Skip to comments.What We Have Learned From The Duck Dynasty Controversy
Posted on 01/11/2014 12:45:56 PM PST by ReformationFan
It seems that the A&E Duck Dynasty controversy has come to a conclusion. In the aftermath of this dispute, after all the words exchanged have been reviewed, what can we learn? I believe that the public responses surrounding this recent chain of events reveal several observable trends and ideologies about us as a society. Thus, the following theses presented below are based upon what I believe is the trending American ideology and ethos towards scripture, ethics, and what it values.
Thesis #1: Society is unable to apply the simple rules of grammar to scripture. In the debated GQ Interview, it is interesting to note that Phils Robertsons controversial comments were basically a paraphrase of a passage in 1 Corinthians. In response to Robertsons paraphrase, many commentators online and on television reacted with a scholarly Biblical disposition giving critique to Robertson and the contents of his comments; individuals who most likely had not even bothered to read the scriptures with the basic rules of grammar. Let me explain. As previously mentioned, the main part of Robertsons quote in the GQ interview that caused offense was from the Apostle Pauls letter to the church in Corinth. In 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 Paul says that wrongdoers such as the effeminate (μαλακoι) and the homosexuals (απσεvoκoιται) will not inherit the kingdom of God. Now, using the rules of grammar, we must note that homosexuality is not the only sin listed in the Apostle Pauls list; homosexuality is listed with the sins of idolatry, adultery, thieving, greed, drunkenness, swindling, etc In other words, it is important to remember that homosexuality need not be singled out in this vast sea of sin in the world. Rather, homosexuals need to join contrite: heterosexuals, males, females, children, elderly, rebels, self-righteous narcissists, Democrats, Republicans, greedy executives, church goers, thieves, teachers, plumbers, adulterers, IRS agents, white collar workers, blue collar workers, uncompassionate jerks, truth compromisers, North Americans, Africans, Europeans, Asians, and so forth, who are confessing that, There is no one who is righteous, not even one; that we are by nature sinful and unclean and we are in need of forgiveness and the sufficiency of Jesus blood. Really there are not different classifications of people; rather there are sinners who confess sin and sinners who dont confess. Indeed, homosexuality need not be singled out in the list resulting in the de-emphasis and/or exclusion of the other items in the list. Conversely though homosexuality should also not be removed from the list, for by removing homosexuality from Pauls list and stripping it from the category of sin we are compelled to be grammatically faithful and do the same to the other items listed in the passage of 1 Corinthians 6:9-10. Otherwise stated, if homosexuality is endorsed, supported, and normalized should we not keep grammatical consistency and do the same for theft, greed, adultery, drunkenness, fraud, extortion, etc
Thesis #2: Society is relatively ignorant of what scripture says on the issue of homosexuality, especially within its historical context If homosexuality is not to be singled out and/or removed from this list, could it be that Paul isnt talking about homosexuality; maybe the passage isnt interpreted or translated correctly? Examining the usage of the words μαλακoι and απσεvoκoιται are extremely valuable to the discussion and questions at hand for it reveals an important historical context for us to assess. You see, in the Romans Empire during the time of Paul active homosexuality conducted by a Roman Citizen was tolerated when the passive recipient was not a Roman Citizen. In other words, homosexual acts were not tolerated when the passive recipient was a Roman Citizen (i.e., it was not appropriate for a Roman Citizen to be penetrated in a homosexual way, but a Roman Citizen could penetrate a non-Roman Citizen). Thus, it could be said that the Roman Empire in the first-century had moral restraint on the ethics of homosexual activities. Indeed, it was inappropriate for a Roman Citizen to engage passively in homosexual activity, but not actively. Why is this important to understand? It is important to understand because Paul, knowing the Roman Empires homosexual ethics, uses two distinct words in talking about and condemning homosexuality; he uses both the words μαλακoι and απσεvoκoιται in his 1 Corinthian list. In other words, Paul not only condemns passive homosexuality (μαλακoι) as the Romans did, but he also uses the word απσεvoκoιται to condemn active homosexuality. Thus, Paul irrefutably rejects both the passive and active acts of homosexuality in his letter to Corinth.
In summary of both Thesis #1 and Thesis #2, Pauls clear usage of the words μαλακoι and απσεvoκoιται within the culture of the first-century Roman Empire shows us undoubtedly that the Holy Scriptures stand against the acts of passive and active homosexuality as well as a plethora of other sins. This is not a matter of interpretation, personal bias, hate, or a lack of tolerance. Rather, using the basic rules of grammar and historical context, it is frankly the reality of the Bible; a reality that many people discoursing about these Biblical passages have failed to acknowledge and/or understand.
Thesis #3: Society is not yet ready to label the Bible intolerant The third thing that we have learned from the Duck Dynasty controversy is that individuals are not yet willing to label the Bible as intolerant. In watching a debate on a news channel, it was interesting to note that one of the participating persons in the debate stated that Phil Robertsons statement to GQ was simply his paraphrase of 1 Corinthians. In other words, the person in the debate attempted to remove Phil Robertson from the equation and pitted the LGBT supporter against the Bible. The follow up question was, If Phil was intolerant, unloving, and insensitive while simply quoting the Bible, what do you believe about the Bible? Is the Bible intolerant, unloving, and insensitive? To my amazement, there was a great deal of back peddling done by the LGBT supporter in the debate. Interestingly though the back peddling continued until the issue of interpretation was brought forth. In other words, the LGBT supporter in this television debate was not willing to apply the same labels placed upon Phil, upon the Bible. Generally speaking, I believe that society is not yet ready to label the Bible intolerant. In order to resolve the tension though, individuals who are offended by the message of Christians quoting the Bible will maintain that the offensive message is one of illogical interpretation of the Bible and not the plain and clear message of the Bible. How long will this tactic last? I am not sure. Could there be a time in the future where these rationales will no longer work and the Bible is categorized as intolerant? Maybe this will happen. If it does, then at least society will be taking the Bible at face value.
Thesis #4: Tolerance is not the chief god in our culture, the dollar is The final thing that we have learned from the Duck Dynasty controversy is that, even though loudly acclaimed, tolerance is not the chief god in our culture, but rather loses out to the all-important dollar. Yes, we are inundated with the message that tolerance in America is the highest ideal and virtue, while intolerance is the mark of evil. This is especially evident when discussing homosexuality. Over the last several years we have witnessed the public retribution towards those in the media who have criticized homosexuality by affirming the Bibles message. The vengeance towards Chris Broussard and Craig James, ESPN Sport commentators who critiqued homosexuality, are two simple examples of the result of violating Americas worship of tolerance. However, is tolerance the chief god of America at this time? The Duck Dynasty controversy has revealed that this is not the case; there is another god that trumps tolerance and that is the dollar. Yes, through the Duck Dynasty controversy we have learned that while tolerance may be Queen, American culture bows in worship at the Kings thronethe almighty dollar. What is more important than being politically correct and tolerant? Answer, $500 million dollars (Note: Bloomberg has recently reported that the Duck Dynasty Empire amounts to some $500 million). Indeed, A&E reinstated Phil Robertson and Cracker Barrel put Duck Dynasty items back on the shelves because Americas capitalistic system responded poorly to the networks initial response and indeed we see that when money talks the servants listen. Thus, the ideology of tolerance is surely a powerful force in society, but it is simply not as powerful as the influence of the dollar.
Even though I confess that I have not watched the Duck Dynasty show and probably wont ever get around to watching it any time in the future, I am grateful for the individuals on this reality show, for through their convictions and Phil Robertsons interview with GQ we have learned more about our society and its ideology towards scripture, ethics, and what it values.
We learned that Americans take television entirely too seriously.
True although I think I learned that a long, long time ago.
We learned that we live in a politically correct world. We learned that major institutions move into high gear if you offend their sensibilities.
We also learned that it’s possible to push back against these strong liberal politically correct theologies.
I learned that buying a lot of Duck Dynasty stuff just to piss off the boycotting fags can really get expensive. LOL!
Well, at least you've come to the point of recognizing and confessing your fault; now, repent you miserable sinner!
Phil Robertson is not intolerant of people who repent their sins. Phil is, as we all are, a sinner and seeks forgiveness everyday.
He is intolerant of those who try to make their sinfulness, their sinful actions, into a normal and acceptable way of life. He is all about “love the sinner and hate the sin”. Many near-Libertarians are cast from this mold too.
The intolerance is and has always been on the politically correct left.
The writer steps over the obvious: The Bible and it’s lessons ARE the target of the left. The Left’s intolerance is all about the judgements contained in the Bible.
For the Left, Homosexuality is completely normal and outside of the Bible’s judegment if you would only read the words the way they read them.
Remember A does not equal A, and 2+2 = 5, if the left says it’s so.
Wow, that’s a lot of dissection and historical analysis. Seems like he’s arguing how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. I find it easier to simply say it is disgusting, filthy, spreads disease, against natural law and God’s law, and runs afoul of plain common sense.
We have learned that there is more outrage over WORDS spoken than over actions.
I disagree with #4.
True that A&E and Cracker Barrel bowed before the dollar but the dollar was not the ‘god’ that moved the consumer. In other words the dollar is not the supreme ‘god’ of most of America. The ‘god’ is in the majority ***sensibilities of Americans*** who speak with their dollars to homosexual supporters.
Americans ARE intolerant. In the main they are not tolerating homosexuality. It does not fit with social norms any more that a man walking into a busy women’s restroom or vice versa.
Society as a whole has had it up to their ears with homosexual nonsense and the foolishness of normalizing it.
This was nothing more than another attempt to intimidate by the gaystapo. Others will think twice before speaking out and that’s their goal.
Well, sort of. You can push back if you're independently wealthy and are in a position to deny those greedy "liberals" a product that's making them money hand over fist. Not so much for the rest of us.
In fact, the Left is against the whole notion of SIN: offenses against a higher authority. They demand that we stop accusing other of such offenses. To do so is to be disloyal to the society in which we live, because only this society has the right to hold people to account. They, of course, claim the right to speak for society.
You are correct ; big corporations’ hr departments will come down like a ton of bricks on anyone that speaks out in opposition to homosexuality....
diversity training, etc is forced on managers...
It seems to me that people react big to stuff like this as Chick-Fil-A because there are so few opportunities to "talk back" anymore. There is, it seems, no political recourse. Anything we determine in the voting booth is rescinded by our Black-Robed Reptilian Masters. Even private expressions of their repugnance or moral reprobation against this foul vice can get you kicked out of a graduate program, denied a license, passed over for a promotion, or fired.
So naturally, when you get the opportunity to push back by buying a Spicy Chicken Sandwich or a T-shirt with your favorite Hairy Duck-Hunter on it, you do with with... I could say, with a vengeance.
Phil reminds me of John the Baptist. That's how I described J the B to my RCIA (adult convert) students --- and they got it!
Well said, Mrs D. In fact, I read it out loud to my husband!
That is right, we should not remove it from the list because Paul pointed it out as not just sin but also against nature itself.
Why wouldn't you at least watch 1 show before going off on a long opinion of the Duck Dynasty phenomenon?