What’s Going On?

I took this picture, but I really don’t know what’s going on; I’m not sure they do either!

Do you ever feel that way?

If nothing else, there is an interesting range of reaction in this photo…

To tell you the truth, I get that same feeling quite often these days looking at the news and the way people react to what’s going on.  The other day a good friend told me about an email that he received from a member of his congregation about certain current events.  It seems that the person who sent it was of the view that Christians need to be very sensitive to the needs of the poor and downtrodden, that we should be willing to quickly help those who are in need.  OK, so far so good.  The note concluded with the assertion that since we need to be attentive to the needs of the less fortunate that we should support higher taxes so that government could care for the needy.  That’s when I had the reaction of the little boy in the picture…

My friend shared another email from a member of his congregation expressing some of the same sentiment but concluding that we need to pay higher taxes so that the government can provide free contraceptives and abortions to the poor.  That’s when I reacted like the little girl in the picture. Does anybody really know what’s going on any more?

Of course we should be concerned about the less fortunate; Jesus told us that.  But I don’t recall that He was pushing a new social program or entitlement.  If I remember correctly He was suggesting that we dig in our pockets and help people out ourselves.  He also taught quite a bit about little children, human life and murder, and I simply can’t fathom the notion that He would have us be merciful by terminating pregnancies… but then maybe I’m the one who’s confused…

(OK, take your finger out of your mouth and keep typing)

The point of this post isn’t to promote or oppose government policies, and quite frankly I don’t think that was ever Jesus’ concern either.  Jesus, in all that He taught, was placing His central and complete emphasis on God’s program of salvation and redemption.  He was not involved in election year politics, of that you can be sure… there were no such things in the provinces of the Roman Empire, so don’t even go there!

Sharing God’s love with others, putting others first, sharing resources with those in need, seeking and saving the lost; these are the priorities that Jesus taught, and all of these were for the purpose of God’s plan of redemption.  They are also the methods of discipleship.  Government social policies?  Well, I’m sure that there are blogs where the merits of these are discussed at length, but this blog is centered on the Person and Message of Christ.

About Don Merritt

A long time teacher and writer, Don hopes to share his varied life's experiences in a different way with a Christian perspective.
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5 Responses to What’s Going On?

  1. Hi Don, great post! This is exactly along the lines of a blog i have been preparing to write for some time. I operate my own Homeless Assistance nonprofit org and i am of firm belief that Jesus…as you say above…wanted all 100% of us to help those in need. I also do not believe Jesus intended for the governments to have to take care of everything, again He wants US ALL to be responsible and take care of what is actually in all honesty ours to take care of as God gave us the right to live here and inhabit this earth and instructed to take care of it. He meant all of it. He did not say……Go inhabit the earth and pawn off the responsibilities of it on others or something else. Thank you for your post!

  2. ephesians413 says:

    We must certainly help our brothers and sisters. We are not above anyone else. However, how do we meet the true need of each person? Sometimes it does mean that they need food. The Bible has precise descriptions of allowing people to glean the fields. In fact, Ruth did that to feed herself and her mother-in-law, Naomi. Some people need food and other kinds of helps on a regular basis. The Bible again teaches about widows and the fatherless, etc. However, giving some people everything on a consistent basis may not be what they need. It may help them more to say, no more. It’s time for you to stand on your own two feet. It may be hurting that person’s chance at salvation to be giving him/her handouts all the time. That person is never able to gain the self respect earned from playing a useful role in society. People who live their whole lives feeling entitled to getting everything for free never acquire the quality of unselfish usefulness, thinking of others instead of themselves.

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