THE RADICAL RIGHT AND THE BIBLE
Conservatives and religious Fundamentalists pay much lip-service to the Bible. In their minds, support for the Bible (along with the U. S. Constitution) is equated with Americanism. Having made this equation, they put on a great show of exalting the Bible and the Flag as the supreme symbols of patriotism and good citizenship.
The fact of the matter, however, is that conservatives have missed the whole point of enlightened religion with respect to its true essentials. Of how much value, therefore, is the ostentatious veneration of Holy Scriptures, the main principles of which are misunderstood, misapplied, and even flagrantly violated?
To prove this assertion, conservative points of view are given below with pertinent quotations from the Bible that nullify their validity.
1. ME FIRST: let the poor take care of themselves; cut out welfare; cut off foreign aid; keep out immigrants.
The last shall be first, and the first last. Matt. 20:16
Whoever stops his ears at the cry of the poor
shall also cry himself, but shall not be heard.
Remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how
He said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35
But whoever has enough of this world’s good things and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart of compassion, how is it that there is any of God’s love in him? 1 John 3:17
If there be among you a poor man of one of your brothers within any of your gates in the land which the Lord your God gives you, you shall not harden your heart nor shut your hand from your poor brother. Deut. 15:7
Cast your bread freely on the waters, and you will find it
again after many days. Eccl. 11:1
And you must never oppress a stranger, for you should know how a foreigner feels, since you were yourselves aliens in the land of Egypt. Ex. 23:9
And whoever comes to Me, I will never cast out.
Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free; the wretched refuse of your teeming shores. Send these, the home-less, tempest tossed, to me. I lift my lamp beside the golden door.
Inscription on the Statue of Liberty
2. MY GROUP FIRST: ignore the rights of minority groups and feel free to hate designated untouchables such as non-whites, AIDS victims, femi-nists, working women, non-English speaking aliens, non-orthodox religious groups, socialistic economists, civil rights activists, pacifists, and free thinkers.
Then Peter spoke up and said, “Now truly I see that God does not play favorites.” Acts 10:34
There is no distinction between Jews and Greeks, between slaves and free citizens, between males and females; you are all equal in the sight of Jesus Christ. Gal. 3:28
A curse on you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! You give a tithe of mint and anise and cummin, but you have omitted the significant matters of religion: judgment, mercy, and faith. Matt. 23:23
3. MY GENERATION FIRST: exploitation of nature, depletion of natural resources, pollution of the earth.
The earth is the Lord’s and all its wealth,
the world and all its peoples. Ps. 24:1
For every animal in the forest is mine,
and the cattle on a thousand hills.
I take care of all the birds in the air,
and everything that moves in the meadows is mine.
Let the mountains yield wealth for the people,
and also the hills, in good works. Ps. 72:3
4. AMERICA FIRST: massive arms buildup; aggression against small countries; undermining elected governments of neighbor states; setting up puppet dictators; subversive arms shipments; using the United Nations only when it agrees with American foreign policy; glorification of misguided super-patriots.
Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord of Hosts. Zech. 4:6b
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the
children of God. Matt. 5:9
5. POWER SEEKING RULERSHIP: Presidents and politicians who consider themselves above the law and who believe that the end justifies whatever means is required to stay in power.
But Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers of the nations exercise dominion over their subjects, and they that are powerful exercise authority of their station, but that is not how it should be among you. No. Whoever seeks to be great should become the servant of all.” Matt. 20:25-26
Let us not judge one another any more; but use your judgment in this way, that you try to never put an obstacle or a snare in your brother’s path. Rom. 14:13
For, brothers, you have all been given your freedom; but do not use your liberty on self-indulgence, but as an occasion for loving service to each other. Gal. 5:13
This is what I command you: “Love one another, just as I have loved you.” John 15:12
6. UNCONTROLLED CAPITALISM: wanting more and more money; the “Daddy Warbucks” syndrome; exercising craft and deception in busi-ness; justifying ruthlessness; opposing taxation and use of wealth in the public interest; viewing recipients of charity as inferior human beings.
You cannot serve God and Materialism. Matt. 6:24b
Do not be addicted to wine, to violent temper, or to filthy
riches. 1 Tim. 3:3a
For the love of money is the cause of all evil.
1 Tim. 6:10a
The Scripture says that man shall not live by bread alone, but also by the words of wisdom that come from the mouth of God. Matt. 4:4b
Let no one pursue his own, but every other person’s welfare. 1 Cor. 10:24
7. NAME-CALLING: slurs and defamations of character aimed at “liberals,” “do-gooders,” “communists,” “eggheads,” etc.
Neither thieves...nor name-callers...shall be accepted into
the kingdom of God. 1 Cor. 6:10
Do not defame your neighbor without any cause, and do
not speak deceptions. Prov. 24:28
And Jesus said, “The things that come out of a man are
what defile him.” Mark 7:20
8. GOVERNMENTAL INVOLVEMENT IN RELIGION, and vice versa.
Then Jesus said to them: “Give allegiance to Cæsar in his realm, and give allegiance to God in His realm.” Matt. 22:21b
Jesus answered: “My kingdom is not of this world.”
9. CHRISTIAN PRAYER IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS.
Give offense to no one, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the Church of God, even as I try to please everyone in every thing, not seeking my own advantage, but the advantage of many, so that they may all be saved. 1 Cor. 10:32-33
10. BIAS AGAINST EDUCATION: support for private rather than public schools, suspicion of all knowledge and scholarship, restrictive censorship of books and “humanistic” instruction, preferring indoctrination above pure and open education, discontinued federal funding for educational institutions, loans, and grants.
Fools despise wisdom and instruction. Prov. 1:7b
Happy is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gets
knowledge. Prov. 3:13
Does not Wisdom call; does not Understanding raise her voice, on the hills beside the path, in the (public) roadways she takes her stand, beside the (public) entrance to the town... Prov. 8:1-3a
He who keeps his old prejudices is foolish, but he who has an open mind will be a success. Prov. 28:26
And as he made his defense, Festus shouted out: “Paul, you are insane; your great education has made you mad.”
11. PURITANICAL CENSORSHIP: book-burning, discrediting of scho-lars, anti-intellectual opposition to the freedom to think and read and do whatever is not against the public welfare; governmental invasion of privacy, prosecution of victimless “crimes.”
Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord.
The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, “Look at him, a glutton and drunkard, and a friend of tax collectors and sinners!” Luke 7:34
Study to show yourself approved by God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, precisely extracting the true meanings from Scripture. 2 Tim. 2:15
For every one who lives on milk is unskilled in understanding the word of righteousness, for he is a child. But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their faculties trained by practice to distinguish good from evil. Heb. 5:13-14
For why should my liberty be judged by some other man’s conscience? 1 Cor. 10:29b
But he that is spiritual can judge everything for himself,
yet he himself should not be judged by anyone.
1 Cor. 2:15
Am I not an Apostle? Am I not free? 1 Cor. 9:1a
Now you are witnesses against yourselves, that you are just like those who killed the prophets. Matt. 23:31
12. ALLIANCE WITH THE RELIGIOUS RIGHT WING: seeking the support of militant Fundamentalists, charismatic televangelists, and Moral Majority fanatics.
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but after their own desires they shall gather to themselves teachers telling them what they want to hear.
2 Tim. 4:3
Whose mouths must be stopped, who corrupt whole institutions, teaching things which they should not, for the sake of filthy money. Titus 1:11
He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting on questions and arguments, from which come envy, strife, name-calling, evil suppositions, malicious disputes of men with corrupt minds - destitute of truth - supposing that getting rich is godly. Keep away from such as these. 1 Tim. 6:4-5
And the wolf catches them and scatters the sheep.
Even as our beloved brother Paul...has written to you...some things hard to understand, which those who are ignorant and unstable twist, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction. 2 Pet. 3:15b-16
A curse on you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you scour the whole land and sea to make one convert, and when he is won over, you make him twice the evil person you are. A curse on you, you blind guides! Matt. 23:15-16a
13. SUPPORT FOR CAPITAL PUNISHMENT.
Thou shalt not kill. Ex. 20:13
Whoever is sinless among you, let him cast the first stone
at her. John 8:7b
14. PRO-ISRAEL BIAS.
And when Gallio was the deputy of Achaia, the Jews all
together rioted against Paul and dragged him into court.
Jesus said to them, “If you (Jews) were the true children of Abraham, you would do the same holy deeds Abraham did.” John 8:39b
Therefore, I tell you (Jews), the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and will be given to a people who bring forth the fruits of the kingdom. Matt. 21:43
Neither because they (Jews) are the descendants of Abraham are they all his children, but only through Isaac are the true children designated. That is, those who are carnal are not the true children of God, but the children of the promise are the only ones who are descendants. Rom. 9:7-8
Well, because of their unbelief they (the Jews) were disowned, but you stand accepted because of your faith. Rom. 11:20a
15. EXTREME ABORTION RESTICTIONS: women forced to bear all children regardless of deformity, criminal conception, threat to their own lives or sanity, and consideration for other complex factors and special circumstances.
Whoever stikes a man and kills him shall be executed...when men fight each other and hurt a pregnant woman, so that there is a miscarriage...the one who hurt her shall be fined. Ex. 21:12,22a
Give them O Lord - what will you give?
Give them a miscarrying womb and dry breasts.
Let them be like the snail that dissolves into slime,
like the aborted fetus that never sees the light.
...an aborted fetus...is born in vain and goes into darkness, and in darkness its existence is obliterated; moreover, it has not seen the sun or possessed intelligence; yet it finds rest... Eccl. 6:3b-5a
Why was I ever born, to see toil and sorrow, and spend my days in shame? Job 20:18
16. SUPER-CHRISTIAN CLAIMS (bearing a resemblance to similar claims of the Ku Klux Klan).
For if a man thinks himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. Gal. 6:3
Wherefore, let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. 1 Cor. 10:12