Christians, Social Media, and Brenden Eich (or “Christians, Please Handle This Well”)


Brenden Eich became the CEO of Mozilla on March 24. This week he resigned. And everyone seems to agree that it was because he donated $1000 to the Proposition 8 campaign in California. That was the campaign to define marriage as between a man and a woman. The proposition was passed but eventually overruled by the courts. 

How far has our culture moved since 2008? In 2008, a majority of Californians agreed that marriage should be defined as between a man and a woman. In 2014, it seems a CEO loses his job because he gave $1000 to the campaign. 

And I'm nervous. I'm not nervous about persecution toward Christians. I'm nervous about Christian's response to the resignation of Eich. So here are some thoughts I would love all devoted Christ-followers on social media to consider:

  1. Let's remember that persecution is expected and Jesus said we are blessed when we are persecuted. So – this is good news, right? I doubt anyone sees this as good news (and neither do I). But it seems we don't believe two phrases of Jesus: "blessed are the persecuted" or "if they persecuted me, they will persecuted you". Do we really believe that?
  2. Let's be very careful how we respond on social media. It is understandable that this is bothersome and scary when we consider our future. But the way Christians respond with anger and hatred – we do more damage than good. 
  3. We live in a fallen world. Do we really believe that? To be shocked about Eich shows we don't really believe the Bible. To be sad – that's normal. To be surprised by the speed at which this is coming – that's normal. To shout and scream "persecution" doesn't seem wise or right to me. 
  4. I think we can raise questions and give counter arguments that are spoken kindly, calmly, and respectfully. But the response ends up making us look like angry idiots. Let's raise proper questions, ("Do we really want a country where…?"  "Help me understand what the difference is between this and…") But that isn't the way it is typically handled. Let's calm down. Let's make proper, respectful appeals, to friends and in the courts, if possible. But the way we react is as important as anything else. 

Ultimately, I'm guessing that the way many Christians will respond to this will embarrass me. And I don't want to be thrown in with Christians who don't seem to believe that being persecuted is to be blessed by God and that we should expect it.

If we could just respond calmly, kindly, and with careful dialogue – I think we can easily win this "argument." But I'm guessing this is (or will soon) be exploding on social media and it will drive people like me into silence because making a difference is more important than making a point. And the Gospel is more important than any job. 

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