40+ Best Jesus and the Disinherited Quotes by Howard Thurman

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We have compiled a list of quotes from Jesus and the Disinherited by Howard Thurman for you to read.


I. Jesus—An Interpretation

“It is exceedingly difficult to hold oneself free from a certain contempt for those whose predicament makes moral appeal for defense and succor. “

“What are you doing over here. I know what the newspapers say about a pilgrimage of friendship and the rest, but that is not my question. This is what I mean. “

“It is necessary to examine the religion of Jesus against the background of his own age and people, and to inquire into the content of his teaching with reference to the disinherited and the underprivileged. “

“It is utterly fantastic to assume that Jesus grew to manhood untouched by the surging currents of the common life that made up the climate of Palestine. “

“If you see a little American boy and you ask him what he wants, he says, ‘I want a penny to put in my bank or to buy a whistle or a piece of candy. “

“Resistance or not to resist. But each of these alternatives has within it secondary alternatives. “

“Resistance may be overt action, or it may be merely mental and moral attitudes. For the purposes of our discussion resistance is defined as the physical, overt expression of an inner attitude. “

“The longer the mood is contemplated, the more insistent the appeal. “

“Wherever his spirit appears, the oppressed gather fresh courage; for he announced the good news that fear, hypocrisy, and hatred, the three hounds of hell that track the trail of the disinherited, need have no dominion over them. “

“During the days of slavery, she said, the master’s minister would occasionally hold services for the slaves. Old man McGhee was so mean that he would not let a Negro minister preach to his slaves. Always the white minister used as his text something from Paul. “

“It would be grossly misleading and inaccurate to say that there are not to be found in the Pauline letters utterances of a deeply different quality—utterances which reveal how his conception transcended all barriers of race and class and condition. “

“The result has been a tendency to be their own protectors, to bulwark themselves against careless and deliberate aggression. “

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II. Fear

“Fear is one of the persistent hounds of hell that dog the footsteps of the poor, the dispossessed, the disinherited. “

“The whole experience attacks the fundamental sense of self-respect and personal dignity, without which a man is no man. “

“The disinherited experience the disintegrating effect of contempt in some such fashion as did Goliath. “

“The threat of violence within a framework of well-nigh limitless power is a weapon by which the weak are held in check. “

“The fear that segregation inspires among the weak in turn breeds fear among the strong and the dominant. This fear insulates the conscience against a sense of wrongdoing in carrying out a policy of segregation. “

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,because he hath anointed me …to preach deliverance to the captives,and recovering of sight to the blind,to set at liberty them that are bruised,to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor. “

“Therefore take no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. “

“When this is accomplished, relaxation takes the place of the churning fear. “

“A man’s conviction that he is God’s child automatically tends to shift the basis of his relationship with all his fellows. “

“The psychological effect on the individual of the conviction that he is a child of God gives a note of integrity to whatever he does. “

“A great and central assurance will cause parents to condition their children to high endeavor and great aspiring, and these in turn will put the child out of the immediate, clawing reaches of the tense or the sustained negations of his environment. “

“From my privately published volume of poems, The Greatest of These, p. 3. “

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III. Deception

“Through the ages, at all stages of sentient activity, the weak have survived by fooling the strong. “

“The question of deception is not academic, but profoundly ethical and spiritual, going to the very heart of all human relations. For it raises the issue of honesty, integrity, and the consequences thereof over against duplicity and deception and the attendant consequences. “

“The fact is, in any great struggle between groups in which the major control of the situation is on one side, the ethical question tends to become merely academic. “

“The penalty of deception is to become a deception, with all sense of moral discrimination vitiated. “

“There is no point at which mere moral appeal makes sense. Whatever moral sensitiveness to the situation was present at some stage in the life of the individual has long since been atrophied, due to betrayal, suffering, or frustration. “

“Until that center is shifted, nothing real can be accomplished. “

“Speak the truth, without fear and without exception, and see everyone whose work is related to your purpose. You are in God’s work, so you need not fear man’s scorn. “

“In the presence of an overwhelming sincerity on the part of the disinherited, the dominant themselves are caught with no defense, with the edge taken away from the sense of prerogative and from the status upon which the impregnability of their position rests. They are thrown back upon themselves for their rating. “

IV. Hate

“Hatred cannot be defined. It can only be described. “

“An unsympathetic understanding tends to express itself in the active functioning of ill will. “

“Because they are despised, they despise themselves. “

“When self-realization is established as a rallying point for the personality, the tremendous source of dynamic energy provided can be a source of great strength. “

“Hatred becomes a device by which an individual seeks to protect himself against moral disintegration. “

“It is not difficult to see how hatred, operating in this fashion, provides for the weak a basis for moral justification. “

“Hatred destroys finally the core of the life of the hater. “

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V. Love

“The religion of Jesus makes the love-ethic central. This is no ordinary achievement. “

“To love such an enemy requires reconciliation, the will to re-establish a relationship. It involves confession of error and a seeking to be restored to one’s former place. “

“It was they who became the grasping hand of Roman authority, filching from Israel the taxes which helped to keep alive the oppression of the gentile ruler. “

“It would matter not how much the individual wished to be regarded for himself alone or to be permitted to disassociate himself from all the entangling embarrassments of his birthright; the fact remained always present. He was a Roman and had to bear on his shoulders the full weight of that responsibility. “

“The experience of the common worship of God is such a moment. It is in this connection that American Christianity has betrayed the religion of Jesus almost beyond redemption. “

“There are approximately 8,000,000 Protestant Negroes. About 7,500,000 are in separate Negro denominations. “

“Once an attack is made on the enemy status and the individual has emerged, the underprivileged man must himself be status free. “

“The fact that he had come to Jesus was in itself evidence to warrant the conclusion that he had put aside the pride of race and status which would have caused him to regard himself as superior to Jesus. “

“Since an army is a part of the pretensions of the modern state, the state’s using it to perpetuate the system of segregation is mere stupidity. “

“The crucial question is, Can this attitude, developed in the white heat of personal encounter, become characteristic of one’s behavior even when the drama of immediacy is lacking. I think so. “

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