Posts Tagged ‘ Cancel ’

Hypocritical Canceling of Cancel Culture?

I have heard several sources calling the call for cancellation of Cancel Culture hypocritical.

Firstly, what is Cancel Culture?

To briefly summarize, Cancel Culture is the trend – mostly by those on the political left and/or who follow/promote Critical Race Theory (CRT) and identity politics – to find out the sins of the past of individuals (especially famous or influential people) or business leaders and publicly shame them while calling for their removal from social media platforms, jobs/positions, and opportunities for advancement or funding.

Churches have not been immune to the movement, with many Pastors and leaders calling for reform of the church as a whole, that churches should apologize for past oppression (real, imagined, or overlooked) in church history against people of color (non-white, non-European) and even sacrificing biblical doctrines and truths for sake of reconciliation. The definition of the gospel has even been redefined from its historical, biblical understanding to appease the “woke” narrative.

Secondly, what is the perceived hypocrisy?

Due to more conservative Christians (not necessarily politically conservative, more those holding to more traditional definitions and understandings of the Bible, the Gospel, and the Church) saying Cancel Culture needs to be stopped, especially in the Church, those promoting CRT and IP (and some who are more middle of the road but want to show their empathy and compassion) say this is trying to apply Cancel Culture to Cancel Culture.

Who do we think we are to do such a thing?

A Defense? Definitely a Response

It does appear hypocritical to call for canceling Cancel Culture.

The one who states his case first seems right, until the other comes and examines him.

Proverbs 18:17, ESV

If anything, we are seeing a changing in beliefs on one side with a call to hold true on the other.

We have to ask: do we believe …

  1. … we are one human race or merely interconnected humans with different racial backgrounds? This is different than asking about ethnicities – different communities with similar culture and physical attributes – because it is a difference of believing we are one race or multiple, separate races (i.e. species versus breeds).
  2. … we are culpable for the sins of the past, whether our own or our ancestors? Do repentance and apologies actually count?
  3. … God changes or the Bible needs to be reinterpreted to fit the times? Is God different from the Old Testament to the New Testament (to today)?

1. Believing we are one human race.

We can see the effect evolutionary theory has had on society. (I am still surprised Charles Darwin hasn’t been canceled due to his racism, believing whites were the most advanced humans and blacks were the lowest.) Chuckie D. taught in his writings that lower human races (non-whites) were not worth as much as the higher races (especially whites).

How is the new cancel culture different? Whites are considered the worst of humanity while “minorities” – especially the more oppressed they have been – are more worthy, especially blacks having endured so much through slavery and Jim Crow-type laws.

This is still dividing us into different tiers – different kinds – of humans. Even though the Human Genome Project declared nearly 20 years ago that there indeed is only one human race. The Bible did say this since it was written …

And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth . . .
Acts 17:26a, ESV

2. Believing in the effects of repentance.

Cancel Culture demands reparations for the sins of ancestors. Because slavery and Jim Crow laws kept minorities down in the past, even if [most if not all] of those responsible are long dead and those of us living today decry the injustice of it, we must still atone for our ancestors’ sin.

Or perhaps we find old papers, articles, pictures, notes, or tweets that were offensive, the one who did/said these things must pay. Even if they have apologized time and again and publicly apologized and made amends, they must pay.

Again, evolutionary thinking is definitely affecting our thoughts, if this is how we respond. Why? Because it teaches that things today describe how things in the past worked. Or, as the Bible put it …

“For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation.”
2 Peter 3:4b, ESV

And this status of never changing is applied to us, too. Perhaps you have heard it said, “People don’t change.” We can see their hypocrisy here, too, because they demand people change to think the way they do. Yet, for those past sins, people still need to pay. Regardless of any repentance. Yet, we should forgive and establish room for growth. As the Bible says …

“Fathers shall not be put to death because of their children, nor shall children be put to death because of their fathers. Each one shall be put to death for his own sin.”
Deuteronomy 24:16, ESV

“Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him, and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.”
Luke 17:3-4, ESV

Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.
Ephesians 4:28, ESV

Believing God is the same.

Many giving in to Cancel Culture say things like God never condoning violence, unless He did in which case it is alright to do so. But only the oppressed can use violence. They often say there is a difference between the god of the Old Testament and the God of the New Testament, that Jesus never condoned the stuff of the Old Testament, which is why we are no longer under rules about slavery and homosexuality, because “Jesus never talked about it” or much of the OT stuff is not loving like Jesus.

Of course, that is if they even believe in God or the Bible.

And besides, God never cancels people.

If we point out He ordered the slaughter of the people living in the Promised Land, that either proves we don’t know what we’re talking about (see above) or that the Bible needs to be cancelled, too.

If we point out God the Holy Spirit striking down Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5, we are told we don’t really understand God.

Yet, we know He did these things. We know that …

“For I the Lord do not change . . .”
Micah 3:6, ESV

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
Hebrews 13:8, ESV

The Response: So, why is not hypocritical for Christians to try and “cancel Cancel Culture”?

Firstly, we remember that Christ has cancelled our sin. (As seen with Jesus forgiving the “sinful woman” and His taking of our sins.

Secondly, we are actually commanded to stand for truth and justice.

For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, being ready to punish every disobedience, when your obedience is complete.
2 Corinthians 10:3-6, ESV

Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Romans 12:17-21, ESV

Therefore, we must make sure our thinking begins with the Word of God. We do not seek retribution, but peace. It is not peace at all costs, for we never deny nor waver from the truth of Word of God.

This is not to say we worship the Bible, but we acknowledge that truth begins with and is found in the character of God as He has revealed to us in Scripture.

Whatever does not conform with that truth must be confronted. We trust that God will change the hearts and minds of those who fight and argue against it. We do not try to change people’s minds nor seek revenge when they attack us. No, we trust the God who alone is able to soften their hearts and bring them to repentance.

We hold true to the truth God has revealed to us in His Word, refusing to change the words of the Unchanging One.

So, it is not hypocritical of us to try and stop the incessant cancellation of others, as long as we are on the side of truth, love, compassion, and grace. We are defending truth, not destroying everything that offends us.

For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.
1 Corinthians 1:22-24, ESV

“And blessed is the one who is not offended by me.”
Luke 11:6, ESV

Topical message: Illnesses, Quarantines, and the Bible

If you are unable to attend a church at this time, may this short message help get you through. Obviously, it is preferable to get together to sing praises, pray, read Scripture, and hear the Word preached.

Regardless, may this message be a blessing to you in some way.

Topical Message: Illnesses, Quarantines, and the Bible

At the time of making this, we are in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. School and business closures, self-quarantining, limited numbers of people allowed to gather, and “social-distancing” (staying at least six feet apart) are affecting all of us. It can be difficult, problematic, and even annoying (especially seeing the empty shelves at the store.)

Many people are talking about even churches being told to stop services, which has led some to be concerned about regularly meeting, some to complain, and some to say this is a government overreach.

We should talk about these.

Firstly, we must ask ourselves, “What about the admonition in Hebrews 10:23-25 to keep meeting together?”

This is a valid point. We do live in the age of the internet, making it easier to have church together at a distance. (Look at this, right here!) My little church, The Church Next Door, is holding Zoom services for the next few weeks, because we meet in a school building, now closed by state mandate. Even if we wanted to keep meeting, it is not our building. So we have another option.

And, yes, as Christians, we have not been given a spirit of fear but of power and self-control (2 Timothy 1:7), but we are also commanded to watch over the sick (Matthew 25:31-46). It would be irresponsible of us to put others in danger by bringing together those who may be sick with those who are more susceptible.

Secondly, this seems an inconvenience, fearmongering, and unbiblical to live in the fear of a virus or other illness.

These things are an inconvenience. There indeed has been a lot of fearmongering and irresponsible behavior by many people on almost all sides of this pandemic. We can debate many of them later, if you wish! However, it is not necessarily fearmongering to say we should do what we can to avoid spreading an illness. In fact, it actually is biblical quarantine and separate.

Leviticus 13:1-8:
The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, “When a person has on the skin of his body a swelling or an eruption or a spot, and it turns into a case of leprous disease on the skin of his body, then he shall be brought to Aaron the priest or to one of his sons the priests, and the priest shall examine the diseased area on the skin of his body. And if the hair in the diseased area has turned white and the disease appears to be deeper than the skin of his body, it is a case of leprous disease. When the priest has examined him, he shall pronounce him unclean. But if the spot is white in the skin of his body and appears no deeper than the skin, and the hair in it has not turned white, the priest shall shut up the diseased person for seven days. And the priest shall examine him on the seventh day, and if in his eyes the disease is checked and the disease has not spread in the skin, then the priest shall shut him up for another seven days. And the priest shall examine him again on the seventh day, and if the diseased area has faded and the disease has not spread in the skin, then the priest shall pronounce him clean; it is only an eruption. And he shall wash his clothes and be clean. But if the eruption spreads in the skin, after he has shown himself to the priest for his cleansing, he shall appear again before the priest. And the priest shall look, and if the eruption has spread in the skin, then the priest shall pronounce him unclean; it is a leprous disease.

What does this mean for us?

Simply, God established the precedent for this sort of quarantining and self-isolation. It keeps others from contracting an illness, and it helps us to see whether or not someone actually has the disease or illness that could affect others. The current C-19 scare is absolutely being handled in a biblical way through the leadership demanding isolation and closing things down.

But, thirdly, isn’t this government overreach?

In some regards, maybe. But as just discussed, not necessarily. Again, we can debate some of this later, but (and you probably are expecting this one) we also need to remember Romans 13’s admonition to obey our governments, and Peter’s similar reminder to honor the national leader and leading institutions (1 Peter 2:13-25). Even if they are “not my president” or from a different political party or even despicable, deplorable humans, they have been put in power.

And, again, as stated before, as Christians it is our duty to obey within reason as we love our neighbor to God’s glory – including being physically separated for a time.

It is okay. It is not necessarily a sin.

And we are able to virtually meet for a time in our modern, technological world.

In the meantime, do what you can to help each other in such difficult times. Share your goods, as possible. (Especially if you, quite bluntly, sinfully hoarded toilet paper. SHARE WITH THOSE WHO MAY NEED IT!) Offer to meet other needs by running errands for each other. Call each other on the phone. Send e-mails and texts to each other to encourage and fight loneliness.

Most importantly, pray for each other, our communities, our nation, and our world.

Whether this is the end of the world or not (*wink wink*), we still have the command to love God, to love each other, and to go into all the world (even virtually) making disciples and teaching them to obey all Christ has commanded us.

And He is with us always, to the end. Trust Him. Turn to Christ in faith, especially if you have not trusted Him as your Lord and Savior. There may literally never be a better time.