Another day, another idiotic college professor misunderstanding the Bible entirely (either willingly or unwillingly, not sure which is worse). Jesus Christ never condemned the rich. He warned them that their love of money could destroy them, but He never condemned the fact they were wealthy to begin with. But we'll get to that momentarily.
Now, this article is a little bit weird because, unlike pretty much every other time, I do not know exactly what the professor argues. Let me explain.
DePaul University political science Professor David Lay Williams held a lecture this month. However, it does not look as though the event was filmed or otherwise documented. All I could find about it is DePaul’s Events list detailing the Mess Hall lecture with a relatively brief description.
So unlike in other articles, I can’t directly challenge the arguments that the professor makes because I don’t have access to those arguments. All I have is the description of the event. However, the description does offer some things for me to explain.
So instead of creating a counterargument to someone’s argument, I will try my best at defending the concept of being wealthy and amassing wealth, why Jesus warned (not condemned, don't get them confused) the rich of His time and why He wouldn't condemn every rich person of today’s world.
Let’s begin by looking at the lecture’s description:
“’Inequality is the root of all social evil,’ Pope Francis has warned. A look at his sources suggests he could hardly argue otherwise. So contends DePaul Political Science Professor David Lay Williams, who investigates the predatory lending practices and extremes of economic inequality in Jesus’ Roman Palestine in a chapter of his forthcoming book on the development of economic inequality in Western political thought. Reimagining some of Jesus’ parables and examining passages from the Gospels and the Book of James, Williams discovered a Jesus intent on reducing the corrosive effects of wealth, greed, and inequality and condemning those with great fortunes as unworthy inhabitants for the kingdom of God. Williams contrasts him with Paul’s attitude toward pious Christians with wealth.”
Right off the bat, I can see I would have a hard time of being convinced by anything the professor says (which I can’t access, as I’ve said). Quoting Pope Francis to make a Christian argument is like quoting Bill Clinton to make an argument against raping women. It just doesn’t work. Beyond the fact that the current Il Papa is a staunch believer in climate change and that mankind has something to do with it, the current reports about his willingness to aid pedophilic priests and his overall comments saying that those who are calling out this perverted evil are of the devil himself all tell me he’s as far from a Christian as one can get while calling himself one.
I had always had an issue with the Pope calling himself the head of the Catholic Church, since only Jesus should be considered the head of the Church, but this particular Pope has to be one of the worst of all time.
When the Dalai Lama is more adamant about Europe belonging to Europeans instead of Muslims than the HEAD OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, there is a problem. So to base an entire lecture (as far as I know) off of a quote from Pope LuciFrancis, that is going to raise some flags on my end.
Now, regarding other things such as “investigating predatory lending practices”, I won’t argue much there. For as long as humanity has had some form of currency, given our evil nature, humanity has sought to cheat and steal off of someone else.
The very first deal we know of is God’s deal with Adam and Eve. Now, it’s not exactly an official deal signed with a document, but it was a deal that had God allowing Adam and Eve enjoying the Garden of Eden in exchange for not eating out of the forbidden tree. And I think we all know what happened.
Later on in the Old Testament, time and time again, whenever a deal between two people was made, there were certain rules such as having people there as witnesses to oversee the making of the deal, like when Boaz bought Elimelech’s belongings and redeemed Ruth in Ruth chapter 4. Or when Abraham made a deal with Ephron the Hittite to buy the land where he would bury Sarah in Genesis chapter 23.
So there were legitimate deals that were held and there were deals where someone would finesse another person, hence why the Old Testament, which is the Word of God, insisted in having rules and traditions to ensure a deal was kept between two parties.
Now, the lecture description mentions what the Gospels and the Book of James say about the rich. And it makes sense, with verses such as Luke 18:25: “For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God,” or James 5:1-6: “Come now, you rich, weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon you. Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have corroded, and their corrosion will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure in the last days. Behold, the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, are crying out against you, and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. You have lived on the earth in luxury and in self-indulgence. You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. You have condemned and murdered the righteous person. He does not resist you.”
Or even Luke 12:33: “Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys.”
But here’s the thing: at the time of Christ, when He would warn the rich, the rich were either those who worked in the government, those who were friends with people in the government, or land-owners with farms and such. The way the first two got rich was by taxing others. If you get rich off of taxing others, chances are good that you are stealing from them.
Now, one can make the case that taxation is theft and the IRS should be abolished along with taxes. I won’t necessarily make that argument myself as it doesn’t really belong in this article and I personally do not entirely agree with it, but that’s for another time.
The point is that Jesus warned the rich because they're very likely to rely on themselves for everything, including salvation. That's why He said it's more difficult for them to enter the Kingdom of God - He never said it was impossible. Just more difficult given the wealthy's self-reliance.
The rich, as I stated earlier, can also include land-owners, not just taxmen. As the aforementioned James 5:1-6 passage says “the wages of the laborers… which you kept back by fraud… you have condemned and murdered the righteous person…” I don’t know exactly who James is talking to here. The letter he wrote was addressed to the twelve tribes in the Dispersion, or the Diaspora, which is the dispersion of the Jews throughout events in the entire Bible. That is my best explanation of the Dispersion not being a theologian myself.
But James clearly is writing letters to twelve tribes and no one in particular. But he writes this with the accusation of the rich people defrauding their servants and “condemning and murdering the righteous person”. I do not know exactly who the “righteous person” is in this context. What I understand is that people who convert to Christianity are deemed righteous thereafter, even while remaining sinners (though they are righteous not out of their own work but by God's grace).
However, that’s not the most important part in this context. James is mentioning, or at least accusing, that the rich he’s referring to have been dishonest with the wages that belong to their laborers. It’s performing such an evil act that is the focal point of this passage. Not the fact that they're rich.
There are other passages in the Bible that speak against the rich and the amassing of wealth, but not because being rich or amassing wealth is in itself a bad thing, but because a love of money, which is sinful, can often stem from it.
1 Timothy 6:10 says: “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.”
You see, it’s not being rich in itself that is bad or evil. It’s the love of money that CAN come from it (but does not have to). For example, Abraham was a pretty rich guy. He was able to buy multiple plots of land and many farm animals like sheep, oxen, etc. Yet, God never condemned his wealth. He never urged Abraham to give up his Earthly possessions.
Why? Because Abraham was faithful to the Lord, though he would stumble such as when he slept with and impregnated Hagar. But Abraham stayed faithful to the Lord, trusted in Him and followed His commandments as best as he could.
So I have to ask: would Jesus condemn the rich of today? Depends on which ones. I will not name any Democrats, as that is obvious why He would condemn them, the least of the reasons which is that they are rich. But people like, say, Bill Gates? I don’t know. Gates didn’t steal anyone’s money. He earned it himself. As far as I know, he didn’t mistreat anyone while he was head of Microsoft. Now, he does have other issues with regard to his entrance into heaven, given that he is an atheist, but I am absolutely sure being rich, with the way he became rich, is something Jesus would not condemn. His Atheism, if he dies without converting, will condemn him. But not his wealth.
Again, Christ never condemns people because of their money - in fact, it's God who blesses us with money and possessions. He condemns unbelievers only - those who love money more than Jesus. It’s the love of money that gets people into trouble. It’s their crooked behavior that gets them into trouble. It’s not the actual money count that gets people into trouble.
So while Christ did indeed warn the rich, as shown throughout the Bible, His issue is not the actual wealth of someone, but rather how they get it, what they do with it and in whom those people trust: their money or the Lord.
The first commandment reads: “You shall have no other gods before Me.” The love of money, the worship of money, is basically idolatry. And it being the first commandment, we can see that it’s a pretty important one to God.
“Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for He has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’”
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Late last month, a sporting goods employee in Tallahassee, Florida, detained a man who was attempting to steal a gun from the store. While this act should seem heroic, or at least the right thing to do for any employee, his employer thought differently and fired him over the incident.
The Tallahassee Democrat (news site belonging to USA Today) reported that on June 29th, Dean Crouch, 32, was working his shift as assistant manager of Academy Sports when suspect Jason White allegedly attempted to steal a .40 caliber handgun and ammunition.
According to the Daily Wire: “The Tallahassee Democrat states that White asked to look at the handgun at the firearms counter; when he was given the gun, he fled toward the front door, where he was tackled and subdued by Crouch and another employee. White was held in an office until police arrived; according to the Tallahassee Democrat, he admitted to stealing the gun and threatened to shoot people with it.”
Now, we can’t possibly live in a world so 180 degrees backwards that stopping a GUN THIEF in a store would get someone fired, right? That can’t be the reason he was fired. Well, you’re right. The reason he was fired, after having been suspended, was because he violated store policy barring employees from placing their hands on customers while they’re in the store.
Yeah, never mind the fact that Crouch possibly saved a number of people AND saved the store a couple hundreds of dollars from a stolen gun and ammo. Never mind that he did the right thing. No, what really matters is he put his hands on the “customer” who most likely did not actually purchase anything and so, one can hardly even define him as a customer. No, Crouch, if he wanted to stop White, should’ve used the Force instead.
Are you kidding me?
We’ll return to this sheer stupidity after I share some more details.
According to the Daily Wire: “Crouch’s attorney, Ryan Hobbs, told Fox News that Crouch, who is married with two young children, was prompted to act by other employees yelling ‘stop that guy’… Hobbs claims Crouch was placed on suspension after the incident… Hobbs noted after Crouch was fired on Tuesday that Crouch had been ‘suspended and terminated for preventing this thief from stealing this weapon.’ He told the Tallahassee Democrat, ‘Academy has decided to, instead of treating him like a hero he is, they terminated his employment effective immediately because he put his hands on Mr. White.’ Hobbs said Crouch and his wife had to put their home up for sale as ‘a direct result of him losing his job at Academy Sports.’”
Hobbs said of the store: “My instincts tell me they are concerned more about people like Mr. White suing them for being stopped in the course of a theft than they are about rewarding or acknowledging in a positive manner that Mr. Crouch may have saved lives… I think he was thinking there is a man running out of the store with a gun in his hand with his coworkers following from the firearm area screaming ‘stop that man.’ Something had to be done and he was the one that was going to do it.”
You really have to be left stupefied to believe a store employee would be fired for STOPPING THE THEFT OF A FIREARM! Now, I understand the need for such policy. These kind of things are put into place to prevent employees from possibly harming a customer in any way and to hold them accountable in the case that they do. However, as with many other cases, there are exceptions to such policy rules.
The thing about implementing and enforcing policy is that it needs to make sense. It needs to be reasonable. Had Mr. White been stealing just about anything else, I still believe it would be best to subdue and detain him, even if the store believes otherwise. But that’s just me. One can easily make the case for just letting them go as well and leaving the police to handle it.
However, we’re talking about a decently high-caliber GUN being stolen with matching ammunition – the type of gun most police officers use today. Despite any intentions Mr. White had with the gun (even if he didn’t admit he wanted to shoot people), the only sane and HEROIC thing to do is to subdue and detain the gun thief. And I honestly think even liberals would agree with me here.
With all the talks about gun control that had been happening earlier in the year, I think even hardcore liberals would agree with Mr. Crouch on this and hail him as a hero. Regardless of political leaning, Mr. Crouch stopped a man with a gun from fleeing the store. Anyone who stops an armed man should be hailed as a hero. And yet, this man was fired over store policy.
How ridiculous is that?! As I said before, there are exceptions to every rule. Those exceptions only exist within reasonable grounds. Stopping a gun thief from escaping your store should be one of those exceptions to that particular store policy. I mean, seriously. What was he supposed to do? Shout at the guy that stealing is against the law? Asking the guy nicely to return the stolen gun? Or use the Force as I mentioned earlier?
Had Mr. Crouch let Mr. White go, the thief would have shot and most likely KILLED some people. The thief ADMITTED to planning as much. Would that have been a more preferable outcome for the store? Not only would one of their employees had allowed a thief to kill people, but the store would have been out quite a few hundred dollars on the gun alone, let alone the ammo.
Tell me, how is any of that preferable to what Crouch did? No sane person can honestly tell me it would be.
Now, even though Mr. Crouch is seemingly in some financial trouble, I doubt he will find it difficult to find a job. If an interviewer asks him for the reason for his termination and Crouch explains it to them, I honestly believe that would nearly guarantee Crouch a new job. Such courage should, and definitely will, be rewarded. Any employer would love to have someone like Crouch on their staff.
I say he will be rewarded simply out of knowing God’s character. He will strengthen Crouch and reward him for such courage, not to mention recompense him for losing his job and his house. I know for a fact that this will set Crouch up for something better in the future.
As for Academy Sports, while I do not live in Tallahassee, I would not shop at that store. Don’t misunderstand, I am not encouraging people to boycott every Academy Sports store. I’m just saying that, for that particular shop, I would hesitate to shop there.
Unfortunately, I don’t quite know what this whole ordeal will mean to other criminals. They might see this kind of situation as a golden opportunity to rob at least that particular store, knowing that their employees can’t do anything about it. Maybe nothing will really come of this, but I wouldn’t be surprised if other criminals were at least planning to do the same, seeing as there would be no repercussions coming from the store.
Then again, while I do not know the exact store policy, if the policy just talks about not putting your hands on “customers”, nothing says you can’t put your boot in their behinds.
I joke, of course, but still. What a crazy world we must live in for someone who would otherwise be seen as heroic to be fired for “violating store policy” in the act of literally rescuing people. Usually, I would try to come up with an analogy, but honestly nothing beats being fired over stopping someone from stealing a gun. You really have to wonder what was going through Crouch’s employer’s mind to arrive to the decision of suspension, let alone termination of employment.
I pray that Crouch will soon find another job with an employer that won’t punish their employees for doing the right thing, even if it violates company policy.
“Knowing that whatever good anyone does, this he will receive back from the Lord, whether he is a slave or free.”
We’ve often times compared Donald Trump to former President Ronald Reagan on this website. I’ve even written a whole article on that subject! “Could Donald Trump Be The Next Ronald Reagan?” And it seems as though I’m not the only person that has drawn comparisons between the two Republican Presidents.
Venezuelan Representative Jorge Arreaza gave an interview after the assembly, in which he said: “For a moment, we didn’t know if we were listening to President Reagan in 1982 or President Trump in 2017.” That sounds like a pretty nice compliment, wouldn’t you think? Well…
The Venezuelan Representative actually thought he was insulting Trump rather than complimenting him. Naturally, being from a nation that’s been socialist for decades, he probably thought Reagan was a terrible human being and that comparing Trump to him was some sort of insult.
Little does he know that people like me actually appreciate his “insult” towards Trump. If he thinks Trump is like Reagan in that respect, I know we chose the right person for the job.
To compare Trump to Reagan would be the equivalent of comparing Obama to FDR. The Democrats LOVE FDR, so to say Obama would be like FDR would actually be a compliment even if intended as an insult. Likewise, to compare Trump to Reagan is a compliment, not an insult.
And do you know what is interesting? The Left almost NEVER makes that comparison between the two. Why? Because Reagan’s legacy was that of making America great. He made America incredibly powerful and rich. He is one of the reasons the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. And he’s remembered as the ideal Republican President. So to say Trump is like Reagan would not be advantageous to the Left.
Yes, the media has attacked “Reaganomics” or trickle-down economics, not knowing that it’s because of those economic plans and policies that America is so powerful. But they never go so far as to say Trump is like Reagan. Because too many people, including some democrats even today, like and have liked Reagan and think of him as one of the best presidents we've had.
Democrats certainly don’t want Trump to be remembered in such a way and are doing the best they can to make certain of that. Or at least make the illusion of it. Trump’s legacy is entirely up to him. What he does and doesn’t do is on him. There will be obstacles in the way (the Establishment being the biggest of them all), but the media can’t destroy Trump’s legacy. Because they couldn’t destroy Reagan’s.
Returning to the Venezuelan Representative, he certainly has plenty to learn. Above all things to learn is that his country is an utter hellhole in the world and it’s because of the very socialist government he’s defending. But other than that, he should learn one important lesson given to him by John Roberts in an interview on Special Report: “If you’re going to try to insult a Republican, don’t compare him or her to Ronald Reagan.”
Like I said, comparing Trump to Reagan is a massive compliment to him. And I certainly appreciate it, even though it was meant as an insult.
And the funny thing about the whole thing is that I agree with him on that instance. Even though it’s entirely likely that this representative was taught that Reagan was the closest thing to the actual devil, most people don’t see Reagan that way. And if he’s comparing the two Presidents, then most people will take it as a compliment, even with the context of the insult.
And, actually, let’s focus more on the meaning behind those words. To this representative, Reagan was probably a degenerate and evil person. And he clearly sees Trump that same way. The media certainly sees Trump that way. Hollywood certainly sees Trump that way. And the Leftist base certainly see Trump that way. They think he is the definition of evil. When in reality, they are the ones that follow and idolize evil people.
Kathy Griffin is clearly evil and messed up in the head, and yet people like her? Obama did his absolute best to destroy the country, and yet people like him and wish he was still President? The people on the Left are all evil, and yet people like them?
Do you wanna know why? It’s not just because evil people tend to like evil people. It’s not just because Leftists are evil and love the evil deeds of the Left. It’s also because there are people that have a misconstrued idea that evil is good and good is evil. As Isaiah 5:20 says: “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.”
These people think evil is good and good is evil. They think freedom for everyone is evil and freedom for only a few is good. They think Trump and Reagan are/were evil and think Obama and Hillary are good. They think following Christ and being a Christian is evil and following Mohammed and being an atheist is good. They think being white is evil and being a minority is good, when being a specific race shouldn’t matter. They think killing unborn babies is good and protecting them is evil.
These people are thoroughly messed up in the mind to think these things. There is a remedy, but they ignore it and mock it. They avoid listening to conservatives and think conservatives shouldn’t be allowed 1st amendment rights. They avoid listening to Christians. They avoid going to church and avoid reading the Bible. They avoid FOLLOWING CHRIST as though it would kill them.
And in a sense, it would. It would kill the evil within them. It would save them from eternal damnation. It would save them from the wrath of God that will inevitably fall upon them. It would educate them on how the world really works. It would turn them against socialism and communism. It would thoroughly change them, and they don’t want that.
They don’t want that because they don’t think it would be right. Like I said, they think being a Christian is evil and that Christians are evil. They’ve been fed that garbage since they were born, or at least started attending public school. Why would they follow Christ if they think doing so would be evil or not the right thing to do? I know the devil is the very definition of evil, therefore I wouldn’t follow him. But I also know that Christ is not just good, but is GOD, and so, I follow Him. Likewise, if I were a Leftist and have believed my entire life that being a Christian is evil, why would I become a Christian? Why would I follow Christ?
These people don’t know the true definition of good and evil. Whenever they can blame God for something bad happening, they will. I’ve seen people on social media blaming God for Hurricane Irma and Harvey. I’ve seen people ask “If God is so good, why does He allow bad things to happen?” They don’t know that when bad things tend to happen to people, they seek God for shelter and protection and He provides.
They don’t know that God is in full control of everything, even evil. They don’t see disasters as opportunities for people to get closer to God. They see them as opportunities to blame God and accuse Him of being evil and try to convince people to turn away from Him.
They don’t know God, and yet, they make accusations of Him and His character as though they did. They haven’t read the Bible and avoid it at all cost and yet, believe it’s a pile of garbage and shouldn’t be trusted and read.
The point I’m getting at is that they don’t truly believe they follow evil people or that they are evil themselves. They see sin as something to be celebrated, not to be repented of. They don’t know the Truth, and will do whatever they can to avoid learning it.
“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’”
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