There has been much said about being your brother’s keeper. but most of all, everyone wants everyone else to be “their brother’s keeper. The president said it repeatedly during the 2008 campaign. A current contemporary Christian song even includes this chorus:
Love, will, hold us together
Make us a shelter
to weather the storm
And I’ll, be, my brothers keeper
So the whole world will know
That we’re not alone
It sounds really good, but what does it mean to be “your brother’s keeper?” Is it necessary to be your brother’s keeper in order to be a good Christian? Was not being his brother’s keeper Cain’s sin? Here is a portion of the exchange Cain had with God:
Genesis 4:5-9 But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. (6) And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? (7) If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him. (8) And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him. (9) And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper?
Cain answered God with a lie and a question, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” As if the answer to the question was obvious. Abel was a full grown man. In fact, Abel himself was the keeper of the sheep, according to Genesis 4:2. He was the keeper of his sheep. As such, it was his duty to control and provide for the sheep, regulate their diet, their rest, their daily lives. Likewise, a parent is a child’s keeper. This is exactly why we do not want a government to be “our brother’s keeper.” The keeper controls the lives of those kept. Children are kept because they cannot provide for themselves and lack the knowledge to make daily decisions. Sheep are kept because they can never have such knowledge. God does not command us to be our brother’s keeper. People enjoy bashing Cain for that response. But the fact is, he was right. However, he only asked the question in an attempt to redirect God’s attention. God, however, was not deterred, knew where Abel was, and focused like a laser on Cain’s real sin:
Genesis 4:10-11 And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother’s blood crieth unto me from the ground. (11) And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother’s blood from thy hand;
Cain was a murderer. He was not found guilty of “not being his brother’s keeper,” he was found guilty of murder. This also shows how jealousy bears hate and can produce murder if not repented of and forsaken.
This is why when Obama says ” we are our brother’s keeper, we are our sister’s keeper” he is completely wrong. Neither he nor the government is our keeper, or should be our keeper. To the Christian, God is our keeper. He provides what we cannot (salvation in Jesus Christ), he knows what we do not, and he provides us through his word the rules for living a prosperous and godly life no matter what happens in the world around us. He provided for the Israelites when Egypt was their keeper. He will provide for us if we have the unpleasant experience of the federal government becoming our keeper. His faithfulness in doing so is demonstrated throughout the scriptures in his frustration of the evil plans of tyrants and kings (whether Haman or Nebuchadnezzar or Saul or Jezebel).
Obama, telling how “we are our brothers keeper,” of course its all through the government, a “benevolent, all powerful government, with the power to redistribute wealth to whom it will, and drain it from whom it will. The government is not my family, nor is it my keeper. it is merely supposed to uphold the rule of law, ensure justice and defend our rights and freedoms.
Obama tells you Government is your keeper. The Federal Government needs to give you a job, insurance, education. The government is your keeper…
This artist wants to be your keeper, but he really wants Obama to be all our keepers… :/