The Anti-Mask League

Ecclesiastes 1:9-10 – What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun. (10) Is there a thing of which it is said, “See, this is new”? It has been already in the ages before us.

This post is not intended to make a political statement or to make an argument for “masks” or “no masks.” I’m just getting that out there from the beginning.

I was reading several articles this morning about the Influenza epidemic of 1918 and 1919, and it amazed me how things just don’t change. On one side the anti-mask league believed they were defending their liberties, while the other side called them “mask slackers.” Solomon’s words in Ecclesiastes are so true when he wrote that “there is nothing new under the sun.”

Wherever we land in this debate, we must always remember that God’s glory must be sought above all things. Also we must not take some issue like masks and let it become another issue over which we as Christians wrangle. Let’s not press our liberties over our brother’s best interest, and may we not assign the wrong motives to someone who walks into a store without a mask.

Romans 14:7-8 – For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself. For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s.

Galatians 5:13-15 – For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another.

Here are some articles for your consideration that I found interesting on the intense debate a century ago about masks and the Spanish Flu.

Freedom to Serve

For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another (Galatians 5:13).

Today we celebrate as a nation our independence. We celebrate freedom.

Please consider the above passage from the apostle Paul. In reference to our freedom in Christ, he instructs us that Jesus did not shed His blood for my freedom to live however “my flesh” pleased. Jesus gave us freedom so that we can serve. Serve God. Serve others.

Freedom to serve.

It seems that our culture around us celebrates American freedom by claiming the rights and liberties to be as perverse as possible. There were also those in Paul’s day who interpreted Christian freedom as the liberty to live however they pleased, regardless of how it affected others. Did Christ shed His blood so that I can fulfill any desire my flesh has? Is that why I am free?

Read the next verse in Galatians 5, verse 14:

For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Galatians 5:14).

Freedom to love my neighbor. Paul regarded himself as free, but he became a “slave” to all, in order to win more souls for Christ (1 Cor. 9:19).

Jesus came into this world to “proclaim liberty” to the captives and “set free” those who are oppressed (Isaiah 61:1-2; Luke 4:18-19). But again, that freedom is to become a servant to all, just like He did for us.

Calling the disciples to Himself, Jesus said to them, “You know that those who are recognized as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them; and their great men exercise authority over them. But it is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant; and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:42-45).

Thank you Lord, for our freedoms, both in Christ, and in America. May we glorify You through these freedoms and use our liberties to become servants to You and to others.