Tags: Religion | christian | income inequality | conservative | stance

Christian Denominations With Most Conservative Stance on Income Inequality

By    |   Wednesday, 06 May 2015 09:30 PM

For many conservative Christians, the question of income inequality is not one of social justice, but instead is an incentive to work harder.

Whose responsibility is it to ease the way for the lower wage earners, and is it a Christian ideal to provide for people who are not providing for themselves though social programs? Here are a few positions on the question that argue the unequal distribution of wealth is not un-Christian at all.

1. In a recent interview with the Christian Post, Palmer Theological Seminary theology professor Ron Sider said, “God wants every person and every family to have access to the productive resources, so that if they act responsibly they can earn their own way and be productive members of society. I am not arguing for equality of income and wealth."

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2. Evangelical Anne Bradley, vice president of economic initiatives at the Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics, said the level of wealth achieved is a reflection of a person’s commitment to work for it.

"God will reward you fully for what you invest," she told the Christian Post.

But Sider also stated giving tax cuts to the richest members of society while cutting food stamps to the poor is a “fundamentally unbiblical, unjust, immoral position.”

3. In comparison, the United Methodist Church says in its 2004 “Book of Resolutions,” income inequality may have its roots in vice.

“The kingdom of God is a form of economy that calls forth from each of us a commitment to the abundance of God in our midst. It is a call to renounce the politics of greed and acquisitiveness which dominate the institutions of government and business and reclaim their true calling in the service of people. Economy is how we order our lives, our politics, our world. It is time that we manifest gospel values in the economic order.”

4. Richard Land, president of the Southern Evangelical Seminary, blames income inequality on family status, and supports traditional family structures where both parents are present, according to CNS News.

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“This is compelling evidence that family status trumps all other causes of income inequality in the United States,” Land said.

5.
During an Evangelical Theological Society annual meeting in 2012, income inequality was a topic of debate. It was decided that the Bible doesn’t command wealth redistribution.

According to Baptist Press, a presenter, professor Craig Mitchell, of the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, said in his paper, “Does God Require the State to Redistribute Wealth?" that "Class warfare, wealth redistribution, and socialism can, at best, make people only equally miserable."

Professor Scott Rae from the Talbot School of Theology in La Mirada, California, argued the Bible requires the creation of an economic "safety net" for the poor, but leaves unanswered who should administer that safety net. He concludes that some use of tax dollars to help the poor is a legitimate way to redistribute wealth, and is not a form of theft.

"Providing for those who cannot provide for themselves is certainly not a 'leveling' of wealth per se (though it is a form of redistribution), but providing a means of sustenance for those who cannot provide it for themselves," Rae wrote, according to Baptist Press.

"Thus I would not say that all redistribution is necessarily theft, but instead is part of the price paid for being a responsible member of the community.”

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For many conservative Christians, the question of income inequality is not one of social justice, but instead is an incentive to work harder. Here are a few positions on the question that argue the unequal distribution of wealth is not un-Christian at all.
christian, income inequality, conservative, stance
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2015-30-06
Wednesday, 06 May 2015 09:30 PM
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