Why Christians Need To Calm Down About The Duck Dynasty Debacle


All of Western Christendom is experiencing a social media storm regarding the firing of Phil Robertson, patriarch of A&E’s “Duck Dynasty” because of comments he made during an interview with GQ. He made comments that were obviously contrary to what our culture deems tolerant. He said that homosexuality is a sin and that logically, a man should only have intimate relations with another woman. I know, this is incredibly shocking statements coming from someone who professes Jesus as their Savior and believes that the Bible is the Word of God. But amidst all the noise about why Christians are being persecuted, that we have no freedom of speech and that we are being attacked, here is why I think Christians need to take a deep breath for duck’s sake and calm down.

1. Persecution vs. Publicity. Persecution based on what the Apostles experienced included crucifixion, being murdered, stoned, scourged etc. For some reason, the church is not up in arms every day about the serious persecution going on in different countries, daily. It does not matter much because it is not happening to stars of national reality tv shows that we love to watch. I did not notice any Christians making a big deal about five hundred people who were killed in Sudan recently. But it did happen and persecution is real. There are homeless people in almost every single major affluent area in the United States but there is no outrage about that because those homeless people do not yet have their own reality show on a major network.

2. Censorship Is Impossible. Given the massive popularity this show has and the monumental marketing that is attached to the show, it will be impossible to not notice this brand or be exposed to it at major retailers in the United States.

In fact, the firing of Phil actually brings a gigantic magnifying glass on a brand and a show that has already seen historic success. If anything, they will sell more products, get more books deals, get more shows, get more money and get more publicity.

In addition, the gospel of Jesus will be more vividly displayed and more and more people in a post-Christian America will realize that Jesus is not just A way, but that Jesus is THE way.

3. First World Problems. What do people in other parts of the world think of when they look at the United States. People are having issues with finding clean water to drink, food for their family and shelter – all the while we are engaged in an outrage that an entertainment reality tv show star was fired.

4. Reality Shows Are Entertainment. Here is the real reality. Duck Dynasty is a reality show. It has an exclusive focus for why it exists: to entertain people. Yes, they pray as a family together and that is awesome. Yes, they proclaim Jesus as the only way to get to God and to heaven. Amen to that.

But this is a show about affluent, outspoken duck hunters who trick animals. I mean isn’t that what the show is about?

5. The Double Standard. So many Christians are outraged that this network fired the star that most likely brought them multiple revenue streams. But here are my questions for Christians:

How many churches would allow this family or even Phil to come speak at their venue?

Would you allow Phil to lead a Sunday School class at your church?

Do you mind that they use language that is not necessarily Sunday School flannel graph safe?

Would your church allow Phil to be a leader of a ministry?

If we answer no to any of these questions, then why are we so upset about a secular network, firing a Christian reality show star for saying what the Bible has said, historically?

Dear Christian, listen to the most important thing that needs to happen during this debacle: 

We need to image Jesus to the watching world. We need to respond to others with love, grace, humility and respect. We can’t just come out, guns blazing and blaming the secular media for yet another attack on Christians. I mean if we are really honest about it – how much better is secular media than Christian media? We have huge powerhouse blogs and mass Christian media trying to bring pastors down with all sorts of accusations. Just as much as we love to see leaders and pastors succeed, we love when they fall from grace, based on our limited understanding of the situation.

I wrote before about how the church needs to respond to homosexuality, here. I still stand by that opinion.

So today in the spirit of Christmas, embody the Jesus of the Bible in the area of influence that God has placed you. And whatever you do, make sure Jesus is being glorified.

Question: What would you add to this conversation? 


8 responses to “Why Christians Need To Calm Down About The Duck Dynasty Debacle”

  1. Good points. I’m proceeding to take a deep breath. It’s very therapeutic – more oxygen to all cells in the body.

  2. You have obviously not watched Duck Dynasty if you think this show is about “affluent, outspoken duck hunters who trick animals.” I’ve watched the show for three years. Their “affluence” has only been evident in a few of the shows. Phil and Kay live in the house they’ve been in for 30+ years…out in the woods. The children’s homes are more “affluent” because of successful, work ethic that helped them to become affluent…and they give God the glory for that and use their affluence to help others. I think I’ve seen them duck hunting 3 or 4 times in 3 or 4 seasons…the show is NOT about tricking animals. Hunting is how our country survived…and for many it’s how they still survive. And in case you’ve not read about the family, Phil Robertson has personally baptized over 300 people and is a popular speaker in churches all over America. What shows in your post is an arrogance about preaching, teaching and pastoring. You probably wouldn’t have allowed John the Baptist to preach, teach or minister in your church because he didn’t dress like you and talk like you.

    Yes…there are problems all over the world…and all over our country. And millions of churches worldwide are attempting to address those problems in almost as many ways. But we have an opportunity to bring to the forefront a very serious problem nation-wide and world-wide….the silencing of God’s Word through His children. How shall the world be saved if they don’t hear the Word and how will they hear the Word if no one preaches it. Phil Robertson was not ashamed to do what millions of Christians have been “afraid” to do. So he used vile and coarse language…well, guess what…SIN IS VILE AND COARSE. Encouraging Christians to be quiet again when they have an opportunity for honest dialogue about what God’s Word says is not really Scriptural. We’re supposed to be about the business of encouraging others and building others up. We all have different gifts to address the different needs in the world…and all those gifts are equal. Speaking gifts are equal to helping gifts…and creating jealousy with articles like this isn’t going to help the church keep doing what it’s doing. You should have encouraged the uproar and piggy-backed on it to encourage those with helping gifts and ministry gifts to also offend the world by doing what God’s Word says. This article is why the church is divided and why the world is winning the battle to suppress Christians and the work they’ve been called to do by God who told us to “Go and make disciples of men.” Phil Robertson is following the commission for his life and should be encouraged to continue doing so. You almost show a reverse prejudice in this article…looking down on a rich man. I’m sorry you didn’t take time to fully check out this family and the work they do before writing an article like this to discourage Christians from encouraging and building up this wonderful man after God’s own heart. I sure hope he isn’t led to read this post and see what you think of him and his family.

    1. Lauren hi – I think you did not read my post based on your comment. This was not a slam directed towards dd but rather a clarion call to Christians everywhere about the fact that boycotts and upheavals about reality tv shows don’t fulfill the Great Commission that Jesus has charged us with accomplishing.

      Every statement about dd that I made is true and accurate – albeit not to your liking – which is ok.

      You also make a lot of ad hominem attacks about me and my character. John the Baptist could pastor my church if he wanted to 🙂

      And thank you for suggesting what I should have done and what protests I should I have joined – but that is my choice 🙂

      Either way, we can disagree agreeably – we both love Jesus, love the local church and want to see people get saved and meet Jesus.

      God bless you, your family and your ministry – and a Merry Christmas to you as well!

      Thank you for stopping by this blog and commenting – and I am sure that Phil won’t be stopping by to read this blog – I am just an obscure pastor with a wifi connection, making sense of the beautiful mess we call American Christianity — blessings to you!

      1. Oleg Shishko Avatar
        Oleg Shishko

        And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. (Ephesians 5:11 KJV)

  3. Bogdan…Phil Robertson has been preaching God’s Word through “reality television” for three years now. I would say he’s at least fulfilling that part of the Great Commission that tells us “First in Jerusalem”. He’s been trying to reach out to Americans through his show and has shared over and over that Faith and Family were the first priorities of the Duck Dynasty. You said that he couldn’t be censored because of the products lining the store shelves…you’ve obviously not read that the stores are removing all his products from their store shelves. Those of us who have been watching the show are not any less aware of the worldwide problems, but allowing a gay minority to determine who can and can’t speak truth IS a serious problem too. And if we don’t stand up against it, then we deserve to persecution that other nations are feeling when their Christians are murdered, starved and tortured…that will soon be our lot in life. HOMOSEXUALITY IS A SIN. HOMOSEXUALS ARE SINNERS. I AM A SINNER TOO…but I have repented of my sins and do my best not to recommit them. Homosexuals are being loved into believing they don’t have to change and that they are not sinners. I can love them…I do love them…I have gay friends. But they all know the truth that the Scriptures teach because I’ve shared truth with them in love. I’ve never condoned their relationships or actions…but I love them. And that’s what Phil Robertson has been doing. His actions should have spoken louder than his words.

    I don’t believe preachers want their parishioners to truly follow their teachings…I think they just don’t believe they will and when they find someone who does, they don’t know what to do with them. I am not a Phil Robertson worshipper…I am not a Duck Dynasty idolater. I am a Christian…a wife…a mother…a grandmother who would like my family to be able to be entertained occasionally. This was one of the rare shows that I could safely invite people to watch…maybe even the only show that I could do so. I am angry that someone else has decided what I can and can’t watch. But I’m more hurt at the number of Christians who COULD take a stand but have chosen not to because it’s just a television show and he’s just an entertainer. He’s being slandered…he’s being handed a trial…his children and his grandchildren are watching the world put him in his place. I believe it’s our place, as Christians, to lift him up and encourage him in his time of need. And just so you know…I’ve visited a third-world country…where I did try to make a difference…where I left support for those who cannot support themselves. Passions come to different people in different places. God created us that way. If we all just worried about one kind of injustice then a lot more injustices would prevail.

    You are free to not care about this situation. I am not. God has placed on my heart that the church is not living up to it’s call of being a light on a hill. Phil Robertson was a bright shining light…letting his light shine before men. I’d like to see that light still shining. I’m not sorry you’re busy with other passions that you feel deeply about. Please don’t tell me not to be passionate about a matter God has placed on my heart!

  4. Mike McKinney Avatar
    Mike McKinney

    Bogdon, What planet do you reside? We are surrounded by “Christ-Haters” as I like to call them. They demand separation of church and state. They find a goofball Federal judge to rule in their selfish favor. They bully, intimidate, protest, name call, bring lawsuits to anyone who disagrees. There are 2% homosexuals and look at how they have all of us afraid of appearing intolerant. We stopped praying in school & sporting events so as to not have a team of lawyers, usually from another state, threatening us, and we usually cower. We are tired of our own government ruling against popular opinions. No one dares besmirch “Allah” because you might get a visit from their version of a mafia hit squad. We are tired of being told to be tolerant while our adversaries only demand until we cave. Duck Dynasty was told to have less guns and cut out the dinner grace prayer and Phil walked off, until A&E caved and allowed the practices. Phil’s words were graphic and coarse but most Americans agree with him. We’re mad as hell and we’re tired of tolerating these intolerants. There’s too many of these groups to list. And yes, the media is way too PC. Why do you think Fox News is so popular? Why do I have to make nice again and again just to be called names by these groups? There is a culture war, and Christians have been loosing ground daily in this country. You would rather say “can’t we all just get along”?

  5. Quote: “He said that homosexuality is a sin and that logically, a man should only have intimate relations with another woman. I know, this is incredibly shocking statements coming from someone who professes Jesus as their Savior and believes that the Bible is the Word of God”.

    I am really confused by your message Bogdan. Why is this shocking? Who’s side are you on? Do you support homosexual lifestyle? Am I missing here something?

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