Friday, September 11, 2009
Christian Compassion: Government's Role
I have given quite a bit of thought about what Christian compassion looks like through government programs. With the healthcare debate at the forefront of the nation, there are some that believe it is the morally correct thing for the government to take care of healthcare for the millions of uninsured. Remember the parable of the good Samaritan. I don’t disagree with this premise fully. However, what that parable was expressing is the desire of God for the individual to reach out and care for another person regardless of possible bias. What it didn’t say was that the Samaritan saw a person hurt and left for dead so he lobbied his governing body to require free (meaning the recipient doesn’t pay) ambulance service for people hurt on the highway.
When we mandate “compassion” through government, we cut God out of the picture all together. That Samaritan wouldn’t see God’s love from the ambulance service that is just doing its job. Government is secular. Since a majority of Americans actually pay no taxes at all, how compassionate is it for them to make such a requirement when it requires no sacrifice or action on their part. People are becoming too “compassionate” with other people’s money.
When we mandate “compassion” through compassion, that compassion is lost on the future generations. If we all take a stand as Christians and say that government should cover the expenses of all healthcare as being the moral choice, the next generation, who will be paying for it, will never have the opportunity to make that decision. Instead, the money is taken from their paychecks automatically and without consent and distributed to those that others see fit to distribute it too. When Jesus instructed us to care for the widows and orphans, he said it to the people. He didn’t ask the people to require their government to do it. It is because we have given this power to government that the people no longer do these things for the glory of God.
Ultimately, when we force our “compassion” through government, where does it stop. Doesn’t really come down to a simple equation: To each according to their need, from each according to their ability to give. That kind of compassion, and it is always sold as compassion, cost 100 million people their lives in the 20th century. With liberty, there are a number who suffer. With oppression, the suffering is innumerable.
Posted by jrchaard at 8:43 AM