Wokism has become a giant bulldozer seeking to crush everything in its path. It has captured the civil government, educational institutions, the military, corporations, banks, media, and even has made major inroads into the church. It comes like a cancer (posing as a medicinal cure) eating away everything that sustains life and peace. In some churches, it is considered a legitimate tool to help us understand sin, but it only creates hatred and destruction.
Wokism is a word that should no longer need a definition. It has become part of our every-day language. Wokism is the application of a new religion which I call Neo-Marxism (some call it Cultural Marxism). Equity, Racism, Social Justice, ESG, LGBTQ, Oppressor, Oppressed—these are all part of the definition. If you need someone to define it for you, then you are way behind the curve. See my book Critical Race Theory and the Church – A Concise Analysis.
I call Neo-Marxism a religion because it is a belief in ultimate values that are diametrically opposed to the Christian Faith. It is more than just a political theory or a political movement. Like Roman Catholicism of the Reformation, or like Mormonism in the early 19th century, it is a threat to the very essence of the Christian Faith. It may not use the Bible as a reference point, but that makes it even more dangerous. It may not refer to some supreme being outside of our experience, but it is nonetheless a religion. Any philosophy with ultimate values apart from Christ is a religion.
Wokism has become a giant bulldozer seeking to crush everything in its path. It has captured the civil government, educational institutions, the military, corporations, banks, media, and even has made major inroads into the church. It comes like a cancer (posing as a medicinal cure) eating away everything that sustains life and peace. In some churches, it is considered a legitimate tool to help us understand sin, but it only creates hatred and destruction. Either become a cheerleader for this new religion or be cancelled. Those are becoming your two choices. Maybe you can remain silent for now, but that may soon come to an end.
And if your church has not bought into this new religion, then probably it is choosing to remain quiet. There is no warning coming from America’s pulpits. As the watchman on the wall in the Book of Ezekiel, the enemy is just outside the gates, but the watchman gives no warning.
Modern America reminds me of Germany during the rise and reign of Adolph Hitler. Tyranny does not rise overnight. It eats away slowly. Few German Christian leaders (mainly Lutherans) stood up to Hitler. They re-interpreted his beliefs as consistent with the Christian Faith. They accommodated his new religion out of fear. They accepted whatever came down from the top, no matter how heavy-handed.
However, like Nazism, Neo-Marxism is slowly eating away at our culture and taking advantage of (or creating) very angry people—all in the name of restoring justice and equity. Death is slowly moving into our culture and our Christian leaders are silent. A fire is raging outside the front door of our house, and we are inside trying to decide what color to paint the living room. We still teach with precision on the major cults of the past, but alarmingly we avoid the beast that is a threat to our people every day of their lives. Neo-Marxism is the new elephant in the room.
We take pride in all the programs of the church, and we listen to expository sermons every week, but if we do not educate our people (especially our young people) about wokism, and if we do not give them the tools to fight against it, then we are like the watchman on the wall who has not fallen asleep, but is just too busy playing games on his iphone. It is time for preachers in America to shout from the rooftops that the enemy is outside the gates.
I listen to a lot of sermons, but I have yet to hear a sermon on the threat of wokism to the Christian Faith and to the Church. I hear about it from conservative news outlets and from scholars like Victor Davis Hanson, but never from the pulpit. That makes me very sad. Very sad indeed!
Larry E. Ball is a retired minister in the Presbyterian Church in America and is now a CPA. He lives in Kingsport, Tenn.