Matthew 7:1

January 26, 2010

A recent article in the L.A. Times reconfirms that millions of dollars from churches helped pass Proposition 8, the constitutional ban on gay marriage in California. That well-churched pockets were so deep over this issue is now part of the battle. 

The Mormon and Catholic churches were the most eager to fund the intolerance, but there is evidence that Baptists and Evangelicals gave generously and also voted lopsidedly for their version of what marriage should be defined as.

Can there be true separation between the laws of the land and religious institutions if churches are working so vehemently to pass laws that derive their inspiration from scripture? Is the pious population now using California’s flawed proposition system to cherry-pick bible verses and turn them into law?

Apparently they are. Here in California a coffer full of cash, some scary campaign ads and slim majority can buy you a change in the constitution. That’s right, a 50.0001% majority can rewrite the California Constitution .

Last time I looked, constitutions were designed to guarantee minority rights and due process despite changing political climates – but that’s another story.

What’s interesting here in this Prop 8 battle is that the Bible has become the standard of law – not the greater good, not the Constitution – the Christian Bible.

Alarm bells should be ringing in everybody’s ears, including Christians themselves, because someday, some other Christians may want a line or two from the Good Book enforced that doesn’t quite jibe with their own views.

Gaze below into the future my children. For once we start pointing at bible verses to justify our laws, all hell will surely break loose.

At the risk of getting too entangled in the massive thicket of insane rules throughout the bible, let’s take a look at a few wacky biblical ideas – just from Matthew — that could be the next well-funded intrusion into your personal liberties.

Proposition D

Divorce is now illegal in all 50 states where there is a Christian majority.

What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

Matthew 19:6

Any devout Catholic who’s tried to get an annulment (they don’t like the “D” word) knows how the Church frowns upon divorce. If the Church (and God) thinks divorce is wrong, how can society possibly justify legal sanction for this awful practice?  Just because lots of people get divorced doesn’t make it right. What God hath frowned upon, let no man legalize.

Proposition $

No citizen’s income shall exceed 110% of any other citizen’s income.

And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

Matthew 19:24

If you think Obama is a socialist, get a load of this! In order to please God and gain a seat near him in heaven, we must ensure that no one becomes too rich – at least compared to his fellow citizen. Therefore, Proposition $ will institute a tax and rebate system which will redistribute all the wealth in this country until everyone makes about the same amount of money.

Proposition 0

No one will be allowed to defend himself when sued.

And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also.

Matthew 5:40

Hereafter, there will be no need for defense attorneys. This civil court admonition in the Bible follows on the heels of the “turn the other cheek” passage which covers criminal court issues.

Of course, these examples from the New Testament are just the tip of the bad-law iceberg. A casual perusal of the Old Testament will reveal mountains of Draconian rules that most enlightened people would find ridiculous.

So why don’t we find some other sources for inspiration for creating laws? As far as the law is concerned, marriage is simply a contract between two people. Why not let those two people decide if they want to enter into the contract or not?

After all…

Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s; and unto God the things that are God’s.

Matthew 22:21