The church in general, and evangelical Christians in particular, has been helping people in poverty. But you wouldn’t know that if you attended a roundtable discussion of poverty at Georgetown University. President Obama made lots of critical comments, but I wanted to focus on just one of his statements.
The president was critical of churches focusing so much time on social issues and so little time on poverty. He wanted “faith-based organizations to speak out on” the issue of poverty and stop being obsessed with what he called “reproductive issues” or same-sex marriage.
Evangelical Christians do have concerns about abortion and same-sex marriage, but that hasn’t kept them from also doing a great deal to help the poor. In fact, Christians are the most generous with their time, treasure, and talents. Also, conservative people are more generous than liberal people. In previous commentaries, I have quoted from the extensive research done by Arthur Brooks in his book, Who Really Cares: The Surprising Truth about Compassionate Conservatism.
What about the institutional church? In term of disaster relief, the Southern Baptist Convention spent more than $6 million. It was the third largest provider behind the Red Cross and Salvation Army. And that is just one Protestant denomination.
An op-ed in the Washington Post by Rob Schwarzwalder and Pat Fagan concluded that: “the evangelical relief group World Vision spent roughly $2.8 billion annually to care for the poor.” They added: “That would rank World Vision about 12th within the G-20 nations in terms of overseas development assistance.” And I might mention that World Vision is just one evangelical ministry. “Groups such as Samaritan’s Purse, Food for the Hungry, World Relief and many others provide hundreds of millions of dollars in anti-poverty programs at home and abroad.”
The church has been one of the most effective social outreach programs in history, even if the president doesn’t think so.
This blog post originally appeared at
pointofview.net/viewpoints/church-and-poverty/ on May 26, 2015.
Post Views: 5,920
Poverty and Wealth
Don Closson examines the arguments in Ronald Nash's book Poverty and Wealth: Why Socialism Doesn't Work and concludes that capitalism is compatible with biblical ethics. It’s disheartening to meet young…
Young Christians Leaving Church
Oct. 5, 2011 Why are young Christians leaving church? There are lots of reasons, and the latest Barna Report lists six reasons that can be found in the book by…
February 27, 2014 Jim Denison recently found a "15-step strategy for converting Christians to atheism" and wrote about it in the Denison Forum on Truth and Culture. Although the article…
February 27, 2008 In a previous commentary I talked about how the current Democratic Party rules made it possible for Barack Obama to do so well in the primaries. There…
March 4, 2008 As once again citizens in four states go to the polls today, it has been interesting to see how the presidential campaign has unfolded. While many political…
Responding to Poverty - As a Christian
Poverty's Devastating Effects I can still remember the feelings of curiosity, confusion and discomfort I felt as a watched the young boys. "What did those kids want?" I wondered. As…
Wealth and Poverty - A Biblical Perspective
Questions surrounding the biblical perspective on wealth and poverty are important to Christians for two reasons. First, a biblical view of wealth is necessary if we are to live godly…
Kerby Anderson is president of Probe Ministries International. He holds masters degrees from Yale University (science) and from Georgetown University (government). He is the author of several books, including Christian Ethics in Plain Language, Genetic Engineering, Origin Science, Signs of Warning, Signs of Hope and Making the Most of Your Money in Tough Times. His new series with Harvest House Publishers includes: A Biblical Point of View on Islam, A Biblical Point of View on Homosexuality, A Biblical Point of View on Intelligent Design and A Biblical Point of View on Spiritual Warfare. He is the host of "Point of View" (USA Radio Network) heard on 360 radio outlets nationwide as well as on the Internet (www.pointofview.net) and shortwave. He is also a regular guest on "Prime Time America" (Moody Broadcasting Network) and "Fire Away" (American Family Radio). He produces a daily syndicated radio commentary and writes editorials that have appeared in papers such as the Dallas Morning News, the Miami Herald, the San Jose Mercury, and the Houston Post.
What is Probe?
Probe Ministries is a non-profit ministry whose mission is to assist the church in renewing the minds of believers with a Christian worldview and to equip the church to engage the world for Christ. Probe fulfills this mission through our Mind Games conferences for youth and adults, our 3-minute daily radio program, and our extensive Web site at www.probe.org.
Further information about Probe's materials and ministry may be obtained by contacting us at:
2001 W. Plano Parkway, Suite 2000
Plano TX 75075
This document is the sole property of Probe Ministries. It may not be altered or edited in any way. Permission is granted to use in digital or printed form so long as it is circulated without charge, and in its entirety. This document may not be repackaged in any form for sale or resale. All reproductions of this document must contain the copyright notice (i.e., Copyright 2023 Probe Ministries) and this Copyright/Limitations notice.
a amazing website that gives very touching information for young adults!
Thank you so much, Molly! It’s our privilege!