“Christianity has not, and does not profess to have a detailed political program. It is meant for all men at all times, and the particular program which suited one place or time would not suit another.”
This morning, in the middle of his National Prayer Breakfast speech, President Obama delighted those of us who love irony by quoting C.S. Lewis. It was an interesting moment in a speech that put forth the notion that taxing the wealthy is right in line with the teachings of Jesus. I mean, Jesus did hang out with tax collectors, right? The idea that government welfare is somehow the fulfillment of Jesus’ teaching on charity is a common misconception that many people make, Christians included, and it’s the main reason that liberals believe conservatives are Christian hypocrites. Perhaps if the president visited church more often than only during campaign seasons, he might not be so confused. See, not only do we spend time praising God in church, we also gain insight from our pastors who have surely spent more time in the word of God than we have.
While Obama may have been correct in saying that government mandated, shared responsibility is equal to the Islamic belief that those who’ve been blessed have an obligation to use those blessings to help others, he is incorrect to group in Jesus’ teaching, “for unto whom much is given, much shall be required.” Aside from the fact that Jesus was discussing requirements from God, not the government, he was actually teaching his disciples that they were stewards of God’s gift of Revelation. Their requirement was to spread the good news of Jesus Christ. It’s the crux of Christianity that Obama seems to miss. Jesus came because we are imperfect. We could never fulfill all the requirements that the pharisees loved to lord over the people. Jesus’ coming ended the rule of law and the began the acceptance that our only way to God was through Him. Yes, Jesus very much emphasized the importance of giving to the poor, but as a reaction in joy to what we’ve been given; not because of a law. Giving out of obligation is not truly giving, it’s merely following the rules. Just ask anyone who’s ever written a check to pay their taxes, I doubt you’d find them excited.
The Bible also teaches that everything we have, including money, belongs to God. We are called to be good stewards with His money. The government is the epitome of mismanaging money. If you truly want to help the poor, you should probably seek out charities; but that would require a bit of work on the part of the giver and a great many find it easier to just let the government run every aspect of their lives. So it is that welfare money ends up spitting out of strip club ATMs, and those same people who paid their charity to the government wonder why government hasn’t solved the issue. Perhaps they should ask the 27 Democrats who voted against stopping welfare checks from being used at strip clubs, casinos and liquor stores.
Another highlight in Obama’s speech was his proud proclamation that his administration has partnered with Catholic charities to help those in poverty. I wonder if those charities are among the ones begging the Obama administration, to no avail, to change the recent ObamaCare edict requiring them to cover birth control costs in their healthcare even though it is against their religious beliefs to do so. Really, slapping them across the face would take less time and probably hurt less.
I also really enjoyed when the president mentioned the half a million Americans who exercised their religious freedom to March for Life recently. Oh wait, he didn’t mention that.
Overall, the president’s National Prayer Breakfast speech was much of what we have become quite familiar with hearing, but sprinkled with some Bible quotes that ultimately fail to give credibility to Obama’s socialist leanings. Thankfully, President Obama did get it right in the end – God will continue to lead our nation, even after those that wish to tax us all into poverty use His word to do so.