Friday, October 29, 2010

Jesus, Caesar, Peter, and Paul Walk Into A Bar...

Quite the brouhaha this week on the local political scene over a mailer sent out by a DFL candidate that many thought displayed an anti-Catholic or at least anti-Christian bias. The story has attracted a great deal of media attention since it first broke both locally and nationally.

There's a lot of interesting angles to this story. To me, the most offensive part of it was not the actual depiction of a religious figure (one that most people would assume was a priest) wearing a button that read "Ignore The Poor." It's that fact that the Left continues to conflate the Christian duty to help the least and the lost with expanded government programs, more spending, and higher taxes. Even beyond the irony that people who are often hostile to Christianity seem to have no problem when it comes to using it to advance their political goals is the gross distortion of the Christian teachings on charity.

It may be hard for some to believe given my Catholic faith, but I have actually read the Bible, in particular the New Testament. And I don't recall coming across too many passages where Jesus calls on Caesar to use the confiscatory power of the Roman government to take from Peter to give to Paul. Christ's teachings on charity and our obligation to the poor are focused on what we are supposed to do, not what we are supposed to use the force of government to make others do.

Yet the Left persists in misinterpreting--either out of ignorance or deceit--what the Bible says about helping the poor. This article called 8 Biblical Verses That Leftists Have Gotten Completely Wrong has a few choice examples. While the DFL hit piece may be one of the more blatant and outrageous examples, it's just the latest in a long line of the Left's disingenuous efforts to equate bigger government with Christian service to the poor.