‘Christian Businesses’ has been quite a theme in the news lately. There is a lot of debate about whether a ‘business’ counts as a person as far as religious liberties are concerned and about how the ‘secular’ and ‘religious’ spheres interact. One big topic at the moment is this healthcare mandate. Businesses of a certain size (I believe 50 or more employees) are required to provide their full-time employees with insurance that covers specific types of care, including contraception.
There are multiple businesses suing the government right now, saying that to provide the coverage for contraception violates the consciences of the business owners. In other words, the business owners believe birth control (or at least certain forms of it) to be immoral, and therefore are unable to put money into a health insurance ‘pool’ from which some funds would come out to pay for those services.
There are multiple tangents we could go on here: what government should dictate to businesses to begin with, the morality of birth control, and more, I’m sure. But I’m mainly focused on this question of ‘Is it immoral/unBiblical to contribute money to a fund where some of the fund is used for immoral purposes.’
Some might say the answer is an obvious yes.
But what I got to thinking about was when Jesus was asked if the Jews should pay taxes to Caesar. You know the story. They come to Jesus and ask Him to give His opinion on whether it is right to pay the tax or not. He answers in His usual wise way, getting right to the heart of the matter, saying that they should ‘Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.’
This passage can be studied to no end, I suppose, but my point here is pretty specific. Those taxes that Jesus told them to pay (and Paul also affirmed the paying of taxes in Romans 13)… those taxes were used for all manner of immoral things: unjust wars, corruption, oppression, and cruel torture and executions. Jesus (and Paul) told the people to not resist the government’s demands to give money to a fund from which some of the money would get used to pay for immoral activity.
So my question: Is paying taxes to Caesar any different from paying money into these government mandated health insurance plans? If the answer is ‘yes, it is different!’, then I would really love to hear your thoughts about HOW it is different.
Now, of course we live in a democratic society where we can lobby and vote for better mandates or no mandates… and that is all well and good… but if you lose the battle for better/no mandates, what then? Does conscience in fact dictate you resist paying? At this point, I think no.