Thursday, June 01, 2017

"Render to Caesar what is Caesar's"

One of the most famous sayings from Jesus is, “Render to Caesar what is Caeser's and to God what is God's.” The main issue here is, what is legitimately Caesar's?

The coin was Caesar's; the salvation belonged to God. One was in charge of the body and the other was in charge of the soul. It is legitimate for Caesar to demand such things as that we contribute and follow the law.

There are however other things that are not Caesar's. It is not up to Caesar to tell us how to think. It is not up to Caesar to tell us what personality we can have.

With personality psychology, we see a vast overreach by Caesar into things that are not his business.

According to personality psychology, some people are bad and can only be bad whatever they do. This contradicts most basic reason. If people are responsible for their actions then anyone can choose to act rightfully. If some people cannot act rightfully whatever they do, then people are not responsible for their actions. This is a worthless mentality, and one whose effects on the world have been horrible. People are being stigmatized for life, and nothing that they can do can improve that state of affairs.

Into this situation then comes God. God says that any sinner can be redeemed. God says that anyone can choose to act rightfully. This includes them damn sociopaths and them damn narcissists. It says that regardless of how your mind has been formed, you can do the right thing.

The reason is that anyone – including these people – have the capacity of choice. And anything with the capacity of choice can do the right thing.

One claim frequently made is that people – especially these people – never change. In fact people change all the time in all sorts of ways and for all sorts of reasons. The Germans were complete jerks during the Second World War; they are not complete jerks now.

If one is to keep rubbing another people's nose into manure, the person's nose will be brown. The nose will remain brown for as long as it is being rubbed into manure. A person consistently being treated based on the worst thing they've done will bring out the worst in the person. In that situation change will in fact be difficult. Whereas giving them breathing space will reduce that scenario.

It is rightful for the society to enforce laws, but not to demonize people. If someone has committed a crime, prosecute it, but don't act as if the person cannot improve their behavior. Many can, and many do. Most sociopaths do not commit a serious crime. Whereas there are any number of perfectly normal people who do terrible things.

It is certainly not up to either authorities or societies to tell people how they can think or what personality they can have. These things are not their authority; they are God's authority. There are things that are legitimately the province of secular authorities. These things are not one of them. Remember the saying of Jesus and act accordingly.


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