What The Phil Robertson Duck Dynasty Uproar Really Means For Sincere, Bible-Believing Christians

 

 

I’m pretty sure by now you are sick of hearing about the Duck Dynasty controversy that erupted this past week after comments by the Ducky Dynasty patriach Phil Robertson came to light.  Phil made some comments to GQ magazine saying that marriage should be between a man and wife and that the alternative lifestyle is a sin.

The praise and backlash has been swift and unrelenting as those who agree with Phil has  come to his aid while others who disagree with his views have unleashed all kinds of vitriol.

As I’ve reflected over the hoopla the past few days I was struck by some of the things this entire controversy means for christians.  Especially christians in the post modern age.  And the biggest issue this uproar has brought to light for Christians in our time is this: what to do with the hard sayings of scripture.

 

The truth of the matter is that both Jesus and scripture has some hard sayings that we as Christians know is hard for the world to hear.  And this puts us as conservative, bible-believing christians in a difficult position.  Because we want to be loving, we don’t want to be judgmental or bigots or whatever else.  But in our attempt to be all these things there are just certain teachings in scripture that no matter how we try to package or coat it, just will not be received well by those who have different views than the ones expressed in the sacred text.

Did we forget that this why Jesus was crucified by the jews of his day.  Because he made statements that to them were just blatantly unacceptable.  And therein lies the rub.  And we see this issue in the life of Jesus, there’s the gracious side of Jesus that we see in his dealings with the woman at the well in John 4 and his dealings with Mary Magdalene etc. but then there are also his hated statements that “he and the father are one.”  And that he has the power to forgive sins.  These were the hard sayings of Christ that got him crucified.

 

And the challenge for us as Christians is the same one faced by Christ.  In that we do want to be loving and gracious and all those good things, but also we have to stand by and affirm even the harder parts of scripture.  And we should be very careful that in our attempts to make Christianity attractive and palatable to non-Christians we don’t also reject or avoid the hard sayings of scripture, because to me that would be not honest.

Any person with even just a basic knowledge of scripture cannot deny that scripture calls alternative lifestyles a sin.  That’s a hard saying of scripture that we just cannot get away from no matter how gracious or loving we long to be.

And here’s where it gets difficult because it means that if we stand in unwavering obedience to the truths taught in scripture we as Christians will be hated.  And no matter how patient and “seeker sensitive” and non-judgemental we want to be there’s just no way around that reality that we will be hated for remaining committed to the harder tenets taught in scripture.  And unfortunately the only way to avoid this hate is by distancing ourselves and essentially reject the hard sayings of scripture to appease non-Christians.  And there are many streams in Christianity who have already done that, who’ve already rejected the basic teachings on scripture in order to make christianity more appealing to non-Christians.  But for true, bible-believing Christians that is just not an option.  And unfortunately because of this we should not be afraid to be hated.  Because that’s the price of holding firm to the faith once and for all delivered to the saints.

In regard to this tension of our time, Jesus’s words in John 15 vs 18-21 is as relevant and applicable as ever:

“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.  If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.  If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also.   They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the one who sent me.”

And while it may be hard to do this in our generation we can rest assured that there is a reward waiting for all those who have remained faithful.

Matthew 10: 32 reminds of this reward:

“Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven.  But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.

“Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.  For I have come to turn

“‘a man against his father,
a daughter against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—
     a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’

“Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.  Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.

 

On which side will you be?

 

 

 

 

 

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