New Warhorn Media post by Tim Bayly:
I said this on social media earlier this week:
If you as a conservative Christian are not willing to picket at the local abortion mill, and if you are not willing to publicly admonish the civil magistrates who approve or even fund the “clinics” that kill babies, I am not interested in what you have to say about mask mandates.
My frustration with masks is that they actually have been treated as a religious sacrament, which most certainly is idolatry. Here are some examples.
The “public health” officials at one university advised students to wear a mask during sex - which will do nothing at all to prevent a respiratory virus from spreading. But we cannot cross the cult of sexual libertinism by advising people not to “hook up” (have one night stands) during a global pandemic.
A recent article in the Washington Post obsessed over the fact that a teacher took off her mask for a few minutes and many kids in her class got infected with COVID-19, barely even acknowledging the fact that she was sick and went to work anyway. The mask was treated as the one thing that will protect people, not staying home when you are sick.
Gyms in Washington, DC offered to mandate customers be vaccinated in order to be exempt from the mask mandate, but city government rejected the compromise. This despite the fact that the gyms’ plan is not only safer for clients and staff but would encourage more vaccinations - something city government allegedly wants.
Now, context: I was wearing a mask indoors in public places before it was mandatory. I defended the mask mandate in 2020. I wear a mask during Sunday morning worship, even though I have been vaccinated, because the local government has mandated it, even tough I disagree with mandating vaccinated people wear masks.
That does not mean masks have not become idolatry to many people and Christians should not ignore that idolatry.
Finally, all all of this causes people not to take pandemic mitigation policy seriously. And people should take it seriously. We have lost well over 600,000 people to this virus in these United States alone. The public health authorities’ lies and hypocrisy have destroyed public trust.
That loss of trust is causing people to die.
Sure, in the sense that seat belts and stop signs and the TSA scanner and passports and guns and Bibles and not sending your children to public school and weekly communion are sacraments. Thus sacraments are anything someone else has a more intense attachment to than I do, or something someone thinks will keep them safe that I doubt or something that will clean them when it’s plain they’re still dirty. But that’s not what these pastors were and are saying when they tell Christians not to wear masks because they’re sacraments and idolatry.
This is their method of forcing believers, fellow Christians, not to wear masks, and thus to escape their charge against this and that Christian and all the churches other than theirs of participation in the sacraments of idolatry. Sexual intercourse has become a sacrament, one could argue, without condemning Christians for having sex. Love,
I agree. Wearing a mask, in and of itself, is not idolatry. Those who claim it is are wrong. It is true that the improper use of a thing does not negate its proper use.
But the Bronze Serpent was not idolatry either. God commanded it be made, and those who looked upon it were cured. And yet it was destroyed in 2 Kings 18:4 because the people of Israel were worshiping it.
There certainly is a great deal of idolatry surrounding masks, and treating mask wearing as a religious sacrament. See the examples I cited above.
There are people on both sides who have given in to idolatry on masks. For some, wearing a mask is a religious sacrament. For others, not wearing a mask is a religious sacrament. Both positions are idolatry.