Tuesday, November 11, 2014

"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Practical Theology 6

Authors Chad Brand and Tom Pratt say it better than I can in their book Seeking the City:
Only envy would deny those who benefit mankind in this manner economic rewards that outstrip that which is given to billions of others, even if it is in the billions of dollars.

Yet, still the attempt to control outcomes from cradle to grave goes on in an educational system that insists on constant invasion of parental rights, a tax system that punishes entrepreneurial talent and risk-taking and rewards foolish and immoral behavior, a political dance that pits groups of supposed "have-nots" against those who have "won the lottery in life," courts that regard their task as exercising the "heart" and "empathy" to walk in someone else's shoes rather than upholding the law and the Constitution, and attempts to reconstruct whole segments of the economy through "health-care reform" and "cap-and-trade" schemes to "save the planet." The equality this will "provide" is the equality of a vast leveling down, not a pulling up of the downtrodden to full enjoyment of the liberties and wealth of American society as we have known it.

The equality that is achievable, and biblical as well, is that which gives every human being the same standing before the law and guarantees that the rules will not be changed arbitrarily by the previous court or the next higher court. Rather, the law is standardized in advance by a written Constitution to which all parties concerned with law enforcement are bound to give allegiance and service. There can be no justice where this is not found and fiercely upheld. Chaos and anarchy can be the only end result of discarding this principle. The failure of this process is what the Bible labels as injustice, or unrighteousness. When government and human individuals collude to take from their fellows to give to themselves or their cronies, whether business or political cronies, it is called theft and unjust gain. This collusion at every level is what creates Babylonish culture, the parody of new Jerusalem. Let us never forget that the Babylon we should fear more is the one in the human heart of which Luther warned: "For all evils and seductions are done under the guise of godliness. Every calamity begins in God's name." These words were further echoed by Helmut Thielicke out of the Nazi tragedy: "Our towns are copied fragments from our breast; and all man's Babylons strive but to impart the grandeur of his Babylonian heart." (822-823)

"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Preface

"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Introduction 1
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Introduction 2
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Introduction 3

"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Biblical Theology 1
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Biblical Theology 2
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Biblical Theology 3
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Biblical Theology 4
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Biblical Theology 5

"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Historical Theology 1
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Historical Theology 2
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Historical Theology 3

"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Practical Theology 1
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Practical Theology 2
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Practical Theology 3
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Practical Theology 4
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Practical Theology 5 
"Seeking the City": Blogging Through Brand and Pratt - Practical Theology 6


For more:
"Flourishing Faith" by Chad Brand: A Review
Brand on Coveting and Classwarfare
The Secular vs the Sacred: Brand on the Influence of Luther
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