In a comment on my last post, marshwiggle wrote:
I tend to believe that man is essentially the same as he was two thousand years ago. Then again, I only think that because history simply records the same power grabs and cruelty over and over again. Can change be accomplished? Yes, but only through self-interest.But my point earlier was that if change can be accomplished, then by definition, these specific social problems are not essential to humanity. That is, they do not have to occur to all humans.
Ironically, the best way to preach social change is either on the grounds of religion- i.e. ethics handed down by higher authority and seeking to please that god by doing things to please him/her, financial interests i.e. this will bring me more money, or increased power, i.e. this will make me one of the elite or make everyone equal(There's a pretty enormous moral difference between these two things, isn't there?)
(this usually only appeals to the ones who feel subjugated, or the last method shown to work- violence- change because I will hurt/kill you otherwise. Since religion tends to be despicable to the progressive movement, along with capitalism (the financial method) you are left with socialism's empty power sharing promises or violence.. Am I forgetting a proven method of change? Enlighten me. :)Well, as far as you and I are concerned, there's the power of Christ in the lives of His followers. Because all the methods you mentioned depend on a leveraging of human power, they are dependent on our fallible ability to make them work. But I believe that social change impelled by Christ's love is not something that will ever be ineffective; the Implementor of this method simply does not fail.
How, then, should we act politically as followers of Christ? I would argue that it is our duty to act in a way that demonstrates our love for mankind -- and I don't really see laissez-faire capitalism, for instance, as an especially loving system -- in order that people may see our good works and glorify our father who is in heaven.
I don't advocate a massive socialist welfare state, but it seems like it'd be nice to create a system where poor people aren't required to stay poor, no matter how hard they try to get ahead. It seems like it would be nice to have a health care system that is affordable even for the poorest (instead of for those who will get along somehow anyway).
And perhaps legislation isn't the best way to effect this change. Maybe, in theory, a privatized system would work as well. All I know is that something needs to change, and legislation seems easiest to implement. The status quo is harsh at best. There are people in the U.S. (to say nothing of elsewhere) who die because they can't afford operations, pharmaceuticals, or other necessities of life.
Reform needs to happen, and who better to undertake it than the salt and light? Why shouldn't we see social change as a Christian duty?