Sunday, December 18, 2011

An Imaginary Article.....

Bill O'Reilly Accuses God of Class Warfare.

After reading the Magnificat, attributed to Mary the mother of Jesus in the first chapter of the Gospel of Luke, O'Reilly accused God of "encouraging the redistribution of wealth" and thereby "punishing job creators everywhere."

"I can't believe this," said O'Reilly. "These ideas are anti-conservative and therefore downright un-American. If God had been around in the 1950's, He would have been blacklisted."

The Magnificat

46 And Mary said,
"My soul magnifies the Lord,
47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant.
Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me,
and holy is his name.
50 His mercy is for those who fear him
from generation to generation.
51 He has shown strength with his arm;
he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts.
52 He has brought down the powerful from their thrones,
and lifted up the lowly;
53 he has filled the hungry with good things,
and sent the rich away empty.
54 He has helped his servant Israel,
in remembrance of his mercy,
55 according to the promise he made to our ancestors,
to Abraham and to his descendants forever."


  1. I think there is a lot that could and should be said about the charitable giving (or lack thereof) of Christians writ large; however, the Scriptural passages that address how and why one should give, I think, make it clear that government-mandated redistribution of wealth is not the answer.

    So many of the biblical edicts given by Christ are not focused on the end, but rather on the betterment of the Christian who employs the means. I believe Christ's views on giving clearly fit this mold.

    In short, charity yes, compulsory redistribution no. You are probably right about how Bill O'Reilly would view the matter, though :)

  2. Randy,

    You're totally right that most people believe in giving - and perhaps in terms of justice, not just charity - but some are uncomfortable with the government mandate.

    I think of it two ways:

    First, there is the justice element. Sure, it's nice for the giver to get a good feeling, absolutely, but we all paid for the roads, the education, etc. that makes being rich possible. No one gets rich alone, they did it through a mix of personal qualities, luck, and the resources given them by their country. So it is just to be required to share the wealth that the school teacher and Wal-Mart checker helped you earn.

    Secondly, I think the early church did require giving to be a participant. The Lord's Supper was about equal sharing, and those who were not seen as making it an exercise in equality were chastised and seen as unfit for taking the sacrament. So, in a way, giving was mandated for participation, just like paying taxes is in a country.

    But it's a good debate about how much should be mandatory and how much should be up to the individual. Everyone believes in both aspects, virtually, so it's just a matter of what the right balance should be.

  3. Government is a social contract. I don't think anybody will disagree.

    When men will not restrain themselves (shipping jobs to China) and put the interest of distant shareholders over the interest of sustainable & local economies, it is the legitimate domain of government to restrain them. I wholly support this form of redistribution, and so do the 99% of us out here.

    By the way, I love the Magnificat! After much posturing & scriptural bombast over the years, conservative evangelicals have not been able to subtract one electron of mystery & magic from the person of Mary, nor will they ever. And I'm not even a Papist.