It’s happened again. A well known Christian gives an interview and espouses his Christian worldview and then the world acts surprised and calls for his head. It happened with Dan Cathy of Chick-fil-A, with Stephen Broussard of ESPN, and now it has happened to Phil Robertson of A&Es mega-hit, “Duck Dynasty”. In an interview with GQ he is asked a loaded question about what he views as sinful, and like the hunter he is, he unloads a buckshot of an answer that covered a myriad of sins, including homosexuality.
Bring on the gay activist groups calling for a boycott. Watch the media bow to the pressure. Cue the Christians calling for their own boycott. Let the next battle of the culture war begin.
We’ve seen this movie before. We know how it ends. Both groups yelling at each other, calling each other names and standing further apart than they were before.
And this is why I have to bow out.
Don’t get me wrong. I support Phil Robertson’s right to say what he believes and I think it’s a shame that in the “Land of the Free” he can’t espouse his religious beliefs without being reprimanded. But there’s something bigger than rights at stake here. We as Christians must learn to see how ridiculous it is for us to complain about our rights being violated when we serve a God who gave up every right He had in order to save us.
So I’m giving up my right to be angry about this. Why? Because me getting upset that non-Christians are acting like they’re not Christian isn’t going to reach them with the Gospel. If we are to reach the world with the Good News of Jesus we as Christians must be willing to imitate our Savior and lay down our rights if it means we can better evangelize.
So I’m laying aside my “right” to be offended and angry. I’m laying down my right to feel jaded by the world. It’s just not worth alienating the very people I am called to love and reach with the message of Jesus. Even if it means I’m labeled as “soft” by my own tribe of Christians.
This doesn’t mean I don’t support the Robertsons or their beliefs. I do. Nor does this mean that I am backing down from what I believe. If asked my opinion on any number of social issues I will gladly give a Biblically sound answer. What it does mean is that I realize there are more important things to be passionate about, chief among them is loving people the way Jesus would love them, even if that means I must “duck” controversy once in a while in order to show that love.