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Woke Theology

1.5 hrs
Starting at $13.33/month (billed annually)


Woke theology grew out of various twentieth-century social movements seeking to address racial injustice. Today, social justice warriors and critical race theory advocates have entwined the civil rights issues Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. advocated in the 1960s with the oppression people of color experienced in the nineteenth century and notable instances of police brutality in recent years.

Woke movement leaders have successfully paired Christian theology with justice-based liberation theology. The orthodox gospel has transitioned into a social gospel, which is more political than faith-based. Woke theology seeks to replace key elements of Church doctrine and shift social thinking from addressing sin to addressing social change.

Woke theology seeks to attack and replace tenants of evangelical theology. Via social media and protests, young people have put woke issues in the public square. The America of the early 19th century, primarily led by Christian white people, is viewed by woke culture leaders as evil and responsible for embracing and promoting a system unfair and unjust to black people.

According to Rev. James Cone, the founder of the Black Liberation theology movement, an arm of woke theology, "White-dominated [American] society" has "defined black as evil." The teaching divides more than unites and wrongly claims that Christians are to make lifting up "the poor and the weak" their primary concern.

What is Woke Theology?

Woke theology can be difficult to explain because the term woke has both positive and negative connotations; it has become both an ideology and a call to action to rectify perceived doctrinal errors and injustices. This article seeks to provide the reader with a better understanding of the term woke and its impact on the Church, Scripture, and world.

The Apostle Paul wrote to the Romans: “And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber…” (Romans 13:11).

In a positive sense, to be woke is to be awake—the directive is an extension of Jesus’ words: “blessed are your eyes for they can see” (Matthew 13:16). This can be opportunities to learn and serve, and, as the Spirit leads, boldly warn and exhort (Ezekiel 33:1-8). To be spiritually awake is to sense what the Lord is doing, to see how world events align with Bible prophecy, and to be in tune with the Spirit’s leading so we can identify and respond to sin in ways that are pleasing to God.

In a negative sense, woke theology asserts that Christians should recognize that severe societal injustices exist. Further, Christians are to realize that racial privilege contributes to these inequities and negatively impacts the environment, economy, educational opportunities, and social harmony. Woke theology views the Church as largely being responsible for these inequities.

What Does it Mean to Be Woke?

In today's world, woke is a broad term tied to addressing outcomes flowing from perceived long-standing oppression and racial inequities. More than just a pursuit of affirmative-action type initiatives whereby fairness in the housing, education, and employment sectors is sought, woke ideology seeks a comprehensive reset in the lens through which society identifies needs and processes values.

Under the umbrella of woke ideology, there are demands for fundamental changes in government, education, religion, environmental regulation, housing, and employment. Woke theology advocates for a new matrix to assess past and present laws and mores. Values and customs associated with America's Christian heritage or the beliefs of the historic Christian Church are likely to be viewed as leading facilitators of injustice and, therefore, are enemies of the state.

How Does Woke Theology Influence Churches?

Woke theology has impacted the church in three primary ways:  1) woke initiatives are emphasized over theological directives 2) supporting woke objectives is increasingly viewed as the means to save the earth and humanity and   3) woke theology compromises orthodox teaching.

1.  Woke theology has weakened the church. The enemy has used lofty-sounding words such as justice, fairness, and equity, to move the church from pursuing its biblical mandate. Rather than focusing on preaching the Gospel of Christ, much of the Church now focuses on preaching a social Gospel.

The objective of a social Gospel is to right perceived injustices in society. Though there are unjust systems that should be addressed, the Church's focus is to proclaim the salvation message of Christ. The church's objective is not to assure or impose equal rights, but rather to help people be in right relationship with God through Christ. As people embrace the teachings of Christ, social justice issues will be addressed.

2. Woke theology has become a kind of new religion that seeks to supplant the traditional Church. A focus on Christ is replaced with a focus on Climate Change. Salvation through Christ has been replaced with salvation through establishing new laws.

Scripture is viewed as antiquated and white people and fellow evangelicals are equated with white supremacy and racist oppressors. Woke theology dismisses key doctrines of the historic Christian Church and purports to have a plan to save humanity (and the earth) via new paradigms in education, justice, employment, and housing sectors.

3. Woke theology compromises orthodox Christian teachings. In the name of tolerance, enlightenment, and acceptance, a new moral standard (a new truth; a new god) has been introduced. In woke theology, there are many paths to God and heaven, truth is relative, white privilege and racism are systemic and the root of much evil today, science and the elite are the final authority, and our biological gender does not define our sex.

In woke theology, we serve others but live for self, we establish our own path and truth, and we reject the idea that there is one way (John 14:6) to God and heaven and that there is one name (Jesus) by which we can be saved (Acts 4:12).

What is the Critical Race Theory?

Critical Race Theory (CRT) is a relatively new term originating from a Social Research project at the University of Frankfurt, Germany, in the 1930s. The theory was brought to the United States in 1934 when many educators from Frankfurt, seeking to escape the Nazi regime, were welcomed by Columbia University's Teachers College in New York.

According to a research article by Kerby Anderson, published on, Critical Race Theory identifies and magnifies social inequities and argues that these "inequities [are] based on "class, race, gender or sexual orientation." In contrast, Cultural Marxism's narrower view argues that most inequities stem from wealth or class. 

Cultural Marxism urges the larger working class to rise up against their powerful but less numerous wealthy oppressors. CRT advocates a protracted approach to initiating change. One advocate, Antonio Gramsci, noted that transitioning power constructs to address social inequities requires time and what he called a "long march through the institutions."   

 Many note that hallmarks in today's CRT initiatives were born out of social movements driving changes in judicial, educational, and government systems in the 1960s. Though CRT goals may have been born out of noble aspirations, and some social changes designed to facilitate equal rights were long overdue, most Conservatives today see that CRT initiatives have had a detrimental impact on religion and culture in America. 

What is Justice in the Bible?

Biblical or divine justice is a concept likely beyond human ability to fully grasp. God’s justice flows from His eternal perspective and infinite wisdom, and blends grace, mercy, accountability and fairness. God, as supreme sovereign, has the authority to establish laws that all of creation must follow. The Lord leads with and extends love but demands accountability and adherence to the precepts He has written in stone, made known through the prophets, spoken through His Son, and written in our hearts (Hebrews 10:16). 

God permits freedom of choice but has made it known that every person’s choice has spiritual and eternal ramifications.

Biblical justice pertains primarily to the spiritual realm. Social justice pertains to the physical plane. Via biblical justice, God offers salvation, forgiveness, and redemption, not so we can escape an earthly criminal court, but so we will not stand condemned in His heavenly court. The primary focus of divine justice then, pertains to matters concerning heaven and hell.

The focus of biblical justice is not to see humanity set things right in their culture; it is about humans being set right with God (Romans 5). However, biblical justice does play a significant role on earth as the Bible includes divine commands for Christians to extend kindness, to live lives of integrity, and to love our neighbor as ourselves. 

There are eternal ramifications in the spiritual realm for those who choose not to follow these directives. God loves justice—and will hold all to account in His perfect time. Scripture notes: “Let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!” (Amos 5:24).

Interestingly, God does not view His law as a collection of independent statutes but rather, as one law—one statute—with one reward and one punishment. Humans either keep the law (the precepts) of God perfectly and in so doing, are judged innocent, or, if we have broken even one law, we are considered guilty of breaking them all and are condemned. The innocent are granted eternal life in heaven—the guilty are fated to hell. 

The standard seems severe; however, God made a striking provision to show the measure of His grace and love. About 2000 years ago, God sent His Son, Jesus, to earth to live, die, rise again, and make atonement for all who confess their sins to Him. 

Jesus offers hope to the guilty—those who sin. Jesus is our Advocate (1 John 2:1) and announces the charges that once condemned, are now dismissed in God's court. The means of forgiveness, redemption, and acquittal may seem strange to some, but humans are not well-positioned to question the way of God. 

What is Racial Justice?

Racial justice is an ideal that advocates that people of all races should be treated fairly and not be penalized or offered fewer opportunities in life because of the color of their skin. Racial justice advocates for equal opportunities and outcomes for equal effort.

Identifying the root causes of racial inequities is difficult yet essential in addressing racial justice issues. For example, studies show that Black people are more likely to serve time in prison than White people in America. Is this because of the color of their skin, or are other factors in play?

Many argue that current racial inequities result from a complex set of variables, including racial prejudice, economic opportunity, commitment to education, community values and expectations, family dynamics, culturally-targeted media messaging, the messaging of role models, and the religious teachings embraced by the community.

As the dynamics that impact racial justice are complex, broad approaches to bring about reform are seldom effective. And often, mandating change that benefits one race can inadvertently negatively impact another, which contradicts the stated goal of pursuing equity for all.

What is Racial Injustice?

Racial injustice is a broad term referencing systems that condone and perpetuate inequities based on race. Often, these inequities are advanced by politics and cultural mores with ingrained bias. 

Social justice warriors are not united in how to combat racial injustice. Many Christians respond by presenting reasoned arguments and holistic recommendations. Others target particular inequities such as home ownership. While some advocate peaceful means, others argue the time has come to implement change forcefully. 

 Racial injustice is a form of evil, and evil rarely steps back without pushback. However, a militant response to rectify inequities can be viewed as a threat by the masses. As a case in point, riots associated with Black Lives Matter have not advanced desired social change. 

The largely non-violent response by Black Christians under the leadership of Martin Luther King Jr., though slower, is considered by many to be more effective in achieving desired outcomes.

 Also undermining efforts to address racial injustices are efforts to equate equality with equity. Equality refers to equal outcomes when there is equal effort. Equity seeks to advantage particular groups to ensure equal outcomes despite unequal efforts. Wokeism advocates equity over equality and looking backward (reparations) over looking forward (for ways to reinforce the ideal of “liberty and justice for all”).

What is the Social Justice Movement?

In the best sense, a "social justice movement" is an effort to ensure that laws and systems do not show bias against an individual based on their gender or race. The phrase has broadened in recent years to include the ideas of equity, reparations, and imposing laws to ensure equal opportunity for individuals (regardless of lifestyle choices or embracing views that undermine the foundational principles a group or nation fought and died for, and hold dear). 

Christians see that racism is evil and believe the ideal of equality is noble, but predicated on the premise that efforts to pursue equality for all will benefit all—particularly the vulnerable. Therefore, initiatives in the name of social justice that negatively impact vulnerable groups, or undermine the values and principles a group or nation has historically held dear, should not be viewed as supporting the cause of social justice.  

A person holding the conditional view of social justice noted above believes sex offenders should not be afforded equal opportunity to teach children, transgender athletes should not compete on the same playing field as female athletes, a male rapist who identifies as a woman should not be given the opportunity to serve his sentence at a women's prison, and evangelical congregations should be free to exclude from consideration for hiring ministers who hold beliefs antithetical to biblical values. Conditional equality ensures that the vulnerable and timeless values are protected.

What Did Jesus Christ Say About Racism?

The term racism is not found in the New Testament. The biblical view is there is one race—the human race—and many ethnicities. Scripture clearly notes that God loves all (John 3:16) and Jesus came for (and died for) all (John 1:12). Christians, then, are to extend the love and kindness of God to all, and, as Jesus said, love our neighbor as we love ourselves (Mark 12:31).


Woke theology has corrupted many terms and causes. Equity is good in principle but can have a detrimental impact on vulnerable parties and dearly held beliefs. Righting social wrongs should be a concern of the Church, but focusing on social matters must not usurp the rightful spiritual priority of addressing matters of sin and faith.

Wokeism negatively impacts religion and culture. It seeks to restrict dialogue, vilify dissenters, supplant traditional values, and redefine key terms. Social justice is best achieved when sin is addressed, Scripture is our guide, and sacrificial love is extended to all.


Hot Topics

Part One

Gabe teaches how Woke Theology awakened: Christian Infiltration, Philosophical Crisis & Poverty in non European & North American countries.

Part Two

This lesson covers The New Hermeneutic. Gabriel shares Reinterpretations from these Interpreters: People, Community, Experience, & History

Part Three

Scripture and Liberation Two senses: Literal (exegesis), Spiritual (allegorical-Gospel, moral, anagogical-eternal significance)

Part Four

JESUS AND LIBERATION Gabriel teaches how Liberation Theology = Political Liberation whereas Christian Theology = Spiritual Liberation

Part Five

PAUL AND LIBERATION Gabriel contrasts Nature And Grace with a teaching from Romans 6:12-23

Part Six

JAMES AND JUSTICE Gabriel teaches through questions like "Doesn’t God love the poor?", and "What about Justice?"


Gabriel Finochio