Wednesday, March 09, 2005

God Doesn't Care About Your Money, Just Your...

Spend much time here, and you'll see me rant about the way many Christians willfully ignore biblical teaching on money and poverty, especially as it applies to government policy. The revisions to bankruptcy regulations currently under review in Congress are a case in point. The bills for revision, which is very bad for debtors and very good for credit card companies (and wealthy debtors), are being carried by a number of Senators who are publicly identified as Christians, including the legislation's primary sponsor, Chuck Grassley of Iowa.

Grassley has been challenged by a group of believers who wrote in a recent open letter...
"As Christian attorneys, we strongly believe that it was never God's intention to create a society where indebtedness was a crime or a badge of dishonor..."
The Senator doesn't dispute these attorneys'' biblical analysis. Instead, he says the Bible doesn't apply here:
"I can't listen to Christian lawyers because I would be imposing the Bible on a diverse population..."
So we can't "impose the Bible" on our country's "diverse population"? When did this start? I'm sure that Grassley will remember this the next time abortion comes up, or when legislation to regulate "public decency" on the airwaves is introduced, or when the teaching of evolution in the schools is discussed. Yeah right. To show you where his heart really is, Grassley has even supported legislation which would allow churches to maintain tax exempt status while openly campaigning for candidates and issues!

Narrowly, I agree with Senator Grassley. Christians shouldn't try to "impose" the Bible on our fellow citizens. I believe we should use persuasion and self-evident arguments to influence national policy, not coercion and threats. But I also believe we should stop selectively reading the Bible.

The biblical worldview is not a buffet cart from which one may chose as one likes. If you want to use the Bible's model for sexual behavior, then you're stuck with what the Bible has to say about money and poverty. If you want to follow the Bible and reject Darwinian biology, then you should also reject social Darwinism. If think the Bible calls us to be pro-life, make sure your concern extends beyond abortion, because the Bible's sure does.

So what's it going to be Senator? Bible or no? Are you in or are you out?

Update: Fred Clark at The Slacktivist has an excellent discussion of usury. The upshot? It's a sin. Go read it.

(Hat Tip to The Revealer)

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