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June 21, 2013

Joe Biden's Bad Theology

Set aside the fact that there seem to be some First Amendment issues with the Vice President of the United States defining the proper interpretation of Scripture and declaring that those who do not hold to it are "bad Christians". The fact is that Slow Joe Biden is declaring to be incorrect a perfectly defensible interpretation of the passage in question.

As lawmakers move closer to a compromise on border security, the free-talking Biden had some fiery words for Republicans who have accused the White House of executive overreach on immigration.

“Many of these same [GOP] representatives talk about their Christianity and their fidelity to the Bible, but they forget Matthew Chapter 25, Verse 34, where scripture teaches us: ‘I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty — you gave me drink. I was a stranger, and you welcomed me,’” Biden said pointing to a Republican amendment that would have blocked President Obama’s decision to halt the deportation of so-called DREAMers.

Biden later added, “It’s the right thing to do; it’s the Christian thing to do. But it’s also an incredibly practical thing to do.”

Now the Left likes to use this particular Scripture to justify every big government entitlement program, and Biden is simply stretching this passage a little further. But let's look at it, why don't we.

MATTHEW 25:31-46 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ Then they also will answer, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?’ Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

First of all, the passage involves Christ praising those who PERSONALLY did something for the favored groups -- it is "whenever YOU did this", not "whenever YOUR GOVERNMENT did this". Forced "charity" via the coercive power of government is not a praiseworthy act; individual charity engaged in through an act of faith and free will is. But beyond that, Biden's odd exegesis (actually eisegesis) would necessarily lead to the belief that the act of calling the police to report a crime or seeking prosecution of a criminal is potentially not a Christian act -- the shoplifter should be allowed to take the stolen food or clothing lest one be viewed as denying them food or clothing, just as an example. Did Jesus truly take a stance that lawlessness was superior to the rule of law? I'd argue that is not the case.

But even more to the point is that the Old Testament repeatedly teaches that foreigners are to follow the laws of the nation. To this end, that would require that aliens follow the immigration laws of the nation. And as we see time and again in the New Testament, it is deemed essential to submit to the just laws of civil authorities and for civil authorities to act justly. To reward those aliens who have violated the laws while holding legal aliens to the full provisions of those same law is fundamentally unjust. And so to claim that we have a Christian obligation to welcome the lawbreakers is a scriptural absurdity.

But then why are we surprised by something absurd coming from the mouth of Biden?





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The Left, to the extent that it pays any attention to the Bible, is known for its cafeteria-style approach to scripture. For example, notice that Biden and the rest of his ilk don't mention 2 Thessalonians 3:10 -- "For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat."

But then Obama confused Christ with Cain when he spoke about being his brother's keeper.

Don't get me started ...

|| Posted by Darkwater, June 26, 2013 02:36 AM ||
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