Scott Tibbs

Needless schism over wearing masks

By Scott Tibbs, July 20, 2020

One of the most disappointing things over the last few months is how quickly the discussions over COVID-19 policy have degenerated into tribalism and partisanship. Even worse is how it has divided Christians from each other. This should not be the case, and we all need to repent of this.

I am seeing more and more attacks on those who choose to wear masks. But it ought to be really simple. If you do not want to wear a mask, then do not wear a mask. But demeaning those who make a different choice than you do is uncalled for. You are unnecessarily sowing division.

When I am indoors in a public place, I do not wear a mask to protect myself. I wear a mask to protect others, especially since it is possible that I could be carrying the virus and be asymptomatic. The worst case scenario is that wearing a mask does no good. But there is no harm in doing it. So why do you care if I wear a mask, especially if your argument for not wearing one is personal liberty?

It is none of your business. You live your life, and I will live mine.

But where we should have no division is within Christendom as a whole. We are seeing Christians fighting over whether churches should require masks. Folks, we are not talking about critical things like the divinity of Jesus Christ or the substitutionary atonement. We are not talking about deep moral issues like abortion. We are talking about something that, to be brutally honest, is not all that important.

Now, by saying that, I am not saying that COVID-19 is not a big deal. Many have died and many more will due. We must submit to Exodus 20:12 and protect vulnerable seniors as best we can. What I am saying is that, as Christendom deals with weighty matters of eternity and the oppression of sin, face masks are not something we should be fighting about and most certainly is not something we should divide over.

I will end with two quotes from an excellent pastoral letter:
Don’t believe masks are effective? No law requiring them? Don’t wear them. But also don’t sit in judgment on your brother in Christ who does. Consider him your weaker brother and accommodate him.
Believe in the effectiveness of masks? Wear one if you want. But realize that not all your brothers in Christ do. And if you want them to wear masks around you, appeal to them in gracious love, not condemning them.
Source: Warhorn Media.

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