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  #1  
Old 12-25-2017, 9:55 AM
justMike justMike is offline
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Default Has Jesus's material message been misinterpreted?

Leaving the salvation of our souls to another discussion, this fellow believes so Jesus message had a more material aspect also. :

https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2017...-not-sins.html
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Old 12-25-2017, 10:07 AM
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If his Jesus can get financial debts forgiven, there'd be a lot more worshippers of him.

He starts with a dictionary approach to interpretation (take a word, ignore the context, and pick the meaning you want it to be), then puts on his debt-colored glasses and interprets the whole Bible from his debt-forgiveness perspective. Just a little biased.

Jesus Christ paid my real debt.
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Old 12-25-2017, 11:51 AM
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There's so much wrong with that article I don't know where to begin
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Old 12-25-2017, 11:59 AM
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It is very common for people to confuse spiritual matters with physical matters. It creates oh so many problems.
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Old 12-25-2017, 11:16 PM
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I can’t even finish the dumb piece. It's so biblically inacurrate and full of error, that it’s not an article even worthy of debate.
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Old 12-26-2017, 6:29 AM
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I feel like I was saved from wasting my time. Thanks for treading the water guys
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Old 12-26-2017, 8:02 AM
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So much fail in that article. Really? Jesus was a socialist? Amazing how they contort Christ message to fit their own.
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Old 12-30-2017, 12:48 PM
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Originally Posted by WASR10 View Post
It is very common for people to confuse spiritual matters with physical matters. It creates oh so many problems.
I suppose yes. If only we were disembodied spirit beings "physical matters" would not be relevant and make for those 'so many problems'. The fact is we must deal with physical existence.
Interesting how the only facts cared about are the 'facts' presented in the Bible. Much of the Bible seems to be confirmed by academic and archeological investigations, but to reflexively decide that
it is the complete factual picture is just y'alls exercising of 'faith'. More went on in those times than was recorded in the Bible, but you don't care about much of any of that unless it confirms your preexisting beliefs.
Would the spiritual message of Jesus be changed if he were in fact a proponent of (as we know it today) Socialism? Your collective (apparently) conservative cultural biases seem to reflexively judge collective living
as somehow un-compatible with Christ's message.

As it turns out, the economic scene of thr Roman Empire at the time of Christ was very surprisingly much like our own.
(If you care for an overview, see here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_economy )
So yes, being in / having large debts was a likely on the minds of people then.

Jesus is / was easily seen as a radical progressive in those days. Can be seen as one now except for the aforementioned co-opting / corrupting of his message to conveniently de-emphasis on material / 'physical matters'.
This piece says it better than I could, challenge to your biases and comprehension skills and check it out. Or, continue to let others decide how you are supposed to think, its so much easier.

https://www.theodysseyonline.com/chr....google.com%2F
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Old 12-30-2017, 1:17 PM
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Originally Posted by justMike View Post
I suppose yes. If only we were disembodied spirit beings "physical matters" would not be relevant and make for those 'so many problems'. The fact is we must deal with physical existence.
Interesting how the only facts cared about are the 'facts' presented in the Bible. Much of the Bible seems to be confirmed by academic and archeological investigations, but to reflexively decide that
it is the complete factual picture is just y'alls exercising of 'faith'. More went on in those times than was recorded in the Bible, but you don't care about much of any of that unless it confirms your preexisting beliefs.
Would the spiritual message of Jesus be changed if he were in fact a proponent of (as we know it today) Socialism? Your collective (apparently) conservative cultural biases seem to reflexively judge collective living
as somehow un-compatible with Christ's message.

As it turns out, the economic scene of thr Roman Empire at the time of Christ was very surprisingly much like our own.
(If you care for an overview, see here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_economy )
So yes, being in / having large debts was a likely on the minds of people then.

Jesus is / was easily seen as a radical progressive in those days. Can be seen as one now except for the aforementioned co-opting / corrupting of his message to conveniently de-emphasis on material / 'physical matters'.
This piece says it better than I could, challenge to your biases and comprehension skills and check it out. Or, continue to let others decide how you are supposed to think, its so much easier.

https://www.theodysseyonline.com/chr....google.com%2F
You assume way too much about me and my comment. It seems you have an axe to grind with someone.

My comment does not discount the real social, political, and economical climate of the New Testament period.

But it is clear and evident that Jesus concerned himself with matters of the soul and of the heart, not so much matters of the body and the wallet. He was not a social justice warrior, no matter how much some people today would hope. Please consider the following passages:

“My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, then My servants would be fighting so that I would not be handed over to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not of this realm.” - John 18:36

“For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body,what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?

Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add an hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing?

Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, not much more you? You of little faith!

Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you."
- Matthew 6:25-33
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I have never posted anything sig worthy.
Mark 16:16

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Old 12-30-2017, 5:11 PM
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Wasr10,
While I used your comment as a point to start from, the 'your' pronoun was used in reference to all the commenters in this thread. If the shoe doesn't fit no need to wear it.

Still no one addresses the underlined question. If Jesus had been a Socialist, would it have made any difference? Adherents seem to want it both ways. If I say Jesus was not about here, but the hereafter, this gets an argument otherwise. But by Jesus's own words you quote, it could be read that even if your life is misery and pain, as long as you trust in Jesus all will be well with your spirit (possibly not mattering if your life of misery led you into sin) as long as Jesus is in your last thoughts as you pass this mortal coil. Is that Matthew 6:25-33 part of the currently fashionable Prosperity preaching? Seemed to work that way for the Calvanists too. So many wars and shedding of blood, burning of heretics etc. took place in the name of differing Christian denominations in the 16th century Reformation. Physical matters seemed to be at the forefront of all that, No? Of course we are all better than that now, right?
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Old 12-30-2017, 11:20 PM
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In Judaism it was tradition to forgive debts after 7 years. The practice was called Shemittah.
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Old 12-31-2017, 5:09 AM
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In Judaism it was tradition to forgive debts after 7 years. The practice was called Shemittah.
Not to mention the Jubilee Year. Debts forgiven, slaves freed, and land returned to original owners.
There are a couple of points I agree with in the article, but on the whole, I am not sure about it.
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Old 01-02-2018, 3:10 PM
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Originally Posted by justMike View Post
Wasr10,
While I used your comment as a point to start from, the 'your' pronoun was used in reference to all the commenters in this thread. If the shoe doesn't fit no need to wear it.

Still no one addresses the underlined question. If Jesus had been a Socialist, would it have made any difference? Adherents seem to want it both ways. If I say Jesus was not about here, but the hereafter, this gets an argument otherwise. But by Jesus's own words you quote, it could be read that even if your life is misery and pain, as long as you trust in Jesus all will be well with your spirit (possibly not mattering if your life of misery led you into sin) as long as Jesus is in your last thoughts as you pass this mortal coil. Is that Matthew 6:25-33 part of the currently fashionable Prosperity preaching? Seemed to work that way for the Calvanists too. So many wars and shedding of blood, burning of heretics etc. took place in the name of differing Christian denominations in the 16th century Reformation. Physical matters seemed to be at the forefront of all that, No? Of course we are all better than that now, right?
You have to forgive me. My post was not quoted so I didn't receive a message that I was responded to. Plus, it being a holiday weekend, I did not check up on threads with which I had participated.

No, I don’t agree. “As long as your last thoughts are on Jesus” is not a Biblical concept. That certainly is not what Matthew 6 teaches. Calvinists, that is a different story all together. Wars, fighting, blood-shed... these are not part of the Christian religion. One only has to read what the Christian church is, from the New Testament, to know this. But, people throughout history have shed blood in the name of a religion they did not represent, or understood. Very true. That does not change what the religion is.
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Old 01-02-2018, 5:12 PM
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Still no one addresses the underlined question. If Jesus had been a Socialist, would it have made any difference?
Since we're speaking hypothetically, I have a question for you: what if there were no hypothetical questions?
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The BIG question: "What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ?" Matthew 27:22b
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Old 01-02-2018, 5:22 PM
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Wasr10,
While I used your comment as a point to start from, the 'your' pronoun was used in reference to all the commenters in this thread. If the shoe doesn't fit no need to wear it.

Still no one addresses the underlined question. If Jesus had been a Socialist, would it have made any difference? Adherents seem to want it both ways. If I say Jesus was not about here, but the hereafter, this gets an argument otherwise. But by Jesus's own words you quote, it could be read that even if your life is misery and pain, as long as you trust in Jesus all will be well with your spirit (possibly not mattering if your life of misery led you into sin) as long as Jesus is in your last thoughts as you pass this mortal coil. Is that Matthew 6:25-33 part of the currently fashionable Prosperity preaching? Seemed to work that way for the Calvanists too. So many wars and shedding of blood, burning of heretics etc. took place in the name of differing Christian denominations in the 16th century Reformation. Physical matters seemed to be at the forefront of all that, No? Of course we are all better than that now, right?
remember people used to pay for absolution

i would prefer to think of the idea of absolution as a ruse to fool sinners into repenting and reforming.

why? child molesters and rapists and murderers should burn in hell, if there is such a thing, no matter what pleas they make as they see the lights dimming.
of course, if there is a god, i don't think he's be fooled by them trying to sneak into heaven anyway.

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Old 01-02-2018, 8:52 PM
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I feel like I was saved from wasting my time. Thanks for treading the water guys
+1 yep
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Old 01-03-2018, 10:01 PM
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Since we're speaking hypothetically, I have a question for you: what if there were no hypothetical questions?
In that case, knowledge would be stagnant. That would be fine for those who find all they need between the covers of the Bible. Fortunately, in my opinion, that is not most people.
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Old 01-04-2018, 5:51 PM
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In that case, knowledge would be stagnant. That would be fine for those who find all they need between the covers of the Bible. Fortunately, in my opinion, that is not most people.
I guess it depends on what they are looking for.
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Old 01-12-2018, 3:41 PM
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Matthew 6:9-13King James Version (KJV)

9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.

10 Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

11 Give us this day our daily bread.

12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
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Old 01-12-2018, 3:54 PM
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There is no 2nd guessing the word. It is what it is...
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Old 01-27-2018, 5:01 PM
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Originally Posted by WASR10 View Post
You assume way too much about me and my comment. It seems you have an axe to grind with someone.

My comment does not discount the real social, political, and economical climate of the New Testament period.

But it is clear and evident that Jesus concerned himself with matters of the soul and of the heart, not so much matters of the body and the wallet. He was not a social justice warrior, no matter how much some people today would hope. Please consider the following passages:

“My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, then My servants would be fighting so that I would not be handed over to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not of this realm.” - John 18:36

“For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body,what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?

Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add an hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing?

Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, not much more you? You of little faith!

Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you."
- Matthew 6:25-33
This is a pretty good illustration of the problem of ripping verses out of context and saying they stand for something.

That is not a very good translation of John 18:36. This is a much better translation: John 18:36 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
36 Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.”

The other verses are not contrasting the physical and the spiritual but are speaking of trust and anxiety.

In terms of of the physical (if you can even separate the physical from the spiritual which seems more of a concept of Greek philosophy than Biblical theology there are these huge biblical references:

God creates the physical world and says that it is "tov".

"And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth." John 1:14

"All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being." John 1:3

Jesus spoke more about wealth and the dangers of wealth than He did about prayer.
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Old 01-30-2018, 4:10 PM
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This is a pretty good illustration of the problem of ripping verses out of context and saying they stand for something.

That is not a very good translation of John 18:36. This is a much better translation: John 18:36 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
36 Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.”

The other verses are not contrasting the physical and the spiritual but are speaking of trust and anxiety.

In terms of of the physical (if you can even separate the physical from the spiritual which seems more of a concept of Greek philosophy than Biblical theology there are these huge biblical references:

God creates the physical world and says that it is "tov".

"And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth." John 1:14

"All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being." John 1:3

Jesus spoke more about wealth and the dangers of wealth than He did about prayer.
Sorry, but this sounds like cut-and-paste exegesis. John 18:36 is translated just fine with "of" instead of "from." "of" fits the context, syntax, and noun structure of the verse.

Yes, God created the world and said it was "tov" (OK Hebrew transliteration). But what does that mean? How many times is tov used in Genesis 1? It's part of the structure of the passage and has specific meaning. Yes, John 1:3, 1:14 are true. So also are all the other passages on creation in the Bible. What's your point?

Jesus spoke about a lot of things. BUT, the quantity of His comments on a given subject doesn't give them more weight! Every word He spoke was absolute truth and needs to be obeyed - even if He only spoke on it once. There's no principle of hermeneutics that says quantity makes for greater quality or importance.
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Old 01-31-2018, 4:14 PM
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This is a pretty good illustration of the problem of ripping verses out of context and saying they stand for something.
Every verse provided illustrates the separation between the physical and the spiritual.

Quote:
That is not a very good translation of John 18:36. This is a much better translation: John 18:36 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
36 Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.”
Why is the translated I provided no good? The words OF and SERVANT? The word translated as ‘of’ is ek. Which can mean, depending on the context, ‘of’ ‘from’ or ‘by.’ The word expresses orientation. So, ‘of’ is appropriate here. The word in your translation offered as ‘follower’ is hyperetes, which means “subordinate’ or ‘one who serves.’ How again is the translation I provided inferior? How again does it not serve the point?

Quote:
The other verses are not contrasting the physical and the spiritual but are speaking of trust and anxiety.
Anxiety over what? Physical means? Is He telling us that we should not allow our spiritual wellbeing be affected by our physical?

Quote:
In terms of of the physical (if you can even separate the physical from the spiritual which seems more of a concept of Greek philosophy than Biblical theology there are these huge biblical references:
I invite you to read Revelation, which is a great example of the Bible differentiating between the physical and the spiritual.

Quote:
God creates the physical world and says that it is "tov".
Tov, (actually in the context in which you cite, the word is towb ) means 'good.' God created a place for us to exist and it was good. Is your contention that this is proof that our physical condition is equal to our spiritual?

Quote:
"And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth." John 1:14

"All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being." John 1:3
Have you considered WHY the Word became flesh? Was it to save us from poverty? Or was it to experience such things, be the lowest of the low, and still triumph in faith?

Quote:
Jesus spoke more about wealth and the dangers of wealth than He did about prayer.
Why is wealth dangerous? Is it because it can affect our spiritual wellbeing?

Jesus spoke of the physical only in terms as it affected the spiritual. Again, I maintain, His concern was (and is) the spiritual. Read the Sermon on the Mount. Read what He has to say about who we make our master, God or wealth. We are all slaves to something. Is it physical or spiritual? There certainly is a difference.
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Old 02-17-2018, 5:43 PM
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Socialism gives a man his fish. Capitalism teaches him to fish for himself.

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Old 02-21-2018, 5:56 PM
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Capitalism genetically modifies the fish so that it can survive a toxic environment, made toxic by the drive to make things 'cheaper',
and externalizes (doesn't deal with at any level) the costs associated with the toxicity it produces for everyone else. What would Jesus do/recommend?
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Old 02-21-2018, 7:24 PM
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Socialism gives a man his fish. Capitalism teaches him to fish for himself.

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Wrong, capitalism is a store where you can buy fish that were grown in farm rather than caught in the ocean.
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Not at all. Trump is a loser and will lose amazingly on Tuesday. It's going to be so big, we are all going to be sick and tired of how much he loses on Tuesday.
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  #27  
Old 02-21-2018, 8:33 PM
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Capitalism genetically modifies the fish so that it can survive a toxic environment, made toxic by the drive to make things 'cheaper',
and externalizes (doesn't deal with at any level) the costs associated with the toxicity it produces for everyone else. What would Jesus do/recommend?
Sorry, but what you described is not capitalism but government interference with free-market. And what does Jesus have to do with it?
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Old 02-21-2018, 10:06 PM
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Wrong, capitalism is a store where you can buy fish that were grown in farm rather than caught in the ocean.
The producers and the retailers would both be capitalists, would they not?
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Old 02-21-2018, 10:26 PM
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Sorry, but what you described is not capitalism but government interference with free-market. And what does Jesus have to do with it?
Exactly where did I mention any government interference? I think you are projecting there. I simply describe a very likely scenario commonly found in capitalism and the aftermath, nothing about a government.
You do recognize that there were toxic lethal fogs that overtook London during the good old unfettered coal industrial age capitalism, right? Maybe that God planned to take those 12.000 dead there in 1952.
No problem, an acceptable price for the profits in your view I'd speculate. Way lots of capitalistic profits to be made on War too. Always has been, even notably the Crusades.
Didn't Jesus and or the Scriptures prescribe being good stewards? I'd say good stewardship is in jeopardy of becoming extinct. Got any example where socialism caused large environmental damages/ toxic releases-consequences?
Standing by.

Last edited by justMike; 02-21-2018 at 10:35 PM..
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Old 02-22-2018, 3:08 AM
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You do recognize that there were toxic lethal fogs that overtook London during the good old unfettered coal industrial age capitalism, right? Maybe that God planned to take those 12.000 dead there in 1952.
No problem, an acceptable price for the profits in your view I'd speculate. Way lots of capitalistic profits to be made on War too. Always has been, even notably the Crusades.
What are you talking about exactly? Are you promoting socialistic forms of oppressive government rule or socialistic economies or both? Are you suggesting that socialism has been more beneficial to society than capitalism upon democracies and Republics? What point were you trying to make by bringing up the crusades? Do you even know what the crusades were, let alone what century it took place? (I’m sure you’re googling it right now because you don’t exactly know).

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Originally Posted by justMike
Didn't Jesus and or the Scriptures prescribe being good stewards? I'd say good stewardship is in jeopardy of becoming extinct.
I’d say trying to weaponize scripture in order to justify a “toxic” form of government rule is something Jesus would defiantly never support.
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Originally Posted by justMike
Got any example where socialism caused large environmental damages/ toxic releases-consequences?
Standing by.


Man you have no idea what you’re asking. You’ve really backed yourself into a corner with that last question.... Socialism has caused not only wide spread pollution, decay, and poverty, but it’s also caused more human suffering as well as overall environmental disasters on a “biblical” scale (pun intended).

Here’s just but one article you can find out there on the web about the “terminal” effects of socialism:
https://fee.org/articles/why-sociali...ses-pollution/

I also think you probably should have brought this topic up in some sort of political debate forum.
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Old 02-22-2018, 5:53 AM
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Exactly where did I mention any government interference? I think you are projecting there. I simply describe a very likely scenario commonly found in capitalism and the aftermath, nothing about a government.
You do recognize that there were toxic lethal fogs that overtook London during the good old unfettered coal industrial age capitalism, right? Maybe that God planned to take those 12.000 dead there in 1952.
No problem, an acceptable price for the profits in your view I'd speculate. Way lots of capitalistic profits to be made on War too. Always has been, even notably the Crusades.
Didn't Jesus and or the Scriptures prescribe being good stewards? I'd say good stewardship is in jeopardy of becoming extinct. Got any example where socialism caused large environmental damages/ toxic releases-consequences?
Standing by.
Why yes I do. Ever heard of Chernobyl? How about this one?
https://news.vice.com/article/the-so...into-the-ocean

Have you seen the hundreds of islands in the south China Sea destroyed by the Chinese? Jesus is our King. We have no need for a big state. He came to set us free not put us in bondage.
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Old 02-22-2018, 6:36 AM
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Originally Posted by justMike View Post
Exactly where did I mention any government interference?
Right here:
Quote:
Capitalism genetically modifies the fish so that it can survive a toxic environment, made toxic by the drive to make things 'cheaper',
and externalizes (doesn't deal with at any level) the costs associated with the toxicity it produces for everyone else
Only you mislabel it as capitalism.


Quote:
I think you are projecting there. I simply describe a very likely scenario commonly found in capitalism and the aftermath, nothing about a government.
Again, It is not capitalism you describe, it is government regulation.

Quote:
You do recognize that there were toxic lethal fogs that overtook London during the good old unfettered coal industrial age capitalism, right?
Maybe that God planned to take those 12.000 dead there in 1952.
Why do you equate capitalism with God's will? Talk about projecting...


Quote:
No problem, an acceptable price for the profits in your view I'd speculate. Way lots of capitalistic profits to be made on War too. Always has been, even notably the Crusades.
Sun Tzu describes how war can be a boost for local economy, are you suggesting China was capitalist in 500 BC? What do the crusades have to do with anything?

Quote:
Didn't Jesus and or the Scriptures prescribe being good stewards? I'd say good stewardship is in jeopardy of becoming extinct. Got any example where socialism caused large environmental damages/ toxic releases-consequences?
Standing by.
East Germany, Eitzig, 1960
Russia, Oka river, 1965
China, Sichuan, 1980
Ukrain, Chernobyl, 1986
Poland, Silesia, 1990
Czechosavakia, Bohemia, 1990
Venezuela, Caracas, 2004

The list goes on and on.
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Old 02-22-2018, 8:08 AM
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Why yes I do. Ever heard of Chernobyl? How about this one?
https://news.vice.com/article/the-so...into-the-ocean

Have you seen the hundreds of islands in the south China Sea destroyed by the Chinese? Jesus is our King. We have no need for a big state. He came to set us free not put us in bondage.
You failed to mention Russia's diverting of the rivers going into the Aral Sea. They wanted to make desert regions able to grow crops. By diverting the rivers, they are causing the Aral Sea to dry up.

http://www.columbia.edu/~tmt2120/introduction.htm

Let alone Russia's dealings with nuclear waste disposal.
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  #34  
Old 02-22-2018, 10:06 AM
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You are correct.
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Old 05-03-2018, 10:34 PM
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Leaving the salvation of our souls to another discussion, this fellow believes so Jesus message had a more material aspect also. :

https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2017...-not-sins.html
I would be interested to read the book. While I do not necessarily agree with the author's premise as presented in the synopsis, it is true the Christian Church has tended to look the other way when it comes to Jesus preaching and teaching on wealth.

Jesus spoke more about the dangers of wealth than he did about prayer. The Gospels are full of such stories: The Rich Young Ruler; The Rich Man and Lazarus; The Man Building Bigger Barns; The Magnificat ("He has filled the hungry withy good things and the rich He has sent away empty")and in Luke's Gospel: "Woe to you who are rich!"

The only true Communist society was the early Christian Church. All in all the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a very subversive document.
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Old 05-04-2018, 8:06 AM
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The author makes a few good points but, like Marx, sees everything in economic terms. It's like an economist who moves out of state to save money on taxes. Yes, they might be right. But they forget the entire point of having money in the first place -- to have the freedom to live wherever and do whatever you darn well please.

Economics is VERY strong in Jesus's message because it was a major issue of his day. But politics, religion and economics weren't separate spheres like they are (or how we think about them) today. The term "Messiah" (pronounced Meshiach in Hebrew) was mostly political but with religious overtones. It wasn't all economics. But economics was undoubtedly part of it.

Jesus was a complex man. Reducing him down to one issue does him a disservice. He was concerned with how spiritual thought & law was put into practice and how certain practices, like not working on Shabbat, often ignored more important matters of life and faith, like helping the needy or simply feeding yourself.

People often think that Jesus was 100% logically consistent and confidently knew everything he ever said. He often backpedaled into more lofty, spiritual matters after being challenged in ways that could get him arrested. It's an easy, tactical retreat so he could live to argue another day. Pretty wise course of action, I think. He pushed a lot of buttons! Putting the deity of Jesus aside, he was human. The temptation narrative and the crucifixion narratives make this pretty clear. Power, fame, ambition, questioning & doubt were all part of his story as much as justice, spirituality, etc. Seeing him as a man of his day, he wrestled with a lot of difficult ideas & a lot of problems. I respect his calls to cut the legalistic BS and get busy helping people. But simplifying that to ONLY economics and ONLY debt is a gross oversimplification. After all, there was already legal precedent for Jubilee, as others had pointed out. But that is notably absent anywhere in the gospels.
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