Recently I read material which surprised and even shocked me: The caste system continues to be enforced in India, despite alleged advancements in human rights. That’s not the shocking part, though. You EXPECT sinners to act like sinners. Sinners will always find loopholes in the law, and human rights abuses will go on under the noses of sinful officials who look the other way rather than offend the finer sensibilities of the aristocracy.
The real paradox is this: A great many “churches”, especially Roman Catholic Churches, condone the Caste system in India, or at least take a passive view of it. People at the bottom of society’s heap, the Dalits, or so-called Untouchables, find no REAL change in status when they accept “Christianity” through the ministry of churches which raise no voice of opposition to the evil caste system of India. Many Dalit Christians continue to live separate lives, forbidden to associate on equal terms with their “Higher Caste” brothers and sisters. The Hindu caste system is predicated upon the belief in many incarnations (rebirths) of all living things. The lowly worm you see may be a reincarnation of someone’s grandmother who is being punished for past misbehavior in her previous life. That silly monkey doing cartwheels in the zoo could be your great grandpa who pulled mean practical jokes on people and now the Law of Karma (you reap what you sow) has pulled a mean one on him to teach him a lesson Animals walking down the street could be housing wayward human spirits. That’s why so many Indians are vegetarian.
According to the Hindu caste system, Dalits are the lowest form of human life (if they’re considered human at all). They must have sinned terribly in their previous life to be reborn as social lepers condemned to a lifetime of hauling garbage and cleaning out the septic tanks of respectable caste families. According to the doctrine of Karma, Dalits must be paying for sins in a previous incarnation. That Untouchable man cooking his dinner in a garbage dump just might be the reincarnation of a mean landlord who kicked families out of their apartment in the days of Julius Caesar.
No pain, no gain. Spare the rod, spoil your evil ancestor. So it follows that you really do Dalits no favor by being kind to them or lifting them out of their degradation. Dalit girls are routinely attacked by “clean” caste boys without fear of retribution. I guess the girls’ assailants are proud of themselves for helping their Karma god get his vengeance on defenseless girls who were horse thieves in Arizona 200 years ago.
The rationale behind the Karma doctrine is similar to the Catholic doctrine of Purgatory, which is very unscriptural and denies the sufficiency of the sufferings of Christ to atone for sinners! You don’t re-incarnate in Catholicism. You simply go to “HELL LITE” to be barbequed for your sins a few hundred years or so, till God is satisfied that you’ve covered that part of your sin bill the crucified Christ failed to finish paying 2000 years ago. Instead of being jabbed in the backside with a devil’s pitchfork until the year 2500, a Hindu who sows hatred and cruelty expects to reap a rebirth as a cockroach other people step on. I wonder how bad you have to sin to be reborn in the year 2100 as a Dalit sewer technician?
Without delving into the complex subdivisions of the Hindu Caste System, here are the main categories:
Brahmins-Priestly class-the privileged aristocracy
Kshatriyas-Warrior Caste-high positions in military and government
Vaisyas-farmers, artisans and merchants
Sudras-Unskilled manual laborers-ditch diggers, domestic servants, etc.
Untouchables (“unclean” outcasts from society)-work as trash collectors, sewer cleaners, street sweepers, garbage scavengers, etc.
Last and definitely least, the Dalits, better known as UNTOUCHABLES! They aren’t even classed as a caste because they’re OUT-CASTES! Dalits serve as a test of love for every professing Christian in India. Fail this test and you’ve made an F in Jesus’ most basic commandment: LOVE ONE ANOTHER AS YOURSELF, even going so far as to love your enemies. The only sin the Dalits have committed to merit the hatred they’ve received is being born into a bigoted environment and being assigned to the bottom of the heap by people more powerful than themselves.
I read about a poor little Dalit girl who did all the dirty work for an upper caste family. She accidentally touched a cooking pot. The mistress of the house beat the child to death for “contaminating” their meal. This poor little girl must have been immediately ushered into heaven as an innocent who never reached the age of accountability. Like the story of Lazarus and the rich man in Luke 16, the tables will surely be turned in eternity if the little girl’s murderer doesn’t repent. The poor rejected child will be comforted in a place of love while the “high caste” woman who killed her will be rejected by God and consigned to the torments of hell, where ALL murderers have their portion (Rev.21:8).
Satan has his counterfeits for every Biblical doctrine. Hinduism teaches “being born again” physically via many incarnations. Jesus teaches resurrection of the SAME person after death, but only a SPIRITUAL rebirth. That is the only rebirth which sets man free from the penalty of sin and brings him into a new relationship with God (John 3:3,7; I Pet.1:23). Hindus teach physical rebirth into yet another sinful human identity. In order for people to be born again spiritually as sons and daughters of God, they must first admit to Christ that they are an unclean sinner in need of His forgiving grace. It is a huge step of humility for a “clean caste” Hindu or any other proud individual to admit to God they are in need of His mercy and washing in the precious Blood of Christ.
I remember riding to church with a friends as a young girl. When the driver got out of the car to go speak to someone, I sat in the car alone with this elderly woman who shared a prayer request with me: “Pat, please pray the Lord won’t let any n-----s move into my neighborhood. I’m really worried about that.” Being so much younger than her, I didn’t want to rebuke her, I just tried to change the subject. How unwilling so many professing believers are to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes and imagine how horrible it must be to be on the receiving end of racism for a whole lifetime! Within the heart of sinful man is the yearning to be on the top of the pile and to look down on others. Racial or cultural oppression is particularly loathsome to God when people justify it for religious reasons.
Here are just a few ways condoning the caste system contradicts God’s Word to Christian believers:
1. The Caste System denies God’s Good News that if ANY MAN (regardless of social position) be in Christ he is a New Creature. Old things have passed away and ALL THINGS have become new (2 Cor.5:17).
2. The Caste System teaches gradual perfection over many incarnations until we reach Nirvana, and those caught up in a bad Karma incarnation must suffer to earn advancement. It denies I John 3:2: Beloved, NOW are we the sons of God.
3. The Caste System denies God’s Word which states that we should NOT call any man common or unclean (Acts 10:28).
4. The Caste System clashes with James chapter 2, which preaches against class divisions in God’s churches.
5. The Caste System violates Proverbs 14:21 which warns that whoever despises (looks down on as inferior) his neighbor sins against God.
6. The Caste System is hostile to the spirit of Christ Who touched even unclean lepers and made them whole (Matt.8:2-4).
7. The Caste System denies that Christ has broken down the dividing wall separating people in order to create one Body unified in Him (Eph.2:14).
8. The Caste System denies that Christian Dalits are clean enough to be the Temple of the Holy Ghost, just like any other Christian believer (I Cor.6:19).
9. The Caste System denies the sufficiency of the blood of Christ to make people clean in the sight of God. Instead, it emphasizes self-effort and EARNING self-betterment through patient suffering through many miserable incarnations.
10. The Caste System denies the priesthood of ALL believers in Christ (I Pet.2:5,9). Indian Christians who tolerate caste discrimination in their churches and insist only Brahmins can be priests are denying the Word of God and mixing heathen doctrine with church practices. God said “Learn NOT the way of the heathen” (Jere.10:2).
11. The Caste System denies that ALL believers in Christ are made one Spirit with Him (I Cor.6:17). If any believer is joined to Christ as one Spirit, then it follows that whatever you do to that believer you also treat Christ the same way. The Hindu Caste System is an abomination in the sight of God and He will not count any believer as blameless who clings to it or supports it in any way.
12. The Caste System is one of the most sinful manifestations of human pride. God is able to abase those who walk in pride (Dan.4:37).
Other Scriptures Which Touch on Untouchable and Caste Issues (comments added).
Matt.25:40: And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
I John 3:15: Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.
Luke 14:10: But when thou art bidden (invited to a feast), go and sit down in the lowest room (humblest seat); that when he that bade thee cometh, he may say unto thee, Friend, go up higher: then shalt thou have worship in the presence of them that sit at meat with thee.
Verse 11: For whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.
Matt.19:30: But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first.
Mark 9:35: And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all.
John 9:1: And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth.
2 And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?
3 Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.
And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment (Heb.9:27).
The person who sins will die. The son will not bear the punishment for the father’s iniquity, nor will the father bear the punishment for the son’s iniquity; the righteousness of the righteous will be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked will be upon himself (Ezek 18:20).
And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common (Acts 10:15).
And hath raised us up together, and made us (ALL Christian believers) sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Eph.2:6).
Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him? (James 2:5)* * *The world chooses the rich and powerful and exalts them as kings. God chooses the lowly of the earth to represent Him.
Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited (Rom.12:16).
But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty (I Cor.1:27).* * *God isn’t impressed with social rank and fleshly strength or wealth. He delights in choosing empty vessels He can fill with more of Himself.
What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ (Phil.3:8). * * *You must be willing to THROW AWAY your most cherished false traditions in order to gain Christ.
You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord's table and the table of demons (I Cor.10:21).* * *Elements of other religions, including the caste system are not of God and don’t belong in His House. Christians can’t partake of the doctrine of demons and of Christ at the same time!
The ground is LEVEL at the foot of the cross. This doesn’t pander to some people’s pride, though. Any Christian who clings to the old ways of Hinduism is contradicting the Word of God and the Gospel taught by the early apostles. He is saying that the body of a Christian Dalit is NOT the Temple of the Holy Ghost because it is an unclean, untouchable thing.
The caste system caters to mankind’s sinful pride. It denys that ALL unsaved men are unclean in the sight of God (Isa.64:6). The REAL God and Creator of all men HATES pride and arrogance (Prov.8:13). Those who take pride in their high caste and despise others lower on the totem pole are an abomination to God and will suffer punishment for their pride (Prov.16:5).
Proclaim liberty to the captives
The Lord of Heaven would ask His prejudiced people: Were not each and every one of you filthy, unwashed BEGGARS when you first came to Me? (Read Ezekiel chapter 16). I could have shut the door on you and left you in your sins and uncleannesses. Instead, I washed you in the Fountain of My own blood, clothed you in My own spotless white righteousness and made you a New Creature in Christ Jesus. I made you royalty! My own son and daughter! Why then will ye deny that very same mercy to your brother or sister who appears in humble guise? Why will ye risk My wrath by breaking the bond of the fellowship of the Spirit of peace? Where is your COMPASSION, My people? Remember the Parable of the Unmerciful servant and how angry it made his lord to find out that this wretch refused to pass on the same kindness he himself had been shown (Matt.18:21-35).
Know ye not that you treat the Spirit of Christ disgracefully when you reject your “lower caste” brother or sister? This applies also to so-called aristocrats in Western nations rejecting believers from the “working class” or unemployed poor people. Don’t turn up your nose at that precious one whom I have redeemed in My own precious blood. Don’t you dare strip them of their New Identity in Christ as being members of My very own flesh and bones. Beat your fellow servants and I shall tear you asunder as HYPOCRITES when I return (Luke 12:45-46).! Think of cruel King Nebuchadnezzar who boasted of his somebody-ness and how all other kings were worms. Remember how I humbled even this mighty monarch and gave him the mind of a grass-eating beast to teach him humility till he acknowledged that only GOD deserved to be exalted (Daniel chapter 4). I didn’t need to reincarnate this fellow as a frog to teach him a lesson! That’s a doctrine of devils, just like the wicked caste system which oppresses the Dalit people.
Nebuchadnezzar suffered his chastisement and reformation all in the very same life! I am able to transform people into new creatures and make them clean without physical rebirth. Reincarnation is a lie of SATAN! Satan counterfeits everything I do to deceive men. My spiritual rebirth into the family of Christ is all I require. Class-conscious believers DENY the truth of the New Birth in others. Believers who persecute “lower-class” believers and call them unclean strip the Christ in them naked of dignity and honor. They put Christ to an open shame, crucifying Him afresh.
I have ripped down the walls dividing My people, and woe unto that man or woman who rebuilds them to pander to human pride! Those things highly esteemed in the sight of man are abhorrent to Me (Luke 16:15). My own Son said this Himself. If you cling to the old caste systems of society and bring them into the House of God, even out of fear of what your neighbors might say, you shall have to give an account for polluting My House with the Doctrines of Devils. Moreover, on the day you stand before Me to give an account of your wretched “Christian” life you will truly be ashamed before Me and My Holy Angels, and before the Son Who died a criminal’s death on the cross to redeem you. Thus saith the Lord unto His Indian caste-conscious Christians in particular, and unto all snobbish, uppity believers proud of their position in the natural order of things.