In light of the recent Chick-Fil-A controversy I’ve been thinking a lot about Christianity and it’s role in society. As easy as it is to get caught up in discussions of free speech and religious persecution, there’s a far more important issues that seem to be getting ignored. It’s not about what other people are doing or saying about Christianity: it’s about who was as Christians are.
Ephesians 5 is a popular passage because it tells wives to submit to their husbands. Yet here we find the foundation for instructions not just to spouses but to families, masters, and slaves. It’s about Christian identity and what a Christian’s role in society is based on. Do you know what these passages say? They say “Live as children of light (for the fruit of light consists of goodness and righteousness and truth).” They say, “Be careful then how you live.” They say “Always give thanks to God for everything.” That’s all in the first few paragraphs, where it also commands Christians to “walk in the way of love”.
It’s interesting, because as much as most people know that the Bible commands wives to submit, the overall tone of the passage is passed over. It doesn’t just say “Women, BOW DOWN!”. It tells husbands to love their wives as God loved the church (oh, and ladies- submit some, m’kay?) and it tells slaves to honor their masters, but it reminds masters that God is the master of all. I mean, pretty much it says, “hey, that’s actually God’s slave. So you aren’t the boss.” Just like it tells women, “submit to your husband as you would to God, because after all he is expected to live every day as a mission for your benefit.”
You may be wondering right about now why I would be writing about any of this in a post that starts out with Chick-Fil-A.
It’s because we’ve forgotten who our identity as Christians comes from.
Our Salvation doesn’t make us the boss. We aren’t in charge. Our role in this world is one of sacrifice, abandon, and honor towards the real master. Our calling isn’t to beat the world into shape, it is to honor all others above ourselves with the true understanding that God is the Lord, King, and Judge of all. He’s the redeemer of husband and wife, of child and parent, of slave and of master. He has commanded us to live as light in this world and He reminds us that the fruit of light is goodness and righteousness. If we live as the light, we won’t have to beat anyone else down to make righteousness prosper in our wake. Obedience, conviction, and submission to God are the natural impulse when touched by a true and redeeming love. If we spread that love with every day of our lives people will be drawn to God like fish to a stream. Since God’s spirit is the only spirit that can birth conviction, redemption, and change, if we live every day in love we do not need to become distracted by the sinfulness in this world. By loving our neighbors, we will have already done everything in our power to win their redemption.
It’s just that simple. The fruit of light is goodness and righteousness. We produce righteousness if we walk in love.
So why does Chick-Fil-A taste like dust and ashes in the mouths of my gay friends? Can someone please explain to me how the special sauce of condemnation is supposed to redeem them?
For the life of me, I can’t seem to understand the Christian point of view on this one.
Ephesians 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
Our fight is not with flesh and blood. It isn’t with society or the evils of society. It certainly isn’t with the gays. It isn’t with people who boycott our establishments. It’s with the powers of darkness and the spiritual forces of evil- and do you know where the first battleground is?
Look in the mirror.