Mathis is Mistaken

David Mathis is a bit off in his criticism of those criticizing the firing of Phil Robertson from the Duck Dynasty show. Mathis believes A&E is profiting from the controversy. They are getting free advertising. So we should not talk about it.

Even if his suspicions were true, what difference do they make to the ethics of addressing this controversy?

None.

So much for that argument.

Referring to Duck Dynasty, Mathis mentions that “this show is scripted.” He piously opines, “this is not the reality worth fighting for.” Okay? What does the show being scripted have to do with sticking up for the biblical and historical view of Christian ethics pertaining to homosexuality? I will answer that question for him. Nothing. It has nothing to do with the issue.

Mathis goes on to write, “The network never owed us this show, never owed us how many times they haven’t censored the name of Jesus from Phil’s end-of-episode prayers, and never deserved that we get this upset and in the meantime litter the Internet with their name and boost their profile.” And who is saying that the network ever owed us any of these things? Mathis is like way off in left field here. He is also obsessed with how much A&E might be making off this controversy, which, as I noted above, is irrelevant to the opinion of Mathis that Christians should just shut up and take it when a high profile celebrity gets fired for simply stating the biblical and historical view of Christian ethics pertaining to homosexuality.

Mathis wisely writes, “Wisdom isn’t picking a fight whenever we can, but picking the right fight.” He unwisely fails to follow his own advice, picking a fight with those whom he thinks are picking a fight when really the fight was brought to us. Where’s the wisdom in that? Mathis is simply begging the question in favor of his view that defending the biblical and historical view of Christian ethics pertaining to homosexuality is unwise by piously quoting passages of Scripture that fail to establish his point.

Frankly, I am not even sure that Mathis understands what has actually taken place. He insists, over and over again, that this is not the time to speak up in defense of the biblical and historical view of Christian ethics pertaining to homosexuality. But he continues to frame the discussion in terms of the silliness of a show and the profit of a television network. He makes a comment about how the Great Commission is not about television programs. Thanks. Totally helpful. But not really. And it has nothing to do with defending the biblical and historical view of Christian ethics pertaining to homosexuality.

Note, by the way, his arrogance in stating that the show is marginalizing Christians as “backwater.” Perhaps Mathis has been with Desiring God for too long. Perhaps he has lost touch with reality. I happen to know at least one local congregation who would have his head for implying something so offensive about believers in the South. It’s not that I am defending Phil Robertson as a Christian. Rather, I am pointing out just how unloving the comment Mathis has made might come across to those who are undeniably Christians and happen to live in the South.

Mathis misses the point entirely. He should have taken his own advice and not spoken to the controversy. We really did not need him breaking his silence to tell other Christians to shut up.

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