Monday, February 22, 2010

Poverty and the Old Testament

I have been teaching and learning about the Old Testament recently, as have many mormons. I am constantly impressed with how much of the scriptures dwell on the subject of poverty.
The lack of poverty is one of the two defining traits of Zion:
Moses 7: 18
18 And the Lord called his people Zion, because they were of one heart and one mind, and dwelt in righteousness; and there was no poor among them.

Moreover, one of the main sins of Sodom was the simultaneous existence of wealth and poverty:

Ezek. 16: 49
49 Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.

I don't think I have a problem with wealth, but I have a major problem with poverty and wealth existing side by side. I believe that any society that tolerates poverty when it has resources to eliminate it will be judged of God. And I don't think God gives a darn about labels like socialism or capitalism, or whatever. Those are all man-made words that actually don't mean a heck of a lot.

1 comment:

lara said...

right on! we certainly do have a fulness of bread, and refrain from lifting a hand to help the poor and neady.