Thursday, January 04, 2007

Jesus and Non-Aggression

I just responded to my friend Jim's article on Jesus and Non-Aggression. Jim is a nuanced libertarian, and I always appreciate what he has to say (even if I disagree). He makes a good case that Christians who are pro-torture and aggressive war are out of touch with their Lord's teachings, as are those who advocate for a lot of State intervention in our personal choices. Here is my response to his article:

Jim, Haven't you ever read the Beatitudes?


Blessed are the rich who oppress the poor, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are those who don't mourn for victims of injustice and violence, for they will be comforted.

Blessed are the imperialists, for they shall inherit the earth.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for vengeance...

Blessed are those who show no mercy...

Blessed are those whose heart is stained with imperialist ambition...

Blessed are the peacekeepers of the imperial system...

Blessed are those who persecute others...


If you only read the right translation of the Bible, you would see the truth of the Constantinian Jesus of Christendom... Actually, good article, of course, though you have to be careful to not just see Jesus through your own ideological lens - he always challenges our lenses. His primary concerns, though often allied with a libertarian view, are not identical with it. Think of Jesus' attitudes toward money. Keeping and spending one's own money were not as important to him as giving it away to others who needed it.

BTW, I just stumbled on an old file of "A Question of Faith" articles from our North Park days, including an exchange we had about abortion. I put my foot in my mouth a lot, and you were thoughtful. Here we are debating again!

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