Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Does it Matter Where our Taxes Go?

The big political debate yesterday was over restricting federal funds for abortions in the latest iteration of the Health Care overhaul. Never mind that there is already a statute that prohibits federal funds from paying for abortions, though I agree with the argument that it's only a shell game of moving lines on a ledger.

This morning coincidentally, I read Matthew 22:15-22 where the Pharisees and Herodians try to trap Jesus by asking him about taxes. The question seemed to be a slam dunk for the Pharisees since any good Jew would agree that the Romans were oppressors and that these taxes went to a government that supported infanticide, homosexuality, and pagan worship. Jesus replied channeling Lee Corso, "not so fast, my friends! Who does this coin belong to? Then that's who has a say of where it goes." In other words, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's." (Mt 22:21)

We let ourselves get into such a fuss over what our government does with our money, but we'll gladly accept grants for our abstinence-only education program. Relating the two, the onus to reduce the number of abortions is not on the federal government, but on the individuals who choose to be irresponsible sexually. In our hyper-sexualized culture, we need to fight this front of the culture war not through politics, but by our own example of purity. The coin bore the image of Caesar, so it was his. We bear the image of God Almighty, and we are his.

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