Jesus was a Socialist?

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don_pepe
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Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by don_pepe »

Back in the days when I was a Christian I would use the Bible as proof that my leftist ideas were correct, I see now that people can twist the Bible into saying whatever they want. Still based on what Jesus says I think that it's pretty hard for right wing Christians to justify their position.

Mark 10:21-25
Jesus looked at him and loved him. "One thing you lack," he said. "Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me." At this the man's face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth. Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, "How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God!" The disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said again, "Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

Acts 2:44-45
All that believed were together, and had all things in common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.

Acts 4:34-37
There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold. They laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need. There was a Levite, a native of Cyprus, Joseph, to whom the apostles gave the name Barnabas (which means “son of encouragement”). He sold a field that belonged to him, then brought the money, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.
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Glacier
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by Glacier »

The difference between what Jesus taught and Socialism is subtle, but there nonetheless.

Jesus: What is mine is yours for the common good.
Socialism: What is yours is mine for the common good.

See the difference?
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steven lloyd
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by steven lloyd »

And even that is a grossly over-simplified and erroneous interpretation of socialism – but whatever. I’m tired of debating old and entrenched rhetorical ideological assumptions.
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bcbudrockz69
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by bcbudrockz69 »

Glacier wrote:The difference between what Jesus taught and Socialism is subtle, but there nonetheless.

Jesus: What is mine is yours for the common good.
Socialism: What is yours is mine for the common good.

See the difference?

nice try but that isnt socialism, its realy what is ours is ours
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Born_again
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by Born_again »

"It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

During a Religious Studies class at college the Padre gave us an interesting interpretation of this parable. He said that there is historical evidence that there was a notoriously narrow gate through the city wall of Jerusalem(?), which led to the marketplace. The gate was colloquially referred to as the "Eye of the Needle", and was only just wide enough for an unburdened camel. He went on to explain that it is possible to enter heaven if you are loaded; but your application form will be scrutinised minutely.

Whether historically verifiable or not, I'm unsure, but this was my first experience of Biblical apologetics at work. One parable--two interpretations; but importantly, one of which goes easier on the wealthier hands that feed the coffers. :eyeballspin:
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steven lloyd
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by steven lloyd »

Born_again wrote:"It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."

During a Religious Studies class at college the Padre gave us an interesting interpretation of this parable. He said that there is historical evidence that there was a notoriously narrow gate through the city wall of Jerusalem(?), which led to the marketplace. The gate was colloquially referred to as the "Eye of the Needle", and was only just wide enough for an unburdened camel. He went on to explain that it is possible to enter heaven if you are loaded; but your application form will be scrutinised minutely.


This has always been a problem with people from modern society trying to ascribe literal translation to Bible text without any knowledge of the historical context in which it was written by men of the time. Another example is the quote “spare the rod and spoil the child” which has nothing to do with corporal punishment (the poplular interpretation) and everything to do with providing guidance – much as the shepards of that time guided their sheep with their long hooked rods.
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steven lloyd
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by steven lloyd »

bcbudrockz69 wrote: nice try but that isnt socialism, its realy what is ours is ours

Closer bud, but what you’re suggesting sounds more like communism.

The academic writer, Robert Mullavey, once described socialism as “the least understood and most misunderstood of all political paradigms”. That is not surprising and even a search on the web today will provide a plethora of conflicting definitions and explanations.

For example, can anyone recognize the ingrained rhetorical bias provided by Justin Quinn ?

Definition: Socialism is a political term applied to an economic system in which property is held in common and not individually, and relationships are governed by a political hierarchy. Common ownership doesn't mean decisions are made collectively, however. Instead, individuals in positions of authority make decisions in the name of the collective group. Regardless of the picture painted of socialism by its proponents, it ultimately removes group decision making in favor of the choices of one all-important individual.

* sounds like BC provincial Liberalism :127:

http://usconservatives.about.com/od/glo ... ialism.htm


Here are some simpler definitions containing less bias:

Economic system which is based on cooperation rather than competition and which utilizes centralized planning and distribution.

http://www.investorwords.com/4613/socialism.html

Socialism refers to the various theories of economic organization which advocate either public or direct worker ownership and administration of the means of production and allocation of resources. A more comprehensive definition of socialism is an economic system that directly maximizes use-values as opposed to exchange-values and has transcended commodity production and wage labor, along with a corresponding set of social and economic relations, including the organization of economic institutions and method of resource allocation; often implying a method of compensation based on individual merit, the amount of labor expended or individual contribution.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socialism

I will give Justin Quinn some credit for this explanation:

Another difference between socialism and communism is that communists directly oppose the concept of capitalism, an economic system in which production is controlled by private interests. Socialists, on the other hand, believe socialism can exist within a capitalist society.

http://usconservatives.about.com/od/glo ... ialism.htm


oops, I implied I wasn't going to do this. Good thing I have a tee time :124:
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unclemarty
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by unclemarty »

Jesus was not politically motivated one way or another, he mostly showed how a Torah observant life had always meant to be lived out - by re-uniting "the spirit" with "the letter" of the original instructions.

steven lloyd wrote:Socialists believe socialism can exist within a capitalist society.

As in a secular Israeli Kibbutz for example?

- Maybe one of the few examples where those who freely chose to implement the
"everyone does what they can and everyone gets what they need" idea within an otherwise capitalist society actually make it work relatively well - where each contributes where their strengths and talents best suit the improvement and betterment of the society as a whole ... but where there is no place or tolerance for self indulgent lazyness at the expense of everyone else?
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Glacier
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by Glacier »

steven lloyd wrote:And even that is a grossly over-simplified and erroneous interpretation of socialism – but whatever. I’m tired of debating old and entrenched rhetorical ideological assumptions.

Ha ha, I knew I that would get your attention. :sillygrin:

What I meant is that Jesus did not advocate any sort of government over another. Socialism as a political form is invariably a corrupted form of what Jesus taught because it forces people against their will to pay for things they don't believe in. What Jesus taught was that one should willingly give freely of themselves to benefit the poor and needy.

If everyone took to heart this idea, then the rich would give to those in need nullifying the need for socialism within the sphere of government.
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bcbudrockz69
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by bcbudrockz69 »

Glacier wrote:
steven lloyd wrote:And even that is a grossly over-simplified and erroneous interpretation of socialism – but whatever. I’m tired of debating old and entrenched rhetorical ideological assumptions.

Ha ha, I knew I that would get your attention. :sillygrin:

What I meant is that Jesus did not advocate any sort of government over another. Socialism as a political form is invariably a corrupted form of what Jesus taught because it forces people against their will to pay for things they don't believe in. What Jesus taught was that one should willingly give freely of themselves to benefit the poor and needy.

If everyone took to heart this idea, then the rich would give to those in need nullifying the need for socialism within the sphere of government.

yea that would be nice
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by NAB »

steven lloyd wrote:* sounds like BC provincial Liberalism :127:


Ya steven, I was thinking similarly about the BC Liberals just the other day. Actually, sounds like most Canadian political parties, even the supposed "far right" Conservatives LOL. Canada IS a socialist country by any reasonable measure IMO LOL! ;-)

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steven lloyd
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by steven lloyd »

NAB wrote:
steven lloyd wrote:* sounds like BC provincial Liberalism :127:


Ya steven, I was thinking similarly about the BC Liberals just the other day. Actually, sounds like most Canadian political parties, even the supposed "far right" Conservatives LOL. Canada IS a socialist country by any reasonable measure IMO LOL! ;-)

Nab


Well, we seem to have adopted some of the more worthwhile precepts of socialism (eg. health care, child protection, welfare & income assistance, pension plans, etc.) that benefit us all as a collective – even if some are too ill-informed or biased to recognize or acknowledge that benefit. We seem to have also failed in our attempts to successfully adopt some of the other precepts, such as public ownership and control of certain key industries and services (eg. hydro, oil & gas, road and highway infrastructure, and perhaps soon even health care), but I don’t know if that represents a failure in the ideology or idea or simply failure in the execution of the ideas because of inefficient bureaucracy (which we find within the realization of all political paradigms). That’s too bad because as we sometimes find out too late privatization for the sake of privatization does not always lead to increased efficiencies and the expected lower costs to consumers. In fact, sometimes the public ends up being gouged due to privatization (eg. hydro costs) or there is an appalling deterioration in the level of service (eg. road and highway “maintenance”).

Whether we look at socialism or capitalism as a paradigm it seems neither model has met it’s ideal in actual practice. I mean let’s face it – a true “free enterprise” system hasn’t existed since at least the days of the cattle land barons. While I believe the best paradigm contains the best precepts from both models, in my opinion it really comes down to the lack of accountability in governance and an electorate too apathetic to care enough to educate themselves, or to not re-elect governments that are screwing them over.

:129:
Last edited by steven lloyd on Apr 19th, 2010, 6:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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NAB
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by NAB »

Yup, they all have their strengths and pitfalls fer sure. As you have often said, if we could just find a way (and a new political ideology/party to represent it) to adopt those things that are strengths and eliminate those things that are weaknesses, life would be perfect huh?

Except of course for those who are just plain sheep, self centred and/or greedy, which these days appears to be most everyone LOL ;-)

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steven lloyd
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by steven lloyd »

NAB wrote: Except of course for those who are just plain sheep, self centred and/or greedy, which these days appears to be most everyone LOL ;-) Nab

There's sheep and there's wolves and then there are those of us (a minority it seems) who just want everyone to recognize we all play a small role in the big picture and are all responsible for our collective (there's that socialist word) successes and failures and to think and act accordingly.
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Re: Jesus was a Socialist?

Post by grammafreddy »

The problem with your collective, SL, is that there are too many political crooks involved for any reasonable collective to do any good in even a small way.
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