Predictably, Rutherford, a typical progressive, decided to demonstrate why they need to just leave references to Christianity alone in his response to my previous post on the inherent illogic of the Democrats’ social gospel. Let’s look a little closer, shall we?
At first blush, your accusation of double standard hits home.
As it should. You reject the source of that which you think you invoke, then imagine that you know what you’re talking about when you think it supports your agenda.
How can we, on the one hand, try to keep religion out of government and in the next breath use religion as a reason for government action.
To understand this is to engage a bit of nuance which you and your fellow “rightists” have proven incapable of doing.
The only people who believe this are you and Fauxahontas. Oh, and rabid Progressives who feel rather than think, largely because its easier than thinking.
Those who quote scripture to justify public policy do so because scripture DOES apply to personal choices.
Sometimes. And sometimes they do so out of an inherent recognition that its teachings and precepts are the basis of our nation’s laws and morals. We’ve had this conversation before, and the truth, being truth, hasn’t changed. If you spent more time reading Blackstone, Locke, and the personal papers and correspondence of the Founders and Framers, as well as histories that reference actual source documents and not the incestuous citations between progressive historians who fabricated biographies and studies, instead of Mother Jones, the New York Times, Salon, and other wishcasting publications, it might become clearer to even you.
When I say I want separation of church and state, I’m saying that I don’t want any religion forced on me but I recognize your right to be religious …
When you say it, you embrace a mendacious fallacy introduced in the American consciousness by a Supreme Court Justice with a big chip on his shoulder, ties to the Klan, and a willingness to deny the history that he couldn’t HELP but to be aware of as a lawyer and Justice of the Court. And because you want to deny that same history, you agree with him.
AND I am also aware of the lessons your religion teaches you.
No. You’re dimly aware of what a few passages of the Bible say, and you continually demonstrate that you have no understanding of the context, or why it is that the whole book is actually cohesive, because you’d rather cry hypocrite for us not acting the way that you believe that we should, based on your thimbleful of knowledge of a subject that represents an ocean of wisdom for those who study it carefully.
I have a right to expect you to participate in this American civic experiment in a way consistent with your Christian belief system. Your refusal to do so makes you a hypocrite.
First of all, seeing as it has lasted more than 200 years, it is safe to say that it is more than an “experiment”, although, seeing as Progressives keep trying to find new ways to break the system, I can understand your confusion. As for my “hypocrisy”, as I have already pointed out, staying at a Holiday Inn Express last night doesn’t mean that you actually have a clue what you’re talking about. You wouldn’t tell a brain surgeon that he’s doing it wrong based on the fact that you once saw a half-hour show on brain surgeons, yet you know a few verses from the Bible and how people who want nothing to do with it any other time will use it support them using force to fund their purchases of votes. Yes, I’m laughing at you, not with you.
As has been proven time and time again, the Bible can be cherry picked to death.
Yes, people who read something they like and stop frequently do cherry pick from it. And yes, people of all stripes do it. The difference is that Christians who read the next part will try to correct those who neglected to do the same.
But when Progressives do it, they have no interest in hearing the parts they don’t like. Usually because it would make it harder to pretend that the way they want to live conforms with what they want to pretend Christianity is.
It is all things to all people. The notion that Matthew is contradicted by Corinthians, Thessalonians and Acts only goes to show that the Bible is not a cohesive book but a potpourri thrown together by a bunch of different people who didn’t coordinate the message.
This is where your lack of knowledge of the subject material makes you look like an idiot. There is no “contradiction”, except in the imagination which you have substituted in place of an actual command of the subject material. First, we could start with the verse Fauxahontas used to sell her redistributionist snake oil, only in the context of the ENTIRE section.
31 “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy[a] angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. 33 And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. 34 Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’
37 “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feedYou, or thirsty and give You drink? 38 When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You?39 Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’
41 “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: 42 for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; 43 I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.’
44 “Then they also will answer Him,[b] saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?’ 45 Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ 46 And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
A few things should stand out to you in reading that entire section. First, Jesus wasn’t talking about government programs taking care of people; he was talking about individuals, and groups of individuals. This is consistent with the commands he made elsewhere in the Bible. But at the same time, there was an expectation that those who receive the charity would STILL contribute something toward their well-being. How do I know this? Because those “different people” who “didn’t coordinate the message” coordinated the message…something that you’d know if you actually read the book, and contemplated on what you read.
From the Old Testament:
9 ‘When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not wholly reap the corners of your field, nor shall you gather the gleanings of your harvest. 10 And you shall not glean your vineyard, nor shall you gather every grape of your vineyard; you shall leave them for the poor and the stranger: I am the Lord your God.
Gleaning was the act of following after the threshers, and picking up the grain that had fallen to ground, and leaving the corners of the field allowed the poor to come and harvest for themselves their sustenance.
This is consistent with the New Testament, and the previously mentioned 2 Thessalonians 3:6-12:
6 But we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw from every brother who walks disorderly and not according to the tradition which he[a] received from us. 7 For you yourselves know how you ought to follow us, for we were not disorderly among you; 8 nor did we eat anyone’s bread free of charge, but worked with labor and toil night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, 9 not because we do not have authority, but to make ourselves an example of how you should follow us.
10 For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat.11 For we hear that there are some who walk among you in a disorderly manner, not working at all, but are busybodies. 12 Now those who are such we command and exhort through our Lord Jesus Christ that they work in quietness and eat their own bread.
And just in case you want to believe that while Moses and Paul, while consistent with each other, didn’t see it the same way Jesus did, I will call your attention to Mark 12:41-44:
41 Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much. 42 Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites,[a] which make a quadrans. 43 So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury; 44 for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.”
This puts a very different spin on the specious “skin in the game” argument We’ve heard over the last three years from the President. But then, if the people who received the most of the taxpayer largesse actually had to contribute to it, then the “urgent priorities” of those so eager to spend other people’s money would probably become a LOT less urgent.
That’s why any non-believer quoting the Bible is engaging in a fool’s errand. I’ve done it a few times myself and have finally learned my lesson. I can say one book says WHITE and you will find me a passage in another book that says BLACK. It’s a foolish method of debate.
No, you haven’t learned anything, because you still presume you understand more than those who have actually done the reading, and have expended the effort understanding the context. You disappoint me not because you continually get it wrong and then call others “Hypocrite!”, but because you pretend that you can understand it without making the effort to actually learn about it yourself. Its kind of like someone who complains that the water someone else draws and sets before him isn’t fresh when the well is three steps away, and he is perfectly capable of drawing his own.
Here’s the bottom line …. if your religion obligates you to be charitable, as you have said it does, then there is no need to compel you. When your government says it needs your help, your charitable nature will lead you to cooperate. No conflict at all. But the truth is your charitable nature only goes so far. Your willingness to participate in a cooperative society only goes so far.
No, the bottom line is that you make several false assumptions. The first is that welfare is synonymous with charity. Welfare is when government takes money in the form of taxes, and decides who to “help” with it, how to “help” them, and to what degree it extends this “help”. Charity is when individuals, acting alone, or in groups, such as churches, contribute their own time, their own effort, and their own money to help those that they believe are worthy, in the manner and degree that they see fit. And they make this determination in the fashion as they apprehend that their faith requires. Government cannot fulfill this obligation, because it is a personal one, and it is a personal one, because Christians are expected to be accountable, as the Parable of the Talents illustrates. This accountability cannot be achieved by paying taxes to welfare. Anyone capable of reading a Congressional Budget (yes, I know that they are rare as hen’s teeth for the last three years thanks to Harry Reid) knows that once government decides it needs to spend money on something, it rarely stops spending money on that thing, even when there is no need for it anymore (like Mohair subsidies), or when it doesn’t achieve its goals (Head Start, which has only a negligible effect on the academic achievement for children participating, and then only through the Second Grade). But when what you do as an individual, or as a church isn’t working, you can do something different, without battling entrenched interests who have every incentive to continue doing what isn’t needed or isn’t working.
Second, welfare is very public. So public in fact, that it is starting to advertise, which would make people truly question the priorities of government, and its “War on Poverty”. If government was serious about winning this “war”, it would be actively working to get people to self-sufficiency, not recruiting people to sign up and accept whatever the government deems adequate for their needs. As individuals and small groups, we are better able to assess the needs of those we help, and tailor our help in a way that also helps them do for themselves. But more pointedly, Jesus was very clear about wanting sincere charity, and not a show put on by those attempting to be more pious than their peers (or those who want to be public to show that they care more than you). From Matthew 6:1-4:
“Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven. 2 Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. 3 But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly.[a]
Third, government’s “War on Poverty” ignores something that Christians know, and Progressives refuse to acknowledge, despite 50-odd years of this “war” without a single “victory”; the poor will always be among us. This is something that is actually stated plainly in the Bible, both in the Old and New Testament (so much for those “different authors” not “coordinating the message”):
11 For the poor will never cease from the land; therefore I command you, saying, ‘You shall open your hand wide to your brother, to your poor and your needy, in your land.’
[YOU...not the government, not give to the government so it does it for you...YOU.]
And from Jesus himself, in Matthew 26:11:
11 For you have the poor with you always, but Me you do not have always.
For a Christian to believe that government can win a “War on Poverty” (that it has no interest in winning) isn’t consistent with Christianity, because doing so presumes that man knows more than the Son of God.
What we got from Elizabeth Warren was a civics lesson. In fact that was an implicit theme of the entire convention.
What we got from Fauxahontas (and the entire convention)was an attempt to justify government’s refusal to live within OUR means, government’s refusal to even consider the idea that destroying families with perverse incentives that have led to third and fourth generations living on welfare is not compassionate, doesn’t provide hope, and consigning even more people to it, rather than an economy that permits people to work and provide for themselves, and to foment envy with the idea that your salvation is found by government rooting around in your neighbor’s pocket and giving you the change.
We’ve gotten away from viewing ourselves as part of a larger enterprise.
Nonsense. Progressives and their practice of defining people by their economic status, by the color of their skin, by their nationality, by their gender, and by their sexual preference has done more to destroy the notion of being an American first and foremost, than concept of government having very specific spheres of influence, and allowing individuals pursue happiness not by having “it” given to them by government, but pursuing it and earning it for themselves.
As long as we pay OUR mortgage, and get OUR kids through school, we’re happy. If we choose to give to a charity or two, that’s OUR business.
Paying our bills and raising our children are our responsibilities. Not the taxpayers’. Not the government’s. OURS. And yes, as I have pointed out, charity is OUR business. Welfare isn’t. The difference is accountability. And because there is accountability, there are also good results, or we do something different, which is far more compassionate than teaching generation after generation that subsistence is all that can be hoped for, because that is all they are capable of…because government tells them so.
As for the country as a whole … it can go to hell in a handbasket. Being a citizen in meaningless. We never signed up to care for our country.
That’s exactly where it will go if you have your way. When you put a yoke and harness on those who still have the drive and ambition to strive and achieve, and to even exceed what they only dreamt of in prior days, months, and years, you kill that drive and ambition. When the government perverts equality of opportunity into equality of result, it sets the bar low, and takes away the incentive for anyone to do better. You need look no farther than the old Soviet Union to see that this is true. In a society where people pretend to work because government pretends to pay them, there is hunger, deprivation, squalor, and hopelessness.
As for citizenship being meaningless, it wasn’t the Republicans who had an illegal alien as a guest speaker, and it isn’t the GOP that continues to push to give all the benefits of citizenship to people who disrespect our laws so much that they are willing to come here and steal them, with the full knowledge that someone else is paying for them. If you want to talk about people not caring about our country, I suggest that you, and other Progressives spend some time considering your reflections in the mirror.
BiW, I’m sorry dude but your party comes off as selfish and petty.
Coming from someone who believes that there is nothing wrong with attempting justify rooting around in our pockets with a belief system you don’t understand and don’t want anything to do with in any other governmental context, that statement isn’t just ironic, it is mendacious. I’m not seeking for you or anyone else to give me stuff; it’s you that demands it from us. And when we dare to suggest the answer to this is “No.”, you start using words like “selfish and petty”. My autistic 8-year-old has a more developed sense of self-awareness than that.
The two conventions made the contrast so vivid.
It is vivid. One featured people who are angry, people who think that others have to give until it hurts to make their own lives easier, those who believe that government can and should use other people’s money to pay for what happens between their legs, regardless of the conscience and religious-based objections of those who would be compelled to pay for it, and those who consistently deliver excuses why you can’t succeed without government, and why government can’t succeed in without punishing those who do.
The other featured people who are proud to be Americans, and who recognize that when government is confined to the limitations it was given by people who would have been horrified and repulsed by the idea that government can and should engage in the kind of activities that Progressives seek to expand. It featured people who don’t define themselves first by color or gender. It featured people who don’t look for ways to justify failure or lower expectations for individuals, or for the country.
To circle back to the beginning, at first blush you’re right.
And at all the other blushes too.
There is a seeming contradiction in the resistance to religion and the appeal to religious principles. But I submit that appeal is simply an attempt to play the game in your arena … to get you at a level you understand.
And as I have demonstrated, it is cynical, and either rooted in Progressive ignorance, or the hope of our own. Heck, even just thinking before speaking should prompt people like Fauxahontas to consider prefacing her remarks with a recognition that talking about God in a forum where people sputter with rage at the mere idea of mentioning God in connection with government, or at least making an attempt, however futile, to address the startling incongruity of saying
And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’
From the same podium where NARAL and Klanned Parenthood extolled the virtues of the Left’s Only High Holy Sacrifice, which kills the least of us under cover of a made up and illogical legal justification. God considers the unborn to be people. This is clear.
“Yet hear now, O Jacob My servant,
And Israel whom I have chosen.
2 Thus says the Lord who made you
And formed you from the womb, who will help you:
‘Fear not, O Jacob My servant;
And you, Jeshurun, whom I have chosen.
5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you;
Before you were born I sanctified you;
I ordained you a prophet to the nations.”
The folly is that you and your fellow conservatives will dig through scripture to justify your selfishness. So ultimately, the liberals attempt to appeal to your religious conscience fails.
The folly is that you and your fellow Progressives presume to tell us that we don’t understand our own Scripture and the faith that it creates. You presume based on your limited exposure that it contradicts itself, when it does nothing of the sort. You presume that you can read a verse, and know that someone who has read the whole thing is a hypocrite. It is a special kind of hubris, and it isn’t the first time even this year that Progressives have engaged in it. Frankly, it doesn’t make sense. I’ve “known” you long enough to know that you wouldn’t dare to tell a mechanic how to fix your car, an electrician how to wire your home, or a plumber how to fix your pipes, but you pitch an argument to me to meet your agenda, pretending to base it in my deeply held beliefs, without doing the work required to understand those beliefs, or what forms them, despite that knowledge being readily available. When we can tell you’re phoning it in, you get angry and call us names, while ascribing all kinds of poor character traits to me, and those like me.
As long as you and other Progressives play it this way, you have no hope of making the sale.