Whenever a secular company takes a public stance against, what we believe are Christian values or violates a biblical principle the knee jerk reaction is to boycott. To never visit their location again and never to buy their products again. A recent example is the Walt Disney Company’s stance against legislation that impacts homosexual and transgender individuals. Since the recent Supreme Court ruling that struck down the right to obtain an abortion under federal protection, many companies have established policies to assist employees seeking abortions. Again, the reaction of Christians is to boycott them. I don’t necessarily mean a coordinated boycott effort. I'm talking about individual boycotts. I am not here to defend these companies and I am not here to judge any individual Christians choices. This post is my personal opinion about Christians thinking that the world should think as we do and if they don’t we Christians should somehow punish them. In my opinion, a boycott, or any other punishment that we can meet is not the answer when a secular company has policies, we, as believers, disagree with.
Yet, is boycotting the answer when a secular company has policies, we, as believers, disagree with?
Here is what scripture says.
Colossians 3:2 NIV Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
What that says to me is that we should put our efforts into building the spiritual kingdom of God, rather than bashing the earthly kingdoms of men.
Yes, I get frustrated and often angry with the leadership of this nation and the leaders and Boards of Directors who oppose my Christian view but Jesus already told us that the world would hate us
John 15:18-21 NIV “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the one who sent me.
The kingdom we are subjects in is not of this earth anyway
John 18:36 NIV Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.”
He still commanded us to go out and recruit everybody, everywhere for His kingdom.
Matthew 28:19-20 NIV Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
How are you going to do that if you boycott everybody that you disagree with? Maybe we should be more of a Jesus follower than a boycotter. Rather than boycott how about showing a world without Christ who Jesus really is
Many of the Companies with Polices We don't Support Never Claimed to be Christian.
The problem is that many of the companies we use to love until a policy we as Christians disagree with was announced never professed that they followed Jesus. Remember that Jesus reminded us that we are not of the world anyway.
John 15:18-19 NIV “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. We are commanded to live a lifestyle according to biblical principles, but we were never commanded to condemn or boycott those apart from Christ who don’t. As a matter of fact the Bible says Scripture that judgment begins with the household of God.
1 Peter 4:17-18 NIV For it is time for judgment to begin with God’s household; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God? And, “If it is hard for the righteous to be saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?”
I think we should be more concerned about churches or Christian organizations that claim to follow God’s Word and don’t. And I dare say we know some of those. We believers should have a greater desire to protect the truth and validity of the gospel of Christ than be overly concerned about a secular company for its anti-biblical actions. That is going to be an empty battle at best.
Our concern about the distortion or disobedience of God’s Word should be in the places where people claim to live by and teach God’s Word. A more appropriate battle would be against the churches and Christian organizations that are redefining what is biblical and causing people in the body of Christ to be misled. That is the real threat to the Gospel of Jesus Christ – not a secular company.
In the U.S. today, Christians are increasingly becoming associated with being “haters”. That may be because we are far more vocal about what we oppose than what we support.
We have come out strong against abortion – the murder of babies – when the message we should convey to them is that we fully support the sanctity of life – at any stage. We have come out strongly against same-sex marriage when the message we should convey is that we are for the sanctity and holiness of marriage as God created and defined it, as a lifelong covenant of sacrificial love between one man and one woman. Instead of being people known for our love of God, His creation of life, and the sanctity of marriage, we’ve become known as opponents of “issues” which has regrettably translated to opponents of people who practice or support those issues.
Is it possible that we have earned the label of haters because instead of praying, we hold signs, barricade doors, boycott, and verbally express to one another, and the rest of the world, how much we disapprove of those who don’t hold to our values?
We can keep spouting the line, “God hates sin but loves the sinner” but no one will hear us until we start demonstrating what it means to actually love sinners as Jesus does.
Jesus said the greatest commandment was to love HIM with all our heart, mind, and soul and love our neighbor as ourselves.
Matthew 22:37-40 NIV Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Instead, we end up more passionate about issues, than we do about Jesus, Himself, and the sinners that He loves. Instead of boycotting companies for policies you disagree with, try supporting them for the things they do right, and we must admit that some of them do some things during Christmas and Easter that follow the Scriptures. For example, Disney, which is now in the Christians boycott bullseye, still reads the biblical Christmas story – from the Scriptures – at its public Christmas Candlelight Service in Disneyland and Disneyworld every December.
There are believers who work for these secular companies who could use our support and encouragement.
I have very good friends who worked for and were executives at Disney. I was an executive with a company with some policies that conflicted with my Christian beliefs. However, in my daily activities I was able to attend Bible studies that included potential customers. There were many Christian employees in that company. Many did not share their faith, but the company welcomed people of all faiths or no faith. That company is typical of most secular companies. Unlike many of our churches these companies are all inclusive.
There are many believers in Jesus who continue to work for companies whose policies don’t match our Christian beliefs, because of how well the treat their employees – all their employees, regardless of their race, religion, or creed. Many of those believers continue to see God’s hand of favor on them as they are promoted through the ranks of the company, assured they are right where they need to be for such a time as this. If we, as believers, boycott a secular company that we don’t believe is behaving according to our personal convictions, what message does that send to the believers who continue to work for that company out of a sense of personal and professional calling? Does it make them feel uncomfortably aligned with the Christians who oppose their company? Does it help or support them in any way?
Instead of boycotting the company, contact a believer you know who works there and tell them how much you appreciate that they are still there, shining their light. Ask them how you can pray for them, like we should for any believer who works for a secular company, public school district, or government job. Personal encouragement and prayer go much further with secular companies – and believers who work for them – than criticism or boycott.
Jesus said others will know us by our love, not our boycott.
I work hard to hold to my biblical convictions in a secular world, and at the same time extend grace to those who don’t believe as I do. How else will they ever see the God who authored love and grace? My church has a ministry to the homeless of our community, many who do not share our faith. It is then that they see what the unconditional love of God and grace looks like. When we boycott based on “issues” it’s difficult for the people who feel strongly on the other side of those issues to not see our boycott as personal against them.
We are all broken due to sin and living in a broken, damaged world. The woman who is outspoken about the right to have an abortion may be speaking out of her own regret and pain. The same-sex couple may be living that way out of their own brokenness. The people who push certain liberal agendas often believe they are helping other hurting or bullied individuals. When we push aside our anger and opposition long enough to see the pain and brokenness behind certain issues, it may cause us to want to show grace, rather than grievance, toward people and the issues they feel strongly about.
If I’m going to boycott a secular company for having policies I don’t agree with, where would I draw the line? In addition to Disney, shouldn’t I also boycott Google, Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, the Oscars, and every other company that has an agenda I don’t agree with? Or would I only keep my boycott to amusement parks and streaming services? Disney is a huge retailer, but if it bothers me that an LGBTQ+ agenda is being promoted, I’d better be prepared to boycott Target, Kohl’s, and every other major retailer that emphasizes National Pride Month in their marketing campaigns every year and is moving toward woke inclusivism in their advertising.
If I am determined to cancel a streaming service because of a transgender character, the portrayal of same-sex parents, or “an exclusively gay moment,” then I’d also better boycott all R-rated movies and cancel Disney +, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Peacock, Paramount +, and several other streaming platforms that portray gay relationships and illicit sex of every kind and persuasion.
If we don’t want our children watching or being a part of anything representative of the way their culture is going, we’d better pull them out of public schools, avoid all amusement parks but Bibleland, and put a 24-hour watch on them to filter out the internet and social media’s “anti-God/self is God” messages.
Here's a better way: teach them how to recognize a secular vs. a biblical worldview and how to make godly choices in a world full of compromise. Teach them how to stand out from the crowd by showing God’s love and grace toward others. We are in this world and it’s a mess. And the only way the world becomes less of a mess is when individual hearts are transformed by the power of God’s Holy Spirit. That doesn’t happen through boycotts. It happens through prayer and impacting lives, one at a time, with the love of Jesus Christ.
Jesus said the world would know that we are His by our love for one another.
John 13:34-35 NIV “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
Let's become believers who loves God more than anyone else and loves our neighbors as ourselves.
Luke 10:27 NIV He answered, “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”
The example that Jesus used in His parable were the Samaritans – a race of people the Jews considered repulsive.
When you love others as God does, grace and unconditional love will rule your actions and people will become more important to you than issues. Jesus never commissioned us to change the laws in our society or try to bring heaven to earth. He told us instead to share the gospel and make followers of His so that others can live eternally with Him and learn what it means to follow Him, too.