Are Christians Being Biblical By Boycotting “Bad” Companies ?


There has been a huge brouhaha brewing over whether followers of Jesus should withdraw their patronage from companies that are not explicitly Christian. Is this a Biblical mandate or a matter of individual conscience? What do we do when companies that we frequent on a daily basis or use their products on the regular – propose or promote an anti-Biblical agenda? I believe that the Bible is very clear about what we should do in this case:


Here is the key passage to apply in this situation:

One person esteems one day as better than another, while another esteems all days alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. The one who observes the day, observes it in honor of the Lord. The one who eats, eats in honor of the Lord, since he gives thanks to God, while the one who abstains, abstains in honor of the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself. For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s. For to this end Christ died and lived again, that he might be Lord both of the dead and of the living. Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God; for it is written, “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” So then each of us will give an account of himself to God. (Romans 14:5-12 ESV)

In another passage, Paul was very clear that they only way to avoid being stained by this world was to leave it completely (1 Cor. 5:9-10).

Boycotting a particular non-Christian company over its policy does not appear to be the direct command of Scripture.

Each person should be “fully convinced in his own mind” knowing that we must “give an account” of ourselves before God – for our actions and for extending or withdrawing “support.”

Here is what I want to say to someone who does not want to “support” a company that is not of a traditional, Christian mindset.

If you are going to boycott a particular company, you must practice what you are proposing. 

This means that it will be nearly impossible for you to do the following, without contradicting your stance: 

  • Buy food
  • Buy basic necessities
  • Getting gas for your car
  • Wearing the clothes you have on as you read this
  • Use most products, goods, services and establishments
  • Allow a utility company to take care of your household services — you don’t really know whether they approve of inerrancy or infallibility.

And honestly, boycotting a corporation is bad business that undermines an otherwise bold display of the gospel of Jesus.

I love what Russell Moore had to say about the concept of “boycotting.”

We won’t win this argument by bringing corporations to the ground in surrender. We’ll engage this argument, first of all, by prompting our friends and neighbors to wonder why we don’t divorce each other, and why we don’t split up when a spouse loses his job or loses her health. We’ll engage this argument when we have a more exalted, and more mysterious, view of sexuality than those who see human persons as animals or machines. And, most of all, we’ll engage this argument when we proclaim the meaning behind marriage: the covenant union of Christ and his church.

A Roman governor thought Jesus was weak when he refused to use imperial means of resistance. But Jesus’ refusal to fight meant just the opposite of what Pilate assumed. “If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting,” Jesus said (Jn. 18:36).

Let others fight Mammon with Mammon. Let’s struggle against principalities and powers with the One thing they fear: a word of faithful witness that doesn’t blink before power, but doesn’t seek to imitate it either.

The Bible teaches us that there are some matters specifically dealing with an individual’s conscience. If you are fully convinced in your mind and are moved by the Holy Spirit to not visit a certain establishment, then more power to you.

But this type of onus cannot be placed upon other people by you personally.

Even worse would be to prescribe this as a Biblical command – which it is most assuredly not.

This is a matter of how we apply to our life that which we read in the Book of Life.

Again — I do not have to agree with you, to be friends with you. Jesus was friends with all kinds of people. You can disagree, agreeably.

For further reading, check out this post.

Question: What is your stance on boycotting companies that are not explicitly Christian? Is it a Biblical mandate or a matter of the conscience? How can we faithfully display the gospel of Jesus in a marketplace that is often opposed to the clear teaching of Scripture?  



12 responses to “Are Christians Being Biblical By Boycotting “Bad” Companies ?”

  1. A thought came to my mind. Will it not be a practice of the antichrist to boycott believers in terms of their necessities? If so, could we utilize the practice?

    1. Hi Val — utilize which practice?

      1. the future practice of antichrist.

        The boycotter’s thought at the back of his mind is “Wish you starve to death, damned sinner.”

  2. Konstantin Avatar

    Well put, thank you.

    1. Thank you Konstantin!

  3. Great topic! I like the verses you brought up and you make quite a good point! On the other hand, I think there are individual cases that are worth the boycotting like when Pepsi Co. used abortal fetus cells to test/create their flavors… And Christian organization wrote them stating “stop” and till than we are not using your product. And it worked! (can find more info on this at Legacy Institute).
    It seems you are referring to specifically those supporting same sex marriage though and I agree!

    1. Yulya agreed – but you also have to look deeper on the consequences of what homosexual behavior has on society – they will use your money and go into classrooms to teach your children stories about princess rescuing princess and not princesses, and if you disagree, you’ll be the one bullied. You can look at statistics and see how the homosexual behavior is linked to health – increase in HIV, Aids, etc., the adverse affect of children living in one parent homes, etc. so standing up and refusing participation in what these companies are promoting is not “bad business” – its stating your position that you reject their idea of their proposed “social change”

      1. Lesya – you bring up some valid points – I still stand by the following claim I make:

        If you are going to boycott a particular company, you must practice what you are proposing – in totality — not just singularly – or exclusively – depending on your preference

        and I also think this is a potent quote:

        We won’t win this argument by bringing corporations to the ground in surrender. We’ll engage this argument, first of all, by prompting our friends and neighbors to wonder why we don’t divorce each other, and why we don’t split up when a spouse loses his job or loses her health.

      2. Melissa Avatar

        Are you serious???
        You think gay people are recruiting children? What are Christians doing with children?? Just that…recruiting.
        If a new story is written that makes it easier for a child to understand that his or her feelings are ok and that helps them, why do you care? Want a christian education for your kid…not in the public schools. Do it at your home. Don’t subject my kids to your fairytales.

    2. Yulya hi — you are right — and this is why you must be governed by Scripture — as I say in the above post:

      Each person should be “fully convinced in his own mind” knowing that we must “give an account” of ourselves before God – for our actions and for extending or withdrawing “support.”

    3. Melissa Avatar

      I know this is an old article but you were so far off base with this statement. I don’t want to spend all my energy trying to explain why you are wrong…but people really should do their research instead of blindly following what others say (things that make you go hummm). PS, no actual embryos are harmed or were ever harmed for Pepsi.

  4. David McNabb Avatar
    David McNabb

    I agree that things of this nature are a matter of conscience, and too often a congregation or denomination will preach as gospel requirement that which is not a true biblical mandate.

    On the other hand, we should consider Paul’s words, “All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not. Let no man seek his own, but every man another’s wealth. Whatsoever is sold in the shambles, that eat, asking no question for conscience sake: For the earth is the Lord’s, and the fulness thereof. If any of them that believe not bid you to a feast, and ye be disposed to go; whatsoever is set before you, eat, asking no question for conscience sake. But if any man say unto you, This is offered in sacrifice unto idols, eat not for his sake that shewed it, and for conscience sake: for the earth is the Lord’s, and the fulness thereof: Conscience, I say, not thine own, but of the other: for why is my liberty judged of another man’s conscience? For if I by grace be a partaker, why am I evil spoken of for that for which I give thanks? Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God: Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved.” (1 Corinthians 10:23-33 KJV)

    He admonishes us neither to be concerned for the source of our products, nor to conduct investigative searches into their origins or the beliefs of their producers. However, should information be brought to light, then we should act on it.

    I was a Capital One card holder for some time, taking no thought of it whatsoever. Then I happened upon an article that showed them to be one of the top companies supporting the gay agenda and what could be termed anti-conventional family ideals. There are other options, and I retired my Capital One cards.

    More often, however, I make my business decisions from a positive, rather than negative, perspective. I will support a business owned and operated by known believers, even if it is a little higher, not to punish others, but to bless and encourage brothers and sisters in Jesus.

    Regardless, thanks for the thoght provoking post

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