Monday, November 23, 2009

Caesar calling the tune

When you take Caesar's coin you dance to Caesar's tune. Churches will eventually learn the price of taking government money. But I fear the lesson will be a painful one.

1 comment:

Anil Wang said...

Agreed, but in modern governments, its far more problematic. In Canada, for instance, the Salvation Army Hospital had to stop delivering babies since any Hospital with maternity services is required to provide abortions. The "government pays for all health care, so it calls the shots" argument is used to justify that decision. The only problem is, private health care (even if supported completely by donations) is illegal.

Similarly, charitable donations for explicitly political entities like LGBT get tax deductions. In Canada, under the previous government, LGBT organizations whose sole aim was to redefine marriage was actually funded by the government. It succeed and the Liberal government at the time welcomed the decision, saying that the public has spoken. But if the Church gets involved in politics as a reaction to these groups, tax deductions are threatened to be withdrawn from the Church.

The playing field is not level. We should not pretend it is. One side (traditional Christianity as well as most traditional religions) demand rights be balanced with responsibilities. The other side demands rights without responsibilities...its the government's job to be long as it doesn't interfere with rights. Caesar at least used to be at least partially on the side of responsibility based rights. No longer.

Unfortunately, responsibility-free rights are popular, those in power relish the opportunity to gain more power, and the pure utilitarians see this as a market need that needs to be met.

I don't know the solution. The ways of Satan are always tempting for those who do not understand. The fruits of Satan are tasty and readily available, but they are corrosive to the bones. A body fed on these fruits cannot stand. The life of discipline, responsibility, honor, and love plants a bountiful feast in the future, but the harvest takes time and without faith, there it is too easy to be discouraged.