The Bible and Politics – Egalitarianism

Egalitarianism is an ideology that can be found in the Church and our modern culture. Let’s address less the strict definition of egalitarianism but more of how we see it applied.

What does the Bible teach about equality? How does this apply to our nation as a whole? How does it inform our decisions politically?

We are all equal as sinners, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). When it comes to salvation and humanity’s access to Christ, “there is neither Jew nor Greek… neither male or female…” (Galatians 3:28). Let me make this very clear, the spiritual standing of all of humanity is the same. It is clear that in judgement and mercy before God, all are equal.

We see this reflected in our politics and nation in the phrase, “equal justice under law.” Our nation’s laws are based on the concept that all are treated equally when it comes to the application of the law. The wealthy are to be held to account as much as the poor. Politicians are to pay for their crimes as much as the common man they represent.

So, we are to be given equal access to mercy and judgement both from God and from man. Are we equal in other ways?

What do we see? Some people can run at great speeds, some are highly intelligent, men possess physical strength and women can bring new life into the world. Everyone is different, with different gifts and talents, but what does the Bible say?

When addressing this, we could talk about the parable of the servants with talents, each servant with a different value of talents. Or perhaps, we could examine the Bible’s prediction of Japheth’s descendants dwelling in the tents of Shem and Ham being the servant of his brothers. Or maybe, we could look at the story of Isaac and Ishmael and the foretelling of their descendants; Jacob’s descendants through whom all the families of the earth would be blessed (Genesis 12:3) and Ishmael’s descendants who’s, “hand will be against everyone, and everyone’s hand will be against him” (Genesis 16:12). While these do touch on how people are different and the nations descended from them likewise differ, let’s focus on the structure God ordained.

Man and woman, while having equal access to salvation and treated equally under the law, are not the same. Man was to be the servant-leader, laboring to provide for his family and providing spiritual leadership. Woman was to be the helpmate, bringing in new life and preparing the young for a Godly life. These roles fit their talents.

So, let’s consider this from another angle. People, families and the sexes, all have talents, God-given skills. These skills make them better suited for different roles. So, if there is an over representation of women raising children, upon thought and consideration, we realize that it is because that is the result of the talents God gave women. If men are over-represented in the military or in a field requiring high physical strength, after thought and consideration, we accept that it is a result of God given talents. In other words, equal outcomes are not to be expected from men and women because their talents are different.

This is the lie of “equality,” it fails to recognize differences in God’s creation and their diverse results.

-By David