Should Christians Support Businesses That Deny Christ?

The issue regarding Starbucks and their public refusal to have "Merry Christmas" placed upon their coffee cups has caused some controversy regarding what Christians should or should not be doing in respect to boycotting this business.

Regardless of what your position is on whether or not Christmas is a pagan holiday, I think we all can agree that Starbucks was NOT removing "Merry Christmas" from their cups because they saw it as a pagan holiday and is not the point of this article. Rather, this article is dealing with the general position of a business that openly denies Christ and the larger points and principles of businesses and the Christian response from a Biblical perspective.

Many Christians see the notion of boycotting as a shallow, divisive, and non-Christian response. It is maintained that, as Christians, we should endeavor to be loving, forgiving, kind, and should eagerly see these issues as opportunities to share the Gospel with others. While I do not deny that sentiment, I do not see how that translates over to "supporting" these openly defiant businesses that have publicly denied Christ.
One verse that came to mind for me was from 2 John 1:10-11.

"If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house or give him any greeting, for whoever greets him takes part in his wicked works."

Now, the context in which this immediately applied was regarding taking one into their homes, providing them with food and shelter while they were traveling and teaching. For one to "receive" such a one into their homes that was not bringing correct doctrine regarding Jesus Christ was the equivalent of "taking part in his wicked works." It was seen as participating in these wicked works because one would be involved in "supporting" and endorsing them by facilitating shelter and providing food and other resources which in turn effectively sustains a person and their agenda. I should no more be interested in helping or supporting one who denies Christ as I should be interested in helping someone buy drugs, commit a crime, or aid any other criminal or immoral act which ultimately, at its root cause, are acts of defiance against Jesus Christ. If we are not to even accept and support one by allowing them into our home, why is it that we should be "accepting" of those that openly deny Christ in the public? Are there two standards?

Some have pointed out that while we should be respectful regarding our differences of opinion on this issue, it tends to become a gray area regarding some other businesses that provide everyday necessities, such as electricity. To me this is not such a confusing issue as to not have a clear and Biblically consistent response. Should a business, that has publicly denied Christ, but is not providing a necessary service (such as coffee) be equated to another business which solely provides a necessary service? No. Furthermore, I should have no problem with using the electricity of a pagan business, as I then, in turn, use that service to further the advances of the Kingdom of God. It would ultimately become a transaction of the enemy of God becoming the servant of God and causing it to become a resource for good. That, however, would not be the case if I so choose NOT to endorse a coffee shop which provides no necessity for living and which I could attend any number of stores in protest of its public denial of Christ. However, if one wished to protest the business that provided a necessary resource and found other ways to provide power for their home, I would be in complete agreement with that position and my prayers would be with them.

Didn't the Israelites leave Egypt with the gold that was initially pagan only to later use it in construction of the tabernacle and the artifacts therein? Is not the wealth of the wicked laid up for the righteous (Proverbs 13:22).

The indisputable point that I wish to make regarding this is that Christians ARE to be able to go the Scriptures and stand upon principles provided there regarding these issues today. Just because one believes the issue is "gray" doesn't mean that it cannot nor should not be sorted through in light of God's Word.

Let's remember that when Chick-Fil-A and the family of Duck Dynasty came out FOR Biblical marriage that there were many that boycotted them with the intent to show their support for Sodomy. Are Christians unable to send the same message through the power of the purse regarding businesses that are publicly immoral? Is it enough that Starbucks support the murder of babies while also parading around a pagan goddess upon their cups?

As for me, regarding an unnecessary service such as coffee, I would wish to make clear just as publicly that, as a Christian, I will choose to not support one who has publicly denied Christ and avoid all appearance of evil therein. Jesus was clear in saying that we are either for Him or against Him and we should be clear in sending a message to this wicked culture and it should NOT be a message of apathy, support, or carelessness in our actions. Rather, we should be united together against evil and make it publicly clear that as for us and our house, we will serve the Lord, not have fellowship with darkness and support those that claim to do the same.

Please see my other article here which deals with the flip side of this issue regarding Christians providing services for those that wish to act immorally.

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