Wednesday, March 24, 2010


I'm reposting some comments I recently left at two different blogs (Between Two Worlds, First Things: Evangel:


steve hays March 21, 2010 at 3:49 pm
A nonbinding executive order–which is trumped by judicial precedent.

Moral of the story, the Democrat party is a total loss. “Pro-life Democrat” is oxymoronic in practice. Same thing with the “conservative” Blue Dog Democrats. They all march in lock-step with the liberals.

steve hays March 22, 2010 at 10:09 am

“I guess God’s not sovereign anymore… Too bad, huh?”

Why did you bother to post a comment? Does this mean you don’t think God is sovereign anymore?

steve hays March 22, 2010 at 8:10 am
One Salient Oversight:

“As far as health care and Christians are concerned, the practice of the state taking a person’s wealth and redistributing it to the poor and punishing those who refuse can be found in Deuteronomy 24.18-22. This was when God required farmers to leave some of their produce behind so that the poor could ‘glean’ what they could from it. This command was seen in practice during the book of Ruth. You need to understand – this was NOT charity. It was a COMMAND from God. The verses in Deuteronomy that I have pointed to when taken in context quite clearly show that God expected Israel to obey his commands and those who did not were punished by the legal system that God set up (eg Deut 24.7).”


i) When passages like this refer to “aliens,” the term denotes legal immigrants.

ii) In addition: “It is noteworthy that with this statute the landowners did not harvest the entirety of their fields or groves and give a certain percentage to the local authorities or religious officials to redistribute. Rather those who qualified for this assistance actually had to go out into the fields or climb trees and work for their food,” J. Hoffmeier, The Immigration Crisis (Crossway 2009), 87.


“Can someone please help me understand how the pro-life democrat is a myth?”

Because they ally themselves with liberal Democrats who support abortion, infanticide, euthanasia, &c.

“That seems to be a wide sweeping generalization that is quite frankly untrue.”

Your sweeping denial is frankly untrue.

“However, their pro-life position does not just stop at abortion, it includes the sanctity of human life with regards to war, to poverty. to the orphan, to adoption, to the alien etc…”

As if conservative Christians ignore these issues.

steve hays March 24, 2010 at 8:57 am

“1) My statement regarding Christian democrats that I know having a robust pro-life stance which includes the sanctity of life with regards to war, to poverty, to the orphan, to adoption, and to the alien was simply to point out that it is untrue to say that a pro-life democrat is a myth.”

i) “Prolife” is an idiomatic label that refers to one’s position on abortion.

ii) I judge “prolife Democrats” by their actions, not their stump speech.

“I am currently working on a campaign for a pro-life democrat who is a passionate follower of Jesus Christ.”

i) Well, Stupak seemed to fill the bill until he betrayed the cause at the last minute.

ii) There’s not much a “prolife democrat” can do in a party dominated by abortionists. It’s not the individual position that matters, but having a working majority. If you’re consistently outvoted, then you’re in the wrong party.

“As far as your statement ‘as if conservative Christians ignore these issues’ I must say that I never said conservative Christians do ignore these issues. That being said I would say that in general the republican party has not been as responsive to these issues as the democratic party.”

Democrats aren’t genuinely responsive to these issues. They have lots of responsive rhetoric, but their policies are counterproductive.

“While I do not think that all of the social welfare programs are implemented in the best possible fashion, it is much easier to extend grace to a failed program that has the right intention behind it.”

Democrats don’t care about solutions, just symbolism.

“I have heard too many conservative talk show hosts wine and complain that government is taking their money away to help the poor and marginalized with social welfare programs and yet I do not see a robust solution being offered. In light of this, I would have to say that with regards to these social issues the democratic party has come closer to expressing the heart of God in these areas.”

You’re deceived by feel-good rhetoric. Moreover, the “poor” are not all of a kind. The Bible distinguishes between those who are poor through not fault of their own and those who are poor due to their reckless lifestyle choices.

“Also, the response of the republican party to war has been absolutely heinous and far from capturing the heart of God. ”

What I find “absolutely heinous” is Obama’s policy of attacking those who defend us while defending those who attack us.

“There has been to much a sense of superiority and pride that has been communicated.”

Are you including yourself in that indictment?

“I am not saying the democratic response is necessary the right one, but please Steve be fair in the discussions. There is already too much polarity in government today and to say flippant things like ‘the myth of the pro-life democrat’ only adds to the discord. It would be more accurate and helpful to say that you are disappointed by the response of those democrats who claim to be pro-life that are currently in congress, than to say that there is a myth to being a pro-life democrat.”

I’m not disappointed by Democrats. They’re behaving exactly as I’d expect, given their party affiliation.

And there’s nothing “flippant” in my statement. Democrats are what Democrats do.

steve hays
March 23rd, 2010 | 8:06 am | #7
Steve Dawson

“Greed, Gluttony,Avarice come to mind. I don’t see too many churches lining up to help those who have had medical problems and need financial help. When was the last time that a church offered to cover the cost of a major medical procedure because the patient had lost their job and hence their insurance?”

When was the last time you offered to pay for somebody’s costly medical procedure?

The only money churches have is from donations by parishioners, most of whom are middle-class or working-class wage-earners, and many of whom are retirees on fixed incomes.

Of course, if the tax burden were lower, that would free up more disposable income to donate to Christian charity. Ever bother to consider that?

And it’s well-known that, despite the tax burden, Christians are far more generous with their disposable income than unbelievers.

steve hays
March 24th, 2010 | 8:40 am | #12
Steve Dawson

“I’d love to be able to sponsor a patient. Unfortunately, my own health care costs (including premiums) last year ran about $10,000. That for me, is more than I pay in property and income tax put together. That’s why we need to do something about health care and why Collin’s list of what’s wrong with government is so hokey. If churches actually stepped up to the plate (there are some who could afford NOT to build excessive facilities) then maybe the government wouldn’t have to step in.”

You seem to think the average church has deep pockets. Where did you get that idea?

You also disregard the issue of cost containment, viz. tort reform, interstate competition, customized health care plans (where you can buy the coverage you want rather than a state mandated package).

Obamacare will increase the cost of healthcare, not decrease the cost of healthcare.


  1. Do you consider Dan Lipinski a pro-life Democrat? And could you explain "Obama’s policy of attacking those who defend us while defending those who attack us"?

  2. Steve can add more info as to what he specifically referred to, but I see Obama going around bashing the UK and Israel non-stop, while issuing non-stop apologize to everyone in the Muslim world about how evil and wicked the US is. Furthermore, I see him deny resources to our troops while granting terrorists the ability to get out of jail free because of his insane insistence on holding civilian trials instead of military tribunals for detainees (BTW: the troops know these guys come back to attack them, so in reality Obama just signed the death warrants of insurgents who would otherwise have been captured but who are now not going to even get the option of surrendering).

  3. On the one hand, the Obama administration indicts, or threatens to indict, soldiers and interrogators who violated the alleged due process rights of the terrorists.

    That's a case of attacking those who defend us.

    On the other hand, the Obama administration bestows full due process rights on terrorists.

    That's a case of defending those who attack us.

    As for Dan Lipinski, you can't be prolife in a proabortion party. And that's because you will be outvoted every time. So, by affiliating with a proabortion party, whose proabortion views will invariably trump your own, you are facilitating a proabortion policy.

  4. Peter, you speak of "bashing Israel" as if that's a bad thing. :)-

  5. Hi Steve, Peter, and other Triabloggers,

    I've been thinking about the "Abortion Tax" and "Freedom of Conscience".

    I don't want my taxes to fund abortions. And I've heard liberals say that they don't want their taxes to fund the war in Iraq and/or Afghanistan. So if everybody screams "freedom of conscience" as a valid and legitimate reason to not pay taxes, then a lot of people aren't gonna pay taxes.

    So I guess I have to render unto Caesar what is Caesar's, and to be a totally unwilling enabler and payer for abortion. (Although if I'm not mistaken, a portion of our federal tax dollars have been funding abortions for quite some time now.)

    What do you think?

    I write this in view of the recent blog post by Justin Taylor about filling out the 2010 census form, and the ensuing discussion about civil disobedience.

  6. Hi T-bloggers,

    I just read this at the FoxNews website:

    "President Barack Obama has signed an executive order designed to ensure that no federal money can be used for elective abortions under the nation's new health care legislation.

    Obama agreed to the order on Sunday to ensure passage of the health care overhaul that is central to his agenda. The deal won the votes of anti-abortion lawmaker Rep. Bart Stupak of Michigan and a bloc of other House members who wanted assurances that existing federal policy would not change.

    The order affirms a prohibition on federal funding of abortions, except in cases of rape, incest or danger to the woman's life.

    Obama invited lawmakers to the Oval Office for the order signing Wednesday but no members of the news media were allowed in the room."

    What do you all think?

  7. The executive order is a sham. It can't overrule statutory law.

    As for civil disobedience:

    i) We can still vote the rascals out of office.

    ii) We have to be wise about what hill we die on. The census is hardly a do-or-die issue.

    iii) We have to honor our prior commitments. For example, if I have dependents, then their welfare comes first.

    iv) Sometimes, in the providence of God, we must endure a certain amount of injustice which we are powerless to prevent. That's just the hand we were dealt. That comes with the territory in a fallen world.

  8. Thanks for the response Steve.

    "We have to be wise about what hill we die on."

    I'll pay my taxes. If they fund abortions, what can I do? Is it God's will for me to not pay my taxes?

    I'm between a rock and a hard place.

  9. Jesus told the Jews to pay their taxes even though the revenue often went to fund immoral Roman causes. So that's not where the line was drawn.

  10. The only thing I will add is that civil disobedience becomes slightly more complicated in America due to the way our country was founded. It is certainly the case that Christ commands us to obey our government, but the *OFFICIAL* position of the government of the United States is that it is ruled by the Constitution. America was set up as a country of laws, not men. Furthermore, our founders explicitly stated:

    ...whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government...

    ...when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.

    Both of those quotes are from the Declaration of Independence, which provided the philosophical justification for revolt against England, and which therefor provides the philosophical justification for the Constitution. In other words, if the Declaration is invalid, so too is our Constitution.

    So the founders of our country said that if government becomes tyrannical, it is not only our right but it is our duty to not submit to it.

    Thus, a Christian today could easily make this argument (and I don't think he would necessarily be sinning to follow this out):

    1. We are to obey our government, per God's command.

    2. Our government is a government of laws (the Constitution), not men.

    3. Therefore, to obey our government is to abide by the Constitution.

    4. If one does not abide by the Constitution, one does not obey the government of the United States.

    5. Elected officials have passed laws against the Constitution.

    6. Therefore, obeying those laws is to violate the Constitution.

    7. Therefore, to obey such laws is to disobey God's command to be obedient to our government.

    In short, this argument would say that our government is, in fact, ruled by the Constitution and therefore we must, in fact, disobey unconstitutional laws. The only way to avoid this is to acknowledge that we are a nation of men, not of laws; and that is the basis for which our founders originally revolted in the first place (i.e., that means that our founder's require us (by saying it is our "duty") to overthrow such a government).

    It would be a lot easier to say "Follow the government's decree, except insofar as they force you to sin" in countries other than the United States. But we've been blessed with founders who knew the natural tendency of men was toward despotism, and who set up their government with a system of checks and balances, and with a mind to always allow citizens the opportunity to revolt against tyranny. Hence the famous response I believe Franklin gave (I know someone said quote, but I'm only about 90% sure it was Franklin) to the question of what type of government did they found: "A republic, if you can keep it."

  11. Publius said:
    Peter, you speak of "bashing Israel" as if that's a bad thing. :)-

    I gather this is tongue-in-cheek. But still, I'll answer it :-)

    Yes, politically, it is a bad thing to bash half of the democracies in the Middle East (the other being Iraq, thanks to Bush), and to side with despotic regimes who want to wipe said country off the map.