20pluscommunitydigestion

There is a great difference in excellency, usefulness, and comfort between people of clear, digested knowledge, and confused, undigested apprehensions. -Richard Baxter

state of the economy for dummies

the flood of commentary on the state of the American economy in recent weeks can lead one to believe thatwe’re talking about another Enron-kind-of-complicated matter here. The folks at Between Two Worlds have done us the favor of pointing us to a brief on this labyrinthine issue.

To understand the financial matters afoot is not merely a matter for economists or pundits. What’s happening in the highest echelons of commerce and government is an issue worth the consideration of Christians, too. There are cautionary tales here for us about the human heart, and how corporate (not in the sense of business, but in the sense of collective) sin is a force to be reckoned with–a reckoning that may extend beyond acknowledgment and into legislation.

All of which inevitably provokes the comment, “you can’t legislate morality,” to which I put forth a quote from one notable (also sent my way through the awfully thorough folks at BTW)

Now the other myth that gets around is the idea that legislation cannot really solve the problem and that it has no great role to play in this period of social change because you’ve got to change the heart and you can’t change the heart through legislation. You can’t legislate morals. The job must be done through education and religion. Well, there’s half-truth involved here. Certainly, if the problem is to be solved then in the final sense, hearts must be changed. Religion and education must play a great role in changing the heart. But we must go on to say that while it may be true that morality cannot be legislated, behavior can be regulated. It may be true that the law cannot change the heart but it can restrain the heartless. It may be true that the law cannot make a man love me but it can keep him from lynching me and I think that is pretty important, also. So there is a need for executive orders. There is a need for judicial decrees. There is a need for civil rights legislation on the local scale within states and on the national scale from the federal government.

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