Saturday, March 20, 2010

Glenn Beck and Social Justice: Part VI: Conclusions

This is the concluding post in a series on Glenn Beck and Social Justice. After an introductory discussion of conflicting definitions, we examined four appraoches:

1. Social Justice as Code for Communism
2. Social Justice in Roman Catholic Social Doctrine
3. Social Justice in Neocalvinist Thought
4. Social Justice in Evangelical Thought

Now, I want to try to draw a few conclusions. First, we should be thankful to Glenn Beck, clown that he is, for sparking a public uproar over the question of what social justice is. After all, not all that goes under the flag of social justice is innocent.

Second, we should reject social justice insofar as it is merely code for Marxism, Socialism or Communism. All of these involve the tyranny of statism and all must be rejected by Christians. Sadly, however, Liberal Protestants have bought into either an inconsistent form of socialism or, in many cases, into the whole thing. In doing so they have transformed the Gospel into a Social Gospel that neglects salvation through the cross and substitutes salvation through the state.

Third, we should recognize and be thankful for the vocation of Evangelicalism to keep before the Church Catholic the priority, integrity and centrality of the biblical and historic Gospel of salvation by faith in the atoning death of Jesus Christ as the foundation of the Faith.

Fourth, we should recognize and be thankful for the contributions of Roman Catholic social doctrine and Neocalvinism in advancing non-statist and non-socialist thinking in the service of finding creative ways for the Church to be salt and light in modern Western culture. We can be especially grateful for the good work done by Neocalvinists in education and the magnificent contribution of Pope John Paul II to the naming of and the struggle against the culture of death.

Fifth, we must be cognizant of the danger of Evangelicalism, Catholicism and Neocalvinism drifting into a culturally accommodated liberalism or socialism. The danger of statism is the most pressing problem in contemporary culture as family is under severe attack and civil society is eroded. In this situation the temptations of Socialism and Capitalism (Liberalism) must be resisted for both are false answers to the problems we face. Resources for working for a kind of social justice that rejects the idolatry of the State and of the Market can be found in the Christian Tradition. The goal is not to conform to Modernity, but to reform it on Christian principles.

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微笑每一天 said...
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