The Circle of Protection: A Round-Up of Christian Responses


Jim Wallis, What Would Jesus Cut, Circle of Protection, SojournersLast week I weighed in on all of the “Circle of Protection” mumbo-jumbo being tossed around at the White House, arguing that Jim Wallis and his progressive brethren are once again warping the “least of these” into political tools and confusing bureaucratic blubber with genuine compassion.

Although the budget talks are finally coming to a close — for better or for worse — there have been a flurry of other Christian responses to Wallis & Friends that are well worth reviewing. Given the evident persistency of the social (gospel) engineers and the relatively mild implications of last night’s news, such a discussion will certainly not fall off our radars any time soon.

Thus, here’s a quick look at what others have been saying about the Christian’s role in approaching an unsustainable economic future.

  • Friend of the blog Eric Teetsel has joined several other Christian leaders in writing a letter to the president in hopes of realigning the discussion away from Wallis’ perversions. The question: “Whom would Jesus indebt?” (Add your signature here.)
  • At National Review Online, Rev. Robert Sirico argues that “in the moral calculus of Jim Wallis and his Circle of Protection supporters, there’s no problem with prostrating yourself, your Church, and your aid organization before Caesar.” Also, catch Rev. Sirico’s interview with NRO on the same subject.
  • Although he doesn’t focus on Wallis directly, Douglas Wilson does a marvelous job illuminating precisely why such talks inevitably result in such bizarre and petty squabbles over this program or that. The reason? We lack honesty, integrity, and above all, a sense of reality. “Paper promises, like paper money, require honest men to execute them,” says Wilson. “And that, as it turns out, is where our real shortage is.”
  • At the Institute on Religion & Democracy, Mark Tooley concludes that Wallis did not go to the White House to represent the poor, but to represent “the secular permanent governing class.” “For its denizens,” Tooley says, “Big Government is apparently the only deity that merits such blind faith.” Ouch.
  • Jeff Wright of Pursuing Truth provides several insightful posts on the topic, pointing first to the hypocrisy behind the media’s harsh reaction to Rick Perry’s prayers compared to those of Obama. Following this, Wright argues that the new Religious Left touts the same faulty principles of the old, followed by a reminder that their (not-so-)clever “God is Watching” slogan also applies to those with a spending addiction (now who could that be!?).
  • At the Acton Institute’s PowerBlog, Ray Nothstine writes one of the snarkier responses to Wallis & Friends (me likey!), describing how “the religious left, on cue, descended to the temple of irresponsible spending to circle the sacred debt wagons.” Similar to my own arguments (here and here), Nothstine notes that “some clerics in Washington are using the poor as pawns or calves in their temple sacrifice to protect their ideological god.” Also at the PowerBlog, Kenneth Spence provides a clever takedown of Wallis’ ad campaign and reemphasizes the ways in which the Circle of Protection “subordinates religion to politics.”
  • To wrap things up, Jordan Ballor provides a splendid overview at Think Christian, pondering how Christians might reevaluate their values amid such goings on by focusing on five main areas: the individual, familial, ecclesial, economic and political. “We need to temper our expectations for what political solutions can offer us,” says Ballor, “and come to grips with what the legitimate limits of governmental action are.”

Did I miss any goodies out there? Do you feel like something has been lost in this debate? I’m interested in hearing your thoughts.

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  • Anon

    What “debate”? You’ve only presented one side, and then found multiple people who agree with you.

  • http://www.remnantculture.com/ Remnant Culture

    When I say “this debate” I’m referring to the debate as a whole (Wallis included). As for this post, I am certainly not trying to represent all sides. I’m trying to represent what *I* think fits a “Christian response.”

  • Modocrider1

    Instead of doing their ordained job of caring for the poor and needy in their own circle of personal or parochial influence as they should, they’re going to the golden calf to beg for the fulfillment of those needs.
      As the society and government grows even more secular and less influenced by Judeo-Christian laws, the church needs to perform its duties as shown in the books of Acts. We need to absolutely abstain from any connection to the government.  The only thing that believers should do is see that institutionalized evil is kept in check by holding the government to its Constitutional directives. We are still for now, anyway, guaranteed rights in the Constitution, and we should use them to voice our opinions and vote.

  • http://twitter.com/remnantculture/status/98442959363645440 Remnant Culture

    I review a series of Christian responses to Jim Wallis and the budget debates. http://fb.me/BehL4UXu

  • http://twitter.com/remnantculture/status/98442959363645440 Remnant Culture

    I review a series of Christian responses to Jim Wallis and the budget debates. http://fb.me/BehL4UXu

  • http://twitter.com/remnantculture/status/98442959363645440 Remnant Culture

    I review a series of Christian responses to Jim Wallis and the budget debates. http://fb.me/BehL4UXu

  • http://twitter.com/jeffwrightjr/status/98443095502372864 Jeff Wright

    RT @RemnantCulture: The Circle of Protection: A Round-Up of Christian Responses http://t.co/zA5Rdky

  • http://twitter.com/remnantculture/status/98443404018597888 Remnant Culture

    Need to catch up on the perversions of @jimwallis & The Circle of Protection? Here's a round up of the dissidents. http://t.co/456XW9G

  • http://twitter.com/spencekenneth/status/98443986066345984 Kenneth Spence

    Need to catch up on the perversions of @jimwallis & The Circle of Protection? Here's a round up of the dissidents. http://t.co/456XW9G

  • http://twitter.com/remnantculture/status/98444054408347648 Remnant Culture

    Anti-Wallis Round-Up: http://t.co/456XW9G @jeffwrightjr @EricTeetsel @JordanBallor @spencekenneth @RayNothstine @markdtooley @douglaswils

  • http://twitter.com/ericteetsel/status/98445116078964736 Eric

    Anti-Wallis Round-Up: http://t.co/456XW9G @jeffwrightjr @EricTeetsel @JordanBallor @spencekenneth @RayNothstine @markdtooley @douglaswils

  • http://twitter.com/markdtooley/status/98446566670614528 Mark Tooley

    More on Jim Wallis: http://t.co/syETKmg #faithfulbudget #moralbudget @sojourners @TheIRD @remnantculture

  • http://twitter.com/anikapanika/status/98450488802025472 Anika Smith

    This could get interesting…RT @RemnantCulture: Anti-Wallis Round-Up: http://t.co/456XW9G

  • http://twitter.com/anikapanika/status/98450488802025472 Anika Smith

    This could get interesting…RT @RemnantCulture: Anti-Wallis Round-Up: http://t.co/456XW9G

  • http://twitter.com/jeffwrightjr/status/98451627849162752 Jeff Wright

    Anti-Wallis Round-Up: http://t.co/456XW9G @jeffwrightjr @EricTeetsel @JordanBallor @spencekenneth @RayNothstine @markdtooley @douglaswils

  • http://twitter.com/remnantculture/status/98479663134945280 Remnant Culture

    RE: When I say "this debate" I'm referring to the debate as a whole (Wallis included). As for this post, I am certain… http://disq.us/2v1186

  • http://twitter.com/remnantculture/status/98479843024437248 Remnant Culture

    RT @markdtooley More on Jim Wallis: http://t.co/LGe96Be #faithfulbudget #moralbudget @sojourners @TheIRD @remnantculture

  • http://twitter.com/remnantculture/status/98480095248924672 Remnant Culture

    RT @anikapanika This could get interesting…RT @RemnantCulture: Anti-Wallis Round-Up: http://t.co/456XW9G

  • http://twitter.com/josephsunde/status/98484808866476032 Joseph Sunde

    Is "social (gospel) engineering" a new term? If we're going to use it, we better start now: http://t.co/wkJU5RW #moralbudget #CASE

  • http://twitter.com/remnantculture/status/98802144081219584 Remnant Culture

    What is the proper Christian response to the "Circle of Protection"? Here's a quick round-up: http://t.co/456XW9G @douglaswils #CASE

  • Pingback: The “What Would Jesus Cut?” debate « Wesley Gant

  • http://twitter.com/jayays/status/99307754799382528 JayAyS

    RT @RemnantCulture: The Circle of Protection: A Round-Up of Christian Responses http://t.co/pHwfwD9

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