Jesus Christ Is Lord

That every knee should bow and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father!

Posts Tagged ‘social justice’

Joe Chavalia Kills Unarmed Indigent Single Mother In Her Own Bedroom! Why Was It Not Murder? BECAUSE HE WORKS FOR THE STATE!

Posted by Job on August 5, 2008

Please see link below on how the state’s power is ever increasing. And no, people, this is not about race. This is about the unchecked growth of state power and the total lack of accountability. Today, the state goes after the poor. Tomorrow, the state – and big business – will come after everybody else. Christians, what are you going to do when the anti – Christ state declares you its enemy and comes after you? Or are you so conformed to this world and its ways and so lukewarm in your witness and testimony through the life that you lead that the state will not consider you an enemy but rather a friend and hence will have no reason to come after you? 

By the way: make no mistake the state is able to get away with this only because this “drug raid” policy targets poor people. If these same tactics targeted the rich or even the upper class, such persons would not put up with it for a second. They would leave and take their ability to create wealth, businesses, and jobs (not to mention pay the taxes!) and go to some place where the possibility of a crime being committed in their home does not result in someone dead. Now be honest: if SWAT teams were busting into upscale rave parties with guns blazing or shooting embezzlers, tax cheats, and going after the MANY affluent drug users that we have in our society, you could imagine the outrage and calls for reform. How do I know this? Do any of you remember Randy Weaver? He was a fellow that decided that our government was illegitimate because it afforded equal rights to black people. There were other reasons, mind you, but make no mistake, Weaver was primarily motivated by his white separatism. Weaver also decided to acquire himself a huge stash of weapons, and to ILLEGALLY sell those weapons to his white separatist brethren. Well, it just so happened that Weaver sold a sawed off shotgun to a federal agent that he believed was a fellow traveler. What did this person want the weapon for? To kill a police officer, or maybe any black person that had the gall to be found in the area? Weaver didn’t know or care. In any event, the fellow quite predictably refused to respond to summons to court to stand trial for his crime. So, when the authorities came to arrest Weaver, a standoff and shootout ensued that resulted in the death of Weaver’s wife. 

Now this should come as no shock to anyone. Armed criminals tend to resist capture, and the result of this resistance often results in injury or death. Except that “conservatives”, the very same types of people that are now cheering the acquittal in this instance, rushed to Randy Weaver’s defense. The government action was “a setup.” The law that Weaver broke was “illegitimate because it infringes on our Second Amendment rights.” Weaver was “targeted because of his politically incorrect beliefs.” Rather than bringing it on herself for living with a criminal, Weaver’s wife – also shot while holding her child – was “murdered by the state.” Now the blogosphere did not exist back then, but talk radio and the conservative magazines ate it up and made Weaver a hero. He was feted on Capitol Hill, speaking before a congressional committee on the need of the ATF to change its tactics and be reformed as the personal star guest of the Republican Congress. He received a huge settlement from the government. And he never saw a day in jail for his original crime of trafficking in illegal weapons OR firing on the government officials that rightfully came to arrest him. 

So Weaver is a hero and victim of government aggression, while Wilson “deserved it” because of her immoral and illegal life choices. What is the difference in the eyes of a conservative? We all know: class, race, and culture. Well, it is precisely the sort of classism, racism, and cultural chauvinism that allows the power of the unjust anti – Christ state to grow by leaps and bounds. , as the very “big government watchdogs” that swung into action to defend a man who was trying to kill law enforcement officials (remember G. Gordon Liddy selling “ATF agent” crosshair targets?) fully support this action. Both Ms. Weaver and Tarika Wilson died after being shot by government agents while holding their children in their arms. The difference is that the former happened because her husband was shooting back! In the Wilson case, the only shots fired were by the state. It is also ever more ironic that so many of the very conservatives that wanted to monitor and curb state power in the Weaver instance now support the Patriot Act, FISA, and virtually everything the state claims that it needs or wants to fight the war on terror.


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How Do We Get The Gospel Of Jesus Christ Back To The Poor?

Posted by Job on April 17, 2008

When Jesus Christ kicked off His public ministry (His turning the water into wine was done privately, as His time had not yet come) by reading the following Messianic prophecy from Isaiah: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” (Luke 4:18-19). Later, Jesus Christ received the strongest challenge to His ministry, and it came not from Satan, the Pharisees or Sadducees, or the Romans, but rather from His own prophet, the imprisoned John the Baptist: “And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?” (Matthew 11:3). To give evidence of His legitimacy, Jesus Christ cited these works: “The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them” (Matthew 11:5).

Now the nature of the challenge to Jesus Christ’s authenticity as the Messiah by John the Baptist can be a matter of some debate. But Jesus Christ’s response in this matter, as well as His synagogue reading at the beginning of His ministry, should be a challenge to US. What, after all, is so important about preaching the gospel to the poor? 

Consider that during the time that these prophecies of Isaiah were written, Israel had long failure to be the holy nation that God intended to be, the one that through their distinct character of unparalleled righteousness would make YHWH, the God of this same nation and of all else, known to all other nations of the earth. Now in theologically conservative circles, the portion of Israel’s failure to obey God that is most often emphasized is their idolatry, and abominations (child sacrifice, ritual prostitution) that goes along with idolatry. Theological liberals, however, focus on the fact Israel had become socially unjust! God had given Israel a plethora of specific instructions to ensure A) that the poor – including widows, orphans, the elderly, and the infirm – would be guaranteed a minimum level of existence, B) that the lower and working classes would not be exploited, C) that the gap between the rich and the poor would not grow too wide, D) that wealth would not be concentrated within the hands of a few families and passed down from generation to generation, and E) that the rich would not be favored over the poor in the markets, courts, and official matters. 

Such regulations make up huge portions of Exodus, Leviticus, and Deuteronomy (and the line of thought behind it is a frequently recurring theme in the rest of the Old Testament), and it is a crime that western conservative Christianity does their best to ignore them and their implications on what the attitude of the people of God should be towards wealth not only for an individual but society. Instead, far more time is spent on speculating whether it would be productive for Christians to keep the Sabbath and some limited portion of the dietary laws, and this is despite the fact that where the New Testament confirms the Old Testament Israel’s concerns regarding economic justice on an individual and corporate level – to the point where Jesus Christ refers to Christians that do not personally help the poor and oppressed as goats that will be cast into the outer darkness – it explicitly states that the Sabbath and dietary laws are matters that should not trouble Christians. 

There are reasons why God desires an economically, politically, legally, and politically just society. The most obvious is to mark an explicit easily seen contrast between Israel and the pagan nations, for pagan nations are notorious for having a tiny elite that is exceptionally oppressive and cruel towards everyone else (an incontrovertible historical fact denied by contemporary thinkers out of their hatred for Jesus Christ … neo – pagans actually blame the world’s unfairness on Christianity and insist that more paganism would increase fairness and personal freedom, a notion particularly espoused by feminists and homosexuals). So, a fair, just nation centered around the worship of a holy righteous God would have been a powerful living polemic against nations centered around the worship of pagan gods whose own religious myths revealed their exhibiting character and nature that was often actually worse than that of humanity. (Greek monotheistic philosophers claimed that polytheistic systems were invented by humans wishing to justify their desire to indulging in the very same sins as polytheistic myths depicted their false gods committing.)

But there are less obvious – but oddly more practical – reasons as well. God hates disorder and the persecution of the weak. Socially unjust societies plagued by things such as poverty and legal corruption are vulnerable to riots, uprisings, seditions, etc. by the underclass, which is confusion. Further, in such societies the upper classes often employ exceptionally brutal policies designed to create a culture of terror and hopelessness among the underclass to discourage just such rebellions. Also, vices such as street crime, economic corruption, high taxes, exploitation, and vicious underground economies are rampant in unjust societies, with children, women, the elderly, etc. the most often and brutally victimized. So yes, God has a huge stake in His people not only being just as a moral virtue, but in pursuing and demanding justice for the sake of the weak, poor, oppressed, and defenseless. Any system that ignores – or even does not emphasize – the social justice component is therefore not aligned with God’s Will or nature. Indeed, one of the reasons listed for warning Israel against desiring a king was that kings not only accumulated wealth taxed from the underclass and passed that wealth down from generation to generation, but would even conscript men and property into military service for the sole purpose of fighting wars to gain more land and wealth! In other words, earthly kings inherently and greatly increase social injustice.

And that is precisely what Israel had become in the time of the prophets, its last days shortly before the northern kingdom was wiped out by the Assyrians and the southern kingdom, Judah and Levi, fell to the Babylonians. The economic commands and principles carefully laid out in the law and exhorted by the writings had completely been cast aside. As a result, land and wealth was concentrated in the hands of a few families, and passed down from generation to generation. Poverty was rampant. Workers were exploited. Debt slavery was common. And “the system”, the courts and the authorities, institutionally favored the upper class IN ADDITION TO being easily manipulated with bribes. Israel had become just as socially, legally, and economically unfair as any pagan nation, with conditions so revolting that the prophet Amos stated that people were being forced into debt slavery no more money than it took to buy a pair of shoes (Amos 2:6;8:6)! (I cannot help but compare that to the modern situation where three strikes laws have been used to give lifetime prison terms for stealing golf clubs and slices of pizza.)

Now the worst part of the anti – God socially unjust situation in Israel was also the least surprising … the religious system of the day was a bought and paid for part of, defender of, and reinforcer of the status quo. Instead of fighting for reform and cajoling the powerful to implement the requirements of the law and respect the Spirit of God as reflected in the writings, they not only allowed the situation to continue but endorsed it with their teachings. This should not surprise you, because not only did the revolting religious structures of the pagan nations of the time do precisely the same, but co – opting corrupt religious systems has been a key component for corrupt and powerful ruling classes throughout the ages. (Not only has Christianity not been exempt from this sad record, but some have made the case that it has been among the leaders!)

Thus, the religious system of Israel in the time of the prophets had become one that was of, by, and for the wealthy and against everyone else. Had it been any other way, had the religious systems and the people that ran them been doing their jobs, there would have been no need for prophets in the first place. For the most part, the prophets during this time were so because they existed OUTSIDE the religious mainstream, the religious establishment, and CHALLENGED IT. The prophets bitterly denounced the religious scene of the day as wicked and corrupt and declared that God’s judgment was upon it along with the rest of the society, down to Ezekiel’s prediction that the temple would be destroyed and that the presence of God had departed it for BABYLON! As a result, the religious authorities of that time persecuted and killed the prophets just as they would go on to kill Jesus Christ and John the Baptist a few hundred years later. (If nothing else, the fact that prophets were hated and rejected by the powerful religious leaders of that day should give us pause concerning a great many of those that claim for themselves such a title – and the benefits that go with it! – in these times.)

As a result, you had a religious system that not only neglected the poor, but spitefully oppressed them and murdered those that sought to give the poor justice. Religious life and institutions had become status symbols for the rich, and the poor were not even considered worthy of consideration … carnal objects of no spiritual value only good to be subjugated and exploited for labor. It is no surprise, then, that Isaiah and the prophets knew that for a person to come and turn the world upside down by establishing the notion that poor people could and should be saved, that there was a place in God’s Kingdom for the low and wretched who at time were actually barred from participation in respected religious life, that for someone even to attempt a thing that was so radical, so subversive, so unthinkable in that time and place that he would HAVE to be the Messiah in order to do such a thing. That he would HAVE to be a Messiah in order to set things right.

So we go forth to the time of Jesus Christ. If you think that things were bad for the poor in Israel shortly before that nation’s destruction, they were oh so much worse under Roman domination. Not only was Rome a pagan nation who lacked any concept of the societal betterment as commanded by the Jewish scriptures, but they lacked even the high notions of an ideal human society as advocated by the Greeks. (Recall that Alexander the Great sought to conquer the world out of his twisted conviction that a Hellenized world would be a better one!) No, the Romans turned the art of cruel injustice that Israel merely practiced during the time of the prophets into a science that they perfected, with their most cunning achievement being Pax Romana, whose pursuit and maintenance justified any level of both systematic AND arbitrary savagery against non – citizens (the overwhelming supermajority of the empire) to allow the exceptionally tiny citizen class to harbor the pretensions of being civilized. On top of that, the common people of Judaea – which had been granted some degree of autonomy by the Romans – were persecuted even more by corrupt Jewish collaborators such as the Herods, the Sadducees, and the tax collectors. Jews had to pay taxes to support both interests, and were given only injustice by the authorities and courts of both as well. Things were so bad that a number of the common priests (meaning priests not financially supported by the temple system) actually starved to death!

Another factor in the time of Jesus Christ: the Pharisees. Now the Pharisees advocated the cause of the poor, and were popular with them. But – similar to the limousine liberals of our time – they did not actually INTERACT with the poor. The Pharisees considered the poor to be ignorant concerning the law, and furthermore any effort to reach out to or transform them a cumbersome task on a wasted effort. It was not considered wasted solely because they provincially doubted the ability of the commoners to be spiritually transformed in large numbers – though that clearly was a factor – but rather because the Jewish religious beliefs of the time sincerely held it to be unnecessary. The Pharisees legitimately thought that it was their duty to be as righteous as they could so that through their righteousness God would send the Messiah and the whole nation would be saved. All that was required of the common people was keeping them to a minimum level of piety (i. e. Sabbath observance) that would not negate the Pharisees’ efforts to secure salvation for themselves and everyone else. (This explains why the Pharisees were so furious at Jesus Christ for brazenly and publicly flouting their Sabbath regulations … in their minds the people following after Him in doing so would have negated the “credits” that the Pharisees were earning with God, which in their minds would not only result in God withholding the Messiah from them, but destroying the nation again.) So no, the Pharisees, who actually believed that they could become unclean by coming into close regular contact with common people, were not preaching the good news to the poor but only giving them rules to follow and judging the poor quite harshly – and arbitrarily – based on them. And even that made them eminently better than the Sadducees, who loathed the poor due to their adopting Hellenistic philosophy that denied the afterlife and held that the purpose of piety was to secure benefits in this life (for them godliness was gain!) and also better than some of the other religious parties that simply pronounced damnation on the whole nation (including the poor) and withdrew from everyone (including the poor) to their own enclaves to secure salvation for themselves.

So, Jesus Christ was operating not only with a contemporary situation, but what had been a fact of Jewish life for several hundreds of years. No wonder, then, did He dare to make serving the poor every bit as integral to His case for being the Messiah as miracles like casting out devils, raising the dead, healing lepers, and causing the blind to see. (Contemporary Christians should use this as yet another example that the fruits of the Holy Spirit and the edifying gifts of the Holy Spirit that are needed for effective ministry to the poor are far more important than the “sign” gifts of the Holy Spirit.) And no wonder did His mighty works among and resulting huge popularity with the poor make those same people fearful that Jesus Christ would unite and lead them into a mighty rebellion!

Again, consider the point made earlier: the prevailing religious thought for hundreds of years had been that the poor had no spiritual worth. That explains the “no prophet/nothing good comes from Nazareth” insults of the religious establishment. By this they were not claiming that the people of Nazareth and Galilee somehow were not actually Jews. No, it was entirely about class … no prophet or anything spiritually good could come from those people because they were POOR.

So by feeding five thousand of the poor with the loaves and fishes, by raising the poor’s dead, by casting devils out of the poor, by healing the poor’s lepers, by making laborers His apostles, EVEN BY LETTING THE POOR REGULARLY PHYSICALLY TOUCH HIM, Jesus Christ established the notion that there were no class distinctions in God’s eyes, and thereby nullified hundreds of years of Jewish thought very much enhanced by their exposure to (and willingness to emulate) pagan thought. The ministry of Jesus Christ brought the poor to the desire that God expressed for them in Exodus, Leviticus, and Deuteronomy. In this way, Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, fulfilled the law in a specific and very important area that Israel, whom God called His national son in Exodus, failed. And so in this way, Jesus Christ very much proved Himself to be the Messiah!

However, rest assured that Jesus Christ did not intend for this work to end with Him. Jesus Christ made explicitly clear that as His Body, the church is to continue His Work with the poor, and to do so with the same goals that God had for national Israel: order and social justice. Uplifting the poor lowers crime, limits disorder and subversion, and marks a difference between God’s people and everyone else that manifests itself the most among society’s weakest: children, orphans, the sick, the elderly, etc. It is so important to God that Jesus Christ stated that whatever a Christian does to the least of society, that Christian has done the same to Him (Matthew 25:38-46)!

Yet it is a message that, at least in the west, is foreign to contemporary Christianity. Theological liberals deny the reality of the Body of Christ and as such seek to create a heaven on earth using government social programs. Further, they oft defend social policies and societal attitudes that incubate disorder, crime, and poverty itself i.e. out of wedlock pregnancy. And that speaks nothing of the horror of abortion, which God clearly hates and will judge just as He judged Egypt for murdering the Hebrew babies and the pagan nations for their practice of child sacrifice.

Theological conservatives for their part reject social justice almost entirely. First they attribute poverty among individuals and nations to their failure to adopt Christianity (or the heresy of the “Christian nation” and its equally heretical and more dangerous replacement “Judeo – Christian values”), and to poor Christians they turn around and demand that they either be satisfied with the prospect of their needs being met in the next life or be charged with being bad Christians. Many of them exhibit an outright hostility to the poor. Some allege that poverty is due to character flaws (which on a wide or national scale they attribute to flawed cultures), others insist that the notion that they have a responsibility to the poor means questioning the legitimacy of their having wealth. When confronted with scripture concerning these attitudes, they will insist that said scriptures are being taken out of context in order to advance a secular agenda, when the truth is that with regards to this area they are no better than are the attempts of theological liberals to justify homosexuality and abortion.

So from a Biblical perspective, an “Animal Farm” situation results, where the theological liberal and the theological conservative can both sit in a room with a poor person being unable to distinguish between the two insofar as his legitimate interests are concerned. The truth is that James Dobson is no more likely to do anything about crime, a lack of jobs, and poor education in a Washington D.C. ghetto than is Barry Lynn. And it is precisely because of this vacuum that false belief systems such as Islam, Mormonism, and Scientology are rapidly spreading to these areas, just as communists and socialists gained a degree of inroads into the poor and black communities in decades past.

So in closing, how do we Christians get the gospel back to the poor? It must start by our ceasing to deny portions of the Bible that we personally find inconvenient, so that we thereby allow the full message of the gospel to reach and transform ourselves to the point where we recognize that it takes more than an “I gave at the office” Christianity for the church to fulfill its mission on earth. Follow The Three Step Salvation Plan By Clicking Here!

Posted in anti - Christ, Christian hypocrisy, Christianity, Christians United For Israel, eastern religion, salvation through Jesus Christ, Y'shua Hamashiach, Y'shua Hamashiach Moshiach, Yeshua Hamashiach | Tagged: | 2 Comments »

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