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Featured Anti capitalistic verses in the Bible

Discussion in 'Controversial Christian Theology' started by timewerx, Mar 22, 2016.

  1. timewerx

    timewerx the village i--o--t--

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    Ezekiel 18:8
    He does not lend to them at interest
    or take a profit from them.
    He withholds his hand from doing wrong
    and judges fairly between two parties.


    Equal rewards in the Kingdom of God (Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard):

    Matthew 20:12
    12 ‘These who were hired last worked only one hour,’ they said, ‘and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the work and the heat of the day.’
     
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  2. Extraneous

    Extraneous Well-Known Member

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    New Testament scripture is anti political altogether.
     
  3. SkyWriting

    SkyWriting The Librarian Supporter

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  4. Extraneous

    Extraneous Well-Known Member

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    There is a distinction made between Church and earthly nations. Holiness is to be separate, not to join them. Where your treasure is, so is your heart.

    Also, biblical wealth is not always money or possessions.
     
  5. Imagican

    Imagican old dude

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    it is easier for a camel to squeeze through the eye of a needle than for a 'rich man' to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.

    Money is the root of 'all' evil.

    Blessings,

    MEC
     
  6. Quid est Veritas?

    Quid est Veritas? In Memoriam to CS Lewis

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    The LOVE of money is the root of all evil - 1 Timothy 6:10.

    Jesus repeatedly says not to gather riches on earth but in heaven. He tells people to sell their possessions and follow Him, He praises the widow for giving away her last coin and He says it is difficult for a rich man to get into heaven.

    That being said, He also says that we must work the hardest we possibly can and get as much as we can for our work, as in the Parable of the Talents.

    Now a world where everyone works as hard as they can and then gives as much as they can to their fellow man would be a paradise. People wouldn't go hungry and everyone would always help each other out.

    It actually comes very close to the ideal of 'true Communism' that all the communist states said they were working towards. Where "from each according to his abilities to each according to his needs" and where the State would wither and die as no longer being necessary.
    Now Communism failed miserably, perhaps because such high ideals were married to Atheism and Utilatarianism and people were dehumanised into cogs in a machine.

    So Jesus is no Communist as an idealogy, but perhaps Christians should be more communist as an ideal, to work towards perfect charity and Work ethic.
    Jesus also was no Capitalist as the Bible is explicit in condemning greed and stockpiling wealth.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2016
  7. Quid est Veritas?

    Quid est Veritas? In Memoriam to CS Lewis

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    CS Lewis said that if you are still comfortable after giving Charity than you probably did not give enough.
     
  8. Extraneous

    Extraneous Well-Known Member

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    Politics of any kind, and the kingdom, will never mix together.
     
  9. timewerx

    timewerx the village i--o--t--

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    I took a quick scan and noticed they are missing something about "savings". All of the verses they quoted about savings are from Proverbs.

    What Jesus thought about saving money:

    Luke 16:9
    I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.

    Text analysis:
    http://biblehub.com/text/luke/16-9.htm

    Money/worldly wealth is referred to as "wealth of unrighteousness". In context, that verse means, we should use worldly wealth to gain friends, ie, help other people, change the world for good, inspire others until it is gone.... The eternal dwellings is being remembered by the people you helped, gave hope and the succeeding generations.

    It gives emphasis on radical generosity, radical acts of selflessness.

    Indeed, common sense dictates, if Christ said that money is wealth of the unrighteous, why accumulate it and then buy ourselves more than meets the basic needs? We should probably give it to those who might need it more than we do.

    Christ doesn't say, we should leave our work or businesses. He only said, our selflessness must be distinguished. Enough to immortalize our deeds...To be remembered by many generations!

    Honestly, I am not comfortable with these teachings of Christ. I'm horrified! But who am I to try to contest these or try to find another interpretation. It is clear as daylight!
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2016
  10. Thunder Peel

    Thunder Peel You don't eat a peacock until it's cooked.

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    That verse in Matthew is a parable about the Kingdom of God and being equal in Christ, hence "The first shall be last and the last shall be first." Whether you've been saved for 60 years or 60 minutes, we are all saved through our faith in Jesus. Just because He blesses someone else with something you don't have doesn't mean He loves them more; each of us are entrusted with different skills, jobs, denominations and relationships.

    Jesus Himself worked as a carpenter with His father. I highly doubt He did all that work for free, not to mention many of the disciples came from working backgrounds. Nowhere in scripture does God condemn working for a profit. In 2 Thessalonians 3 Paul warns against idleness and even states in verse 10 that "If a man will not work, he shall not eat." Money itself is not evil, only making an idol of it is. Jesus calls us to be generous and giving--nowhere does He state that capitalism is bad or that working for profit is frowned upon. If that were the case then most pastors, who are paid by their church, would also be in sin, as would any Christian who works and gets paid. God blesses us with jobs and money in order to teach us stewardship and generosity.
     
  11. expos4ever

    expos4ever Well-Known Member

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    Jesus announced the arrival of the Kingdom of God - what could be more "political" than that? Let's be clear: despite widespread misunderstanding about this, Jesus is indeed claiming to be a king over this present world, not a mysterious unseen world of interior "spirituality".

    During the enlightenment - and all us westerners have been deeply influenced by it whether we acknowledge it or not - "religion" and "politics" were split apart. The New Testament knows nothing of such a distinction - it is something we have imposed on the Scriptures and done great violence to them in the process.

    Having said this, I think we agree that we (Christians) are certainly not to conform to the kind of politics that we, sadly, see much of. But we are not to withdraw from the public square and concede the fight to other forces.
     
  12. timewerx

    timewerx the village i--o--t--

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    I think you simply did not notice one of my posts down the line.

    I agree with you. The overall context is suggesting that keeping a job or business is not bad, as long as you don't keep most of your earnings to yourself.

    Christ did say, we can use "unrighteous wealth" (worldly wealth) to make a difference in our world. To use worldly wealth in remarkably selfless undertakings. However, in the process, only little is left to ourselves and may only cover the basic needs.

    To be extravagantly generous in simple terms.
     
  13. Quid est Veritas?

    Quid est Veritas? In Memoriam to CS Lewis

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    You are wrong about there being no division between politics and Religion.
    Before Macchabean times there was a High Priest as well as a King in Israel. In Exile, there was an Exilarch and a High Priest. There was always a division between the secular power and the Religious one. This only ended when the Maccabees usurped the Kingship after the war with the Seleucids, but was reintstated by the Romans when they made Herod king.

    In Jesus' time we have the secular Roman Authorities supported by the Jewish high Priest with a legal division between cases that could be seen by the Romans and purely religious Jewish questions seen by the Sanhedrin.

    The Romans also had a division between the Priestly colleges and the Elected magistrates in Republican times, although sometimes they were the same people. The laws and electorate between the two were vastly different with certain religious roles only filled by Patricians.
    This continued after the Empire became Christian with a system of Officials on the one hand and Bishops on the other.
    There has always been canon law and secular law, dukes and bishops, the King and the Church. Sometimes they impinge on each others territory, but there is a division.
    The Enlightenment has nothing to do with separating church and state as certain countries never did that, such as Britain. Politics and Religion were already discussed separately by Aristotle. You are very much mistaken on your facts here.

    As to the New Testament, the Gospel of John says explicitly that His Kingdom was not of this world (John 18:36), hence Pontius Pilate sees Him as innocent of insurrection (the punishment of which was crucifixion). It couldn't be made more clear that Jesus was not referring to our secular world. Afterall, He tells us to turn the other cheek and no Politician or Monarch who tried that would survive very long.

    We imposed no division on the Bible, it has been present since Aaron and Moses; Samuel and Saul etc etc.

    I agree that Christians shouldn't withdraw from politics as I had alluded to in my previous post, as we would be immoral if we didn't act against the iniquities of the world, but this world will pass to nothingness. Politics should always be a secondary concern to your Religious well being.
     
  14. expos4ever

    expos4ever Well-Known Member

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    That does not support a claim that there was a separation between religion and politics - all it shows is that two different people had two different roles. The Old Testament clearly stitches the domains of religion and politics tightly together - the laws of the land for the Jews were the edicts of the Law of Moses. I think no scholar will dispute that the Old Testament does not separate the domains of religion and politics.

    Not sure how you see this as supporting a separation, at least in the relevant sense. The Romans allowed the Jews to exercise a certain degree of freedom to follow the Law of Moses in how they ordered their world - and the Law of Moses is decidedly "political" in the sense that it prescribes how the society is governed. I do not know enough to comment on your claim that some cases were resolved by "secular" Romans authorities. But even if that's true, that does not affect what the Old Testament prescribes - the complete integration of "religious" and "political" spheres. You almost seem to be arguing that since the Romans did not allow the Jews to follow what the Law of Moses prescribes that this is "the way it is supposed to be".

    Both the Old and the New Testaments advocate for a clear integration of the domains of we now call "religion" and "politics". The fact that the Romans interfered with this does not change the prescriptive message of Scripture.
     
  15. expos4ever

    expos4ever Well-Known Member

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    I think there is a misunderstanding for which I am largely responsible.

    While I might dispute that the Romans really separated "religion" and "politics" (after all, their Caesars were arguably "deified"), my point is about the model that is prescribed in the Scriptures, not what is actually done in the real world. Both testaments explicitly and implicitly advocate no separation between "religion" and "politics". I hope that clarifies things.
     
  16. expos4ever

    expos4ever Well-Known Member

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    Not really. While church and state are technically integrated in Britain, they are effectively completely separate.

    Huge translation problem with this verse. The better translation is "My kingdom is not from this world" (I can provide the detailed argument later). Jesus is certainly not denying kingship over this world - something he clearly affirms elsewhere (again, I will give details later); no, He is simply saying the principles of His kingdom come from "above".
     
  17. Tree of Life

    Tree of Life Hide The Pain

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    I don't see anything that strikes at the foundation of capitalism here. The Law forbade Israelites exacting interest from fellow Israelites. This is what Ezekiel is referring to. They were free, however, to exact interest from non-Israelites. The parable in Matthew speaks of the generosity of the employer and emphasizes that he is free to do what he wants with what's his - including being generous. Neither of these principles seem contrary to capitalism.
     
  18. timewerx

    timewerx the village i--o--t--

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    Judaists who were formerly Pharisees conduct such practices. In fact, it is written in their Babylonian Talmud.

    But are you a Christian or a Judaist? And honestly, I did not see it in Ezekiel 18. Do enlighten me what I have missed.


    If everyone has equal wage, I guarantee you that you will not be able to make a profit and that my friend, is not Capitalism! ;)
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  19. Tree of Life

    Tree of Life Hide The Pain

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    I'm confused as to what you're saying here.

    Do you really believe that Jesus' purpose in this parable was to command employers to give all employees equal wages? If so, I'm afraid you don't know how to read Scripture.
     
  20. timewerx

    timewerx the village i--o--t--

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    Yes, it is not a command.

    I think what Jesus is saying in that parable is that "your ways are not my ways"
     
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