Disagreeing with a King

Well, Michael Vick did what anyone would do when facing federal charges, with clear evidence and people willing to testify against him: he pleaded guilty to dog fighting.

And so this story has captured the sports world. Most of the shows and segments on those shows, dealt with the question: where do we go from here? I found one particular segment on “Cold Pizza” quite fascinating. Former Bucs QB Shaun King participated in the discussion and made some fairly bold statements. Apparently Michael Vick didn’t “owe anyone an apology.”

This ‘anyone’ did not include, of course, “The Lord.” Vick needed to seek forgiveness from God, but really didn’t need to apologize to the people he let down (like the fans and his teammates) as well as the commissioner (who he blatantly lied to). His public apology today went a step further in showing his contrition, and proving his forgiveness. These apologies weren’t superfluous, but they were not required. He only needed forgiveness from God, and he had that.

I love Shaun King, I really do. Not only because he was a classy Bucs QB (who’s job was simply taken away from him), but he is a brother in Christ. And he is very bold with his faith, and I love that. And his point is made that there is forgiveness in Christ. With that being said, I’d like to examine what he said.

Does Michael Vick ‘owe’ an apology to the fans of Atlanta, and his teammates? His poor decision making not only hurt himself, but also hurt the Falcon’s chances (which I’m glad for by the way). But then again, maybe Joey Harrington is the answer there? An apology might not be required, but it certainly seems like there was a lack of concern for others.

Does Michael Vick ‘owe’ an apology to the commissioner (whom he lied to face to face), and to all those he lied to when he professed his innocence via a statement? Certainly we are forgiven even though we can’t go back and tell the truth to all those who we’ve been dishonest or lied to over the years. That is not a prerequisite for forgiveness.

But how can there be reconciliation without apologies for wrong done to one another? Certainly sins can only be forgiven by God through the work of Christ. But the fruit of forgiveness in a believer’s heart is expressed through apologizing to the offended party.

Psalm 51 does show David saying that he sinned only against the Lord. Perhaps this is King’s thinking. But is this a correct application? Clearly people do sin against one another. In James 5, we are instructed to confess sins to one another (although very few Christians think James is serious in much of what he says) , and Jesus instructs us to even seek out those who might have something against us. Perhaps we have sinned against them, and an apology is what he has in mind?

I still think that if Uriah weren’t killed in battle, David would have ‘owed’ him an apology for sleeping with his wife. So while Shaun King is by far my favorite ‘King,’ I will respectfully disagree with my Buccaneer brother in Christ.

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