How a Christian Athlete Might Respond to the Questions that Are Coming and Will Keep Coming – Kevin DeYoung

How a Christian Athlete Might Respond to the Questions that Are Coming (and Will Keep Coming)

Okay, you have ten seconds–not a term paper, not a sermon, not a blog post, not five minutes–ten seconds to talk about our country’s most controversial subject with someone who wants you to say something stupid, and you have to state your mind, on the spot, humbly and articulately in a way that honors Christ, tells the truth, is shrewd as a serpent, and as innocent as a dove, go:

Do you think the NFL (or MLB, or NBA, or NHL, or whatever) is ready for a gay player?

I think every team in this league wants to win, and the coaches and the people in the front office are doing all they can to get the best people in here so we can put the best team on the field.

Do you think the guys in the locker room would feel comfortable with a gay player?

I can’t speak for the guys in my locker room. I just know we want to win and want the best players who can help us meet our goals.

Would you personally be comfortable with a gay teammate?

I’m a Christian which means I believe in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ for my sins. It also means I believe the Bible. The Bible tells me to love my neighbor so that’s what I would hope to do with any teammate.

But would you be uncomfortable with a gay teammate?

We’d find out. I don’t really know if I’m comfortable with any of my teammates until we get to know each other.

So do you personally think being gay is a sin?

The story of the Bible is the story of grace for sinners. So naturally the Bible is going to say a lot about sin. And guys sleeping with guys is one of the things the Bible calls sin. But everyone on my team is sinner and that starts with me.

Would you draft a gay player if you were the General Manager?

I’d evaluate him like any other player and look at film, the results from the combine, his pro day, his work ethic, and his character.

How would you feel if he does get drafted by your team?

I’d look forward to meeting him once camp starts.

And if he is watching this right now, what would you say to him?

I’d tell him he probably has better things to do than watch me on t.v.

What is the first thing you will say to him if he’s on your team?

Hello.

Anything else? Would you hang out with him?

Sure, if he likes video games and talking about Jesus.

Do you worry that a gay player might feel offended or threatened knowing what you and other Christians on the team think about his lifestyle?

Not any more worried than I am about the teammates who don’t agree with my beliefs or my choices in life.

How do you respond to the stories that equate this with Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier in baseball?

I’ll stick to playing football and let you write the stories.

But do you think there is something historical and ground-breaking about the first openly gay man in your sport?

I suppose a lot of people think it is ground-breaking.

And what do you think?

I’m not sure it’s quite the same as overcoming a centuries-old legacy of slavery and institutionalized segregation.

How do you think the fans will respond if the first gay player is your team?

Depends on if we are winning or losing. I think fans are more concerned with getting wins from their football team than social commentary.

How will Christians like yourself and Christians on your team learn to be tolerant of someone when you disagree with him on something as fundamental as his sexual identity?

I hope we’ll be more tolerant of him as a person made in God’s image than some reporters are of religious people with traditional beliefs.

And why do you think conservative Christians are so obsessed with this issue of homosexuality?

You’re the one asking all the questions.

Thank you for your time. There you have it, folks, at least one Christian athlete questions whether the league is ready for this kind of breakthrough. Back to you in the studio.

Read this & much more on Kevin Young’s blog at The Gospel Coalition.

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