Healthcare is not the domain of the civil government. Medical expenses, above and beyond the ability of an individual or a family to pay, falls into the category of a charitable need. In this essay, I will seek to outline how God has directed these needs to be handled in the Scripture. In the Bible, God has created various spheres of government:
The Individual, the Family, the Church and the Civil Magistrate. Each of these spheres has been given authority over separate and distinct spheres and should never cross the jurisdiction of the other. This concept is called the doctrine of Sphere Sovereignty.
When Paul was talking to Timothy about the care of widows in the church, he puts the responsibility squarely on the individual (in particular on the man) to care for widows who are in financial need (this falls under a charitable need).
“But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” (1 Timothy 5:8, ESV)
If an individual and/or family cannot or will not care for their own relatives, then Paul directs the church to provide for widows who meet the necessary requirements for church care:
“If any believing woman has relatives who are widows, let her care for them. Let the church not be burdened, so that it may care for those who are truly widows.” (1 Timothy 5:16, ESV)
What should be done for people who have no family and cannot find help within their local church? Well, they should find another church. Never is the Civil Magistrate given the role of being involved in charity.
“For (the Civil Magistrate) is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.” (Romans 13:4)
“(The Civil Magistrate is) sent by God for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.” (1 Peter 2:14)
The civil magistrate’s role is one of force, and the Bible forbids the concept of force ever being used for charity.
“Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” (2 Corinthians 9:7, ESV)
You can learn more of why government funding of charity (legal plunder), including tax-payer funded healthcare, is immoral HERE.
In Matthew 26:11, Jesus said, “The poor will always be with you.” Jesus instructs us as individuals to give to others as we are aware of their needs, but there is nothing in Scripture that encourages the civil magistrate to cross the line into tyranny by forcibly taking money for something that is not their jurisdiction (charity). If it is wrong for you to go to your neighbor’s house, stick a gun in their belly, and take their money to pay for your medical needs, then it is JUST AS WRONG for you to take their money indirectly by having a friend do it, or a policeman, or a congressman. Making something legal DOES NOT MAKE IT ETHICAL. Killing unborn babies is legal, and agreed upon by the majority of people in society. It is agreed upon by social contract, but that does not make it ethical.
The Bible teaches that there is a lawful taxation (for military, police, courts, etc.), and such taxation is not tyranny. However, taxation for charity IS tyranny. As Christians, we still pay it, but we also recognize it as being an unjust tax.
“Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience. For because of this you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing. Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.” (Romans 13:5-7, ESV)
When one sphere of God’s established government attempts to fulfill the role of another sphere, it creates all kinds of problems. The reason that our current healthcare costs are so exorbitant is that the government involved themselves years ago, driving up the cost of care to the point that now, most people believe the only way the problem can be fixed is to resort to Socialism and make all healthcare tax-funded.
The real solution is to return healthcare to the private sector and for the civil government to get out of healthcare, and all charity work; including education, welfare, housing, retirement and other needs that are relegated to the domain of the Individual, the Family and the Church.
Here is an explanation of why socialized medicine doesn’t work in the long-term:
Listen to Ronald Reagan’s warning against Universal Healthcare in 1961:
“I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations.” — James Madison
The fact is that despite the high costs of medical care driven by government mandates and controls, there are STILL Biblical solutions to our medical crisis. One such solution is Samaritan Ministries. My family has been a member of Samaritan Ministries since its beginning in 1996.
Two years ago, my wife’s mother was diagnosed with Stage 4 bone cancer. Before she died from her incurable cancer, she went through a six month battle that involved, as you can imagine, a very costly treatment. We were very grateful that the medical needs were provided, not by insurance, nor by forced confiscatory taxation through the government, but rather through the cheerful and generous giving of individuals and families who paid those medical bills because of the love of Christ. You too can replace your health insurance with a Biblically-based, medical cost sharing plan that lowers overall medical costs for all citizens and doesn’t increase anyone’s tax burden.
I encourage you to download a free information packet HERE.
Israel Wayne is an Author and Conference Speaker. He is the Director of Family Renewal, LLC and the Site Editor for www.ChristianWorldview.net.
As a minister of the Gospel, I appreciate your insight; however, if this is true, Christians should be exempt from being made to pay taxes, and pursuing legal action. Scripturally, God allows authority (the law of the land) to protect the disadvantaged from the self-serving, and self-reserving fallen nature of humanity (including Christians who fill pulpit and pews every Sunday).
The message of Christ does not include greed and capitalism (which is at the root of all inequity in the US), yet Christians are subject to it. The only thing I can say about government involvement in anything, is that those who are truly in charge and profit from law making have no respect of persons. Respectfully,
I will refer you to this article: http://www.christianworldview.net/2011/05/sphere-sovereignty-dead-dutch-guys/
Government is established by God (Romans 13) and taxation is allowed by God and mandated for Christians (Rom. 13:7), HOWEVER, the government can only justly tax people for services that are prescribed by God. When they go beyond that, the taxation is tyrannical. We should still pay the tyrannical taxes, because they are backed by force and punishment, but we must recognize that we are under tyranny. Forced redistribution of wealth for the sake of “charity” is not love, but is, instead, tyranny. http://www.christianworldview.net/2011/04/robin-hood-the-government-schools-by-israel-wayne/