Christmas Wise Guys


ACRU Staff


December 23, 2010

ACRU Senior Legal Analyst Jan LaRue wrote this column that will appear on

Two thousand years ago, wise men came from the East bearing gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh to honor Christ’s birth. A beautiful new Christmas song asks, “Where’s the Line to See Jesus?”

From the beginning, some in the line have been neither wise nor bearing gifts.

Herod tried to kill Him. Irreligious zealots now want Him ostracized from public life (see here,

here, here, here, here, and here). Some all-knowing atheists want Him “demythologized.” Yes. Folks who don’t know what’s happening on the other side of town, much less on the other side of the universe, insist they know for sure that there is no God and call that “reason.”

They blindly abandon reason in their belief that the massively complex DNA molecule is the result of random chance, even while conceding that it takes a Bill Gates to produce a mere software code.

Next in line is NPR’s Nina Totenberg, who insists there’s no bias at the taxpayer-funded PBS. So why did she apologize for saying “Christmas”?

“Well, these agencies, including the Defense Department, don’t know how much money they’ve got and for what. And I was at – forgive the expression – a Christmas party at the Department of Justice and people actually were really worried about this.”

Then there’s the less-than-august congressional Caesar, Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wa.), who misused Christ on MSNBC’s Hardball to legitimize the government seizing more earnings from working taxpayers and increasing our national debt:

“This is Christmas-time. We talk about Good Samaritans, the poor, the little baby Jesus in the cradle and all this stuff. And then we say to the unemployed we won’t give you a check to feed your family. That’s simply wrong.”

Here’s some “stuff” in the Bible that McDermott might consider:

• You shall not show partiality to a poor man in his dispute. (Exodus 23:3)

• The rich shall not pay more and the poor shall not pay less than the half shekel, when you give the contribution to the LORD to make atonement for yourselves. (Exodus 30:15)

• And those indeed of (the sons of Levi who receive the priest’s office have commandment in the Law to collect a tenth from the people, that is, from their brethren, although these are descended from Abraham. (Hebrews 7:5)

That’s a tenth from everybody, rich and poor. Sounds like a flat tax, don’t you think, Rep. McDermott?

It wouldn’t seem like Christmas unless commentator Bill Press, a staunch advocate of church-state separation, dropped a lump of coal in our stocking. When it comes to tax policy, Press eradicates the line between Christian duty and the government. Writing on The Washington Post’s “Faith” blog, Press declared his “clear moral imperative” for government leaders:

For Christians, especially, the message is clear. Read the New Testament. Jesus paid special attention to the poor and expected his followers to do the same – even to the point of shedding all their worldly possessions to help the poor. That same theme of helping the less fortunate permeates both the Old Testament and the Quran.

“In light of that clear moral imperative, those who would burden our grandchildren with paying for tax cuts for today’s millionaires – or demand tax cuts for the wealthiest of Americans as a price for helping the poor and unemployed – either ignore the teachings of their faith or are deliberately throwing faith and morality out the window.”

The Lord made provision for the poor without having government play Robin Hood. It’s about individuals giving freely as they’re able. The “poor” Joseph and Mary brought their own offering to the Temple after the birth of Jesus in compliance with the Mosaic Law:

• And if she is not able to bring a lamb, then she may bring two turtledoves or two young pigeons–one as a burnt offering and the other as a sin offering.” (Leviticus: 12:8)

• Now when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were completed, they brought Him to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord (as it is written in the law of the Lord, “Every male who opens the womb shall be called holy to the LORD”), and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the law of the Lord, “A pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.” (Luke 2: 22:24)

There is a line to see Jesus.

It’s where wise men kneel after following the Shepherd’s example: “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

It’s still the best invitation ever given.



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