Skip to comments.Is Jesus Christ a Socialist?
Posted on 08/17/2011 8:52:17 PM PDT by lbryce
As the debate over the governments debt and its role in assisting the poor intensifies, some on the far left have begun to claim that Jesus Christ and the Holy Bible advocate socialism and preach against capitalism.
While this notion gives many conservative Christians angst, it is an ideal that is quickly gaining steam among atheists (and some left-leaning believers) who find themselves more on the fiscally-liberal side of the political spectrum.
Last week, atheist Gregory Paul, a freelance researcher, author and illustrator, penned a piece for the Washington Post in which he claims that socialism has its roots in the Christian Bible. In his article, Paul questions why Christians have abandoned the socialistic inclinations espoused by Jesus Christ to embrace capitalistic beliefs that contradict, in his view, Biblical principles.
Paul contends that a set of profound contradictions have developed within modern conservative Christianity. These contradictions are so perplexing, he says, that they set ones head spinning. In Pauls eyes, Christians who denounce Darwins evolutionary science, yet espouse social Darwinism (i.e. capitalism) are doing so without examining the antithetical nature of their thinking. He writes:
Many conservative Christians, mostly Protestant but also a number of Catholics, have come to believe and proudly proclaim that the creator of the universe favors free wheeling, deregulated, union busting, minimal taxes especially for wealthy investors, plutocrat-boosting capitalism as the ideal earthly scheme for his human creations.
In citing examples straight from the Bible that he calls outright socialism of the type described millennia later by Marx, Paul pleads his case. The first example he gives is focused upon Jesus warning to the wealthy that they may not inherit the kingdom of God (Matthew 19:24, which reads, ..
(Excerpt) Read more at theblaze.com ...
Jesus live under the corrupt rule of Rome. He certainly didn’t expect Rome to take care of the poor.
Whenever some socialist tells me that I need to advocate a socialist takeover of the government because Jesus was a communist I tell them that ... if they really wish to do that ... takeover the government with socialism because Jesus was a socialist ... then EVERY PERSON IN POWER HAS TO BE A CHRISTIAN AND HAS TO BE DEVOUTLY SO AND TESTED FOR IT EVERY MONTH.
That shuts them up pretty quickly.
No Jesus was not a socialist.
These trite associations are offensive to the spirit.
nope. probably the oldest lie in church age.
NO and we “are not” our brothers keeper.
"Thou shalt not steal" is an affirmation of property rights, which socialism denies, iirc.
Neither shall you covet your neighbours wife.
Neither shall you desire your neighbours house, or field, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbour.
Jesus Christ taught people to turn to God as their sufficiency, not some government.
I guess the left needs some lessons in Proverbs . . . the ant, the Virtuous Woman . . .
That and the 10th Commandment.
Part of socialism/marxism is to disseminate inflammatory rhetoric specifically designed to agitate and demoralize. Making the claim that Christian philosophy somehow parallels Marx & Engels, or Mao’s little red book is ludicrous, yet people will get all bent out of shape and try to counter it with rational argument. It’s a game of whack-a-mole with the left. It’s supposed to get you all hot and tilting at windmills.
If you don't view the two entities are different, of course you believe Jesus was a socialist.
Charity is a matter of free will, not government force. Render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s. Would Jesus agree with all the policies of our government or how the people’s funds are spent or who pays and who does not? He left it to us to choose.
With the exception, I think, that if you want your neighbor’s house, field, slave (where permitted), ox, donkey or other property and you and he can freely come to terms, you can *buy* the property you want and then it’s yours.
Jesus was a Torah believing Jew, and Torah endorses private property rights. Jesus was not a socialist.
Ask your socialist friends, "when Jesus returns and rules from His throne in the Holy of Holies, in the Temple, on Mount Zion, in Jerusalem, in Israel, will he establish a socialistic democracy? Or will He establish His kingdom?" Since none of them believe He will return, they won't be able to answer.
The “socialism” he points out involves voluntary, willful selling of property to willing buyers, and charitable giving of the proceeds to the poor and to the church...that free flow of goods is capitalism, not socialism - the government did not force them to do it and then confiscate the cash through taxation. The living in a community was also voluntary and not done by the point of a sword from a government official or through confiscation through taxation.
The main argument that Jesus was a communist is that both during the ministry of Jesus, and in the early life od the Church after the Resurrection, the diciples lived communally and shared all their assets. However, there is no evidence that early Christianity preached that this should be forced on people. This lifestyle would eventually be centered in the monastic life, where even today monks and nuns share all their assets and live a communal life. It has worked in Catholicism for about 1500 years, but it only works in monasteries, not in the whole population. It works when there is a shared degree of faith, and that God is central to their lives. Replacing that with a materialist atheist communism enforced among the whole population doesn’t work.
Although Jesus said, “Render unto Caesar, that which is Caesar’s”, He never said that folks shouldn’t work for a living.
Joseph worked as a carpenter. Jesus didn’t condemn him for working for a living. To the contrary, if anything Jesus benefited from hard labor and a meager living on what his earthly father could provide for him and Mary.
Jesus did say it would be harder for a rich man to enter heaven, than it would be for him to enter through the eye of a needle. Even that could be interpreted several ways, because there was an entry way into Jerusalem (or some city in the area) know as the needle.
I have always thought that he was trying to say that the temptations for people of means, was very strong.
When it came to the poor, and the tradition of allowing the poor to reap the chaff, or leftovers in the field, Jesus never said that the poor should get everything.
The left loves to screw with religious concepts. They don’t respect religion, and it’s fair game to them. They don’t worry about judgment day nearly as much as they should.
Hardly any of us do, but I try to be respectful about religious matters. They don’t. They would use Jesus to jaundice people about good values. Shame on them.
Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s; render unto God that which is God’s.
Not so much when one bounds what Jesus said with Torah.
Yah. I always love it when some athiest bastid starts lecturing me about Jesus.
The ironic thing is, to the Left, government IS their religion.
The comparison is a non sequitor.
Christ is not limited...is neither...and is both.
These are distinctions necessary because man is a flawed being incapable of governing himself.
Capitalism cannot survive without being tempered and regulated (outside of government) by Him. Socialism fears truth and therefore Him
But in my opinion, He is the ultimate (l)ibertarian.
this is interesting because it illustrates the libertarian’s need to destroy Christ. his creed is untenable—cannot survive—in the face of the existence of God. God is an existential crisis to libertarianism.
Nope. He came to free men not enslave them.
Socialists (Communists/Fascists/Marxists/other lefties) are about subjection and slavery. They are generally atheists and don’t believe in God. They never saw a lie they did not like. Ungodly vermin.
Perhaps the original iteration of laissez-faire.
-- William Shakespeare The Merchant of Venice, Act I, Scene 3
NO he wasnt- i’ve been seeing this alot lately. god/jesus is hard core to the right.. a girl on facebook told me that god loves everybody even gays-WRONG - god showed his love for gays at sodom and gomorrah—http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sodom_and_Gomorrah shes told me thats wrong— i said you are calling god wrong- you think god changed his mind about this? you and the world may see it wrong but he sees it the same as when he done it..god hasnt changed the world has
she says well jesus came and made all things new-TRUE-but jesus says when you see me you see the father( meaning he thinks the same as the father). jesus came for one purpose, to give his live for the sins for many (not all).. people will stand in front of jesus and say i worshiped you, and he will cast them in hell saying i never knew you- does that sound like a socialist to you?
I have considered this question in the past and came to realize is that what he asked of people was a voluntary personal giving out of love, not the government controlled giving of Socialism.
Next stupid question?
Noah was big on Wall Street. He floated his stock while the rest of the world was in liquidation.
re: “The Bible is open to interpretation on many things. People can find scripture to support their own particular belief about who Jesus was, what he means to them.”
Ibryce, you are quite right that many, many people attempt to use the Bible to support their own ends.
However, do you think that because people disagree about the meanings in the Bible that there really isn’t a correct meaning? Or, to put it another way, because people interpret the Bible in many ways, do you think that there is no such thing as a “correct” interpretation?
As to socialism in the Bible. It’s true that the early church shared their wealth to help those in need - but, the big difference is that it was all Voluntary! It was something that some of the early Christians did of their own accord - no one demanded this of them - not even the Apostles.
Also, the Apostle Paul mentions in 2 Thessalonians that those who “do not work should not eat”. Private property was not taught against, but greed was. Putting one’s faith and trust in their wealth was foolish. The teaching of the Old and New Testaments are that the people of God are to take of the poor, and this was to be a willing, voluntary act of love. The poor were also expected to work and do their part as well. There was no expectation that everyone was to give up all their personal property. There was no expectation that the government was to do this either through taxes.
I heard recently of some “Christian” ministers speaking to Congress about not cutting social welfare programs and used the Bible to attempt to say that it was their responsibilitiy to take care of the poor. They are flat wrong - it is the Church that is to help the poor through voluntary donations of money and time. The Church is doing many, many things across the world to help people in dire straits. Private charity groups always do a better job of helping people and doing it without taking away the poor persons dignity. The government does just the opposite.
Jesus didn’t get into politics, since his kingdom isn’t of this world.
He didn’t do anything to either go for or against Rome. When pressed, he gave a coin out of a fish’s mouth for taxes.
Jesus was generally against lying, theft, murder and the oppression and killing of his followers. Socialism, being iniquity in state form, is probably not the way he rolls.
Emphasis added by me.
He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must WORK, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to SHARE with those in need. Ephesians 4:28
In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard WORK we must HELP the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” Acts 20:35
Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to WORK with your hands, just as we told you, 1 Thessalonians 4:11
nor did we eat anyone’s food without paying for it. On the contrary, we WORKED night and day, laboring and toiling so that we would not be a burden to any of you. 2 Thessalonians 3:8
Our people must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good, in order that they may provide for daily necessities and not live unproductive lives. Titus 3:14
We are to work to provide for ourselves and share with those that CANNOT provide for themselves. It is not by compulsion or government theft. We give and receive, sow and reap, NOT tax and spend. God should be our source, not government.
Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back.” Luke 6:38
He who is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward him for what he has done. Proverbs 19:17
Here is another way of thinking about it. The Jews spent several generations on the Egyptian plantation. It took God 40 years, and cost a whole generation their lives, to get Egypt (dependence on government) out of them, so they could trust God and receive their inheritance and The Blessing.
I was going to respond in kind...thank you for completing the task for me.
"We oppose Moralities"
(morals)...So they do not simply express a practical need for mediation as they come into developement of those societies,and as a result they are expressed in very strict rules which allow no deviation in any sense....... From this point of view Christainity is one of the most hateful of moralities.So Morality is not simply a codification of external sanctions, but is deeply rooted in individuals in the form of "Moral Conscience". This moral conscience is acquored and maintained largely as a result of the religious. ...............
Frankly I would not pay any attention to the latest ploy by the Commie/Fascist/Socialist/Progressive to marginalize religion. They desperately need the masses to renounce religion (and Germans in the 30's did,and the Russians did even earlier) for the State to become the ALL powerful Ruler.
First, for Christians, Jesus Christ is understood in terms of the Trinity, defined, I suspect, fairly well by Wikipedia as follows:
“The Christian doctrine of the Trinity defines God as three divine persons Father, Son, and Holy Spirit distinctly coexisting in unity as co-equal, co-eternal, and consubstantial, or of one being. The Trinity itself is considered to be a mystery of Christian faith.
“According to this doctrine, God exists as three persons but is one God, meaning that God the Son and God the Holy Spirit have exactly the same nature or being as God the Father in every way. Whatever attributes and power God the Father has, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit have as well.
“The doctrine developed from the biblical language used in New Testament passages such as the baptismal formula in Matthew 28:19 and took substantially its present form by the end of the 4th century as a result of controversies concerning the proper sense in which to apply to God and Christ terms such as “person”, “nature”, “essence”, and “substance”.
“Trinitarianism contrasts with non-Trinitarian positions which include Binitarianism (one deity/two persons), Unitarianism (one deity/one person), the Oneness or Modalism belief, and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ tritheistic monolatrist view of the Godhead as three separate beings who are one in purpose rather than essence.”
Second, Marxism, of which Socialism is one form along a spectrum, has, from its founding, held religions such a Christianity in contempt, and more severe forms of Marxism have rigorously and violently sought to purge such religions and their practice from society.
Marxists who try to posit Jesus as a fellow-Marxist of one sort or another, or who equate any form of Marxism with the teachings of Jesus, are disingenuous in the extreme. They make him out to be a mere wise man, and seek thereby to secularize his teachings and use them for their own political purposes, while willfully ignoring his essential divinity, which they abhor.
So you mean I’m not allowed to kill my brother?
Possibly, but then in Christ we would all behave in such a way that no government would be necessary...or at least minimally.
perhaps i’m overthinking that...
Sodom and Gomorrah weren’t destroyed because of gayness.
Socialism is the political outgrowth of philosophical materialism..which is atheist by definition.
Christ/God created man with free will.
Envy is a sin, Socialism is institutionalized sin.
Jesus answered them and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled.
Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knows that you have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Jesus is a monarchist. What else would He be?
I’ll take a Shakespearean quotation as validating source anytime.
I very much appreciate your thoughtfulness in posting it :-)
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