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Ricky Gervais’ Golden Globe speech should inspire Christians to speak more boldly

Gervais is an atheist. A proud one. But, Christians can learn something important from him.
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Ricky Gervais speaks onstage during the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 5, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California. Paul Drinkwater/NBCUniversal Media, LLC via Getty Images
Stephen Kokx By Stephen Kokx

January 10, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — Everyone’s talking about Ricky Gervais’ performance at the Golden Globe Awards. And for good reason. It’s not every day the self-righteous leftists who run our soul-rotting “entertainment” industry get called out — to their faces — for their hypocrisy.

As satisfying as it was to watch, I’m somewhat surprised that Christians have focused their commentary on the political instead of the theological aspects of Gervais’ remarks.

During his monologue, the 58-year-old British actor repeated how it was his “last time” hosting the event and that he “doesn’t care” if he offends anyone.

"Remember, they're just jokes. We're all gonna die soon and there's no sequel, so remember that,” he said.

Gervais is an atheist. A proud one. He debated Stephen Colbert about the existence of God on The Late Show in 2017. He’s talked about his beliefs on numerous occasions throughout his career.

On Sunday, he made sure his audience was aware of his views. “If you win, come up, accept your little award, thank your agent, and your god, and f*** off, okay?”

In my many interactions with atheists, they all seem to share the same idea that life isn’t to be wasted and should be experienced to the fullest. “You’ve got to do something meaningful while you’re here because one day you won’t be around anymore,” one recently told me.

Not all atheists live up to this, dare I say, creed. But the point, I suppose, is this: Gervais went into that room knowing he was going to get a lot of people angry. Still, he did it anyway. Why? He gave us one reason. “This is the last time I'm hosting these awards, so I don't care anymore.” Another reason, and this is more of a guess on my part, is because of his atheism. He knows that life is short and that speaking the truth is important. We’re not going to live forever. Might as well push the envelope. Who cares what people think?

How many Christians, I have to wonder, have the same sort of zeal with their own faith and would enter a room full of persons openly hostile to the Gospel but go ahead and preach it anyway, knowing that doing so may cost them their career or result in people ridiculing them? Probably not a lot. 

No doubt Christians are already firm believers in the idea that we need to make the most of the time we’ve been given, but if Gervais’ monologue teaches us anything, it’s that followers of Christ desperately need to speak up, boldly and unashamedly, and not be afraid of offending others, come what may. I mean, if he's willing to so fearlessly spout his crude jokes and erroneous views on God, why aren’t Christians similiarly enthusiastic about defending what they know to be objectively true? Gervais' courage puts theirs to shame.

In the years ahead, Christians need to do a better job at reminding not just non-believers and liberals that Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life, but even family members and friends who have fallen away, even if it means losing those relationships. Moreover, they can’t put fleeting political and inter-religious alliances, even ones that are decades old, before the truth. Calling on others — including and especially Jews — to recognize Christ as the Messiah is essential in the years to come.

For all the correct observations Gervais made about Hollywood Sunday night, he was wrong about one glaring thing. We are going to die some day but there will be a sequel, one where we’ll either enjoy eternal bliss with God or burn in the fires of hell. And it will last forever. Remember that, Ricky. I’ll be praying that you and your fellow atheists come to realize that.


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Stephen Kokx

Stephen Kokx is LifeSite's Assistant Director of Digital Marketing. He has previously worked for the Archdiocese of Chicago's Office for Peace and Justice. A former community college instructor, Stephen has written and spoken extensively about Catholic social teaching. His essays have appeared in such outlets as Catholic Family News and CatholicVote. Follow him on twitter @StephenKokx