There seems to be a misunderstanding of what the mission of Jesus’ Church is, and this misunderstanding is not limited to non-Christians. Many think that the mission of the Church is to combat poverty and help the poor, but this simply isn’t true.
Jesus didn’t come to end poverty, He didn’t come to end sickness, and He didn’t come to end sadness. While He did those things, among others, that was not His purpose. God had a bigger goal in mind. He came “in order that the world might be saved through him” (John 3:17 ESV). He came to save. He told his disciples in Matthew 28:19-20, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (ESV).
No where does Jesus say end poverty, end sickness, or end sadness. Those things are not the Gospel message. The Gospel message is the Good News: the saving Grace of Jesus Christ. That is the message we are supposed to be spreading. Yes, we are supposed to help and care for the poor, sick, and downtrodden, but we’re supposed to do it while working our primary mission: spreading the Word of God.
Undermining the Message of the Gospel
It used to be that people in need came to the Church, now they go to the government. Getting help from the government wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing, but it’s the message that they’re getting that’s the problem. The “good news” coming from the government is that it can help you with all your needs; you can rely on the government. Those turning to the government for help, aren’t hearing the saving message of the Gospel. They’re hearing the saving message of the System, and they’re placing their faith in Uncle Sam instead of God. And by supporting these programs, Christians are pushing people away from the Church.
Welfare is a system where money is taken from some who have and given to others who don’t. Sounds like charity doesn’t it? It’s not. Welfare is collection through taxing “those who have” and giving to “those who don’t.” While collecting taxes for the government to do necessary business is fine, it’s the extra “stuff” that becomes questionable. While the list of questionable is long, it’s “helping the poor” that I’m concentrating on. The War on Poverty. While this is a noble cause, it’s a fruitless cause. It isn’t working. If you look at the numbers, you’ll find that we haven’t really made any improvements. We spend more and more tax payer dollars, and enact more and more programs, but the number of people in poverty hasn’t really changed in forty years. Sure there’s evidence that it’s getting worse, but I’ll let you Google it. It’s not the point. The point is we’re not winning, and it appears that we’re not gaining either.
So, if we’re not gaining and we’re not reaching people for Christ, why are we supporting this? Because it makes you feel good? Taxes are not voluntary, therefore, they are not charity. Welfare takes money from people who have it, forcefully, and gives to those who don’t. Don’t think its forceful? Try not paying.
When you take take money from someone who doesn’t give it willingly, it’s stealing. It doesn’t matter what the reason is. It doesn’t matter if the thief is trying to put food on his table, or an organization is trying to put food on people’s tables, simply taking it is wrong? But taxes aren’t stealing, you say? It’s legal? Just because something is legal doesn’t make it right. Maybe that’s part of the reason liberals don’t want the Ten Commandments in government buildings. They don’t want to constantly be reminded: Thou Shalt Not Steal. For the government to take anything outside of what it requires for its own Constitutionally approved needs is stealing. It is taking from the citizens it is supposed to protect and giving it to someone else. The person on Welfare can’t steal from someone else, so the Liberals get the government to do it.
Getting Back to the Message
It’s time for Christians to stop supporting this nonsense. Welfare sounds like a grand and noble idea, but I’ve said it before. It’s an idea that has the fingerprints of Satan, the Father of Lies, all over it. It sounds like a grand plan and it has that little touch of truth to make it sound legit, but it steals from God’s Glory and pushes people from His Son.
The biggest shame in all this, is the number of Christians that are pushing this false gospel: the Social Gospel. I can’t think of any reason to push welfare the way they do, other than it makes them feel good. It makes them feel compassionate. Don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing wrong with compassion. Compassion is Biblical, but when we place compassion as our priority over that of His priority, we are working against God. We are working for ourselves.
We need to remember why Jesus came here. He came here to save us from sin. Not to save us from poverty. His constant message throughout His ministry was how His Kingdom was at hand. Along the way, he healed people and fed people, but He never asked for donations, and He never forced people to help. Christianity is about loving your neighbor, and loving your neighbor isn’t about forcing your neighbor. It’s about giving willingly, and it’s about spreading the Good News, not spreading the wealth.