Conservative Colloquium

An Intellectual Forum for All Things Conservative

Protestantism and Liberalism: Sola Fide and Good Intentions

Posted by Tony Listi on March 22, 2008

Aren’t the good intentions of modern American liberals merely the secular counterpart to sola fide? It would seem intentions trump consequences for liberals, and faith (merely mental assent or intention and thus not faith at all) trumps actual obedience and good works for Protestants.

But we know that the professed intentions of liberals are not good enough. Good politics MUST have good consequences. Likewise, a saving faith MUST have good works and obedience (unless one is instantaneously in a state of grace and die before one has the opportunity to live out one’s faith).

Is this merely an analogy or perhaps a discovery of cause and effect?….

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2 Responses to “Protestantism and Liberalism: Sola Fide and Good Intentions”

  1. Anon said

    Odd. As a liberal, I’d put the failure of e.g. the Iraq operation, as a failing to think up the consequences despite the good intentions. I’d put the resistance to nationalised healthcare, despite evidence that it has worked in many other nations, as again a matter of holding faith in the free market over rational consideration of what works and what does not. I’d point out the constant statement of ‘freedom’ as a solution to all things without thinking about what freedom means as another failure of intention.

    If you really think realism trumps faith, you might wanna consider becoming a liberal.

  2. foospro86 said

    Just fyi, this post was not meant for liberal non-believers but for conservative believers. I didn’t say realism trumps faith. My main target in this post is sola fide, not liberalism. I believe that a true faith necessarily must produce good works as much as it can.

    Iraq has been a mixed bag. But there have been good consequences to it. We removed Saddam Hussein, we sent a message to the world that state-sponsors of terrorism will face consequences, and we’ve attracted al-Qaeda to one concentrated spot where we can kill them by the hundreds, if not thousands (as opposed to a difficult diffuse network). We’ll see if it was worth it in the end.

    Nationalized health care is failing Britain (Is that where you are from?) probably more than the other European countries’ systems:
    France: http://healthcare-economist.com/2008/04/14/health-care-around-the-world-france/
    European systems:
    http://www.heritage.org/Research/HealthCare/HL711.cfm and http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/html/pa-613/pa-613index.html

    The data has piled up showing the failure of government and the better consequences of a free market. Economics is the science of how freedom works. And economics has nothing to do with intentions. Liberalism refuses to accept the economic facts and instead rely on statolatry, a blind faith in the state.
    Keep in mind that the current US system is far from free. The free market hasn’t failed; it hasn’t been tried.

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