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Sticking up for the Soup Nazi

Those of you who read my blog here regularly know that sometimes I like to poke a little fun at Pat Robertson… not because I don’t like Pat Robertson… but because he says some goofy things sometimes (or at least presents some things very differently than I would).

Sometimes I agree with him.  Sometimes I don’t.

(And for the record, I’d love to sit down and have coffee with Pat some morning… even though I don’t like coffee. Pat has done some incredible things in his life, and I’ve to pick his brain a little.  So, Pat… have your people call my people and we’ll set something up).

But here, Pat is discussing the question that is coming up more and more in culture. It’s the area of inclusivism and discrimination.

The question:  should a baker be forced to bake a cake and sell it to a gay couple for their wedding if the baker doesn’t agree with gay marriage or thinks that homosexuality is a sin?

One side of the argument is if the baker does not bake the cake, he/she is discriminating.

The other side of the argument is that if the baker does sell the cake that he/she is compromising their beliefs/principles.

Pat feels that the baker should be able to say no to anyone he/she wants to.

And who does he bring out as the example that we can all relate to?

That’s right… the soup nazi.

I only have a couple of problems with this analogy.

1. The soup nazi is an example from 1995. It would be nice if we had a little more current example, at least from the show Friends or Saved by the Bell: The New Class.

2.  I’m not sure if you’re endearing people to your point of view by invoking the soup nazi.  After all, half of his name is nazi, which doesn’t have a good connotation the last time I checked.

But in reality, in today’s culture, Christian bakers who refuse to bake a cake for a lesbian couple are actually seen exactly this way… as a ‘no cake for you’ unloving, ‘I don’t need you’ personality.

So, maybe the analogy was the perfect one, Pat.

Whether you think the baker should or should not bake the cake, the bigger problem is how Christians are viewed in society.

The ship has sailed, culture-wise, on the gay marriage issue. More and more Americans are agreeing that marriage equality should be a right. How we as Christians respond to that says much about us.  It also says much about how we are perceived in the culture from this point on.

I’m not saying this is not a difficult issue for everyone to work through. It is. But let’s be sure that we don’t lose all of our voice in speaking into people’s lives because of a cake.

Thoughts?

Todd



3 Responses to “ “Sticking up for the Soup Nazi”

  1. James says:

    Good Topic Todd;
    One that believers are going to have to deal with one way or other, for discrimination (religiously speaking as to conviction) or inclusive of all peoples (matter of reaching people with love not religious dogma).

    I’ve grappled with this for years and I agree with you Todd, the ship has already sailed on this issue. The church does make any friends or future converts through hate and discrimination. It only galvanizes the oppositions point, that Christians are judgmental, unloving and exclusive.

    However, on the other hand, I feel its a matter of the “heart”, not the head. We’d like to think it is a matter of well defined theology, doctrine, belief, but it isn’t. As much as we thumb the Bible, scream verses back and forth across the isle. I still believe homosexuality is a sin, but no more than hate, adultery, and discrimination (remember Paul and the Nicolatians? sp? Neither Jew nor Greek, etc.etc.)

    Plus the heart does what it does. If you hate homosexuality and homosexuals then my words aren’t going to change that nor any theological discussion or verse thumping on my part.

    You believe what you believe by the filter you’ve adopted as a believer which is based on your denomination, or doctrinal orientation. Sound Familiar. We are a product of the input given in our lives. Then God comes along and changes that. Remember Paul on the Damascus road, he was on his way to persecute the Christians. His orientation, theology was he was doing what was right and his heart was squarely centered on following that course. Until he was set straight about the matter. And his heart was changed.

    Until God penetrates the deepest recesses of our heart, this stuff isn’t going to go away. Homosexuality, cruelty, spousal abuse, war, greed, it isn’t going to go away because of Bible Thumping. It only goes away when the Love of God penetrates that heart and mind that’s on the wrong path.

    We can be instrumental, if people see that love of God and not judgment, but there still isn’t any guarantee. Stephen was still stoned, the Apostles were still martyred.
    But the world has a better chance when we live lives of love, grace, forgiveness and not dogma, doctrine and judgmental theology.

    Reconciliation vs. retribution.
    James

  2. Mark E says:

    Marrying someone is different to baking a cake for them.

    Using Pats logic, you can refuse a person of a different race.

  3. Howard says:

    This is going to get silly really fast, but I would say there is a difference between simply baking a cake versus writing a message on that cake he disagrees with. For example, “God bless this union.” While I would be willing to bake the cake, I would not put two grooms on top, nor would I write something on it I thought was unbiblical. Another issue: How does one argue for compelling a baker to bake a cake or a photographer to shoot pictures and not compel a wedding singer to sing? The logic of one necessitates the other. And if it really is discrimination to not participate, how does separation of church and state protect pastors? Logically, it can’t.

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