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Maintaining Integrity When Business Meets Politics



Christians are told in 1 Corinthians 1:8 that God will “keep [us] firm to the end, so that [we] will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.” This verse points us to the role that God plays in transforming our lives as well as our hearts.


When one declares themselves to be a Christian, they become part of a great family of believers who are being sanctified by God’s grace.


While Christians are called to grow in the wisdom of the Spirit, we are not able to do so without being wary of the allure of the world’s promises. These promises often come as lies from the Devil; as we know from 2 Corinthians 11:14, “Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.”

American culture often endorses worldly cunning while despising heavenly wisdom. This reality is illustrated by the scheming endorsed by the so-called “hustle culture,” a phenomenon in which people are encouraged to give their work their absolute best and sell themselves at every opportunity. [1] Phrases like “be your own brand” and “networking” float around self-help manuals like a swarm of money-hungry vampire bats. [2] [3]


Though these movements appear to be falling out of favor with the mainstream media, they are still very much alive in corporate America. Always looking for an “angle” is a way of life for many American businessmen. As a result, it often creates a competitive and contentious environment.

This phenomenon presents unique challenges for Christian organizations because they often become representatives for Christianity, and how they respond to the un-Christ-like temptations of this business environment affects how the general public sees Christianity.


Consider the example of the Babylon Bee, a satirical Christian news site. The Bee holds itself out as a Christian organization, which lends it a kind of credibility with the religious right and also makes it a Christian representative to the general public.


Despite doing everything by the book, the Babylon Bee still found itself at the center of a spat last spring between the respective Presidential campaigns of Governor Ron DeSantis and former President Donald Trump, who got into a public argument on social media platforms regarding their relationships with Babylon Bee. [4]


As one left-leaning article on the public political battle put it:


“In February, the relationship between Trumpworld and the Bee soured when…Laura Loomer noticed a $21,500 payment from the Friends of Ron DeSantis PAC to the Bee made during the governor’s race and tweeted that Seth Dillon — owner of The Babylon Bee — had claimed to her that the money was for ‘joke/speechwriting.’”


Some members of the political right interpreted this as an attempt by DeSantis to use the Babylon Bee’s witty writers to combat former President Trump’s bombastic speaking style.

The satirical website survived this spat, as well as other instances of negative publicity because their leadership has refused to cave to the temptations of the hustle culture behind secular business and politics. They have taken seriously their role as agents of the Lord’s Kingdom and maintained their integrity as the salt and light of the earth (Matthew 5:13-16).


By opening ourselves up to the Wisdom of the Holy Spirit, Christian businesses are enabled to walk through the temptations of American hustle culture and fulfill the command of 1 Corinthians 10:31: “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do [including satire], do it all for the glory of God.”


Foundations of Truth hereby waives all claim of copyright (economic and moral) in this work and immediately places it in the public domain; it may be used, published, edited, and distributed in any manner whatsoever without any attribution or notice to Foundations of Truth.

 


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