Tim Tebow (AP Photo)
Tim Tebow’s commitment to speak at Dallas’ First Baptist Church — and his subsequent decision to renege on that commitment — has incited a firestorm from his critics. First, we heard liberal bloggers and commentators like Greg Doyle condemning Tebow’s appearance as the quarterback’s “greatest sin.” Then, following his cancellation, the American Family Association (AFA) called him out for “taking a knee rather than stepping up in the pocket.” But once again, the armchair quarterbacks got it wrong.
The real shocker here isn’t Tebow backing out of the speaking engagement. Granted, extra drama surrounding the Jet’s second-string quarterback would prove toxic for his career. Because of his public profile and circus-like media attention, everything he does is already scrutinized. I recently saw a picture of Tim on Facebook that an acquaintance posted after running into him while on vacation. Among the comments were spectators questioning which club he was at and attempting to poke holes in his moral character. They came up short; it turned out he was in a harmless restaurant (gasp!). No wonder he’s so worried about where he shows up these days.
No, the story about Tebow cancelling his appearance isn’t really about Tebow at all. It’s about the hypocrisy of the Left, specifically the lesbian/“gay”/bisexual/transgender (LGBT) community. For a group of people who constantly advocate “tolerance” and the idea that “we shouldn’t judge others” or “push our worldview in the public square,” they sure are doing a good job of judging the First Baptist Church of Dallas and Pastor Jeffress. Not only are they acting as the judge, but they are sitting as the jury. They have found the church and its pastor guilty of standing up for what they believe is true. Completing the trifecta, they are trying to act the part of executioner by attempting to destroy Tebow’s reputation in the public square. You would think a group that preaches “equality” and “acceptance” as much as the LGBT community does would be a little more tolerant of those with whom they disagree.
Additionally, the LGBT community had no idea what message Tebow was prepared to share with the church’s congregation. Besides the fact that it’s none of their business, Tebow is known for sharing his “God is unconditional love” school of thought with audiences. So, if the LGBT had any real qualms with the Dallas church’s so-called anti-“gay” views, then shouldn’t this be the very audience with whom Tebow shares his “Jesus is love” message?
Tebow is the perfect example of society’s modern persecution of Christians. Standing for your convictions is controversial, especially if you are a 25-year-old Christian in America. We’re only allowed to spread our message to those closed groups who already agree with us. Don’t you dare try to step outside of your neatly limited boundaries. And believe me, most of us don’t make $50k per speaking appearance. In fact, the truly dedicated pro-family, pro-moral advocates live off a Ramen-noodle-lunch and shoestring budget as we face the Left’s lambasting and harassment.
The child product of rape, Ryan Scott Bomberger, Founder of the Radiance Foundation, understands first hand the trials that come with standing for your convictions. During the 40th annual March for Life rally, Bomberger strode into the lion’s den of liberal media, “MSNBC,” and delivered one of the most courageous pro-life interviews ever given. It was a bold move. Knowing the tendencies of MSNBC’s notorious, yet uninformed anchors, some pro-life advocates would have cautioned him against the appearance. But Bomberger’s point was to unapologetically spread the pro-life message to those who are not pro-life. Isn’t that the ultimate point? And Bomberger’s efforts haven’t gone without serious obstacles; the NAACP is threatening to file suit against the Radiance Foundation. As Bomberger told Concerned Women for America, this is ironic, considering the fact that he “is a black man or just as black as Obama,” and his goal is to save the lives of unborn black babies.
There’s also another young man Who refused to allow His critics to dictate to whom He shared His good news. His personal and professional life was, in every respect, controversial. He ate dinner with prostitutes and tax collectors. So unorthodox were His tactics, that at the tender age of 33, the public, His friends, and His fans turned against Him and condemned Him to death. And yet, 2,000 years later, His refusal to cave to critics remains the saving grace of the entire human race.
In the end, there remain some inconsistencies to the Tebow/Dallas Church debacle, and we simply don’t have all the facts. But let’s hope Tim Tebow isn’t bowing to the hypocrites on the Left, because he would be far better served to continue “Tebowing” before history’s most controversial figure, his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Chelsen Vicari is the Online Communications Strategistfor Concerned Women for America, the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization.