This past week the theological authority known as ESPN branded certain professional athletes bigots for not brandishing a homosexual support patch against their religious conscience.
If a bigotry is intolerance of other beliefs (due to conviction about their own), then would not anyone who says a Christian cannot exercise their beliefs be a bigot, too?
Since when did sincere religious belief become bigotry? Answer: since the beginning of the word.
The history of the word bigot has been associated with the old French and English phrase for “by God”. It would be stated as a claim of conscience and conviction concerning what was honest or true in the sight of God.
Such as, “I do not corrupt the word of God, by God” (a paraphrase of Paul’s statement in 2 Cor 2:17). He did not tolerate corruption to the word of God. Paul was killed for living out his conviction by God (i.e. being a bigot).
Such as, “By the living God… tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God…. Thou hast said [by the living God]” (Matt 26:63-64). His consent by the living God would eventually get Jesus killed.
Such as, when Martin Luther uttered these words at the risk of his life, “My conscience is captive to the word of God… Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me.” He was deemed an outlaw and was hunted for maintaining his beliefs by God (i.e. bigotry).
Historically, Christians are called bigots more often. Perhaps because they are more likely to say out loud that the Bible is true, by God, even if it costs them in public opinion. As a result, they have been ridiculed, hated, and killed for their intolerance.
It should not be missed that the cry of bigotry usually comes from those with an intolerant adherence to their own convictions (i.e. bigotry). I suppose it takes one to know one.
The difference being by which god those convictions align: the god of this world or the living God of Holy Scripture.
It seems bigots are everywhere these days. Intolerance is all the rage. Then why the outcry over Christian bigotry?
Because Bible believing Christians claim to stand by the true and unchanging God and not by the god of the current thing.
By the word of God,
Justin “veteran bigot” Johnson