of life, suicide would not be a consideration. Yes, we don’t know the end of Hitler’s life, but we do know that suicide does not come from the Spirit of God. As with MLK, regardless of the “good” he did in his life (and I believe he was an amazing civil rights leader), that has nothing to do with whether he was a true believer of Christ. It’s not based on what we do, rather it’s solely based on grace through faith (Ephesians 2:8-9).
The question to keep in mind is, if you died today how certain are you that you would go to heaven? And why?
Probably? Seriously no he will experience separation from God! End of that story. if you take away the Virgin birth of Christ he’s just another man that happened to decide he was going to die for a bunch of people he didn’t know. No he was fully God he was born of a virgin and he brought salvation to sinners. Whether Martin Luther King liked it or not I could care less. The Bible calls these people heretics they exactly what they are black liberation theology is nothing but a biggest way of saying oh look at me I’m so pious. It’s Pharisees with darker skin. The same things and beliefs that are held by Louis Farrakhan Jeremiah wright and Raphael Warnock. So there’s no baby with God either you believe or you don’t believe.
MLK was a follower of Jesus Christ.
He lived it
He breathed it
He died for it.
No man has greater love than to lay down his life for his friends . . .
How can you be so blind?
May God open your eyes.
Hell will be populated with people who had right doctrine but never did a thing with it.
Colin, works cannot save you at all my guy. I don’t know where you got that idea from, or if you have even read a single chapter of the bible, but what you are implying right now is that because MLK did good deeds that means he will go to heaven. That is damnable doctrine.
MLK lived, breathed and died for racial equality and he should not have been assassinated for it. He should be honored for his work in that area. That said, his theology made it clear that he rejected the Jesus clearly portrayed in the Bible and the nature of salvation as being by faith and not by works. He was not a Christian because he called himself one. That’s not how it works.
my Goodness. how dare you condemn a man who died for the cause of love justice peace and freedom. yes he was wrong to sleep around, and that only puts him in the category of most men.
he was one of the greatest huemans who ever lived and he was Christlike unlike most people. If Jesus came around you would condemn him too.
whatever happened to judge not.
this kind of comment I find sickening. Dr King died for love equality justice peace and freedom. yeah he was wrong to sleep around and that only makes him like most men…
whatever happened to judge not. if Jesus were around you would condemn him too.
he was far more Christlike than u will ever be.
stop the bs please. he was a true Christian unlike most of you who just sit in judgement and don’t help no one.
Excellent exposition of the unvarnished truth. Thank you.
Sadly, this author only found what he was looking for because it took me only minutes to research evidence of what kind of faith Martin Luther King, Jr. had.
I find that if many of us were judged by our childhood and early life we would also be found lacking in faith in word and in deed, but it is how we finish that should more accurately define us. In that context I don’t doubt that MLK Jr. was a follower of Christ in word and in deed. When he was older, although like all of us imperfect, he spoke of his hope being in eternity and in the Lord. He famously said:
“Well, I don’t know what will happen now. We’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn’t matter with me now, because I’ve been to the mountaintop. And I don’t mind. Like anybody, I would like to live – a long life; longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over. And I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land. So I’m happy, tonight. I’m not worried about anything. I’m not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.”
MLK Jr.’s submission was to God’s will and his faith was clearly in the Lord.
Before today I had never heard that MLK Jr. wasn’t a Christian, although I heard of his infidelity towards his wife. I also recognize that even great men of God, such as David, failed in this way to be Godly. Even so, he was called a man after God’s own heart, David being a murderer and adulterer. Of course it’s because he repented before the Lord.
God tells us that man looks at the outward but He looks at our hearts. Jesus says that if we confess Him before men He will confess us before His Father. Listen the video below and judge for yourself.
In the audio to the following video MLK Jr.’s faith was in the Lord and in eternity. He clearly proclaims how he returned to the teaching of his father in the following video and talks about the Lord helping him, quotes Jesus from the NT and then names Him. I don’t doubt Martin Luther King, Jr. was a born again Christian. Please watch and see what you think. God bless.
Thank you for thinking through this. Sadly, saying that you are following the Lord is not necessarily the same as actually following the Lord. Jesus said in Matthew 7:21-23
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
When MLK said that he had seen the Promised Land, he was talking about things on earth. Jesus calls us to look forward to his heavenly kingdom and to rejoice whenever we are persecuted for His sake on earth.
David repented quickly. That seems to be very different from MLK, and (sadly) that is the difference between receiving forgiveness and not receiving it. Jesus said that we will know them by their fruits, and he was not talking simply about their deeds but their character. MLK’s persistent and unrepentant adultery disqualifies him.
I watched the video, and it was clear that he was only aware of the sins of others. He uses many of the right words, but does not seem to truly focussed on the kingdom of God, but rather on earth.
When I read your comment about what was in the video, I thought you had watched it. But clearly, you were banking on no one actually watching the video where King clearly explains that He called on Jesus and experienced a change in his soul. He never once mentions anyone else’s sin. You were dishonest. Why? What was your intention for doing this? Please note Jesus in the Scripture in John 8:44 when Jesus was speaking to the Pharisees who did not believe in Him. Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
Are you looking at the same thing? The complete transcript of the sermon is here:
Where there does he talk about repentance from his own personal sin? I’m not arguing that King didn’t believe there was any evil in him, but in my quick read of the sermon I don’t see it. The sin I see referenced were the ones of racism and injustice that he opposed from the pulpit, and the opposition to him, like the phone call he got at midnight.
I think his problematic views are summed up well in these quotes from another sermon he gave on the same parable:
“God is not interested merely in the freedom of black men and brown men and yellow men; God is interested in the freedom of the whole human race and the creation of a society where all men will live together as brothers and every man will respect the dignity and the worth of human personality.”
“When we believe in God sure enough, we know that there is a power in this universe working at every moment to bring low gigantic mountains of injustice and to pull down prodigious hilltops of evil.”
I don’t consider those statements categorically wrong in the right context and in the right place. But the gospel he was preaching was one primarily if not exclusively concerned with remedying the injustice in the world. That is not the gospel of the Bible. The gospel of the Bible is primarily concerned about the glory of God, not as supernatural aid in remedying the temporal injustices in human lives.
Clearly very little study was done on King for this article. Aside from googling his career in academia (which he largely renounced in 1955), and some searching in his potential infidelities (stories of which are denied by key figures in his life and are largely largely untenable as question of motive plays heavily in them), it seems the author does not have any familiarity with King or his faith. Do better. You’re attacking an important figure in Christian History. At least read a book or two of a dissenting opinion to get a full picture. I would not doubt that unconscious bias at best, or outright racism at worst, played as a key motivator in the research and undertaking of this project.
I’ll be the first to admit that I am no expert on King and am not familiar with all of his writings and speeches. But I stand by everything written in this article. Before falsely accusing me of racism, at least post some evidence not just just assertions.
I looked for evidence that King renounced his heretic beliefs and found nothing. If he actually did, please send me references and I’ll be happy to look at them.
On the issue of his immorality a lot more evidence has come to light since this article was published. Everything I wrote was true, and it was far worse than we said. You can find details in this article:
The article is no longer there. Satan always tries to suppress the truth.
Here is an updated link: https://standpointmag.co.uk/the-troubling-legacy-of-martin-luther-king/
This is a badly written, poorly researched, and summarily awful piece of work. Further, the author’s definition of Christianity seems to be rooted in the bastardized white American corruption of a religious tradition that began in North Africa and them spread to the uncivilized peoples if modern day Europe. Further, this same bastardized Christianity evolved from people who committed genocide on Indigenous populations, instituted chattel slavery, raped and violated enslaved women, and who continue to advance racist theology.
The definition is Christian used in this article is based in the Bible and nothing else. If there are factual errors please post them. Hurling insults doesn’t change the truth.
Thank you for raising these issues. It does seem likely from the evidence that he was an unrepentant adulterer, which separates him from David, and puts him (sadly) in the category of those that Jesus condemned.
I reviewed the YouTube sermon that was suggested, and I detect an awareness of the sin of others, but not of his own. He spoke words on behalf of Jesus that do not match Jesus’ words in the Bible. His fake Jesus does not call him to repent and instead gives him false assurance. Do not forget that there are those to whom Jesus will say (despite prophesying in His name and casting our demons), get away from me, I never knew you.
It is with much heaviness that I come to this conclusion, but those around him must bear some blame. They should have presented his sins to him and then to the church and he should have been disciplined (1 Tim 5:20-21). Perhaps then he might have repented.
It appears you are attempting to bash a man of God. There wasn’t anything good mentioned about this man. If it wasn’t for God using this man, you wouldn’t be able to even experience a Black anything. Curious what is your Faith ?
Joshua, your article is well-written. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was the first recipient of Planned Parenthood’s “Margaret Sanger Award.” She was the driving figure that gave birth to Planned Parenthood. She was also into eugenics and considered people of color “human weeds.”
Pastor Bill Fowler
Church Without Walls
Thanks, you bring up a good point. Anyone interested can read more about this, and Dr King’s acceptance of the award and praise of Sanger on Planned Parenthood’s own site:
Wow! I had no idea that MLK was in agreeance with the woman who founded Planned Parenthood. Thank you for sharing!
He literally said “The Negro constitutes half the poor of the nation. Like all poor, Negro and white, they have many UNWANTED CHILDREN. This is a cruel evil they urgently need to CONTROL. There is scarcely anything more tragic in human life than a child who is NOT WANTED. That which should be a blessing becomes a CURSE for parent and child. There is nothing inherent in the Negro mentality which creates this condition. Their poverty causes it.”
Jose C. Not everyone who says Lord Lord will enter heaven. You can’t compare David to MLK. David loved the Lord and was chosen and Jesus bloodline came from David.MLK wasn’t chosen and never brought people closer to the Lord only his own teachings. It’s clear you only know how to quote scripture but have no possession of it. The way you die is the way you’re judged. If you die an adulterer you’ll be judged as one and God will have nothing to do with the carnal nature. Let me give you a detention of what God calls carnal nature. Being under the influence of the visible, the tangible and the temporal. There is no sin in heaven… Nothing is going to heaven that didn’t come from heaven
You are 1 lost person.
Incidentally… talking of unrepentant adulterers who are self-proclaimed Christians… Paul tells us to have nothing to do with such people.
1 Cor 5:11
But now I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people.
We should not praise such people… and we certainly should not vote for them.
Thank you for taking the time to write so eloquently on a subject upon which I believe far too many Christian may not be well-informed. I would like to share a few thoughts with you that I hope you will find constructive and insightful.
I’ve previously researched the personal faith of Dr. King myself and was shocked to discover, as you have carefully articulated, that Dr. King had expressed very skeptical sentiments about foundational biblical beliefs in a paper he wrote while at Crozer Theological Seminary. While I myself don’t endorse a completely literal reading of every scripture, I do think that King’s apparent dismissal of the divinity of Christ as superstitious literalism casts serious doubts on his faith. The most surprising and concerning of all was his rejection of the resurrection of Christ because, like the Apostle, Paul himself stated, “if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins” (1 Corinthians 15:17 NIV). This belief is the very backbone of the Christian faith and should provoke concern when treated disputably. This is why I think that, by bringing this issue to light, your article has provided the opportunity for a more sober reflection on Dr. King’s faith and legacy.
In speaking of Dr. King’s legacy, though, it appears that your skepticism about his faith potentially produced a cynical perception of King’s application of scriptures in his combat against injustice. In your article, you suggested that using the Bible as a framework to speak to people’s longing for freedom is “an abandonment of the message of the Bible”. This claim prompts questions about (1) why you believe the Bible, as complex a work as it is, only has one message, (2) what you believe that message is, and (3) how you think it should be practically applied to engage injustice in the world. Now, I’m confident that you probably have great insights revolving around those questions, and I encourage you to lovingly engage them in robust discussions. But ultimately, unlike the divinity of Christ, the application of many scriptures- especially Old Testament (OT) stories- can be vast. I don’t know if there is always a single right way to view and practically apply the paradoxically unchanging, yet dynamic wisdom found in God’s word. I think this partly why Paul encouraged the Roman church to not argue over disputable matters when they were fighting over how Christians should deal with foods sacrificed to idols (Romans 14). Paul himself even uses OT scriptures as a framework to speak to the wrongness of Christians treating each other with contempt on that disputable matter (Romans 14:10-11). So, when it comes to how Christians should deal with social injustice, it may help to consider how Dr. King’s robust use of scriptural themes revolving slavery and freedom, though disputable, benefited his struggle against injustice. This may not have been your intention, but to deploy appropriate concerns about his lack of solid doctrine to undermine his application of scripture for advocacy has the effect of promoting a contemptuous and cynical view of Dr. King’s legacy.
In summary, going back to the question of whether or not Dr. King was saved, I, like you, am very doubtful for the previously-stated reason above. And if he wasn’t really a Christian, it honestly wouldn’t be surprising if the accusations about his infidelity were really true. However, that being said, I encourage you to consider a couple things about this. The first is that every human being is just as fallible as Dr. King (Romans 3:23). And since only God knows the heart (Proverbs 21:2, Acts 15:8), I would encourage all Christians to reserve the final judgment to God and make no accusations about the intentions of those who would disagree with the position you and I take on Dr. King’s faith, even while calling out the negative effects of a potentially less informed opinion of Dr. King’s faith. Secondly, Dr. King’s faith, as flawed as it may have been, provoked him to fight social injustice with a moral courage that was either criticized for not being violent enough or threatened with harm and death by those who attempted to intimidate him into silence. In fact, it is shameful to admit as a Christian that this same moral courage was not present in the many other church leaders who, for all their better doctrine, chose to remain silent about the very issues Dr. King was willing to fight and die for. You and many others may not want to view him as a hero,- and understandably so. But I hope you reserve grace and understanding for our brothers and sisters who, despite his shortcomings, wish to still celebrate his influential legacy.
Thanks for your comment. I didn’t mean to imply that the scripture only has one singular message. The point of scripture is for God to bring Himself glory by revealing Himself to man. The central message is the sinfulness of man, and how Christ became flesh and was crucified to save a people for Himself. But it is still valid to apply the scriptures to many different areas of life and practice – to society, law, science, personal conduct, philosophy, etc, etc.
My point in the article wasn’t that everything Dr. King or liberation theology said is wrong, or that every application of scripture was invalid, but that there was a fundamental flaw with the theological framework. It misses the message of the Bible by making it purely about man and man’s physical needs on earth instead of being ultimately about God, what He is doing in the world, and how He commands men to treat one another. Like any heresy or false gospel, it contains a lot of truth. (Otherwise it wouldn’t deceive anyone).
At this point I can’t say I am well studied enough to either support or disagree with the timing of certain points of Dr. King’s message and the tactics he used. But insofar as anyone advocates the equality of all mankind as created in the image of God, I entirely agree.
Thanks again for reading and commenting.
As to whether or not Dr. King was a Christian can only be conjecture on our part. The evidence can be surmised from his life and his words. As a African American man it pains me to know an very famous influential African American man struggled consistently in the flesh. He allowed sin to reign in his members but it appears to be fact. Yet that does not disqualify him as a Christian! The damaging argument to his life as a Christian is he never gave the plan of Salvation ( Romans and Ephesians) during his most influential times. He never or rarely mention the name that is above all names. HOW CAN HE NOT SPEAK THE SSVING GRACE OF GOD IN JESUS CHRIST and call himself a Christmas?
We in the African American community can be angry, insult our foes, cry foul but the blame is on Martin Luther King for not making it clear crystal clear on Jesus Christ being the only Begotten Son of God and whosoever shall believe shall be save.
Thank you for your response, Mr. Horn. God bless you
In the end, God is the final judge and His judgement on Martin Luther King is a way above our humble pay scale. Martin Luther King’s moral courage was way beyond the the moral courage of many Christians in the south who used scripture to enslave black people. According to your doctrine this places George Washington and Thomas Jefferson in the same class of eternal judgment as they were deist. However, their celebration in American history and whether they went to hell is rarely questioned. Oh yah, I forgot, they are white.
Principals of scripture are almost always more powerful than the person speaking. We are all flawed. By today’s standard King David would have been impeached and given the death sentence. He gave his life for a lot of Christian black people. He ripped down the walls of segregation and changed the history of justice in America. That’s enough for me to celebrate whether Christian or not! God judges the heart as he did for King David.
Just in case if you are wondering, I am a born again Christian who believes in the fundamental teachings of the Bible.
Thomas Jefferson was clearly not a believer based on his writings. Those who claim that he was so are in error. I do not believe there is evidence that Washington was a diest. Instead there is some evidence that he was a faithful Christian.
One big difference between Dr King and these men is that they were not pastors, Those who claim to be ministers of the gospel ought to be held to a higher standard.
Your point? Khazars are not original Jews. They are converts and Constatine and Rome used the cross to conquer the world not live like Jesus instructed. White people have lied so much throughout recorded history that it is more reasonable to be a skeptic than a “believer”.
It is hard to believe anything our white American brothers say. After all it is STILL in the AMERICAN HISTORY BOOKS that COLIMBUS DISCOVERED AMERICA! AND THE FACT IS THAT’s A WHITE AMERICAN LIE! WILL WHITE AMERICA ADMIT CHRISTOPHER LYING COLUMBUS LIED? NO THEY WONT!
So Joshua Horn, PLEASE STOP! ! Do your research on Christopher LYING Columbus and make this be YOUR NEWS for 2020!
If Martin Lither King had an affair so what! Find out for me if Christopher LYING was sleeping with SHEEPS or what ever animal his crew slept with.
Thanking you in advance for your research.
PS: DO YOUR RESEARCH ON THE DIRTY DERDD OF J EGAR HOOVER or the dirty FBI during Martin Lither King’s life time!
Thanks for reading, but I do not understand what Christopher Columbus has to do with Dr King.
The answer is “Nothing”. Rather than process what you wrote, Ronda just wants to play the race card, distract, divert, etc. This person’s moral integrity is revealed in the statement, “If Martin Lither King had an affair so what!” Yeah, so what if a professed man of God was repeatedly breaking one of the 10 commandments of God? If this is true as seems likely, King was sinning against God, against his wife and children, and against all his followers who placed their trust in him.
This is from kinginstitute.stanford.edu: This is an excerpt from mlk speech on Easter, “Through the resurrection of Jesus Christ we have fit testimony that this earthly life is not the end, that death is just something of a turn in the road, that life moves down a continual moving river, and that death is just a little turn in the river, that this earthly life is merely an embryonic prelude to a new awakening”
I believe mlk to be flawed, and his theology was twisted at 22-23 when he attended seminary and wrote the papers on the virgin birth of Jesus and the resurrection but I remember when I attended seminary so was mine until I learned the truth. I follow Jesus in my life. But I admire mlk for his unmitigated courage, and I am glad salvation rest with Christ and not man. For some, not you, on the internet have sent mlk to eternal damnation. I am thankful our salvation rests in the mighty hands of God almighty!
its all connected theyre all lies
Joshua, Why would you be worried about offending people that are so emphatically hypocritical? We know for certain that Messiah strongly rebuked hypocrites in no uncertain terms. All humans both individuals and groups have themselves to blame. Whenever we point our finger at anyone we have three pointing back at us. Well over half of those killed in the civil war were Yankees. How much appreciation do you see them getting? All of the complaint against “white people” is the same as the Nazi complaint against the Jews.
Well over 90% of the world’s social welfare spending is from the United States and Europe. The thanks and appreciation are underwhelming to say the least. I will say that any and all rejectors of the Word of God should not be heroes for God’s people. That includes a great many white men that also need to be accurately reported on. Our great weakness is in placing men where only Christ should be. Everyone who has mere humans as their heroes will be disappointed.
First of all I read do not judge others. I also read that we will know followers of Jesus by the fruits they produce, and the fruits that MLK, Jr. produced were definately those of the Holy Spirit. Being liberal or conservative are not the marks of following Jesus, but they are as Jesus taught: loving God…loving others…and even loving yourself. I try to do those things, with God’s help, and leave the judging to God who judges all perfectly. I would suggest we all do the same as well.
I love truth no matter who it is or what it is and I never believed he was a born-again Christian. You don’t cheat on your wife; you don’t fornicate with loose women who idolize you for your popularity, looks or money. God is his ultimate Judge…but denying the Virgin Birth and living in sin as he did is a scary thought for anyone, not just MLK.
This Author DID do his research.
I happen to have a 1965 paperback (just three years before MLK’s death) called “The White Problem in America”. The book is a compilation of essays written circa 1965 compiled by Ebony magazine.
One of those Essays was written by MLK, entitled ironically enough: “The Un-Christian Christian”.
I thought of transcribing the whole 7 page article but several in context quotes should suffice:
“I thought first of the many people who have been with us since the beginning of the struggle, who have fought with us , who have bled with us suffered with us and died with us, who have been the very apotheosis of the Christian faith, straight out of the pages of the Acts of the Apostles. THESE ARE THE TRUE SONS OF FAITH”. “They come from all walks of life. Some are church members, but many are not. Some were clergy of all faiths-Protestant, Catholic and Jewish”
Here MLK, in the beginning of his essay gives us his definition of a ‘true’ Christian. Nothing about Repentance or Faith in Christ’s atoning sacrifice for sin – which is our root problem. No, if you are in the civil rights fight in America, that’s what makes you a son of God – quite wrong scripturally. His essay title was called “The Un-Christian Christian” so I don’t know how he includes the Jewish faith as necessarily Christian – a bit of cognitive dissonance there.
“all men as sons of God”; “where millions of God’s children are being trampled over by the iron feet of oppression”; “It is surprising how seldom ministers and rabbis in the South or North have preached the truth of the biblical teaching on the brotherhood of man with courage and conviction”; “Where all men are brothers……to live as an heir and partner to the Kingdom of God”.
Here MLK, misunderstands the biblical notion of being a Child of God that comes through repentance and faith in Christ the God-Man as our personal substitutionary sacrifice for sin by the finished work on the cross, MLK by-passes repentance and true faith and basically unbiblically calls all men ‘children of God’ God is not your father without repentance and faith i.e. our biggest need is that we have ALL sinned against God in a myriad of ways and taking away that SIN is our real need to have God as our Father otherwise Scripture says that the devil is our father by default through the original fall of man.
“The awful fact about the South is that Southerners are making the Marxist analysis of history more accurate than the Christian hope that men can be persuaded through teaching and preaching to live a new and better life”. “The wedding of Christ with the culture of the South may well prove to be the end of Christianity as a world religion”
Here MLK in his complete misunderstanding of Christianity resigns it under Marxism of all Ideologies because history has shown how wonderful that has been under Stalin and in China etc. His myopic and theologically wrong view of Christian history is crystallized (on the admitted failure of the colonial era regarding slavery) is accentuated in his prediction. As if the whole history of Christianity has been seen to offer nothing good to civilization otherwise and is now somehow doomed forever – what a irresponsible and fanciful prediction. True Christianity will survive until Christ comes back and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it. Theologically he talks a lot about teaching and preaching but nothing about becoming a new creature through authentic Repentance and Faith i.e. Regeneration to a new creation.
Anyhow, I recommend anyone who wants to see firsthand how MLK did not begin to understand true Christianity just three years before his death should procure a copy of this book and read the essay in it’s entirety. This social Gospel which has been counterfeited as the true Gospel has done much harm to the witness of the True Church of God.
Thanks for reading and commenting, especially the quotes directly from King that you’ve posted.
Though offended at first, I do appreciate your writing. It shows me that there is still much work to be done to bring the Gospel full circle.
Personally, however, what I would give to bear witness to a moment in which you forsake the comforts white privilege–a birthright that has afforded you a rose colored lens through which you merely peer at struggle–in order to feel the lived reality of a man who was constantly on the brink of death in his Christ-driven quest to see marginalized people validated as human beings. Would you have it so that he simply served as a chaplain…facilitating the call to salvation as his people took their final breaths while hanging from trees? Was he supposed to hold an alter call at the Million Man March while the Christians in political power undermined the very foundation of Biblical human existentialism–that man and woman were created in the likeness and image God? While darkness pervaded through the hearts of Christian people who professed to be saved, was he supposed to offer them salvation again, or show them Jesus, a real life vessel who facilitates soul transformation?
Salvation is not the end of this earthbound race. We still have to walk with Christ in Spirit and in Truth and Dr. King showed people how to do that. “Be not conformed unto this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds so that you may prove what is the perfect will of God.” There are many who profess belief in Christ whose souls I’m sure are saved, yet they never experience transformation of soul or mind and in that right, make Christ no more than an idol. I recommend you read: “What Jesus Meant” and “The Revolutionary Politics of Jesus.” This life is no one-dimensional experience…
Furthermore, the Social Gospel is easily undermined by Fundamentalists as it requires a forfeit privilege in pursuit of social equity. When cupboards are overflowing, no such resource is foreign, and capitalism works in your favor… When your people aren’t disproportionately criminalized, imprisoned, and impoverished, with an inflated boldness can you proclaim that the glory is for the hereafter and not now. While I do not condone or excuse Dr. King’s philandering, I do encourage “He who is without sin cast the first stone.” Christ lived as a human to show us how to live as humankind. One can’t follow Jesus and not live according to His teachings and philosophies of life. Christ didn’t turn over money changing tables because he wanted everyone to go to heaven. While that was his existential goal, he also opposed capitalism and self-righteousness.
Nothing better than reading the Bible in its entirety as opposed to being governed by sectoral doctrine.
Peace be with you,
Your sister in Christ who believes Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life.
Thanks for your comment. I agree wholeheartedly with your last line – all belief and practice must be based off of a personal study of the entire Bible.
I believe in a gospel that effects every area of life. The scripture is sufficient for all of life and godliness, and the principles contained in it out to be used to reform every aspect of society.
However, if a pastors ministry is only about things of this life, it is a waste of time (or worse, proclaiming a false gospel). If a generation’s entire attention is turned to injustices in this present life, all of that is meaningless if they are not converted by Christ and receive the promise of eternal life.
Whether or not Martin Luther King is in hell or heaven we are speculating about his life in reference to Jesus Christ and I think mlk should get some points for that.
What a disgusting response you gave. “White Privilege” is a myth created by the God hating atheist secular world. It appears you have bought into critical race theory hook, line, and sinker. Please, show the chapter and verse in the Bible that talks about “white privilege” and where it tells a specific type of person they need to repent for the way they were born. Such awful ignorance. Repent of that foolishness. There is one race, the human race. Everyone descended from Adam and Eve. That is what the Bible teaches. Unless you have evidence that someone has committed the sin of hatred towards someone because of the color of their skin you do NOT get to judge an entire group of people because of their color. In fact, even if you did find someone who hated someone for the color of their skin, why does that automatically make everyone else who may look like that person guilty of that person’s sin? It sounds to me like to are in a church that doesn’t teach the Bible correctly. They are more interested in conforming to the current events of the world rather than seeking and pleasing God. I would flee that church as soon as possible and find a teacher who understands what proper exegesis is. You are being lied to.
Also, as for MLK, he denied that Jesus was God. In Jesus own words he said, unless you believe that I AM, you will die in your sins. Denying the deity of Christ is a DAMNABLE heresy. If he believed that when he died, Jesus own words condemn him.
Our concerns, as true followers of Jesus, should not be whether a person goes to heaven or hell; Instead our focus should be in the word because that’s the way to find God. After finding him, we should continually read to build a stronger relationship with him. I encourage all of you to meditate on Jesus’ commandments because they in turn will help us enter the kingdom. As far as MLK….God told us about him and people like him in Jeremiah 23:25-32. Jesus was very clear about his return and his warning to us to stay away from wicked acts in Revelation 22:12-15. Remember, we can’t be responsible for others, but we must be careful of how we conduct ourselves and how we lead his sheep. May the spirit of truth be with you and guide you to the true lamb of God, who is the only way to the Father.
You seem to forget that God doesn’t choose the perfect man for their are non. Saul was a murderer who refused the notion of a messiah he hated it. King David fornicated some believe he raped Bethsheba. God knows the hearts of man better than anyone. Yes Doctor King while young had beliefs that weren’t in accordance to what Jesus taught us. He was young and walked with science and used the human mind to try to rationalize the Bible. But you cannot rationalize the bible for it isn’t just a book you read. You can’t find a magic formula in it as if it were a science book. And MLK realized as he grew. He learned that it was only through faith and the belief in all mighty God and our lord and Savior Jesus Christ can the Bible truly be understood. Who are you to criticize him you who live in sin, does his sin out weight yours? He lived as a man of flesh and bone but he died a man of faith full in the glory of the lord. He saw the promise land for he had accepted the lord and in the end he died with Jesus in his heart. We shall all be judge and we shall all be found unworthy in the presence of the lord but it is through his grace that we shall be cleansed in fire and join him and God in the promised land Dr.King Saw.
Please point me to where in his speeches or elsewhere it is recorded that Dr King renounced his previous belief and said that “it was only through faith and the belief in all mighty God and our lord and Savior Jesus Christ can the Bible truly be understood.” When did Dr. King repent like David did? How do you claim to know his heart when we see the fruits of unrestrained sin in his personal life?
Wow. So many great responses here answering the fallacies of this article. I don’t know that I can offer any thing better without devoting too much time to my response, hitting at each erroneous point than to say this. I think it’s so sad that people continue to compare christian leaders with people like King David. King David had EIGHT WIVES and numerous concubines concurrently! Maybe the label that we place on adultery isn’t lining up with the Almighty’s. I hate the idea of anything other than one man being married to one woman and being absolutely monogamous til death do them apart. However, that’s not what we see with King David, so how does he end up being the measuring stick for any Christian living today? Or ANY bible champion from the Old Testament. So why keep trying to compare their morality against what is required of believers in Yeshua today?? This is OUR measuring stick>>> Mark 16:17-18 King James Version (KJV)
17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;
18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
Does this describe you? Check yourself to know whether you are in the faith.
I am a pastor and have been in ministry for over thirty years. I believe I hear your heart. However, I am interested to know why Dr. King was chosen out of all the people you could have chosen for comment or ridicule? As Christians, we are not called to judge or make speculations regarding things we have no clue about, particularly whom God has chosen to use. Without question, God chose Dr, King to accomplish the work that he ordained. There has been no other man like Dr. King nor will there be another. You must admit that you have never had the privilege to sit in on a Sunday church service to hear any message preached by Dr. King, so you have no idea as to how often or not that he lifted up the Majestic and exalted name of our precious Jesus. I am confident that he did it far more than you can imagine. The stage Dr. King found himself trusted upon necessitated the methodology and communication skills used differently than expected of the common Black Baptist Preacher. Had he played into the expected image of mainstream America always quoting scripture, I do not believe he would have been able to accomplish all that he did. Also, I would like to point out to you the fact that you have not lived long enough to realize that your salvation will not insulate you or anyone else from their facilities, weaknesses, or humanity regardless of title or position. Because no man or woman can live a life of consistent perfection, Christ has come to be our redeemer. God does not demand a perfect life. He demands perfect faith in his son Jesus. I read where you said that ministers should be held to higher standards. You are correct. However, that standard is the same for all believers and followers of Christ. God has no respect of person. You mentioned that Washington was a faithful believer. However, he was also a notorious and cruel slave owner! The great pastor and author of the famous sermon “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” Johnathan Edwards is remembered for the Great Awakening and called a Christian brother. However, he too like so many other so-called great ministers as you might regard was also a slave owner. Even today, in our nation’s churches Sunday is still the most segregated hour of the week. In many White Evangelical churches around the world, the name and gospel of Christ are being lifted, yet these same ministers are racist, bigots, liars, thieves, distorters of the truth, and fornicators. Will they make it to heaven? Neither of us knows if or when they repent and ask forgiveness. God alone knows all. I would just like to ad that I agree with you that those called and privileged to proclaim the gospel of Christ should live consecrated lives. However, I am a living witness that to do so has nothing to do with personal discipline or goodness, it is only by the power of the living God. Lastly, I would like to remind all those that had so much commentary regarding Dr. King’s alleged infidelities, his faults are no greater than our own. All sin is sin and abhorred in the sight of God. Even at our very best, we have all failed. None earn browny points with God. We have no righteousness. We are all only made right with God through faith in Christ. My final thought fro you Joshua is this. You mentioned that the focus on the present is a waste of time, and that Eternity should be the priority. Though that is undeniably true, Jesus and the apostle Paul consistently demonstrated the heart of the father by emphasizing caring for the poor, needy, and marginalized here in this present age.
Mr. Scott, thanks for your comment. Dr. King was chosen as the subject of his article because we saw a growing movement among evangelicals around the 50th anniversary of his death to accept and exalt him in a way that wasn’t consistent with history or sound theology. This article doesn’t judge on something we don’t know about, its entire point is to present the facts of history as we know them to be.
I certainly agree with you that no one can live a perfect life, that all Christians are called to high standards, and that it is the power of God that gives holy lives.
I believe I said focusing “only” on the present is a waste of time. Christ, Paul and many other prophets and apostles spent a lot of time condemning injustice and caring for the needy (and so should we). But not one of them could be said to focus only on that, or focus on that at the expense of eternity.
Thanks for your comment.
Knowing the facts of history include that the founder of the FBI, J Edgar Hover, was a racist…and that like it or not, he did’t release any alleged evidence of King’s “unrepentant” infidelity when it could do him & his followers the most harm….while conducting COINTELPRO, murder of Black leaders in more “radical” movements, frame-ups against innocent Black leaders, etc…it’s likely that this “substantial evidence” of MLK’s infidelity is a frame up too. I looked at the “evidence” of arguments for and against King’s alleged infidelity, as well as his change in theological beliefs. One common thread of those in favor MLK being immoral were “facts” presented by the racist…and still very “good ol boy”…FBI, and Black people whom MLK had friction with, to include jealousy.
I do know that one difference between Christians and sinners is consistency, while noting exceptions: sinners are consistent in doing wrong and being unrepentant, most of the time. Christians, while they stumble, are consistent in living the Christian life. Concerning MLK and any other person perceived as a “Black leader” in our society, I see consistently unreliable, “sources” with a history of lying against and even framing Black people, since the beginning of the 13 colonies.
It reminds me of the so-called FBI stats on Black-on-Black crime that anti-Black racists love to mention: they don’t mention how these numbers are tabulated, the fact that the FBI admits that over scrutiny of one ethnic group (relative to another) can create a false narrative, that the FBI has systemic racism…and that criminals tend to victimize folks from their same cultural/ethnic background. I’m a Christian who understands advanced math & science and the numbers just don’t add up concerning MLK’s alleged sins.
So, I have a vote of no confidence in any so-called evidence that MLK was living an immoral life, or that he continued to deny Christs’ divine nature.
I see evidence of the misnomer “evangelical”, but the would take so long to respond to. I do know that being a Christian is not just living a moral life…but worshiping correctly too. Again, future long topic, but plenty of Bible to support that…especially when we compare the entire book of Acts and Christian doctrine to what modern day “Christians” claim is Christianity.
Since this article was written, a lot more of the FBI files have been released which document very shocking claims. You can find a summary of them here. They seem based on solid evidence
As to why the FBI didn’t release that information, that’s a complicated question. It seems the FBI preferred to keep damaging information on hand to use at the right moment, rather than just releasing it publicly. They used it (wickedly) to try to manipulate him in to suicide. Perhaps they thought this would be more effective than just releasing it. But just because they didn’t publish it doesn’t mean that they didn’t have it.
If you have any evidence that Dr. King’s theology did change please post it. I have seen this often claimed, but never proved.
A November 9th poster claimed to quote the evidence that King’s Theology did change. You said that was not proof enough. I come from a huge family…some aunts, uncles who saw and heard Dr. King sing a different tune from the “evidence” that you’ve provided. However, my point is that there’s not enough evidence to assume MLK was as bad as you say. when one considers the severely racists, and Frankly, evil sources that most of this so-called evidence comes from.
However, you implied that such information is not good enough to change your belief of Dr. King’s moral character. You believe sources that have a history of telling half-truths, lies, and strategic omissions to me and my ancestors since they were brought here in chains. You belief sources that have always tried to paint Black people in America…and Black leaders (both real and perceived) as spiritually and morally inferior to White people since the very existence of these sources. I do not believe these sources (to include the FBI). I’m prudent enough not to accept them as “gospel”, regardless of my own human frailties.
Why the FBI did not release what they had was not as complicated as you assume, if one realizes the nature of the FBI as one of the sources described above….they didn’t have the evidence to do the harm they wanted.
As a Christian who’s become seasoned in both doctrine and lifestyle, I’m not ignorant to the fact that Martin Luther King, did not exactly preach the complete gospel…when comparing Baptist theology to the Church that Jesus, the Christ, built (as described in book of Acts and the rest of the New Testament). I will say that such evidence is clear and that is one of his faults. Other than that, I take the moral character stuff with a few large grains of salt.
You stated that one of your reasons for writing this thread against MLK’s moral character was due to what “evangelicals’ are doing with his legacy, relative to Christian based morality. I do not see the same zeal when it comes to White “Christian” persons of history whom many “evangelicals” memorialize. Based upon the close-to-zero credibility of the sources for you to draw this conclusion, the timing of your opinion post, and way it was presented…folks have a right to question your motives. I’ll be open-minded and give you the benefit of the doubt that you are not a racists. As a Christian, I must be a thorough examiner of people if I expect them to give me the benefit of the doubt when/if they examine me. However, I will say that what you wrote is CONSISTENT with a pattern of White people who say they are Christians, but who are just racists with Bibles at worst…or have a “converting the natives” attitude toward non-White folks…especially Black/African folks…at best…the more “friendly” type of racism I’m used to seeing and experiencing since my birth. The “converting the natives” attitude usually assumes that the morally inferior non-Whites must be taught that they or those who they look up too have one or more fatal flaws, even flaws that make them unChristian or inherently less moral than their White counterparts. When the word of truth is rightly divided, they will ignore that they too have looked at sources that traditionally have been hypocritical at best, like the pharisees.
I see that most agreeing with you on this topic claim to take the scripture at face value…but then take these sources which have had racial bias in them since before any of us were born and elevate the sources to the same level of reverence of the Bible…especially when these sources speak ill of MLK…or any Black leader, for that matter.
Well, my response is extremely too long, so I apologize for that and this will be my last response, as I see no further reasoning that can be done when even the definition of how one becomes a Christian is different for several people who have responded to your post. However, I will note some scripture on how I became a Christian:
Hear the gospel: Romans 10: 17
Believe the gospel: Hebrews 11: 6
Repent of ones sins: Luke 13: 3, 5
Confess belief in Christ as divinity, who died for us: Matthew 10: 32-33
Be Baptized: Acts 2: 38
Now: being faithful until death: Revelations 2: 10; is something that causes much debate, but there are at least 2 more scriptural references to back this one up.
I can only hope that reasonable people…especially concerning Christians who want to create better race relations, will “consider the source”, as the saying goes.
Thanks for taking the time to reply. I appreciate that you acknowledge that Dr. King’s message did not contain the whole gospel. I also hold that the FBI is a suspect source, though looking at the evidence from their archives I have come to the conclusion that the stories are very credible. One thing to remember is that this isn’t information distributed for the public by the FBI. That is not trustworthy, as it would not be surprising if they dealt in misinformation. These stories are coming from their internal records that have only now been released. Those they had no reason to falsify.
Criticism of my motives doesn’t particularly bother me. People can falsely slander us as racists, but I’m not sure it’s worth any effort to try and disprove them, as it’s a charge that is nearly impossible to refute based on the standard that some like to apply.
I do agree that many historical figures who are held by many to be solid Christians are anything but. If there are particular examples that you think we should post about, just let me know and we’ll consider it.
Is there any hope for the Gutless Coalition? #goneleft&continuing
People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. We are all capable of unrighteous acts, I thought that’s why God made us human. I didn’t know that everyone was supposed to be never unwavering and faultless. Where did I miss that in my Bible studies? I do remember reading how one should never judge lest ye be judged because the only being who should pass judgement on another is God himself. I cannot avoid ad hominem here; I believe you are very self righteous and a pompous bigot. There are a multitude of ways to interpret King’s views and it is important to understand the context in which a thought was expressed before passing judgement which you have no right passing as a mortal. What makes you the gatekeeper to the domain of Heaven? What makes any man beyond redeemable? We are all filthy rags in the eyes of the Lord. Also, leaders should not be held to a higher standard in any regards that does not effect their capability to lead- in church or otherwise- we are all human and fall short of the grace of God. I hope you remember that it is the sick who need a doctor; it is the ones who struggle that need the love of Christ the most.
1st Corinthians 13
“one should never judge”
“you are very self righteous and a pompous bigot”
Thanks Lucky Lou, your comment put a smile on my face this evening.
On a more serious note, I am not the one who judges or condemns anyone, I’ll leave that up to God. I do feel qualified to speak to Dr. King’s conduct, as I am not guilty of the things that he is credibly accused of. Please explain how I’m misinterpreting Dr. King’s views if you have any evidence that points to that actually being the case.
Funny you should bring up 1 Corinthians. Chapter 6:9-11 comes to mind:
“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.”
God is the gatekeeper of the kingdom of heaven, and this passage shows how He keeps the gate. He cleanses sinners, and gives the Holy Spirit. We have a promise that the lives of believers will not be characterized by these sins, and we are given passage like this one so we can hold leaders (and others) accountable to that.
Thank you, Whitney Simpson & Dave Scott. I wholeheartedly agree with your comments. Mr Horne, as far as your comments to Lucky Lou, I get that you were saying it put a smile on your face because you felt judged by him. However your article is certainly passing judgment and condemnation on a man that is no longer alive. That is not a Christian thing to do. He laid down his life to help us all. MLK did as much good for my race(white) as he did for blacks. If you can’t see that, I pray for your eyes, mind & heart to be opened.
Just because someone did good in their life doesn’t mean that other areas of their life are not worthy of condemnation. If this article was condemning Thomas Jefferson for owning slaves, or Joseph Stalin for massacring his people, would you still be saying it’s wrong to pass judgment on someone who is dead? Evaluating and judging the past is fundamental to history.
It’s easy to assert that something isn’t a Christian thing to do. If that is so, please demonstrate it from scripture.
Thanks for your comment.
Thank you for sharing factual information about MLK. I agree that sometimes people put him in a lofty place in Christian history. If he had professed more about Christ being the centrality of his life, I think the discussion would go a different way. I acknowledge your meek responses to criticisms in these threads of comments. I hope you are doing well. Thank you for desiring Christ to be the center of all, not human hands/minds.
Hi Caleb, thank you for your comment and for your kind words.
God says that His people perish for lack of knowledge. Why are you closing your minds, assuming that the writer is racist? You must be interested in information, you can learn something you have formally not known. Why do you harden your hearts and close your eyes? I am a black woman. I trust God,no man. If MLK had an agenda other than what is in accordance to the Christian belief, shouldn’t we be made aware? Research these accusations for yourself. Research in depth, you may be afforded freedom from hidden lies of the devil , your enemy. You should want to teach your children truths. Are you uncomfortable confronting trues? Pray ask God For He certainly is a lover of truth. Don’t be so offended, God said that to you.
Anyone who denies the Virgin birth and resurrection of Jesus Christ is a wolf among the sheep, a heretic. Study the Scriptures and you will find that a heretic will NOT inherit the Kingdom of God.
Freedom is found in Jesus Christ through the Spirit. Ye must be born again. Daniel was a slave in the Babylonian Kingdom, yet he had God’s favor upon him. This is freedom. Instead of pointing black people to the real Jesus Christ, MLK sold them a pipe dream. MLK did not want freedom to serve the God of the Bible, but for the flesh. Look at the blacks today: about 75% of the children are born of fornication. Theft and murder run rampant. Abominable. Yet, the only sin talked about is “racism”. You hypocrites! After God freed the Hebrew slaves from Egypt, they too didn’t want their freedom to serve God, but for the flesh. So God wanted to consume them all.
My mother was born in 1950 (Jim Crow) Arkansas. In the 90’s she’d often tell me, ‘Integration destroyed the Black community.’ She said Black teachers actually LOVED and CARED for us. That we had our own, Black owned businesses, etc. These conversations were my first experiences at seeing the Civil Rights Movement as the FRAUD it really was.
We all know what type of ‘Christian’ Dr. MLK REALLY was. That’s not as important to me as why he thought leading Black Lambs into the Den of White Wolves was scriptural.
They always show the 1955 Montgomery bus Boycott as a Civil Rights Victory. But how was it a Victory for Black people? Allegedly, the bus company (Montgomery City Lines) was losing $30,000.00 a month during the Boycott, so they relented and allowed to Blacks back on the buses to sit wherever they chose. Wouldn’t the Victory for Blacks rather had been to continue Boycotting (FOREVER), keeping that $30,000.00 a month for yourselves, invest it to start YOUR OWN (Black City Lines) bus company instead?
Dr. MLK had a strange Messianic complex. He actually compared himself to Moses in his ‘Mountain Top’ speech at the MASONIC TEMPLE (Church of God and Christ), on April 3, 1968. How dillusional! Moses DID NOT lead the children of Israel in a March around the Pyramids! He threatened to KILL Pharaoh’s firstborn son. And all the firstborn in Egypt, from the throne to the stables if Pharaoh continued to enslave GOD’S firstborn son.
So, the Black Lives Matter movement is yet another FALSE movement Black people seem to be ever enamored with. Who knows why. I believe it might be that Black people are a lot like my Father. You see, my Mother was light, bright and d— near White. That’s why my Father loved her. Because he jes’ wanted good ol’ Massah to gives him a hug. Just like Black people did in MLK’s time and still to this very day.
As Christians, we are called to preach the gospel of Jesus. If MLK (was a Christian and) preached Jesus, he would have made a true and lasting impact.
The gospel is the power of God unto salvation.
Everything else is the flailing of sinful man.
There is scarcely a movement to make the world better that does not have its detractors. “The Lord works in mysterious ways.” Let’s each look into our hearts and become the Christians we are called to be. In our humble efforts we might find a new level of empathy for those who try to change the world. We might appreciate how ambiguous and challenging and unpredictable this work is. Something in this discussion calls to mind debates over how many angels fit on the head of a pin…rigorous but at the end of the day not where the thrust of God’s goodness lies. At the end of the day, God scoops each of us up in love to celebrate what we have been able to do to advance his presence and forgiving us all our shortcomings, all of them.
Susan, at the end of the day some who boast in their good works will hear “‘I never knew you; depart from Me.” (Matthew 7:23).
It is not ritual, religion, or politics that counts but relationship with God through repentance and faith in Christ’s death on the cross for our sins.
You attempt to equate a biblical refutation of an empty social gospel with a frivolous debate about how many angels fit on the head of a pin. Wrong! It is as serious as the question of where a person will spend eternity, heaven or hell? My guess is that you do not believe in hell and I suspect that King didn’t either but Jesus clearly did and he warned people about it often, saying, “unless you repent you will all likewise perish”. How often did MLK warn people to repent of their personal sins against a holy God?
My uncle worked for the FBI under Hoover. Early in his career, he was assigned to guard doors of a meeting in Atlanta at a large hotel. As King was leaving the conference room, he was blasting Andy Young for getting him a black prostitute instead of a white one.
The problem with liberal Protestantism’s view of Jesus is that it cannot really distinguish him in any meaningful sense from great Christian saints such as Francis of Assisi or Seraphim of Sarov, or known miracle workers such as Padre Pio of Pietrelcina (20th century), who were known to radiate holy auras from their faces, like Jesus did on Mt Tabor. We really should call him St. Jesus, since he is just another human son who intimately united himself to God and lived a truly holy life. No need to be baptized into his name, no need to address prayers to God through him, no need to call him Lord. Basically, the apostles all got it wrong, as did Jesus himself, when he declared that he longed for the Jewish people to shelter under his wings throughout many ages, though they would not. The liberals are very fond of Jesus, but ultimately they deny Him on a fundamental level.
You seem to be a follower of MLK? Well let s me state this very very clearly.God’s word tell us no to judge it also says we’re to be fruit inspector.King was a heretic and if you don’t like that tough I’m using his own words. If you don’t have believe in the Virgin birth you’ve just knocked out the main foundation of the Christian faith. I don’t know how any man could call himself a minister of God’s word and don’t believe in virgin birth it’s a contradiction in terms. But since he was such a great civil rights leader he must have been a great man really? But the only time he ever saw him was when his limo was either pulling into town or pulling out of town right before the riots started. The Bible also says not to commit adultery so I guess we’ll just have to wait on 2027 to see exactly what the FBI had on this guy. But for me trying to justify is not believing in the Virgin birth that’s idiosyncratic. He was a heretic leading so many astray that was gullible enough to follow him.
Wow!! white devils.. and you guys want BLM to end but yet you can clearly see racism it’s promoted in the white community.. look at all the comments.. it quickly shifted from mlk heresy faith to Blacks..As if there is no individuality.. the same racist mind set that kept slaves 400 yrs is still displayed here by uneducated fools
Which specific comments here do you see as racist against African Americans? It seems ironic that you are complaining about racism, yet use the term “white devils.” No one else on this comment thread has anyone used such racist language, and if someone used the term “black devils” they would have their comment deleted.
It is always intriguing how modern-day Confederates such as yourself – perpetuators of a long tradition of treason against this country’s democratic and constitutional principles ESPECIALLY against African Americans always seek to demonize your victims. Especially when people such as you continually laud the truly demonic figure now finally leaving the White House whose unprecedented and unending immorality throughout his entire lifetime is truly unmatched in American history.
Hi Tom, assuming your comment is directed at me as author of this post, I just have to say that you’re making a whole list of false assumptions.
1. I’m not a modern day Confederate, whatever that is supposed to mean.
2. I don’t support any violation of the God-given rights of African Americans that are going on now, or have happened at any time in this country’s history.
3. I am not a supporter of President Trump, nor do I excuse any of his immorality.
I do not know what Dr. King might have confessed prior to his death. I notice that this article never mentions whether Dr. King was baptized. Only those who are baptized can claim to be united to Christ: Romans 6:3–4 (ESV)
3 Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.
Sadly, there are some who claim teh name Christian who deny teh role of Baptism, even arguing that baptism does nothing or that it is a work. The Bible speaks differently: 1 Peter 3:21–22 (ESV)
21 Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him.
Therefore, unless you know that he was never baptized, and you know that he blasphemed the Holy Spirit, and you know that He denied the Lord Jesus Christ until the moment of his death, you are violating the 8th Commandment: You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
Matthew 5:43–48 (ESV)
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Matthew 28:17–20 (ESV)
17 And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. 18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Baptism of the Spirit for those that believe, yes, the thief on the cross is prime example of a sinner being saved at the very end of his road, being baptized with the Spirit… like you said, no one here knows MLKs exact relationship with Christ before he was murdered, but we are all allowed to make fair judgment based upon his words and actions. Hopefully he was right with God, no man is good nor even close to perfect, so I won’t cast stones at him. He was always a man I admired for the good things he did do. 4th grade I was him for biography day hahaha little white kid reciting his life all day. Nowadays, the ironic thing is, I would be called a racist and be accused of “cultural appropriation”, for having a black idol and portraying him. I don’t think MLK would be happy with the current form of PC racism being utilized today to divide everyone even further in the name of equality disguised as entitlement. Weird how the world spins!
It’s a shame that so many follow false teachings we do so much charity in the name of someone else instead of the name we should follow JESUS I just pray doctor king got it right before he went home
All this is fabricated. The writings was when he was 19-20yrs old college student. Never in the writing did he deny the Virgin Birth. He said it’s hard to convince a non believer. There’s no audio or footage of him denying the Virgin Birth as a pastor.
Your assertion that it is fabricated does not make it so.
Wow! Wow! Wow!
Thank you for writing this and continuing to return to it years later…
I am going to continue to sit with your post (and the comments) in prayer. I realize there was so much I didn’t learn about MLK, Jr. in school, church and now as an almost 48yo. I could not read the FBI reports – I get the idea; he was wrong and in sin. The stuff about his connection to Planned Parenthood, also wow.
Overall, it made me sit up and take responsibility for what I had been clinging to as a voice for black people without regard for the wrong that sullies/sullied his message. The thing that sits with me most is that preaching and teaching solutions that don’t include eternity aren’t to be given too much of our time. It’s a false sense of hope and not at all what God calls us to.
The road really is narrow, isn’t it?!?
Thank you for writing this.
So many have made this man into something he was not , nor wanted to be known as. He simply a man that fought for social justice and equality for the black man. There is no reasonable person who would believe he was a Bible believing Christian. It doesn’t seem he cared . He was content in doing what he believed was right.
Just curious as to know if many people that hate Jesus even know why they hate him. So many people hate Jesus. And get so angry. I know why, it’s in the bible and its prophecy being fulfilled. Should say something in your brain…WHY is every other god ok? A question you should ask yourself. Get ready for His coming. He is love
King David was also an adulterer….
Thank you for summarizing the facts of MLK’s apostasy. I’ve read about this in several different places over the years but the basic facts from all sources are consistent with your analysis: MLK denied the essential truths of Christianity and so cannot be considered as a Christian in any meaningful sense of the word. His personal morality was consistent with his denial of the faith.
However, there also seems to be an unstated presupposition that even though MLK personally was a degenerate apostate, nevertheless, Christians should celebrate his cause. That thinking permeates modern society and is a twisted alloy of marxism and radical egalitarianism. There is nothing virtuous or righteous in integration of schools or other social institutions. MLKs “civil rights” movement was instructed by marxism and driven by envy. Looking back on 50+ years of integration reveals a trail of intensified racial animosity today vs the pre-Civil Rights era, the destruction of the middle class black community, particularly black owned small businesses and disintegration of black families since they’ve been herded onto Uncle Sam’s plantation.
Discerning Christians rightly recognize MLK was not a Christian. That same discernment reveals that the civil rights movement was also destructive of Christian society and a platform of evil fruit born of evil intent.
Thank you for your comment. My purpose in this article was quite narrow, and did not include evaluating Dr. Kings positions. There were clearly statements he made that were very true, but my purpose wasn’t to either endorse or condemn his movement as a whole.
I find incredible this comment on integration: “There is nothing virtuous or righteous in integration of schools or other social institutions.”
I am not familiar with Dr. King’s earlier writings, but I am familiar with his later writings and his application of God’s Word. They are grounded in God’s truth. Dr. King’s legacy, though stained by sin, is a witness to God’s love and miraculous power to impact our world.
Do any of us want to be remembered for things we said years ago or by our shortcomings? MLK confessed and believed (Romans 10:9). We do not know if others are truly saved out not (1 Corinthians 4:5).
Thank you for allowing me to comment.
I laughed at the stupidity of this article. It’s like asking if the Pope or the priest is catholic. Yes of course they are. MLK was more a Christ follower than most Christians I know, especially the Christian Nationalist Evangelicals that worship a dead liberal social justice warrior on Sunday but hate them every other day of the week. So MLK has some affairs? we all sin. So did King David and King Solomon, Donald Trump, the evangelicals king. The priests that rape boys are way worse than that. The bible condemns pedophilia. Look at you saying because MLK talked about mosses rather than Jesus Death it makes him not a christian. What does Jesus death and forgiveness of sins have to do with being liberated from racism and slavery like the Israelites and instead having everyone treated equally instead of based on National origin, skin color etc.
Dustin, what does being liberated from racism and slavery have to do with where a person will spend eternity? King rightly called America as a nation to repent of racism and inequality but did he, as a so called “minister of the gospel” ever tell individuals to repent of their personal sins and to place their faith in Christ who died and rose again? We know he didn’t because when he was around 12 years old he told his Sunday school teacher that he didn’t believe that Jesus rose from the tomb. Later, in a liberal seminary he made it clear that he rejected the basic teachings of the New Testament such as the virgin birth, the atonement through Christ’s death, the resurrection, the return of Christ, etc, etc. MLK was no more a born again Christian than his Hindu hero Gandhi was. His reported moral failings only confirmed that his religion was a mere facade he assumed to promote his political agenda. BTW, God does not grade on the curve. The heinous deeds of Roman Catholic priests do not make King’s adulterous sins against God, his wife and his followers somehow less evil.
Thank you for your detailed studies and writings. Few people today can rightly divide the Word of God like you do and apply it to such a popular figure as MLK. Many are still being deceived by him now evenvthough he is gone. And by many others who are Christian in name only.
Thank you for the kind words.
GOD evermore Meaty Wisdom/KINGDOM of HEAVEN PEDAGOGY Enlightens one, outside their “Traditions of Man” Pedagogy/Cerebral Self-Calulation Ethos Box… Though quite unsettling to do so but GREATER MEATY REWARDS in the KINGDOM of HEAVEN, per JESUS Pedagogy Teachings, as exemplified in St. Matthews 5:18-20 about GOD’s Covenant Laws of the 10 Commandments & “thee Golden Rules” as wellas GOD’s Creation Covenanting Levetical Festivals — which have Skant -applied- KINGDOM of HEAVEN PEDAGIGY in the Traditions of Mankind Pedagogical Teachings, of most Churches, Christian Schools and housholds still today…
…Quite research lacking …your Pedagogy on MLK’s Liberal Theology Leanings :
….Prior to his initial introduction to the ideas of Niebuhr, King ‘‘was absolutely convinced of the natural goodness of man and the natural power of human reason’’ (Papers 5:419). Niebuhr, however, challenged the usefulness of moral idealism in struggles for social justice. In line with this thinking, King also appreciated Niebuhr’s interpretation of original sin, writing: ‘‘His theology is a persistent reminder of the reality of sin on every level of man’s existence’’ (King, 99). King wrote several papers on Niebuhr in the course of his doctoral studies at Boston University and determined that Niebuhr’s thought was ‘‘the necessary corrective of a kind of liberalism that too easily capitulated to modern culture’’ (Papers 2:278)…
… MLK was quite critical of Paul Tillich:
… he did not substantively study Tillich’s work until choosing his dissertation topic, ‘‘A Comparison of the Conceptions of God in the Thinking of Paul Tillich and Henry Nelson Wieman,’’ in early 1953. In his dissertation, King expressed disagreement with both men’s disavowal of personalism, and criticized Tillich’s abstract notion of God as ‘‘little more than a sub-personal reservoir of power’’ and ‘‘a pure absolute devoid of consciousness and life’’ (
2:534). King did, however, praise both men’s ‘‘cry against the humanism of our generation … that has had all too much faith in man and all too little faith in God’’ (
…Also Quite research lacking …your Pedagogy on genaralizing Liberstion Theology… Heartful Liberation Theology is about Proclamationary, Buffering against/Casting out the Superiority Self-Image Complexes Germinating and Inferiority Self-Image Complexes, Germinating impact of below still genrationally Deep Rooted Theological Pedagogy:
…ACTUAL 1800s BLACK SLAVE BIBLE –Select parts of the holy Bible, for the use of the negro slaves, in the British West Indies Island & USA–957 Bible Chapters Omitted That Could Incite Slaves To Seek Liberty– :
…Heartful Liberation Theology by such luminaries as Richard Allen in the 1700s, Harriet Tubman, Charles Mason, William Seymour, Deotis Roberts, Bishop Joseph A. johnson and many other Religious Luminaties not known outside the African-American Communities and their community media outlets….
PEACE, Derrick “klutch” Cargle
a Thirster for the Greater Meaty Awards of JESUS Kingdom of Heaven- St. Matthew 5:18-20- thee Pearls of Great Price… JESUS said “Many are called but Few Chosen…
Thank you for your comment, and for including arguments from sources, which many other comments on this page fail to do. I haven’t read Kings work enough to give an an extensive response. What I would say is that just because King disagreed with certain elements of liberal theology in his day doesn’t mean that he believed in orthodox theology. His statements on elements in that question seem quite clear and unrefuted to me.
O don’t know much about his history, but I read where he translated the new testament from Greek to German in a short space of time and other languages! That makes him Christian to me.
This was quite a surprise to me. I always thought of him as a Christian hero, a gentle and peaceful minister of the gospel. I didn’t realize he denied the bible and the sacrifice of Jesus for his sins. It is a sad thing when people deny their only means of salvation, no matter how much good they do in the world. It all boils down to pride and a spirit of self sufficiency.
Let’s play a “what if” game. What if you don’t care whether the Last Supper really did take place but you are committed to Christ and his teachings and truly LOVE people in the way he asked us to. What if you don’t think that Jesus actually walked on water but you believe that you can be saved by being obedient his commandments. What if you believe in them and practice them, but being human, are not perfect and fall victim to sin at points in your life. What if you don’t really care if Jesus was a virgin birth but you see him as the Son of God. There are many people in the world who hold these views and who are deeply committed to the ways of Christianity.
What REALLY makes you a Christian…and who gets to determine whether you are or not?
Judge not, lest ye be judged.
If you continue to follow that line of reasoning, what if there’s someone who says they are deeply committed to the ways of Christianity but doesn’t believe that Jesus is the Son of God? What if they don’t believe he was real a historical figure? What if they don’t accept all of his teachings, but they like a few of them, but still want to be called a Christian? Who is going to stop them?
I am not putting myself in a position to decide who is and who is not a Christian. Ultimately, as a Christian, I believe that God, who had revealed himself in the Bible, decides who is and who is not a Christian. There are some very basic criteria, both theological and practical, that we could look at to determine that, like 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.
The point of this post was to present some historical information that many Christians would find very relevant in answering the question the title posits. Ultimately this isn’t intended to be a theology blog. If that’s what you’re looking for I’ll refer you here:
Thank you for sharing this! MLK was a great man who died for a real cause. You’ll never understand this mans life or what he went through, all you’ll be able to do is point the finger. He’s gone. His life was sacrificed for many, he was murdered, probably by other Christians, and he was non violent. What have you done? Why are we reading about what happened in his private life? What have you done in the dark? Please tell.. He was going to die no mater what he preached. He was a black man trying to help others during a time when white people were treacherous. No “Gospel” was going to save him!
MLK was just one instance of blacks being propped up by bolsheviks as a psyop to be used as politcal fodder. He was one of several civil rights activists trained at the Highlander Folk School which was closed for being a known communist training school (say what you will of “Hoover’s FBI”), and also had links to Union seminary school of liberal christian theology and ties to the Jewish thelogical seminary of America. MLK was deemed a plagiarist by the board at Boston University. His real name was Michael King, renaming him Martin Luther was an attempt to defame the name of the leader of the Protestant Reformation.
blacks represent 13% of the American population, but commit over 57% of violent crime.
January 16th is James Earl Ray Day
Dear Mr. “a dude”
“blacks represent 13% of the American population, but commit over 57% of violent crime.” Your point being?
We all sin, and no man is perfect. So I ask have you done anything but point out flaws in a man’s character. A man that did great things for his people and others. As did Moses and several other men in the bible. we don’t know what there short comings were. Instead of appreciating a man for all the good he’s done you slander his name, in which he can’t defend himself. people lie, and if the F.B.I had anything it would have been released a long time ago. Sounds like another way to tare down another black.man. Kick rocks with your fake **** gossip. I am ****!
It’s sad how many people defend someone who denied the basics of the faith. No one is saying he didn’t do some good things. The point is according to the teachings of scripture, the tree wasn’t bearing the fruit of a Spirit filled life.
Jesus was clear about believing in Him and following Him. I don’t get the luxury of making Jesus who I want Him to be.
I can’t call my dog Jesus then say I believe in Jesus and claim to be a Christian.
How many people would hire someone who didn’t know how to fix a car but called himself a mechanic? Or go to a doctor for surgery who wasn’t a doctor (but he calls himself one)?
Thank you Joshua for a well written article. Sometime truth hurts.