Two things caught my attention today. A sermon from the Associate Pastor candidate at our church this morning and an article shared on Facebook by a friend’s daughter.
The sermon was based on the following:
Imitating Christ’s Humility
1 Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
6 Who, being in very nature[a] God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
7 rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature[b] of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8 And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
The article in Vanity Fair is, not surprisingly an “Eat the Rich” lecture about income inequality titled “Of the 1%, By the 1%, For the 1%.
I don’t know if their “statistics” are based on valid data, but I do note the false premise often used by Progressives/Socialists/Marxists (Note: they do not include the statistics regarding where the lion’s share of the tax revenue comes from as well as the fact that we are nearing a point where almost half the people in this country pay no taxes, but that’s a post for another time):
Some people look at income inequality and shrug their shoulders. So what if this person gains and that person loses?
At this point a loud buzzer sounds and the reader should ask themselves: Is every gain by someone a loss to another? A socialist would say yes. I don’t think a follower of Christ would agree. That is because the world view of these two people are, “world’s apart.”
The article goes on to tell us why our economy is doing so poorly and what needs to be done to change that:
Third, and perhaps most important, a modern economy requires “collective action”—it needs government to invest in infrastructure, education, and technology.
Collective action and government are the answer…..NOT! The article continues:
None of this should come as a surprise—it is simply what happens when a society’s wealth distribution becomes lopsided. The more divided a society becomes in terms of wealth, the more reluctant the wealthy become to spend money on common needs. The rich don’t need to rely on government for parks or education or medical care or personal security—they can buy all these things for themselves. In the process, they become more distant from ordinary people, losing whatever empathy they may once have had.
Here I must agree with the statement made, minus the false assumption that this a result of “lopsided wealth distribution.” My world view says that we become more distant from ordinary people and people who are truly in need of our help because government has taken over our charitable giving. THEY take the resources and they distribute it to whom THEY deem worthy. In the process our hearts become hardened and we leave it to the powerful elite to determine where our wealth should go.
Hear Paul’s words again:
3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
Christ changes our hearts and leads us to value others above ourselves. Christ encourages us to look to the interests of others. Government, laws, and executive orders do NOT accomplish that.
It breaks my heart and causes me great distress that our young people are being indoctrinated into the Marxist-based concept of “social justice” and have totally lost sight of what our Founders sought and that is equal justice.
The article continues:
They also worry about strong government—one that could use its powers to adjust the balance, take some of their wealth, and invest it for the common good.
You are darn right I worry about strong government that can use its powers to “adjust the balance, take some of their wealth and invest it for the common good.” This is where history shows us just what can occur if that strong government is not tethered to something that guides it: As I noted in my post “Divided We Fall” a passage from Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s biography:
The difference between real leadership and the false leadership of the Leader was this: real leadership derived its authority from God, the source of all goodness. Thus parents have legitimate authority because they are submitted to the legitimate authority of a good God. But the authority of the Fuhrer was submitted to nothing. It was self-derived and autocratic, and therefore had a messianic aspect. (pg 141)
The authority of a Progressive/Marxist leadership is submitted to nothing. Just read Saul Alinsky to confirm that. Just review the horrors that come about when leadership is submitted to nothing. They will USE Christian principles and quote Christ, but they are perverting the message for their own ends. Do I believe that many of the social justice folks truly believe they are doing the right thing? Yes. But I have to add the caution that the German people, in particular the “German Church” thought what it was doing was correct also.
Our Constitutional Republic only works if it involves a moral people. Abuses of Capitalism and our system of government do not demonstrate that Capitalism is dead and our Founding Documents are irrelevant. It demonstrates that there indeed are people who do things for their own self interest and who can bring harm to others. Setting up a socialistic/progressive/Marxist government does NOT eliminate this problem. It makes it worse.