A Lutheran Response to the Duck Dynasty Uproar
Soon, very soon, millions of people will hurry to their Christmas Tree to see what Santa or one of his helpers has brought. As the paper flies and the ribbons and bows are either saved or discarded, Duck Dynasty will once again have a very good Christmas. Duck Dynasty clothing of every shape, size, and design will be unwrapped. People will be busy assembling and watering their Chia Beard Duck Dynasty figures; did you get all four? Some will be drinking their Duck Dynasty wine, while they smoke a Duck Dynasty cigar, and their children run and play while wearing their Duck Dynasty masks left over from Halloween. Indeed, financially speaking, the Robertson family, which in all reality is Duck Dynasty, will have a very good Christmas. Did I mention they also make duck calls?
Unless you have been living in an information vacuum the last few days, you know that Duck Dynasty, or should I say the patriarch of the Duck Dynasty family, Phil Robertson, has been in the news. Duck Dynasty is a cultural phenomena with one of the most amazing marketing strategies that parallels their hit television reality show. Duck Dynasty is literally everywhere. It should be no great surprise that GQ magazine would want to do an interview with the head of the family. It should also be no great surprise that a left leaning magazine would ask left leaning questions. Often, when a movie star or tv personality does an interview, the big question is whether or not the person will do the interview “in character” or as themselves; for Phil Robertson they are one and the same. By the way, Phil thinks homosexuality is illogical and sin. He said it much more colorfully than I want to discuss here.
Phil Robertson is the 67 year old patriarch of the Duck Dynasty family. He is very open that he was once immersed in “sex, drugs, and rock and roll” until he became a Christian. His testimony about the persistent preacher in the bar that he was running is really quite interesting.
An adult convert, he is now an elder at White’s Ferry Road Church of Christ in West Monroe, Louisiana. He has been called by some the “Billy Graham of Duck Hunters” and others claim he has personally baptized more than 300 people in the waters near his house. His GQ interview, to those who know him, including his pastor, was simply “walking the walk and talking the talk.”
If you take the time to read the GQ interview, rather than just reading the selected quotes in the media, you may wonder why it took A & E so long to get offended. What he said in the interview is in reality nothing that he hasn’t said, on numerous occasions, for many years. His comments were not anti-gay or “homophobic;” they are simply anti-sin. He is calling sin, sin, and calling sinners to repentance. We all know how politically incorrect that type of speaking and preaching is today. So now people are up in arms, threatening boycotts and lawsuits, and attempting to make this an issue of free speech and constitutional rights.
As a Lutheran Christian I am sympathetic when anyone speaks the truth of God’s Word and is attacked for it. As one who believes that homosexuality is sin I rejoice when anyone makes the good confession in that regard. As one who has had more than a little experience dealing with folks in the pro-gay world, I must offer a few words of caution. It is not enough for the evolving pro-gay movement to simply tolerate or accept their agenda; you must celebrate it. If you cannot or will not celebrate their agenda, you are the enemy and you must be destroyed. Christians must have their eyes wide open to this current state of events. Also, one of the pro gay movements’ major weapons is to turn the discussion to one of civil rights. If this is a civil rights issue, then any criticism of homosexuality is equated to supporting slavery and Jim Crow. Sadly, Phil Robertson allowed the interview to go in that direction, and his remarks about how happy his black co-workers were in the pre-civil rights area make him look like a fool at best and a racist at worst. There is a lesson to be learned here for all who seek to make the good confession.
My prediction is that when the dust clears, Duck Dynasty will be bigger and more popular than ever. The show may end up on a different cable channel, but recent history has taught me that redneck Bible thumping works, at least for television ratings. Whatever happens to the show, the fight for the truth of God’s Word will continue. Be cautious and be very careful who you support. Not everyone who quotes a Bible verse is on the side of the proper distinction of Law and Gospel. I would recommend you read the GQ interview for yourself before you make up your mind on this one.