A friend asked me a series of questions the other day: “Would Jesus wear a mask? If the Roman government issued the order, would Jesus and his disciples wear a mask in the temple, while reading the Torah, singing praises, healing the sick, and raising people from the dead?” I like these questions because they do not ask what your opinions are about masks, rather they ask, “does the Bible have anything to say about wearing masks? How can I be more Christ-minded?”
There are a lot of questions, worry, and confusion circulating right now. A lot, a lot of opinions floating around. Medical professionals, government authorities, liberals, conservatives, Democrats, Republicans, Aunt Suzie – it seems like everywhere we turn, there is another person offering their opinion about masks. And every week those opinions change again and again. It is hard to know what to believe, and, a lot of times, who to believe. So, we try to figure out what the truth is, what feels right in the midst of the chaos. It is really easy to rely on our own understanding. In the midst of all this change and uncertainty, God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, so let’s believe Him (Hebrews 13:8).
I see a lot of believers trying to figure out what truth the Bible has to offer about current events, and I commend them for seeking the truth. I typically see a few scriptures being brought up again and again, and I want to walk through their logic with you and clear out some of the confusion. I will also engage with those questions my friend asked in the first series of this blog, the first of many to come.
It is great to see you, friend.
“My Spirit Does Not Bear Witness”
Argument #1: Masks, social distancing, and governmental restrictions do not bear witness with their spirit. They feel that it is wrong.
What did I say before about how easy it is to rely on our own understanding?
I do not mean to suggest that we cannot feel in our spirits when something is sin, but feelings and intuitions are subjective and often wrong. Believers can feel very differently from one another. You can have two believers in the same room and the only thing they have in common is the conviction they both feel that they are correct and the other is wrong.
We do not get to weigh in our spirits what laws we obey and which we will ignore. We do not live our lives and make corporate decisions by what we feel in our spirits bears witness for God, but rather by the word of God. Try telling a restaurant owner that putting out your cigarette does not sit well in your spirit. Imagine trying that same argument with a flight attendant.
I have heard warnings that wearing a mask is a slippery slope to wearing the mark of the beast. But the person posting never offers data or evidence of the connections between masks and the mark of the beast. I could use this premise-conclusion logic to argue that the government telling us to wear clothes in public could also be a slippery slope to the antichrist.
Believers and non-believers alike argue that data supports masks and social distancing. They compare the number of cases between areas that do wear masks and social distance and areas that do not, and the numbers as reported do show there is a drop in cases. This position may not sit well with our spirits, but the evidence may suggest a dramatic reduction in cases where social distancing and mask mandates have been followed. I am not suggesting that a position is correct or incorrect; or that you are right or wrong based on what you believe.
I am suggesting that what governs our actions should not be what we feel, rather we should let the Word of God be the north star that guides our lives, decisions, and beliefs.
While the Word of God does not give us a handy checklist or road map for every current situation, you better believe that the Bible gives us a guide on how to respond beyond what we feel in our spirits.
In the next blog, we will examine in depth what the Bible has to say to us in this moment in history, and we will look at Jesus’ responses in similar situations to what is happening now.
What should I do with the check in my spirit? Cash it!