Caring for Our Elderly when Medicare Is Gone: The State’s Bankruptcy Is the Church’s Opportunity
Here is a guest post from Wesley Strackbein:
The constant hullabaloo coming from both political parties about the impending insolvency of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid has real cause, insofar as these welfare programs cannot keep pace with the changing demographics in America.
Our society is fast turning into an upside-down pyramid with an enormous number of Baby Boomers about to retire with a shrinking workforce following in their wake. The factors that are fueling this perfect storm that will soon strike our land include the fact that seniors are living longer than they have in past generations; but more importantly, it has been brought on by the evil of more than 50 million abortions since Roe v. Wade, as well as the Church and broader culture’s gleeful embrace of contraception that followed the Pill’s legalization in 1960, among other factors.
Bottom line: The Baby Boomer generation valued materialism and convenience over the short time, rather than the blessing of children, even as the better part of this demographic has chosen dependency on the state as they enter their retirement years.
Soon, the jig will be up, as Medicare and Medicaid, followed by Social Security, will either go bankrupt, or the federal government will call for raising taxes substantially on our anemic workforce, or pull the lever to print more fiat money through the Fed, or borrow trillions from China or other foreign countries, or, likely, all of the above. The response that will come from the vast number of retirees on the near horizon is predictable: Our representatives in Washington will face irate seniors whose care will suffer in the twilight of their lives—a deplorable situation which will be epidemic in every region of our nation.
As bad as all this is (and it is truly bad), the fundamental answer to this self-inflicted wound is not to polish brass on the sinking ship of our failing welfare programs, a course the majority of Republican and Democratic Party leaders and major candidates routinely champion, advancing the empty promises of statist dependency.
Instead, the God-honoring solution is for Christians to make preparations now to fill the coming void. This should start by us pro-actively setting aside resources to take care of the aging in our immediate and extended families, forsaking the statist money trough; followed by us building a safety net of resources and helps beyond this (financial, medical, and home-care solutions, etc.) in conjunction with our local churches, so that we will be ready to minister to the many seniors in our communities who will need help in the future. In the proverbial years of plenty, we must plan for the financial “famine” our nation’s aging population will soon, without question, face.
When the social welfare house of cards propped up by our federal government comes tumbling down, the Church of Jesus Christ should be prepared and ready to step in and offer hope to the elderly. In fact, this crisis may prove to be one of the greatest ministry opportunities the Church in America has been given in generations, if we will only begin planning now to seize the day when the great storm hits us with all its fury.
In describing our ministry duties in contrast to statist solutions, R.J. Rushdoony has wisely observed: “It is individuals and families who suffer most from tyranny, and it is they who must be zealous for freedom by providing social financing which will meet the needs God requires us to meet without creating a power state.”
Regrettably, our nation has, on the whole, already taken the “power state[’s]” slavish bait concerning care for the elderly. The time is now for us to zealously break free from this pernicious dependency and to actively cultivate alternative hopeful “social financing” and other helps on the family and local level “which will meet the needs” of our aging seniors.
May God give us the vision, heart, and determination to pursue such a course.
Wesley Strackbein has worked with Vision Forum since 1998, handling media relations, marketing, and a variety of other roles for the ministry. He has served as producer on multiple film projects, including The Mysterious Islands; and has edited numerous books, including John Calvin: Man of the Millennium. Wesley has a passion to be a faithful family man and churchman, and to help equip the Body of Christ to thrive in our day by following the Scripture’s all-sufficient directives for godly living.
 R.J. Rushdoony, The Institutes of Biblical Law: The Intent of the Law, Vol. III (Vallecito, CA: Ross House Books, 1999), p. 14.