For the past year I have sadly watched as Christian people fight over whether or not we should wear masks. I have prayed for insight to share on this issue. Finally, a simple word came:
If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles.Matthew 5:41
This is found in Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount.
In Jesus’ day a Roman soldier could walk up to pretty much anyone and require that person carry the soldier’s gear for one mile. The person had to comply, but the soldier couldn’t require the person to carry his gear farther than one mile.
Imagine you are going about your day, shopping for dinner and going to pick up your repaired ox cart from the wheelwrights. A soldier comes up to you and demands that you carry his gear. He is going in the exact opposite direction that you were headed, and he’ll probably help himself to some of the food you just purchased that’s in your basket. Now supper is going to be very late and the ox cart will have to be picked up tomorrow, since the wheelwright will be closed by the time you can make it back. This will set back everything you planned for tomorrow, too! And on top of that, Jesus asks that you carry this guys gear for two miles, which means a four-mile round-trip jaunt for you.
I gather that Jesus is saying, follow the rules of the government, even if they are very inconvenient and feel downright invasive of your civil rights. Not only follow them, but go out of your way to bless your enemy by doing more than is required of you.
The only exceptions I could find in the Bible (after a very quick perusal) that allowed for disobeying authorities were when rulers asked people to worship them instead of God, and when rulers required people to stop sharing the Gospel.
So should I as a Christian wear a mask? If my government says so, yes!
And now that it is recommended that we wear two masks,
Maybe even four!
(OK, that may be a little silly, but two is an excellent idea!)