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The Lethal Christianity of Patrick Mahomes

     The Kansas City Chiefs are unquestionably among the best football teams in the NFL.  They have appeared in four of the past five Super Bowls, enjoying wins in three of the contests.  With such success comes an overload of media coverage, emphasizing players in high-profile positions. The bevy of questions fielded by these elite athletes ranges from game strategies to the details of their personal lives.  This fact holds especially true for any organization appearing in the Super Bowl with the frequency the Chiefs have in the past years.  And no player enjoys more attention than quarterback Patrick Mahomes.  He is a highly talented person with a skill set very few players enjoy. 

      Mahomes’ first Super Bowl appearance came four years ago when it was widely published that the quarterback was a devoted Christian.  Various articles said he became a believer during his years in middle school and that he was outspoken about his faith.  Many pictures had been posted on the internet, seemingly attesting to his claim, which initially made me very happy to hear.  Just as quickly as Mahomes’ confession of faith was publicized, so were the details of his relationship with his girlfriend, Brittany Matthews.  The specifics of their relationship included the fact that the two lived together without the benefit of marriage.  The couple candidly spoke about their living arrangement, presenting it as exciting and normal.  They seemed oblivious that there was anything wrong with the behavior.

       Mahomes’ talent was verified by a return trip to the Super Bowl the following season.  The media eagerly sought an update on the couple's relationship, at which time they excitedly shared they were expecting their first child.  People responded enthusiastically, and nobody seemed to think there was something inherently wrong with having a baby out of wedlock.  Instead of being ashamed of their sinful behavior, the couple advertised their actions.  The product of their fornication seemed to give a reason for celebrating, not repenting.  And once again, Patrick Mahomes’ Christianity was highlighted during this second Super Bowl appearance.

     The visit of the Kansas City Chiefs to the Super Bowl this year placed Brittany Mahomes in the spotlight thanks to her recent photo shoot for the annual Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition.  Pictures of the former professional soccer player left nothing to the imagination.  Her nudity was on full display in pictures that could only be considered absolutely immodest, which violates the fundamental concept of propriety (I Timothy 2:9-10).  Once again, articles all over the internet declared the Christianity of the Chiefs quarterback.  In fact, during the interview with Patrick Mahomes immediately following the Super Bowl LVIII victory, the quarterback was certain to give glory to God.

      Five years ago, I felt compelled to say something about this inconsistency.  I said nothing.  Again, four years ago, I experienced the same sense of obligation.  Crickets.  I acknowledge my guilt and wrongdoing by remaining silent but feel I can no longer be mute on the subject because too much is at stake.  With record numbers of Christian youth leaving the faith, it becomes more necessary than ever to address the misrepresentations of what it means to be a follower of Christ.  There is no distortion of Christianity more pronounced than what you see in the Mahomes.

     A superficial reading of the Bible paints a terrifying picture of the consequences attached to the way the Mahomes have chosen to live their lives.  Titus 1:16 addresses counterfeit Christianity by saying, “They profess to know God, but by their deeds they deny Him, being detestable and disobedient.”  This teaching is straightforward, and no amount of talent or fame can supersede what is unmistakably non-negotiable. 

     The “deeds” the Mahomes have been glad to display publicly are explicitly addressed in Scripture.  While some Christians, unfortunately, yield to temptation and engage in adulterous behavior and acts of fornication, it is certainly not a practiced behavior.  Living in willful defiance of God’s standard proves a person is not a biblical believer.  I John 3:4-9 attests to this fact by telling the reader, “Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness. You know that He appeared to take away sins, and in Him, there is no sin. No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him.  Little children, make sure no one deceives you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil. No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot (practice) sin, because he is born of God.”

      Whatever happened to sin and its deadly outcome?  Society has bellowed that adultery and fornication are allowable behaviors and have no moral consequences.  I Corinthians 6:9-11 makes it transparently clear that this is not the case and Christians simply do not participate in such lifestyles, “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.”

       Following this most recent Super Bowl victory, the fans and commentators began discussing a new football dynasty.  I am more concerned about an eternal destiny, though.  Patrick and Brittany Mahomes are eternal souls flaunting a lifestyle that is decisively not Christian, all the while clueless to this reality.  Their claim of faith is invalidated by Scriptural evidence to the contrary.   What a person says about themselves is not necessarily true.  What is even more tragic is the impact their misrepresentation of Christianity has on young adults who look to these two as examples of how to live.  If a person draws their idea of what it means to be a Christian from the Mahomes, the consequences will be lethal.

      One final thought. The Mahomes are the product of two distinct influences. The world’s ethics oppose the standards of a holy God in every capacity. This couple is clearly influenced by this worldview. The second influence is the Church.  Being comfortable with such flagrant disregard for the moral code of God parallels the absence of righteousness being taught by Christian leaders.  Are the Mahomes the product of this negligence?  Regardless of the answer, never has the mandate, “Cry aloud, and spare not,” (Isaiah 58:1) been so necessary.

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