Scripture on the Budget: What the Bible Says About National Priorities

One aspect of the Democratic response to the upcoming Republican budget attacks must be a willingness by “faithful Democrats” to discuss budget and tax policies from a moral perspective and to challenge Republicans to apply the same moral codes to kitchen table issues that they so eagerly embrace on bedroom issues…because as soon as we [Read More…]

The Responsibility of the Nation and Its Government to “the Least of These”

Scripture sets a very high bar for public morality as well as for private behavior. Although we can easily rationalize why alternatives to the commands of Scripture might be more “sensible” and “realistic,” if people are going to insist on applying scripture to the bedroom, they must be willing to apply it to the boardroom [Read More…]

The Policy Implications of Praying, “Thy Kingdom Come…”

The Kingdom of God requires action by each of us, but it also requires action by all of us. It requires that Christians not only succor the least, last, and lost in our society but also that we truly claim our inheritance as God’s chosen people by boldly confronting the systemic bonds of injustice that [Read More…]

On Corruption and the Exploitation of Workers

Time and again the Bible makes clear that what God demands and takes pleasure in is not acts of piety and the scrupulous following of purity codes but our demonstrating His love through our actions and the policies we enact in government, business, and all other institutions. Special condemnation is always reserved for those in [Read More…]

The Sin of Helping the Rich at the Expense of the Poor

Democrats must not get into the business of throwing stones, but neither should we allow Republicans to continue to portray us as moral relativists. We must approach moral conversations with humility “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23), but we should not shy away from naming an action [Read More…]

The Blessedness of the Poor and Our Christian Responsibility to Them

An underlying assumption in many Republican policies is that poor people deserve what they get and that they are poor because of some character flaw. But poverty is not a sin, and it is not necessarily caused by sin. Jesus was homeless throughout his ministry. His disciples were unemployed. Elijah the prophet fled into the [Read More…]

Wealth, Materialism, and the Bible’s View of an “Ownership Society”

If Republicans are so eager to legislate morality, perhaps they should start by doing all they can NOT to appeal to our base desire to increase our own wealth, because Jesus told us that we “cannot love both God and wealth” (Matthew 6:24), and as Paul said, “the love of money is the root of [Read More…]

Countering the Right’s Pharisaical Approach to Piety and Moral Legalism

The tendency of many leaders of the religious right and Republicans to focus on purity following the letter of the law while ignoring its true purpose is hardly new. As Jesus said to the religious and political leaders of Israel: “Woe to you teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth [Read More…]

Concluding Thoughts: Applying Scripture in a Pluralistic Society

If certain elected officials and Christian interest groups seeking to influence elections and government claim that they cannot check their faith at the door when it comes to their so-called "family values" issues, then this same faith must also inform their positions during tax and budget debates along with all the debates on the "compassion [Read More…]

Commentary: A Place At The Table

It is that belief of the impossible becoming possible that has guided my steps as a public servant. It is the belief that we can build a society like Dr. King’s Beloved Community where we tend to the “least of these” and everyone has a seat at the table. There are those among us who [Read More…]