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  1. #1
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    Jesus was a communist

    Jesus said a few things didn't he, that sound a bit socialist.

    Off the top of my head...

    Blessed are the poor

    Woe to the rich

    Its easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.

    Sell your possessions and give to the poor


    And in the end bit, after he had been crucified I think, it says the disciples sold all their possessions and gave to everyone according to his need.

    Which a bit like what Marx said!

    No doubt some people will come up with some arguments to prove that Jesus in fact meant that people should chase wealth and material possessions, and vote for the Republicans.

    As Georgie boy would say, bring em on!

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    If you are going to introduce scripture you'll have to include the verses that say what you say they mean. It's proper source citation.

    And when you do so, it allows context to be understood.

    Please provide verse references for all quotes you wish to be considered as evidence. You merely stating them and claiming they exist in the Bible, is not the same as you providing scriptural support.
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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Jesus purposefully had no political views. Presumably, He would be against the idea of an abusive government, but otherwise, He didn't express in political views. I am sure He made it clear enough that He wasn't speaking of an earthly kingdom, but the kingdom of Heaven.

    John 18:33-37

    33 So Pilate entered his headquarters again and called Jesus and said to him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” 34 Jesus answered, “Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to you about me?” 35 Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered you over to me. What have you done?” 36 Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.” 37 Then Pilate said to him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.”
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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by John 12:1-5, 7-8, ESV
    1 Six days before the Passover, Jesus therefore came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. 2 So they gave a dinner for him there. Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those reclining with him at table. 3 Mary therefore took a pound of expensive ointment made from pure nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair. The house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. 4 But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (he who was about to betray him), said, 5 “Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” ... 7 Jesus said, “Leave her alone, so that she may keep it for the day of my burial. 8 For the poor you always have with you, but you do not always have me.”
    Obviously, Jesus was not as interested in "social justice" and redistribution of wealth as all that. He allowed a woman to use an ointment worth a year's wages to anoint his feet. When asked about it, he made a statement that clearly demonstrates that he accepts that there will always be poverty and that there are things more important than giving to the poor.

    I'm inclined to say that the average Communist would have taken Iscariot's side (without the larcenous inclination) of the matter and insisted that the money should be used to better the community. I mean, imagine what you could do with a year's worth of wages... but Jesus clearly shows that while caring for the poor is important, this woman had the right to as she pleased with her own things, no matter how much good she could have done with them in the community.
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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    This quote seems to distance Jesus from any type of political thought:

    21"Caesar's," they replied.
    Then he said to them, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's."

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    If you are going to introduce scripture you'll have to include the verses that say what you say they mean. It's proper source citation.

    And when you do so, it allows context to be understood.

    Please provide verse references for all quotes you wish to be considered as evidence. You merely stating them and claiming they exist in the Bible, is not the same as you providing scriptural support.
    Yeah, of course, here they are.


    1.
    20Looking at his disciples, he said:
    "Blessed are you who are poor,
    for yours is the kingdom of God.
    21Blessed are you who hunger now,
    for you will be satisfied.
    Blessed are you who weep now,
    for you will laugh.
    22Blessed are you when men hate you,
    when they exclude you and insult you
    and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man.

    23"Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their fathers treated the prophets.
    24"But woe to you who are rich,
    for you have already received your comfort.
    25Woe to you who are well fed now,
    for you will go hungry.
    Woe to you who laugh now,
    for you will mourn and weep.
    26Woe to you when all men speak well of you,
    for that is how their fathers treated the false prophets.
    Luke 6
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...+6&version=NIV


    2.
    The Rich Ruler

    18A certain ruler asked him, "Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?"
    19"Why do you call me good?" Jesus answered. "No one is good—except God alone. 20You know the commandments: 'Do not commit adultery, do not murder, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.'[b]"

    21"All these I have kept since I was a boy," he said.

    22When Jesus heard this, he said to him, "You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me."

    23When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was a man of great wealth. 24Jesus looked at him and said, "How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! 25Indeed, 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."
    Luke 18
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...18&version=NIV

    Just after he said this he told the disciples that he would be killed.


    3.
    4All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.
    Acts 2
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...+2&version=NIV


    there are more.....

    4. In Luke 1, Mary describes God...

    52He has brought down rulers from their thrones
    but has lifted up the humble.
    53He has filled the hungry with good things
    but has sent the rich away empty.
    Luke 1
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...ke&version=NIV

    5. Jesus calls the money dealers 'robbers'


    2Jesus entered the temple area and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves. 13"It is written," he said to them, " 'My house will be called a house of prayer,'[e] but you are making it a 'den of robbers.'[f]"
    Matthew 21
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...21&version=NIV

    6. Jesus repeatedly said treat you neighbour as you would yourself

    The Greatest Commandment

    28One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, "Of all the commandments, which is the most important?"
    29"The most important one," answered Jesus, "is this: 'Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.[e] 30Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.'[f] 31The second is this: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'[g]There is no commandment greater than these."

    32"Well said, teacher," the man replied. "You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 33To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices."

    34When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, "You are not far from the kingdom of God." And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.
    Mark 12
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...12&version=NIV

    7. Another crucial passage...

    The Sheep and the Goats

    31"When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. 32All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
    34"Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'

    37"Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'

    40"The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'

    41"Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.'

    44"They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?'

    45"He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.'

    46"Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life."
    Matthew 25

    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...25&version=NIV

    8. An interesting passage worth mentioning is this

    34"Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 For I have come to turn
    " 'a man against his father,
    a daughter against her mother,
    a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law -
    36a man's enemies will be the members of his own household.'[e]
    Matthew 10
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...10&version=NIV


    Jesus live in a time when the Jews were ruled by the Roman Empire, and there were many radical Jewish sects based in class struggle. This erupted into full scale civi war not long after Jesus died. The word zealot derives from a Jewish sect which lead a revolution against the Romans. They get mentioned for example in Acts 5. The apostles were arrested and thrown in jail. Judas of Galilee (not to be confused with Judas Iscariot) tried to lead a revolt which was crushed.
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...05&version=NIV

    ---------- Post added at 12:28 AM ---------- Previous post was at 12:23 AM ----------

    9.
    Giving to the Needy

    1"Be careful not to do your 'acts of righteousness' before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.
    2"So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 3But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
    Matthew 6
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...06&version=NIV

    ---------- Post added at 12:29 AM ---------- Previous post was at 12:28 AM ----------

    10.
    Treasures in Heaven

    19"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
    22"The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light. 23But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!

    24"No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.
    Matthew 6
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...06&version=NIV

    ---------- Post added at 12:41 AM ---------- Previous post was at 12:29 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Lukecash12 View Post
    Jesus purposefully had no political views. Presumably, He would be against the idea of an abusive government, but otherwise, He didn't express in political views. I am sure He made it clear enough that He wasn't speaking of an earthly kingdom, but the kingdom of Heaven.

    John 18:33-37
    Well he spoke of both. See my pastes. The passage you quoted is him accepting his fate, he knows god wants him to die. He is saying that the spiritual world is more important than the material, but that does not negate statements he made about the rich etc, in fact it complements them. Obsession over material wealth is a barrier to spiritual wealth, that was his message. Buddha said the same kind of thing as well.

    ---------- Post added at 12:50 AM ---------- Previous post was at 12:41 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Talthas View Post
    Obviously, Jesus was not as interested in "social justice" and redistribution of wealth as all that. He allowed a woman to use an ointment worth a year's wages to anoint his feet. When asked about it, he made a statement that clearly demonstrates that he accepts that there will always be poverty and that there are things more important than giving to the poor.

    I'm inclined to say that the average Communist would have taken Iscariot's side (without the larcenous inclination) of the matter and insisted that the money should be used to better the community. I mean, imagine what you could do with a year's worth of wages... but Jesus clearly shows that while caring for the poor is important, this woman had the right to as she pleased with her own things, no matter how much good she could have done with them in the community.
    Well Jesus couldn't be a communist in the exact same sense as we use the word today. Even today many people don't really understand the concept properly. Communism as defined by Marx would not have been possible in Jesus' time. However Jesus clearly sympathised with the poor and against the rich, and many times spoke against the desire to accumulate wealth.

    Ok, so Jesus sometimes appeared to contradict himself. He presumably had his reasons, depending on the context, the situation he was in. I can't say what his reasoning was, I can guess what it might have been. Obviously in this instance he was focussing on his imminent death.

    This is an incident where he appears to have contradicted his main teachings. He may have slipped up, or may have had his reasons.

    ---------- Post added at 12:58 AM ---------- Previous post was at 12:50 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by czahar View Post
    This quote seems to distance Jesus from any type of political thought:

    21"Caesar's," they replied.
    Then he said to them, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's."
    Well this was Jesus replying to the Pharisees who were trying to trap him.

    Paying Taxes to Caesar

    15Then the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words. 16They sent their disciples to him along with the Herodians. "Teacher," they said, "we know you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren't swayed by men, because you pay no attention to who they are. 17Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?"
    18But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, "You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? 19Show me the coin used for paying the tax." They brought him a denarius, 20and he asked them, "Whose portrait is this? And whose inscription?"

    21"Caesar's," they replied.
    Then he said to them, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's."

    22When they heard this, they were amazed. So they left him and went away.


    ---------- Post added at 01:02 AM ---------- Previous post was at 12:58 AM ----------

    Clearly Jesus was not saying 'lets have a revolution now' like some of the Jewish leaders were, but every revolutionary has to weigh up the chances of success and the timing has to be right. Jesus might not have been a socialist as we understand the word, but he was a communist in a way that suited the time he lived in.

    ---------- Post added at 01:06 AM ---------- Previous post was at 01:02 AM ----------

    Question is, if he was here today, what would his political stance be?

    Support capitalism with its extremes of inequality? Support the Republicans who made the rich richer? Or follow the man who said 'from each according to his abilities to each according to his needs', a phrase that could have come straight out of the New Testament.

  7. #7
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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by manc View Post
    Well this was Jesus replying to the Pharisees who were trying to trap him.
    Indeed, but that does not counter my claim that Jesus did not care much (if at all) for politics. In fact, coupled with with John 18:36, Jesus seems to take a very apolitical stance:

    36Jesus said, "My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jews. But now my kingdom is from another place."

    This is after he distances himself from any type of Earthly kingship . . .

    Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, "Are you the king of the Jews?"

    34"Is that your own idea," Jesus asked, "or did others talk to you about me?'
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...18&version=NIV
    (emphasis added)

    . . . though he does not try to distance himself from any type of spiritual kingship:

    [37"You are a king, then!" said Pilate.
    Jesus answered, "You are right in saying I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me."

    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...18&version=NIV
    (emphasis added)

    This seems to show that Jesus was not concerned with the mundane, earthly politics associated with kingship, but the spiritual, ethical world and the afterlife Christianity is associated with.

    And correct me if I am wrong, but isn't one of Marxism's chief complaints about Christianity (amongst other religions) that it distracts the proletariat from the problems of this world and causes them to focus on some pie in the sky afterlife? Isn't that one of the ways religion acts as "an opiate for the masses"?

  8. #8
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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Yeah, well there's no denying Jesus's prime message was a spiritual one. But part of his message was about how you should live your life on earth, and its that bit I'm on about.

    Jesus knew he was gonna get executed in advance, and he wanted to make sure that he got made a religious martyr rather than just one of many political ones. And not just any old religious martyr. The son of god in fact, well, thats what he said.

    In the bits you are quoting he is basically reinforcing the message that he was sent by god to deliver various messages.

    Its pretty obvious to me that his message is basically socialist in spirit. If he was around today he would surely shudder at the Republicans, and cringe at the Democrats.

    ---------- Post added at 05:37 AM ---------- Previous post was at 05:33 AM ----------

    The Believers Share Their Possessions

    32All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had. 33With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all. 34There were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned lands or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales 35and put it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to anyone as he had need.
    36Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means Son of Encouragement), 37sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles' feet.
    Acts 4
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...04&version=NIV

    ---------- Post added at 05:38 AM ---------- Previous post was at 05:37 AM ----------

    Acts 5

    Ananias and Sapphira

    1Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. 2With his wife's full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles' feet.
    3Then Peter said, "Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? 4Didn't it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn't the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied to men but to God."

    5When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard what had happened. 6Then the young men came forward, wrapped up his body, and carried him out and buried him.

    7About three hours later his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. 8Peter asked her, "Tell me, is this the price you and Ananias got for the land?"
    "Yes," she said, "that is the price."

    9Peter said to her, "How could you agree to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also."

    10At that moment she fell down at his feet and died. Then the young men came in and, finding her dead, carried her out and buried her beside her husband. 11Great fear seized the whole church and all who heard about these events.
    Acts 5
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...+5&version=NIV

    ---------- Post added at 05:42 AM ---------- Previous post was at 05:38 AM ----------

    So basically in these last two pastes its reiterated (was also in Acts 2) a couple more times how the followers of Jesus sold all their possessions, and even keeping a bit back (and lying about it) got you killed!

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    I find it passing odd that a Marxist and self-described atheist would compare a mythical being (a divine Jesus, from his perspective) with his own political philosophy.

    Perhaps Communism is mythical, as well. I mean, it's "common knowledge" that no true communistic government has ever existed...
    The Signature Religion is the one true religion. I know this is true, because it says so right here in this signature.

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Thank you for properly citing the verses. Let's examine a few of them:

    20Looking at his disciples, he said:
    "Blessed are you who are poor,
    for yours is the kingdom of God.
    21Blessed are you who hunger now,
    for you will be satisfied.
    Blessed are you who weep now,
    for you will laugh.
    22Blessed are you when men hate you,
    when they exclude you and insult you
    and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man.

    23"Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their fathers treated the prophets.
    24"But woe to you who are rich,
    for you have already received your comfort.
    25Woe to you who are well fed now,
    for you will go hungry.
    Woe to you who laugh now,
    for you will mourn and weep.
    26Woe to you when all men speak well of you,
    for that is how their fathers treated the false prophets.
    Speaks to the fact that the poor should not be bothered with their sufferings of this world as they will be no more in the next. It does not support your claim.

    The Rich Ruler

    18A certain ruler asked him, "Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?"
    19"Why do you call me good?" Jesus answered. "No one is good—except God alone. 20You know the commandments: 'Do not commit adultery, do not murder, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.'[b]"

    21"All these I have kept since I was a boy," he said.

    22When Jesus heard this, he said to him, "You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me."

    23When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was a man of great wealth. 24Jesus looked at him and said, "How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! 25Indeed, 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."
    Jesus is explaining that He, God must come first. Not that it is wrong to be rich. If the wealthy man can give up what he loves most, and instead, love Christ the most, then he will be saved. Does not support your claim.

    Just after he said this he told the disciples that he would be killed.
    Relevancy?

    4All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.
    Voluntarily helping others is a good thing. Does not support your claim.

    52He has brought down rulers from their thrones
    but has lifted up the humble.
    53He has filled the hungry with good things
    but has sent the rich away empty.
    Here is the passage in its entirety:

    46And Mary said: "My soul glorifies the Lord 47and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, 48for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. From now on all generations will call me blessed,
    49for the Mighty One has done great things for me— holy is his name. 50His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation.
    51He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
    52He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble.
    53He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty.
    54He has helped his servant Israel, remembering to be merciful 55to Abraham and his descendants forever, even as he said to our fathers."
    Proclaiming the glory of God, explaining the novel idea (which at the time, it was) that the poor are to be valued and helped and how just because someone is wealthy doesn't mean they are "in" with God. Helping the hungry and turning away the rich is not saying that those who are hungry are auto-deserving nor that those who are rich are turned away by virtue of being wealthy. See below for more on this.

    You've cherry-picked verses to suit your belief. This erroneous view of how to interpret scripture is called eisegesis. It's taking your idea(s) and forcing into where it does not belong. Instead, exegesis is to be employed...it's taking meaning out of the passage.

    I'm guessing that instead of using a proper commentary, you are using a socialist or communist, non-religious site that throws in a few verses it plucked from the Bible and erroneously claims that such verses can be used to support their preconceived ideas about what scripture teaches.

    If you have interest in seeking the actual meaning of passages in the Bible, you'd use a proper scholar's commentary. It'd save you a lot of time in that you'd not offer up verses that do not support your position.

    If we were to just cherry-pick like you have done...then I could just post:

    1 Sam 2:7 The LORD makes poor and rich; He brings low, He also exalts.
    ..and call it a day.

    The rest of your verses are the same as the above. Taking just a cursory glance at a proper commentary will reveal this. If you need a good one online, I'll give you a few links. Since the above has been exposed for being what it is, and below the arguments are responded, I see no reason to continue pointing out the flaws in the cherry-picking and gross misunderstanding of passages.

    If you disagree that exegetical methodologies are the proper way to understand meanings here, then you'll need to provide scholarly support. It is insufficient to post a verse then grossly mistranslate it according to your needs.

    Quote Originally Posted by manc View Post
    Yeah, well there's no denying Jesus's prime message was a spiritual one. But part of his message was about how you should live your life on earth, and its that bit I'm on about.

    Jesus knew he was gonna get executed in advance, and he wanted to make sure that he got made a religious martyr rather than just one of many political ones. And not just any old religious martyr. The son of god in fact, well, thats what he said.

    In the bits you are quoting he is basically reinforcing the message that he was sent by god to deliver various messages.

    Its pretty obvious to me that his message is basically socialist in spirit. If he was around today he would surely shudder at the Republicans, and cringe at the Democrats.
    No He wouldn't. What He would do however, is rebuke those who say "know Him" (like you are doing now).

    Jesus never once condoned or advocated or suggested any sentiment close to communism or socialism. He did however, speak to the fact that often the wealthy are too blinded by greed to see what is most important. He also taught that all people are equal (poor, wealthy, male, female, Jew, gentile, etc...) in His eyes and those who are capable of doing so, should help those who cannot...voluntarily.

    Communism is not a philosophy that teaches one should voluntarily help others (which is what Jesus taught)...communism dictates that all are to be equal, regardless of their skill, intelligence, capability for being productive.

    You confuse Jesus' promotion of the virtue of generosity and caring, with the idea that none should be able to earn more due to their capability and instead, be forced to give away what they earn. Nowhere in scripture are such teachings to be found. Nowhere are we told that David or Solomon or any others who were wealthy were looked down upon by God or told to get rid of their wealth.

    And if Jesus' teachings were really on par or similar enough with communism, then it would not be the case that communist countries persecute those who follow Jesus' teachings...or seek to rid its culture of any of Jesus' philosophies.

    Communism is not harmonious with Jesus' teachings...it is contrary to Jesus' teachings.

    Surely you can provide a case where a communist country followed Jesus' philosophies and encouraged its culture to become Christian, placing this religion or its ideals above all else? If not...well...it merely supports the opposite of your claim.
    Last edited by Apokalupsis; September 6th, 2010 at 03:27 PM.
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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr Gonzo View Post
    I find it passing odd that a Marxist and self-described atheist would compare a mythical being (a divine Jesus, from his perspective) with his own political philosophy.

    Perhaps Communism is mythical, as well. I mean, it's "common knowledge" that no true communistic government has ever existed...
    I'm interested in why so many Christians seem to take these teaching with a pinch of salt.


    I think the existence of god is very unlikely. I would not describe myself as an atheist because that implies certainty about something which is impossible to prove.

    Marxism has little in common with mythology or religion. It is a theory based on fact. Its not a rigid theory either. Its more like a tool kit than a magic blueprint.

    What interests me is that there are many Christians who don't seem to take much notice of Jesus' 'socialist' teachings.

    Marxism does have a relationship with religion. Most often its religion being used against socialism, sometimes religion works on the side of socialism, for instance the left wing priests in Latin America.

    Marxists have no wish to claim Christianity because Marxism is materialist.

    Materialism is one major strand of philosophy which says that our consciousness comes from the material world. Marx improved on materialism by adding that humans can also change the material world. It may sound obvious but obviously it wasn't obvious to the materialist philosophers before Marx. The other main strand of philosophy is idealism. Marx learned dialectics from Hegel, who was an idealist. Marx too the dialectical theories and applied them to materialism.

    What do you mean by Marxism being mythical exactly? You say no true communist government has ever existed, which is kinda correct-ish. You mean socialism is an impossible thing to achieve?

    Well it might be true. Who knows? But there is no good reason why it wouldn't work if people chose to establish socialism and the counter revolution was somehow stopped reasonably easily. Anyway, thats drifting off topic.

    ---------- Post added at 09:07 AM ---------- Previous post was at 08:58 AM ----------





    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Thank you for properly citing the verses. Let's examine a few of them:
    Apokalupsis for some reason your links to Bible Gateway are not working.

    ---------- Post added at 09:55 AM ---------- Previous post was at 09:07 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Thank you for properly citing the verses. Let's examine a few of them:

    Luke 6
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...+6&version=NIV


    Speaks to the fact that the poor should not be bothered with their sufferings of this world as they will be no more in the next. It does not support your claim.
    Well it would be easier to answer this if I knew which bit you are referring to, but I assume it is the bit I quoted.

    20Looking at his disciples, he said:
    "Blessed are you who are poor,
    for yours is the kingdom of God.
    21Blessed are you who hunger now,
    for you will be satisfied.
    Blessed are you who weep now,
    for you will laugh.
    22Blessed are you when men hate you,
    when they exclude you and insult you
    and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man.

    23"Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their fathers treated the prophets.
    24"But woe to you who are rich,
    for you have already received your comfort.
    25Woe to you who are well fed now,
    for you will go hungry.
    Woe to you who laugh now,
    for you will mourn and weep.
    26Woe to you when all men speak well of you,
    for that is how their fathers treated the false prophets.

    I do not agree that he thinks the poor should not be bothering with their sufferings. Sure, he is saying things will be better for them in the afterlife. And at the time he probably realised there was no cure for poverty. But he doesn't come across as some heartless bastard who couldn't care less about peoples suffering in the material world. After all, he supposedly went round helping the sick and sticking up for the underdog.

    You are just asserting this with no supporting argument. The disciples clearly took this passage literally as I showed earlier. If he was just offering some consolation, why bother to say 'woe to the rich'. Why deny what he said? Why put words in his mouth?

    ---------- Post added at 10:02 AM ---------- Previous post was at 09:55 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Luke 18
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...18&version=NIV


    Jesus is explaining that He, God must come first. Not that it is wrong to be rich. If the wealthy man can give up what he loves most, and instead, love Christ the most, then he will be saved. Does not support your claim.
    The Rich Ruler

    18A certain ruler asked him, "Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?"
    19"Why do you call me good?" Jesus answered. "No one is good—except God alone. 20You know the commandments: 'Do not commit adultery, do not murder, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.'[b]"

    21"All these I have kept since I was a boy," he said.

    22When Jesus heard this, he said to him, "You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me."

    23When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was a man of great wealth. 24Jesus looked at him and said, "How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! 25Indeed, 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."

    He says that rich people cannot go to heaven, and that they should sell all their possessions and give the money to the poor. Its pretty clear.

    Sometimes Jesus talked in parables, other time he just told it straight. Sell all your possessions. He was talking literally, except the camel bit which is an obvious figure of speech. There is no ambiguity.

    ---------- Post added at 10:39 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:02 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post

    Just after he said this he told the disciples that he would be killed.
    Relevancy?
    Well if you are a serious dude like Jesus seemed to be, and about to tell your comrades something really heavy like you are gonna get killed, you might well precede it with a quick recap of you most important ideas, told straight, like, sell all your possessions.


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Acts 2
    4All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.
    Voluntarily helping others is a good thing. Does not support your claim.
    Selling all your possessions and all being equal is a bit more radical than just helping others. The words are almost the same as the ones Marx used.

    "From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!"

    see the similarity? What the disciples did was what Marx said. And what Jesus said.



    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Luke 1



    Here is the passage in its entirety:

    46And Mary said: "My soul glorifies the Lord 47and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, 48for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. From now on all generations will call me blessed,
    49for the Mighty One has done great things for me— holy is his name. 50His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation.
    51He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
    52He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble.
    53He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty.
    54He has helped his servant Israel, remembering to be merciful 55to Abraham and his descendants forever, even as he said to our fathers."
    Proclaiming the glory of God, explaining the novel idea (which at the time, it was) that the poor are to be valued and helped and how just because someone is wealthy doesn't mean they are "in" with God. Helping the hungry and turning away the rich is not saying that those who are hungry are auto-deserving nor that those who are rich are turned away by virtue of being wealthy. See below for more on this.
    Another example of how he said the poor should be helped, yeah. Another example of Jesus' influence on Mary, of his dislike of the rich.

    Jesus was born in a poor family and associated mainly with poor Jews in an area dominated by the Romans and a few Jewish collaborators. It would be odd if Jesus DIDNT favour the poor over the rich. Class hatred would have been rife, was rife, Jerusalem was in a sort of pre-revolutionary state.

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    You've cherry-picked verses to suit your belief. This erroneous view of how to interpret scripture is called eisegesis. It's taking your idea(s) and forcing into where it does not belong. Instead, exegesis is to be employed...it's taking meaning out of the passage.

    I'm guessing that instead of using a proper commentary, you are using a socialist or communist, non-religious site that throws in a few verses it plucked from the Bible and erroneously claims that such verses can be used to support their preconceived ideas about what scripture teaches.

    If you have interest in seeking the actual meaning of passages in the Bible, you'd use a proper scholar's commentary. It'd save you a lot of time in that you'd not offer up verses that do not support your position.
    I picked them out of the bible. I have not got a socialist analysis. I don't know if one exists. I picked out the bits I knew of which said stuff which sounded like his main message regarding class and wealth. Of course they are cherry picked. But I never saw any bits that said the opposite.

    If you want me to read a scholars commentary you could supply a link to one which is reputable. However what I am dealing with is not a scholarly exercise in excusing capitalism. I am dealing with the actual Bible and what it actually says.



    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    If we were to just cherry-pick like you have done...then I could just post:

    1 Sam 2:7 The LORD makes poor and rich; He brings low, He also exalts.
    ..and call it a day.
    Well for a start this is Old Testament, its not Jesus is it? And it basically seems to be saying that everyone is created by God.


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    The rest of your verses are the same as the above. Taking just a cursory glance at a proper commentary will reveal this. If you need a good one online, I'll give you a few links. Since the above has been exposed for being what it is, and below the arguments are responded, I see no reason to continue pointing out the flaws in the cherry-picking and gross misunderstanding of passages.
    well, I will have a look if you post some links, but really what interests me is the bible, what it says, and how ordinary people interpret it, ordinary people including ordinary priests etc.

    Basically I think that when Jesus came out with these lines he intended ordinary people, illiterate ones, to be able to understand his message. He wanted soundbites people would remember and pass on, mainly through word of mouth. Keep it simple. He didn't intend it to be a case where only scholars can understand what the heck he was on about.





    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    If you disagree that exegetical methodologies are the proper way to understand meanings here, then you'll need to provide scholarly support. It is insufficient to post a verse then grossly mistranslate it according to your needs.
    I'm not really needing to do much interpretation. I just quoted some key passages. The word speak for themselves. There is more stuff along those lines in the Bible.

    ---------- Post added at 11:03 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:39 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post

    No He wouldn't. What He would do however, is rebuke those who say "know Him" (like you are doing now).
    I just quoted the bible. Its pretty straightforward. Jesus told the rich to sell all their possessions, and thats what the disciples did. A sort of primitive communism.


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Jesus never once condoned or advocated or suggested any sentiment close to communism or socialism. He did however, speak to the fact that often the wealthy are too blinded by greed to see what is most important. He also taught that all people are equal (poor, wealthy, male, female, Jew, gentile, etc...) in His eyes and those who are capable of doing so, should help those who cannot...voluntarily.

    Not much of a choice. He said sell all your possessions, or you wont get into heaven. I'd call it an ultimatum.


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Communism is not a philosophy that teaches one should voluntarily help others (which is what Jesus taught)...communism dictates that all are to be equal, regardless of their skill, intelligence, capability for being productive.
    You seem to have forgotten everything I posted, including the fact that Jesus told the rich to sell all their possessions, and that what the disciples did. It's quite straightforward.

    Communism is a choice the human race has. We can either go for it, or reject it. Its our choice. You have a choice. I'm sorry its a difficult one.




    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    You confuse Jesus' promotion of the virtue of generosity and caring, with the idea that none should be able to earn more due to their capability and instead, be forced to give away what they earn. Nowhere in scripture are such teachings to be found. Nowhere are we told that David or Solomon or any others who were wealthy were looked down upon by God or told to get rid of their wealth.
    Jesus said, as we have established that the rich should sell all their possessions. The disciples did this. I keep repeating this but its a key point. Its a straightforward point. Jesus faced execution. He knew it. He was not messing about. He said exactly what he meant, and intended that message to get spread, word of mouth, around the globe.

    He gave the human race a choice. Follow the spirit of what Jesus said or you probably wont get into heaven.

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    And if Jesus' teachings were really on par or similar enough with communism, then it would not be the case that communist countries persecute those who follow Jesus' teachings...or seek to rid its culture of any of Jesus' philosophies.

    Communism is not harmonious with Jesus' teachings...it is contrary to Jesus' teachings.

    Surely you can provide a case where a communist country followed Jesus' philosophies and encouraged its culture to become Christian, placing this religion or its ideals above all else? If not...well...it merely supports the opposite of your claim.
    There has never been a communist country.

    The closest thing was the first 7 years in Russia which was in a transformation stage towards the goal of socialism, it failed because it didn't spread to advanced countries - the German revolution failed for example, mainly because of the useless leadership of the Social Democratic Party who betrayed the revolution, even having Rosa Luxembourg and Karl Liebknecht murdered. They did not persecute religions, not until Stalin's counter-revolution.

    Of course Jesus couldn't have been a communist in the exact same way as a Marxist is today, that would not be possible, but in spirit he clearly was. Hence the disciples live a communal life.

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by manc View Post
    Well it would be easier to answer this if I knew which bit you are referring to, but I assume it is the bit I quoted.
    I have included the text in quotes for convenience.

    I do not agree that he thinks the poor should not be bothering with their sufferings. Sure, he is saying things will be better for them in the afterlife. And at the time he probably realised there was no cure for poverty. But he doesn't come across as some heartless bastard who couldn't care less about peoples suffering in the material world.
    How is comfortable the poor coming across as being heartless exactly? Jesus is saying to the poor "Don't worry, your suffering in this life will be gone in the next. The next life is far greater, superior, peaceful and joyous."

    You are just asserting this with no supporting argument. The disciples clearly took this passage literally as I showed earlier.
    You haven't said what you think the passage says. You just said it supports your position that Jesus was a political activist subscribing to communism. Cherry-picking verses doesn't create a sound argument nor support your position.

    If he was just offering some consolation, why bother to say 'woe to the rich'.
    "Woe to the rich" doesn't mean that by virtue of being wealthy one is evil or cannot be saved. There are several examples of righteous men in the Bible (I listed a few in the previous post).

    Jesus is speaking to the popular but false teachings of the rabbis that to be rich meant that one was blessed by God and were therefore, saved (since they were favored by God). To be poor meant that God did not approve of you (according to their teachings). This was contrary to what God actually taught and Jesus is correcting their false teaching.
    Jesus’ message is clear—it is impossible for anyone to be saved by their own merits. Since wealth was seen as proof of God’s approval, it was commonly taught by the rabbis that rich people were blessed by God and were, therefore, the most likely candidates for heaven. Jesus destroyed that notion, and along with it, the idea that anyone can earn eternal life. The disciples had the appropriate response to this startling statement. They were utterly amazed and asked “who then can be saved?” in the next verse. If the wealthy among them, which included the super-spiritual Pharisees and scribes, were unworthy of heaven, what hope was there for a poor man?

    Jesus’ answer is the basis of the gospel: "With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God" (Matthew 10:27). Men are saved through God’s gifts of grace, mercy, and faith (Ephesians 2:8-9). Nothing we do earns salvation for us. It is the poor in spirit who inherit the kingdom of God (Matthew 5:3), those who recognize their spiritual poverty and their utter inability to do anything to justify themselves to a holy God. The rich man so often is blind to his spiritual poverty because he is proud of his accomplishments and has contented himself with his wealth. He is as likely to humble himself before God as a camel is to crawl through the eye of a needle.
    http://www.gotquestions.org/camel-eye-needle.html

    Why deny what he said? Why put words in his mouth?
    You confuse what He actually meant and what scholarly, expert consensus on the matter concludes...with your subjective and biased eisegesis. If what you say is the case is true, then surely there is scholarly support for it. Please provide some. I do not recognize you as an authority on the Greek language, ancient culture, Hebrew, Hebraic Law, etc... If you are, please provide your credentials.

    Your referenced passages are known as The Beatitudes. This sermon is found in multiple books. Jesus names a group of people normally thought to be unblessed or unblessable and pronounces them blessed (well-off and fortunate) because of the presence and availability of abundant life in God's kingdom to everyone, regardless of status, circumstances, or condition.

    20, 21. In the Sermon on the Mount the benediction is pronounced upon the “poor in spirit” and those who “hunger and thirst after righteousness” (Mt 5:3, 6). Here it is simply on the “poor” and the “hungry now.” In this form of the discourse, then, our Lord seems to have had in view “the poor of this world, rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which God hath promised to them that love Him,” as these very beatitudes are paraphrased by James (Jam 2:5).

    Jamieson, R., Fausset, A. R., Fausset, A. R., Brown, D., & Brown, D. (1997). A commentary, critical and explanatory, on the Old and New Testaments (Lk 6:20–21).

    Here again, it is the eternal fate of men who live for money, entertainment, and fame which is in focus. This is not the prophecy of some social revolution that will destroy the rich, etc.; but it is a warning of the final judgment.

    The false prophets ...
    Coupled with Luke 6:20, where it is made clear that the thrust of these verses is directed at the apostles themselves, there appears a contrast between the holy apostles who have become poor, leaving all that they had, and even hungry, as just seen in the grainfields, and the false prophets who were made rich by their sacrifice of truth and through pandering to the depraved desires of rebellious Israel. The false prophets did indeed receive the emoluments which adorned their apostasy: riches, food, entertainment and popularity. As Summers noted, "In the history of Israel, Amos, for instance, had been condemned while Amaziah was praised."

    Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Luke 6". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". . Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

    Verse 24. Who are rich. In this world's goods. They loved them; they had sought for them; they found their consolation in them. It implies, farther, that they would not seek or receive consolation from the gospel. They were proud, and would not seek it; satisfied, and did not desire it; filled with cares, and had no time or disposition to attend to it. All the consolation which they had reason to expect they had received. Alas! how poor and worthless is such consolation, compared with that which the gospel would give!

    Woe unto you that are full! Not hungry. Satisfied with their wealth, and not feeling their need of anything better than earthly wealth can give. Many, alas! are thus full. They profess to be satisfied. They desire nothing but wealth, and a sufficiency to satisfy the wants of the body. They have no anxiety for the riches that shall endure for ever.

    Ye shall hunger. Your property shall be taken away, or you shall see that it is of little value; and then you shall see the need of something better. You shall feel your want and wretchedness, and shall hunger for something to satisfy the desires of a dying, sinful soul.

    Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Luke 6". "Barnes' Notes on the New Testament". .

    There is no advocating of communism here. You have read into something which is not there and scholars do not recognize to be true. Again, you'll have to show that your credentials is superior to theirs or find actual scholarly support for your assertions as to what we are to take from the passage. You merely claiming it does not make it true.
    He says that rich people cannot go to heaven, and that they should sell all their possessions and give the money to the poor. Its pretty clear.

    Sometimes Jesus talked in parables, other time he just told it straight. Sell all your possessions. He was talking literally, except the camel bit which is an obvious figure of speech. There is no ambiguity.
    See above.

    Well if you are a serious dude like Jesus seemed to be, and about to tell your comrades something really heavy like you are gonna get killed, you might well precede it with a quick recap of you most important ideas, told straight, like, sell all your possessions.
    1) It does not follow that the very last thing one says before one tells them that he will die in the future, is the primary view of all things ever taught. That's perhaps the largest leap that's been offered at ODN in quite a while. Can you support this please? You are inserting your own opinion and understanding instead of pulling out actuality. Again, this is called eisegesis. It's not a good thing manc.

    2) Jesus went on for quite a while after this and preached, prayed, spoke in parables, healed, etc... How many times did he focus on "Everyone! Quick! Sell all your stuff asap! I'm going to die...in a little while!"?? According to your reasoning, He should have done this the entire time...after all, a "serious man" would have focused on the crux of His message here.

    It's an illogical stretch that serves only to corrupt scripture to suit your own, subjective understanding, nothing more. However, if you have actual scholarly support...I'd certainly welcome it.

    3) And most importantly...this is the 3rd time Jesus predicts His death in Luke. By your own reasoning, the preceding statements/lesson offered by Jesus in the other predictions should be the primary focus of Jesus' teaching.

    Luke 9:44-45
    44"Listen carefully to what I am about to tell you: The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of men." 45But they did not understand what this meant. It was hidden from them, so that they did not grasp it, and they were afraid to ask him about it.

    What did Jesus do or say right before this prediction? Whatever it is, according to you, is the crux of Jesus' teachings.

    The Healing of a Boy With an Evil Spirit
    37The next day, when they came down from the mountain, a large crowd met him. 38A man in the crowd called out, "Teacher, I beg you to look at my son, for he is my only child. 39A spirit seizes him and he suddenly screams; it throws him into convulsions so that he foams at the mouth. It scarcely ever leaves him and is destroying him. 40I begged your disciples to drive it out, but they could not."

    41"O unbelieving and perverse generation," Jesus replied, "how long shall I stay with you and put up with you? Bring your son here."

    42Even while the boy was coming, the demon threw him to the ground in a convulsion. But Jesus rebuked the evil[b] spirit, healed the boy and gave him back to his father. 43And they were all amazed at the greatness of God.
    ...Jesus says nothing of wealth or poverty. Nor does He do anything that teaches a lesson about either. He heals a boy.

    He predicts His death even before that time though.
    Luke 21-27
    21Jesus strictly warned them not to tell this to anyone. 22And he said, "The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life."

    23Then he said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. 24For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it. 25What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self? 26If anyone is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels. 27I tell you the truth, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God."
    And his message is not about money, but rather man focusing on his own merits, rather than following Christ.

    Your understanding of this passage is not only wrong by scholarly standards, but just an elementary review of the book of Luke.

    Selling all your possessions and all being equal is a bit more radical than just helping others. The words are almost the same as the ones Marx used.

    "From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!"

    see the similarity? What the disciples did was what Marx said. And what Jesus said.
    Another huge leap. Jesus nowhere in this passage says "Do what is according to your ability and give to others' needs". Jesus isn't even speaking here! In fact, no one is. At this time in the Bible, Jesus has already been crucified. This is the story of what happened after Peter gave a sermon. How is it that you can claim authority on such important matters of interpretation, but make such a huge, obvious mistake here as to what is going on, who said (or didn't say) what, etc...??

    This is yet another prime example of eisegesis...which is not a good thing manc. You have corrupted scripture to suit your needs, instead of taking out of it the meaning and ideas it actually contains.

    Here's the text in its entirety (since I'm not a fan of cherry-picking)...

    The Fellowship of the Believers
    42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. 46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

    The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (Ac 2:42–47). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

    Here is what actual scholars say about it:
    2:44-45. The selling of property and the common possession of the proceeds may imply that the early church expected the Lord to return soon and establish His kingdom. This may explain why the practice was not continued. Holding everything in common was not socialism or communism because it was voluntary (cf. 4:32, 34-35; 5:4). Also their goods were not evenly distributed but were given to meet needs as they arose.

    Walvoord, J. F., Zuck, R. B., & Dallas Theological Seminary. (1983-). The Bible knowledge commentary : An exposition of the scriptures (Ac 2:44–45). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.
    and
    Life of the Community (2:42–47). The concluding verses of chapter 2 comprise a summary of the community life in the early Jerusalem church. They emphasize the remarkable unity of the early Christians. Note the qualities that marked their common life. They gave their attention to the apostles’ teaching: They were eager to learn all they could about their Lord. They gave themselves to one another in their fellowship together. They shared at the table: Breaking bread probably included both a common meal and the Lord’s Supper. They prayed together. Their witness was marked by signs and wonders: They continued to experience the power of the Spirit. They shared, not only of themselves but of their possessions: They held everything in common and gave freely to the needy. They met regularly with fellow Christians in household fellowships and continued to worship and witness in the Jewish temple. It was an ideal time. God blessed their faithfulness. They grew steadily in numbers day by day.

    Polhill, J. B. (1998). Acts. In D. S. Dockery (Ed.), Holman concise Bible commentary: Simple, straightforward commentary on every book of the Bible (D. S. Dockery, Ed.) (503). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers
    .
    and
    2. They had all things common; perhaps they had common tables (as the Spartans of old), for familiarity, temperance and freedom of conversation; they ate together, that those who had much might have the less, and so be kept from the temptations of abundance; and they who had little might have the more, and so be kept from the temptations of want and poverty. Or, There was such a concern for one another, and such a readiness to help one another as there was occasion, that it might be said, They had all things common, according to the law of friendship; one wanted not what another had; for he might have it for the asking.

    Henry, M. (1996). Matthew Henry's commentary on the whole Bible : Complete and unabridged in one volume (Ac 2:42–47). Peabody: Hendrickson.

    4. They raised a fund for charity (v. 45): They sold their possessions and goods; some sold their lands and houses, others their stocks and the furniture of their houses, and parted the money to their brethren, as every man had need. This was to destroy, not property (as Mr. Baxter says), but selfishness. Herein, probably, they had an eye to the command which Christ gave to the rich man, as a test of his sincerity, Sell that thou hast, and give to the poor. Not that this was intended for an example to be a constant binding rule, as if all Christians in all places and ages were bound to sell their estates, and give away the money in charity. For St. Paul’s epistles, after this, often speak of the distinction of rich and poor, and Christ hath said that the poor we always have with us, and shall have, and the rich must be always doing them good out of the rents, issues, and profits, of their estates, which they disable themselves to do, if they sell them, and give all away at once. But here the case was extraordinary (1.) They were under no obligation of a divine command to do this, as appears by what Peter said to Ananias (ch.5:4): Was it not in thine own power? But it was a very commendable instance of their raisedness above the world, their contempt of it, their assurance of another world, their love to their brethren, their compassion to the poor, and their great zeal for the encouraging of Christianity, and the nursing of it in its infancy. The apostles left all to follow Christ, and were to give themselves wholly to the word and prayer, and something must be done for their maintenance; so that this extraordinary liberality was like that of Israel in the wilderness towards the building of the tabernacle, which needed to be restrained, Ex. 36:5, 6. Our rule is, to give according as God has blessed us; yet, in such an extraordinary case as this, those are to be praised who give beyond their power, 2 Co. 8:3. (2.) They were Jews that did this, and those who believed Christ must believe that the Jewish nation would shortly be destroyed, and an end put to the possession of estates and goods in it, and, in the belief of this, they sold them for the present service of Christ and his church.

    Henry, M. (1996). Matthew Henry's commentary on the whole Bible : Complete and unabridged in one volume (Ac 2:42–47). Peabody: Hendrickson.
    and
    “and had all things in common” This early experiment in “community” was not successful (cf. 4:32–5:11). This is not meant to be a universal principle, but an attempt at a loving, mutually supportive community or faith. This is a good example that not everything recorded in the Bible is meant to be universally implemented! These early believers had a great love for one another. Oh, that we could regain this love and sense of the presence and power of God among us (cf. John 17:11, 21, 22, 23)!!

    Utley, R. J. D. (2003). Vol. Volume 3B: Luke the Historian: The Book of Acts. Study Guide Commentary Series (45). Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International.

    Another example of how he said the poor should be helped, yeah. Another example of Jesus' influence on Mary, of his dislike of the rich.

    Jesus was born in a poor family and associated mainly with poor Jews in an area dominated by the Romans and a few Jewish collaborators. It would be odd if Jesus DIDNT favour the poor over the rich. Class hatred would have been rife, was rife, Jerusalem was in a sort of pre-revolutionary state.
    I already addressed this. You failed to respond to it and instead merely regurgitated your position.

    I picked them out of the bible. I have not got a socialist analysis. I don't know if one exists. I picked out the bits I knew of which said stuff which sounded like his main message regarding class and wealth. Of course they are cherry picked. But I never saw any bits that said the opposite.

    If you want me to read a scholars commentary you could supply a link to one which is reputable. However what I am dealing with is not a scholarly exercise in excusing capitalism. I am dealing with the actual Bible and what it actually says.
    When I say scholar, I'm not referring to a scholar of political science or economics, but rather Biblical translation and interpretation. I've provided several of these sources above.

    Well for a start this is Old Testament, its not Jesus is it? And it basically seems to be saying that everyone is created by God.
    1) God = Jesus. Doesn't matter if it is the New or Old Testament.
    2) That's right, God made both the rich and poor. If the rich were so evil, so despised, God could not have made them.
    3) God/Jesus considers both the rich and poor to be the same. You confuse what God says about the rich and poor. They are not evil and good by virtue of their income or savings...but by their worldview and priority. See above.

    well, I will have a look if you post some links, but really what interests me is the bible, what it says, and how ordinary people interpret it, ordinary people including ordinary priests etc.

    Basically I think that when Jesus came out with these lines he intended ordinary people, illiterate ones, to be able to understand his message. He wanted soundbites people would remember and pass on, mainly through word of mouth. Keep it simple. He didn't intend it to be a case where only scholars can understand what the heck he was on about.
    You only need a scholar's clarification for better understanding when your understanding is confused about what it says. This is why I have provided correct interpretation for you.

    I just quoted the bible. Its pretty straightforward. Jesus told the rich to sell all their possessions, and thats what the disciples did. A sort of primitive communism.
    See above. If you wish to ignore reason and scholarly support, you'll have to provide either your credentials or external scholarly analysis that supports your position.

    Not much of a choice. He said sell all your possessions, or you wont get into heaven. I'd call it an ultimatum.
    He was speaking to a very specific individual who valued X over Christ. Jesus is consistent in His teaching that for those who value X over Him, will only gain X in this world, not salvation. He consistently teaches that this world is temporal, while the next is eternal.

    He focused on the weakness of man, whatever that weakness is. In this specific instance, the man's weakness was his wealth. The man loved money more than himself.

    It is not a requirement to sell your possession to get into Heaven. There is no such command that exists anywhere. Secondly, if this were the requirement, it would mean that merit over faith is what mattes more. Jesus disagreed and taught otherwise (and in fact, debated the Pharisees quite often about that).

    18:22 “*‘One thing you still lack; sell all that you possess’*” This is an AORIST ACTIVE IMPERATIVE. Jesus recognized this man’s priority structure. The parallel in Mark 10:21 and some ancient uncial manuscripts of Luke (A and W) tell that Jesus had great care and love for this man, but he would not lower the standard of the gospel to allow him to receive eternal life. This is not a universal requirement for all humans (cf. Zaccheus, Luke 19). But it is a recurring statement (cf. v. 28 and 12:33–34). Jesus realized that this man’s heart was not fully turned to God. Anything in our lives that keeps us from fully trusting God is an idol and must be dealt with (cf. Matt. 6:24).

    It is possible that Jesus was calling this man to be a disciple like the Twelve (cf. Matt. 19:21; Mark 10:21). This man could have been a significant Christian leader, but the pull of riches (cf. 8:14) paralyzed the possibilities! Jesus used this very command (“come, follow Me”) to call others:
    1. Levi (Matthew), Mark 2:14; Luke 5:27; Matt. 9:9
    2. Peter and Andrew, Matt. 4:19
    3. Philip, John 1:43

    However, it must also be said that this is a call to discipleship for all followers, not just the Twelve (cf. Matt. 8:22; 16:24; Mark 8:34; Luke 9:23, 59; John 10:27; 12:26; 21:22). The gospel is (1) the welcoming of a person (Jesus); (2) believing truth about that person (the gospel, the NT); and (3) living a life like that person (Christlikeness).

    Utley, R. J. D. (2004). Vol. Volume 3A: The Gospel According to Luke. Study Guide Commentary Series (Lk 18:22). Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International.
    and
    Was Jesus recommending a passive and unthinking approach to life and the future? Absolutely not. He used dramatic rhetoric to highlight the inconsistency of claiming faith in God while remaining anxious about daily needs. Jesus’ advice to sell one’s possessions and give to the poor (v. 33) fits into this context. It is not an absolute command but an illustration of the kind of faith that trusts God more than worldly security. For more on worldly security, see note on Mk 10:21.

    Cabal, T., Brand, C. O., Clendenen, E. R., Copan, P., Moreland, J., & Powell, D. (2007). The Apologetics Study Bible: Real Questions, Straight Answers, Stronger Faith (1539). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.
    and
    Jesus then told the man one other thing he needed to do: he needed to follow Jesus, and in order to do that he had to give the money from his possessions to the poor. This action would touch on the 10th commandment against coveting, which included the idea of greed and holding onto things which are one’s own as well as wanting things that belong to others. It was at this point that the man faltered.

    Jesus’ reasoning was clear: (a) one must keep the Law perfectly in order to inherit eternal life (cf. James 2:10). (b) Only God was good—truly righteous. (c) Therefore nobody can obtain eternal life by following the Law (cf. Rom. 3:20; Gal. 2:21; 3:21). The only course of action left to an individual is to follow Jesus in order to obtain eternal life.

    18:23-25. The ruler was not prepared to take that step (but contrast Zacchaeus, 19:8). The ruler was more attached to his wealth than to the idea of obtaining “eternal life” which he had so nobly asked about at the beginning of his conversation with the Lord. Jesus responded that riches are a hindrance to one’s obtaining eternal life. Riches often cloud a person’s thinking about what is truly important in life. Jesus used a common hyperbole of something that is impossible—a camel going through the eye of a needle (belonēs, a sewing needle, not a small door in a city gate). Likewise it is most difficult (but not impossible; cf. Zacchaeus, 19:1-10) for a rich person to be saved.

    18:26-27. The disciples were dumbfounded. They had the mistaken impression, like the Pharisees, that wealth was a sign of God’s blessing. If a person such as the ruler could not be saved, Who then can be saved? Jesus, by His reply, did not rule out all wealthy people from salvation. He noted that God can do the impossible.

    Walvoord, J. F., Zuck, R. B., & Dallas Theological Seminary. (1983-). The Bible knowledge commentary : An exposition of the scriptures (Lk 18:21–27). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.

    You seem to have forgotten everything I posted, including the fact that Jesus told the rich to sell all their possessions, and that what the disciples did. It's quite straightforward.
    Didn't forget, your understanding of scripture (in this instance at least) has proven to be grossly incorrect is all.

    Your understanding of wealth is that it is intrinsically wrong. Jesus' understanding of wealth is that it is one of many things that are possible to lead men astray. For those who let something lead them astray, they will not be saved for they have chosen that thing over following Christ.

    There are many wealth men of God in the Bible. They did not have to sell their possessions, they merely had to have God come first. They had to have their priorities in order. That's the message of Jesus.

    Communism is a choice the human race has. We can either go for it, or reject it. Its our choice. You have a choice. I'm sorry its a difficult one.
    lol It isn't difficult in the least. Communism has proven to not only be extremely harmful to humankind, but a complete and utter failure. Therefore, I choose to not favor it.

    Jesus said, as we have established that the rich should sell all their possessions. The disciples did this. I keep repeating this but its a key point.
    1) He never said that. He was quite specific. See above.
    2) Repeating it as many times as you like, but it won't make it come true.
    3) Disciple or Apostle? And where specifically? Provide verse please.

    Jesus also said to sell your goods and buy a sword (Luke 22:35-36). According to your reasoning, everyone should become soldiers.

    See what happens when we use improper exegetical methodology?

    Its a straightforward point. Jesus faced execution. He knew it. He was not messing about. He said exactly what he meant, and intended that message to get spread, word of mouth, around the globe.
    See above. He predicted his death 3x. Your claim of "what is" here, is highly problematic.

    There has never been a communist country.
    Communist - a system of government in which the state plans and controls the economy and a single - often authoritarian - party holds power; state controls are imposed with the elimination of private ownership of property or capital while claiming to make progress toward a higher social order in which all goods are equally shared by the people (i.e., a classless society).

    Afghanistan, Albania, Angola, Benin, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Congo, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Ethiopia, Hungary, Mongolia, Mozambique, Poland, Romania, Somalia, South Yemen, Soviet Union, and Yugoslavia were all communist countries.

    China, Cuba, Laos, Vietnam and North Korea are still communist.
    -=]Apokalupsis[=-
    Senior Administrator
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    I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend. - Thomas Jefferson




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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    How is comfortable the poor coming across as being heartless exactly? Jesus is saying to the poor "Don't worry, your suffering in this life will be gone in the next. The next life is far greater, superior, peaceful and joyous."
    Well I acknowledged that, he is offering that consolation, but you originally said the "poor should not be bothered with their sufferings", which to me sounds very unsympathetic, and I don't think Jesus would have thought like that. I don't think he was 'comfortable with the poor'. He was clearly uncomfortable with this rich / poor business.


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post

    You are just asserting this with no supporting argument. The disciples clearly took this passage literally as I showed earlier.
    You haven't said what you think the passage says. You just said it supports your position that Jesus was a political activist subscribing to communism. Cherry-picking verses doesn't create a sound argument nor support your position.
    Ok, just to keep track, this is the passage about blessed are the poor and woe to the rich.

    I think it says what it says. The poor will go to heaven, the rich will not.

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    "Woe to the rich" doesn't mean that by virtue of being wealthy one is evil or cannot be saved. There are several examples of righteous men in the Bible (I listed a few in the previous post).

    Jesus is speaking to the popular but false teachings of the rabbis that to be rich meant that one was blessed by God and were therefore, saved (since they were favored by God). To be poor meant that God did not approve of you (according to their teachings). This was contrary to what God actually taught and Jesus is correcting their false teaching.
    Jesus’ message is clear—it is impossible for anyone to be saved by their own merits. Since wealth was seen as proof of God’s approval, it was commonly taught by the rabbis that rich people were blessed by God and were, therefore, the most likely candidates for heaven. Jesus destroyed that notion, and along with it, the idea that anyone can earn eternal life. The disciples had the appropriate response to this startling statement. They were utterly amazed and asked “who then can be saved?” in the next verse. If the wealthy among them, which included the super-spiritual Pharisees and scribes, were unworthy of heaven, what hope was there for a poor man?

    Jesus’ answer is the basis of the gospel: "With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God" (Matthew 10:27). Men are saved through God’s gifts of grace, mercy, and faith (Ephesians 2:8-9). Nothing we do earns salvation for us. It is the poor in spirit who inherit the kingdom of God (Matthew 5:3), those who recognize their spiritual poverty and their utter inability to do anything to justify themselves to a holy God. The rich man so often is blind to his spiritual poverty because he is proud of his accomplishments and has contented himself with his wealth. He is as likely to humble himself before God as a camel is to crawl through the eye of a needle.
    http://www.gotquestions.org/camel-eye-needle.html
    Yeah, yeah. Its very handy theses waffling 'scholars' manage to be able to tell us what Jesus actually meant. Why not let him speak for himself? His words are usually very straightforward. He either tells it straight or puts in in a simple parable. I wish Marx had written so clearly.

    Jesus makes the point over and over, and his disciples put into practice, and you are clutching at straws. Where does Matthew say 'nothing we do earns salvation for us'? Why did Jesus tell the rich to sell their possessions? Why did the disciples put this into practice?


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    You confuse what He actually meant and what scholarly, expert consensus on the matter concludes...with your subjective and biased eisegesis. If what you say is the case is true, then surely there is scholarly support for it. Please provide some. I do not recognize you as an authority on the Greek language, ancient culture, Hebrew, Hebraic Law, etc... If you are, please provide your credentials.
    'Sell your possessions' does not need an academic to translate. Jesus did not intend his words to be impossible for as non-scholar to understand. Jesus said it, and the disciples did it.


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Your referenced passages are known as The Beatitudes. This sermon is found in multiple books. Jesus names a group of people normally thought to be unblessed or unblessable and pronounces them blessed (well-off and fortunate) because of the presence and availability of abundant life in God's kingdom to everyone, regardless of status, circumstances, or condition.

    20, 21. In the Sermon on the Mount the benediction is pronounced upon the “poor in spirit” and those who “hunger and thirst after righteousness” (Mt 5:3, 6). Here it is simply on the “poor” and the “hungry now.” In this form of the discourse, then, our Lord seems to have had in view “the poor of this world, rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which God hath promised to them that love Him,” as these very beatitudes are paraphrased by James (Jam 2:5).

    Jamieson, R., Fausset, A. R., Fausset, A. R., Brown, D., & Brown, D. (1997). A commentary, critical and explanatory, on the Old and New Testaments (Lk 6:20–21).

    [INDENT][INDENT]Here again, it is the eternal fate of men who live for money, entertainment, and fame which is in focus. This is not the prophecy of some social revolution that will destroy the rich, etc.; but it is a warning of the final judgment.
    I know all this. All these handy scholars trying to justify the wealth priests began to accumulate. They abandoned the teachings of Jesus and some 'scholar' let them off the hook, with a feeble argument.

    Its amazing what you can convince yourself of.

    No I never said he was prophesising a social revolution, though he did come close. He did live in a time when revolution was in the air. But socialism as in the modern sense would have been impossible. Jesus wanted everyone to love their neighbour and treat them as they would want to be treated. In spirit he was a communist.


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    The false prophets ...
    Coupled with Luke 6:20, where it is made clear that the thrust of these verses is directed at the apostles themselves, there appears a contrast between the holy apostles who have become poor, leaving all that they had, and even hungry, as just seen in the grainfields, and the false prophets who were made rich by their sacrifice of truth and through pandering to the depraved desires of rebellious Israel. The false prophets did indeed receive the emoluments which adorned their apostasy: riches, food, entertainment and popularity. As Summers noted, "In the history of Israel, Amos, for instance, had been condemned while Amaziah was praised."

    Ok lets have the passage

    Love for Enemies

    27"But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. 30Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31Do to others as you would have them do to you.
    32"If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' love those who love them. 33And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' do that. 34And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' lend to 'sinners,' expecting to be repaid in full. 35But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. 36Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

    Judging Others

    37"Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. 38Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."
    39He also told them this parable: "Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit? 40A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher.

    41"Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 42How can you say to your brother, 'Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,' when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.
    Its pretty straightforward. I dont need to 'interpret' it. The words are clear. He did not say 'repossess the hoses of poor people', he did not say 'rich countries - screw to poor countries. He did not say, 'give tax cuts to the rich'.


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post


    Verse 24. Who are rich. In this world's goods. They loved them; they had sought for them; they found their consolation in them. It implies, farther, that they would not seek or receive consolation from the gospel. They were proud, and would not seek it; satisfied, and did not desire it; filled with cares, and had no time or disposition to attend to it. All the consolation which they had reason to expect they had received. Alas! how poor and worthless is such consolation, compared with that which the gospel would give!

    Woe unto you that are full! Not hungry. Satisfied with their wealth, and not feeling their need of anything better than earthly wealth can give. Many, alas! are thus full. They profess to be satisfied. They desire nothing but wealth, and a sufficiency to satisfy the wants of the body. They have no anxiety for the riches that shall endure for ever.

    Ye shall hunger. Your property shall be taken away, or you shall see that it is of little value; and then you shall see the need of something better. You shall feel your want and wretchedness, and shall hunger for something to satisfy the desires of a dying, sinful soul.

    Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Luke 6". "Barnes' Notes on the New Testament". .

    There is no advocating of communism here. You have read into something which is not there and scholars do not recognize to be true. Again, you'll have to show that your credentials is superior to theirs or find actual scholarly support for your assertions as to what we are to take from the passage. You merely claiming it does not make it true.


    Jesus is saying that material wealth will make it impossible to get into heaven. Its very clear. Obviously if everyone was wealthy he might have a different view.




    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    1) It does not follow that the very last thing one says before one tells them that he will die in the future, is the primary view of all things ever taught. That's perhaps the largest leap that's been offered at ODN in quite a while. Can you support this please? You are inserting your own opinion and understanding instead of pulling out actuality. Again, this is called eisegesis. It's not a good thing manc.
    It wasnt exactly a crucial point in the debate, of course it was my opinion, a logical one.

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    2) Jesus went on for quite a while after this and preached, prayed, spoke in parables, healed, etc... How many times did he focus on "Everyone! Quick! Sell all your stuff asap! I'm going to die...in a little while!"?? According to your reasoning, He should have done this the entire time...after all, a "serious man" would have focused on the crux of His message here.

    Maybe he didnt want to be too repetitive.




    Luke 9:44-45
    44"Listen carefully to what I am about to tell you: The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of men." 45But they did not understand what this meant. It was hidden from them, so that they did not grasp it, and they were afraid to ask him about it.

    What did Jesus do or say right before this prediction? Whatever it is, according to you, is the crux of Jesus' teachings.[/QUOTE]


    I think you are making too much out of one remark. He healed a boy who was mentally ill. Before that he fed the 5000 people. He got them to share what they had, and hey presto, they all got to eat. Funny that innit?


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Selling all your possessions and all being equal is a bit more radical than just helping others. The words are almost the same as the ones Marx used.

    "From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!"

    see the similarity? What the disciples did was what Marx said. And what Jesus said.
    Another huge leap. Jesus nowhere in this passage says "Do what is according to your ability and give to others' needs". Jesus isn't even speaking here! In fact, no one is. At this time in the Bible, Jesus has already been crucified. This is the story of what happened after Peter gave a sermon. How is it that you can claim authority on such important matters of interpretation, but make such a huge, obvious mistake here as to what is going on, who said (or didn't say) what, etc...??

    This is yet another prime example of eisegesis...which is not a good thing manc. You have corrupted scripture to suit your needs, instead of taking out of it the meaning and ideas it actually contains.

    Its not me who's doing the corrupting. I am just quoting the Bible.

    Of course I know Jesus had already been crucified. Jesus told the rich to give up their possessions. After he was crucified his followers all live a communal life, doing just that. Its very clear, very simple. They put into practice what he advocated. A sort of primitive communism. Well, a commune, shall we say. A communal lifestyle.




    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    If the rich were so evil, so despised, God could not have made them.
    He didn't make them rich did he? He made everyone, apparently. And gave them a free choice. To live as Jesus advocated, or to be selfish. The selfish won't get into heaven.

    Any Christians who are reading this now and are a bit worried, best thing to do is to try to understand it. Save yourselves!







    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    3) God/Jesus considers both the rich and poor to be the same. You confuse what God says about the rich and poor. They are not evil and good by virtue of their income or savings...but by their worldview and priority.

    Well obviously god's not not gonna let some evil bastard in purely because he was poor.

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    You only need a scholar's clarification for better understanding when your understanding is confused about what it says. This is why I have provided correct interpretation for you.
    Karl Marx's writings can be a bit hard to understand sometimes. He was a bit too educated, an bit too wordy. Cheeky German even slagged the poor English in Origin of the Species!

    Jut Jesus was supposed to be the son of god. Not an intellectual in the educated sense, not a scholar. He wanted his words to be understood by ordinary people by word of mouth. He didn't write voluminous books. He just did speeches. He dealt in parables and explicit messages.

    If I need a scholar to interpret 'sell all your possessions', something is very wrong!


    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    See above. If you wish to ignore reason and scholarly support, you'll have to provide either your credentials or external scholarly analysis that supports your position.


    Ok, let me ask, do you think Jesus wanted his message to only be understood by a few scholars? Do you think he wanted an elite to have the say on WHAT HE SAID.

    This reminds me of the novel 1984 when everything means the opposite of what it says. "WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY, and IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH"


    Jesus "sell all you possessions". Christian right "vote for a party which gives money to the very rich".




    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Not much of a choice. He said sell all your possessions, or you wont get into heaven. I'd call it an ultimatum.
    He was speaking to a very specific individual who valued X over Christ. Jesus is consistent in His teaching that for those who value X over Him, will only gain X in this world, not salvation. He consistently teaches that this world is temporal, while the next is eternal.

    He focused on the weakness of man, whatever that weakness is. In this specific instance, the man's weakness was his wealth. The man loved money more than himself.
    No, he said "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".



    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Communist - a system of government in which the state plans and controls the economy and a single - often authoritarian - party holds power; state controls are imposed with the elimination of private ownership of property or capital while claiming to make progress toward a higher social order in which all goods are equally shared by the people (i.e., a classless society).

    Afghanistan, Albania, Angola, Benin, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Congo, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Ethiopia, Hungary, Mongolia, Mozambique, Poland, Romania, Somalia, South Yemen, Soviet Union, and Yugoslavia were all communist countries.

    China, Cuba, Laos, Vietnam and North Korea are still communist.

    Ha! Ha! PMSL! Oh dear, that was truly funny. See my thread on what is communism. Its like quoting a satanist to explain Jesus' writings.

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by manc View Post
    Yeah, well there's no denying Jesus's prime message was a spiritual one. But part of his message was about how you should live your life on earth, and its that bit I'm on about.

    Jesus knew he was gonna get executed in advance, and he wanted to make sure that he got made a religious martyr rather than just one of many political ones. And not just any old religious martyr. The son of god in fact, well, thats what he said.

    In the bits you are quoting he is basically reinforcing the message that he was sent by god to deliver various messages.

    Its pretty obvious to me that his message is basically socialist in spirit. If he was around today he would surely shudder at the Republicans, and cringe at the Democrats.
    Probably not as much as he would at the openly atheist Communists. Nonetheless, I see your point about Jesus being concerned with this life as well as the next one, and it is a good one. I concede there.

    However, just one question before I go; does Communism support temporary or permanent equality (or near equality) in wealth? In other words, would a Communist say, "I want equal wealth distribution - but only for X amount of years" or "I want equal wealth distribution forever"?

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by czahar View Post
    Probably not as much as he would at the openly atheist Communists. Nonetheless, I see your point about Jesus being concerned with this life as well as the next one, and it is a good one. I concede there.

    However, just one question before I go; does Communism support temporary or permanent equality (or near equality) in wealth? In other words, would a Communist say, "I want equal wealth distribution - but only for X amount of years" or "I want equal wealth distribution forever"?
    Communism is a movement which aims ultimately to abolish the private ownership of the means of production, so I would assume that money would be abolished. Wealth distribution would be equal, except some people i.e. the sick and disabled etc would get a greater share of resources.

    Communists are not atheists as such. Marx said you only know what you can prove in practice. Marx only did a critique of organised religion because it was used to keep the workers in their place. Which you can see examples of in what Apokalupsis is saying - the workers should not worry about their poverty. This is religion being used as a tool by the ruling class. Teachings of Jesus turned upside-down. Jesus is used to justify poverty! To Marx, people clung to religion precisely because it gave them some reward in the afterlife to make up for life being so rubbish on earth, which was discussed on another thread.

    But actually on earth we see religions persecuting each other. The Bolsheviks never persecuted anyone for their religion. They went out of their way to help the minorities, Jews, Muslims and so on. They weren't quite so kind to the Orthodox church which had great wealth and had persecuted other religions, and supported the counter-revolution in the civil war. The Orthodox church had been a tool of the Tsar.

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by manc View Post
    Communism is a movement which aims ultimately to abolish the private ownership of the means of production, so I would assume that money would be abolished. Wealth distribution would be equal, except some people i.e. the sick and disabled etc would get a greater share of resources.
    Do Communists seek to make this equal wealth distribution permanent, though?

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by czahar View Post
    Do Communists seek to make this equal wealth distribution permanent, though?
    yeah, of course, why do you ask?

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by manc View Post
    yeah, of course, why do you ask?
    Because it is yet another thing that separates Jesus from communists; communists are looking for a permanent equality of wealth, while Jesus and his disciples are simply looking for a temporary, earthly one. Just listen to this description of Heaven:

    The city was laid out like a square, as long as it was wide. He measured the city with the rod and found it to be 12,000 stadia[a]in length, and as wide and high as it is long. 17He measured its wall and it was 144 cubits[b] thick,[c] by man's measurement, which the angel was using. 18The wall was made of jasper, and the city of pure gold, as pure as glass. 19The foundations of the city walls were decorated with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire, the third chalcedony, the fourth emerald, 20the fifth sardonyx, the sixth carnelian, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst.[d] 21The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl. The great street of the city was of pure gold, like transparent glass.

    Rev. 21:16-21
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...21&version=NIV
    (emphasis added)

    Jesus may be telling people to cast away their wealth, but reading it in the context of the Bible he is simply telling the wealthy to cast away their riches in this world in the hopes of gaining more riches in the next world. That is not giving away wealth. That is temporarily parting with wealth to attain greater wealth. It would be like me giving away my cottage to get a mansion in Beverly Hills.

    And are all people going to be able to enjoy this wealth? Of course not. There is no equality of wealth in the afterlife.

    He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son. 8But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death."
    Rev 21:7-8
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/...21&version=NIV

    And of course, considering that Heaven is a place for the chosen few, it is not like these people suffering at the bottom would be an isolated minority. And not only will the chasm between them be bigger than that which sits between the earthly rich and poor (as there is no spiritual equivalent of the middle class), but it will be longer (eternal) and far more painful (full of burning sulfur).

    In conclusion, Jesus may have promoted an extremely short, earthly period of financial equality, but in the long run his and his father's plans could not be further from an ideal socialist/communist world. If anything, existence in the Christian Bible has far more inequality and suffering than anything that could ever exist in even the worst capitalist dystopia.

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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    Quote Originally Posted by manc View Post
    Well I acknowledged that, he is offering that consolation, but you originally said the "poor should not be bothered with their sufferings", which to me sounds very unsympathetic, and I don't think Jesus would have thought like that. I don't think he was 'comfortable with the poor'. He was clearly uncomfortable with this rich / poor business.
    Yes, don't be bothered to the point where it drives you into deep sorrow. He is comforting the poor by telling them that their eternal life will be so much more rewarding.

    Ok, just to keep track, this is the passage about blessed are the poor and woe to the rich.

    I think it says what it says. The poor will go to heaven, the rich will not.
    Great. But again, you have not supported that. And we know for a fact that the wealthy can go to Heaven. Even without scholarly support you argument fails through inconsistency. You wish to accept on one hand what the Bible says (even though your understanding of it is utterly wrong), then ignore the fact that the Bible also says that the wealthy HAVE gone to Heaven. I've provided examples in 2 posts. Your continued use of bad logic only hinders your position, not helps it.

    Yeah, yeah. Its very handy theses waffling 'scholars' manage to be able to tell us what Jesus actually meant. Why not let him speak for himself? His words are usually very straightforward. He either tells it straight or puts in in a simple parable. I wish Marx had written so clearly.

    Jesus makes the point over and over, and his disciples put into practice, and you are clutching at straws. Where does Matthew say 'nothing we do earns salvation for us'? Why did Jesus tell the rich to sell their possessions? Why did the disciples put this into practice?
    So many problems I don't know where to start.

    1) To rely on your own lack of education and insist that those with education are wrong is perhaps the worst argument that could possibly be made. It says "I am right by virtue of being ignorant and they are wrong by virtue of being more educated than myself."

    You are publicly admitting that one should not understanding ancient linguistic styles and nuances, culture, ancient law, etc... that one does not need context to derive meaning (and in fact, should do away with), that one should take everything read literally and ignore the many literary styles, etc...

    You are saying that you champion ignorance over intelligence. I'd be very careful here with such a position, it has the tendency to follow you through the community. The position that it's better to be mentally numb to facts, evidence, expert study, conclusion and experience...than it is to be educated and value those things...is not a position that is capable of standing up to scrutiny for what should be, obvious reasons.

    2) According to such reasoning, when Jesus says He is the lamb, he's literally a lamb...after all, He said it, it's clear. And when He says he's the light...he is literally some sort of torch...after all, he said it. And when He says he is the gate, well, you get the picture. Such an understanding of language is extremely problematic. It may work to justify false beliefs...but it won't work for educated, reasonable beings.

    3) You allege that scholars "waffle". And as usual, offer no support. It may be convenient to make such charges, but such tactics do not go unchallenged in a real debate by real debaters.

    4) You regurgitating the same claim does not make it true. You'll have to do more than merely say "nuh-uh" when your argument has been countered.

    So...we'll start with the challenges that you are hereby officially required to answer.

    Challenge to support a claim. #1
    Support that the lack of education trumps education. That ignorance grants one wisdom and truth and that expertise and education results in flawed understanding of what one is an expert of.

    Challenge to support a claim. #2
    Support that everything in the Bible is intended to be literal and that there are not multiple literary styles, and that context and language nuances are not to be used in deriving meaning from ancient text. It's a multiple part challenge.

    Challenge to support a claim. #3
    Support that these experts have "waffled" in any way shape or form on their position in these verse.

    Challenge to support a claim. #4
    Create an actual coherent, cogent rebuttal instead of merely repeating the same responded to argument.

    Now...before you proceed, you should be aware of our community rules governing the challenges.

    When challenged...you have 3 and only 3 viable options.
    1) The challenge may be ignored, but no further line of argumentation that was originally challenged, may be posted. It is a "quiet concession" of sorts.

    2) Address the challenge directly by answering it.

    3) Publicly concede the point being challenged.

    If there is any deviation from the above 3 (for instance, continuing the line of argumentation even though it has been challenged...and the challenge goes unmet), it is considered trolling (which is considered an infractionable offense).

    For claims made within the thread that are related to the topic, they too must be supported. If not supported initially, but issued a Challenge to support a claim. to do so later, the claim must be supported or all subsequent, repetitive arguments will be considered to be an act of trolling.

    'Sell your possessions' does not need an academic to translate. Jesus did not intend his words to be impossible for as non-scholar to understand. Jesus said it, and the disciples did it.
    No one said any such thing. Now you are creating a strawman. What is under contention is not that Jesus said sell your possessions, but rather the reason WHY He said it, the lesson to be learned, who He is talking to and the extent of doing so.

    I provided support for the actual meaning. You insisting "nuh-uh" is not proper debate.

    On this passage:
    Challenge to support a claim. #1
    Support your position that Jesus saying this at this time to this group of people means that all Christians everywhere should do so.

    Challenge to support a claim. #2
    Using your "logic", and considering that Jesus said to sell your possession and buy a sword...it means that Jesus wants Christians to sell their goods and prepare to fight...everyone.

    After all..."Why not let him speak for himself? His words are usually very straightforward. He either tells it straight or puts in in a simple parable."

    Not only do you claim to be the official uneducated authority on what Jesus meant, but you also ignore the fact that Jesus wants the money earned from selling possessions, to be spent on warfare.

    You can't have it both ways. Using your own misunderstanding, you have refuted yourself...OR you have to admit to not being consistent. Which is it?

    I know all this. All these handy scholars trying to justify the wealth priests began to accumulate. They abandoned the teachings of Jesus and some 'scholar' let them off the hook, with a feeble argument.

    Its amazing what you can convince yourself of.
    ...what?? No one is justifying the wealth that the rabbies have accumulated. They have explained HOW the wealth has been accumulated and the false teaching of the rabbis that wealth leads to salvation. They explain that this was a false teaching and Jesus is countering their false claims.

    You can't possibly say you understand this when you didn't even read what was said.

    Jesus wanted everyone to love their neighbour and treat them as they would want to be treated. In spirit he was a communist.
    Communism has nothing to do with loving people. They are not synonymous. It's like saying "Jesus wanted everyone to love one another. In spirit, he was a white guy." It's absurd.

    One can be a communist and care about others. One can be a capitalist and care about others. One can be a Democrate and care about others. One can be a Libertarian and care about others. One can be Asian and care about others. One can be African and care about others. One can be a media mogul and care about others. One can be a shepherd and care about others.

    Simply loving and caring about others, does not a communist make.

    Ok lets have the passage

    Its pretty straightforward. I dont need to 'interpret' it. The words are clear. He did not say 'repossess the hoses of poor people', he did not say 'rich countries - screw to poor countries. He did not say, 'give tax cuts to the rich'.
    Who said they did? Another strawman it seems.

    Jesus is saying that material wealth will make it impossible to get into heaven. Its very clear. Obviously if everyone was wealthy he might have a different view.
    You've merely repeated your claim, nothing more.

    • Jesus never says anywhere that it is impossible to be saved because one is rich.
    • Jesus does say that all men can be saved regardless of status, nationality or status (servant or master).
    • Jesus says it is hard for some rich to be saved because they value their possessions more than Jesus. This is not the same as it being impossible.
    • Rich men were saved and they were seen as being good and wise by God. A point you continue to ignore.
    • Explanations as to why and what, were given by expert scholars on the matter


    So...
    Challenge to support a claim.
    Support your argument given the facts above.

    It wasnt exactly a crucial point in the debate, of course it was my opinion, a logical one.
    All points are a matter of contention. And as was proven, it was not logical in the least.
    Challenge to support a claim.
    You'll have to actually address the rebuttal instead of regurgitate the claim.

    Maybe he didnt want to be too repetitive.

    I think you are making too much out of one remark. He healed a boy who was mentally ill. Before that he fed the 5000 people. He got them to share what they had, and hey presto, they all got to eat. Funny that innit?
    Very well...so you are admitting to being inconsistent with your reasoning then? You insist that when someone does as Jesus did, it can only signify importance when what He does, jives with your understanding. All other times that Jesus does it, must be wrong by virtue of it not supporting your position. Is this right?

    Its not me who's doing the corrupting. I am just quoting the Bible.
    Right. Like Jesus is really a lit up sheep that morphs into a gate, right? After all, Jesus said it.

    This goes back to the top where you'll have to defend that ignorance trumps education and expertise.

    Of course I know Jesus had already been crucified. Jesus told the rich to give up their possessions.
    ..no...you didn't. You thought that a) someone was giving a command where they were not and that b) Jesus was giving the sermon when Peter was. It's evident in your language. You quote the text, then say that Jesus made a command. This never happens. It's dishonest discourse manc.

    He didn't make them rich did he? He made everyone, apparently. And gave them a free choice. To live as Jesus advocated, or to be selfish. The selfish won't get into heaven.
    Wait. You have been continually arguing that we should just be able to quote the Bible. Now you are being inconsistent. Your methods for interpretation are all over the board here. You insist that it is acceptable to cherry-pick ONLY when it is favorable for you to do so. But when we employ the same "method" (which is frankly, absurd and no scholar Christian, atheist or otherwise would agree with) on passages that refute your position or become problematic, it cannot be used by virtue that it exposes your methodology as flawed.

    It's yet another example of inconsistency manc. '

    Well obviously god's not not gonna let some evil bastard in purely because he was poor.
    Why not? According to your "logic", He must, after all, Jesus is pretty straight forward.

    If woe to the rich means no rich guy can be saved...how is it that we should not take it in a straightforward manner when he speaks of the poor?

    More inconsistency in your reasoning it seems.

    Karl Marx's writings can be a bit hard to understand sometimes. He was a bit too educated, an bit too wordy. Cheeky German even slagged the poor English in Origin of the Species!

    Jut Jesus was supposed to be the son of god. Not an intellectual in the educated sense, not a scholar. He wanted his words to be understood by ordinary people by word of mouth. He didn't write voluminous books. He just did speeches. He dealt in parables and explicit messages.

    If I need a scholar to interpret 'sell all your possessions', something is very wrong!
    1) Seems to me that most everyone understood what He meant. Only those who are insistent that it's proper methodology to insert preconceived meaning into text struggle here.

    2) re: sell possessions...another strawman. That's never been the contention. See above as to what really is the problem.

    Ok, let me ask, do you think Jesus wanted his message to only be understood by a few scholars? Do you think he wanted an elite to have the say on WHAT HE SAID.
    No. The problem is, people are people...they are not perfect. And they often tend to have preconceived ideas not only about what is wrong or right...but about political and sociological ideals. And when there are competing views, especially from a source such as religion, said people tend to insert their ideas into said religion to convince themselves and others, that "Hey! If this religion says I'm right, then I must be and you guys are doing it wrong."

    This is how heresy begins...and is why the study of ancient language, culture, history, context, law, etc... is necessary. To protect what is, from the corruption of uneducated people or those with an agenda.

    Jesus "sell all you possessions". Christian right "vote for a party which gives money to the very rich".
    Yes, we know your position. You've done nothing but repeat it over and over. However, this is the last time you are allowed to repeat it as per our rules here. You'll have to actually defend the challenge. See above.

    No, he said "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".
    I believe this is already addressed. If I need to elaborate, let me know. However, rRepeating the same claim won't make it come true. You supporting it however...may help.

    Ha! Ha! PMSL! Oh dear, that was truly funny. See my thread on what is communism. Its like quoting a satanist to explain Jesus' writings.
    Great. I'll take this as a concession since you cannot address it here and instead, make snide remarks hoping that it somehow absolves your requirement of intellectual discourse.
    Last edited by Apokalupsis; September 7th, 2010 at 11:23 AM.
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    Re: Jesus was a communist

    2Jesus entered the temple area and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves. 13"It is written," he said to them, " 'My house will be called a house of prayer,'[e] but you are making it a 'den of robbers.'[f]"
    People were selling product at exorbitant prices for ceremony on the temple grounds. This is not in accordance with Mosaic Law.
    There is no wealth like knowledge, no poverty like ignorance.
    Nahj ul-Balāgha by Ali bin Abu-Talib

 

 
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