Well, the more I listen to the criticism of President Barack Obama and his policies being “Marxist,” or “socialist,” the more I scratch my head.
In this Christian nation, it seems that I must not understand what Jesus taught.
I thought Jesus taught us to take care of “the least of these.” So did Yahweh, in the Hebrew scriptures. Over and over, Yahweh admonishes the Israelites, yes, to stop forsaking God by worshiping idols, but God also charges them to “do justice.” In the book of Jeremiah, as just one example many,this God says to the people,”Administer justice every morning; rescue from the hand of the oppressor the one who has been robbed, or my wrath will break out like fire against you.” (Jer. 21:11-12)
Or in the book of Isaiah,God bristles at the claim of the Israelites that they have fasted. He rejects their show of devotion, saying, “Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter – when you see the naked, to clothe him and to turn away from your own flesh and blood?” (Isa. 58:6-7)
Do those types of words, some from Yahweh, others from Jesus, mean that Jesus was a Marxist? Was or is God a socialist? If one follows what God says, is one a Marxist or socialist?
I am thinking that the desire for money and profit trumps the desire for God for many. The more money we have, the more we want. We cannot be satisfied. There is something in the human spirit that consistently clamors for more. Consider roller coasters. Every year, there is a new one, somewhere, that is higher and faster and more terrifying. There are amusement park rides that feed into this “greed for more” that just seems to be a part of the human psyche.
We want more of everything except God or what God wants. We are more wont to try to manipulate what the sacred texts say in order to satisfy our insatiable desire for “more.” God gets in the way.
Mother Teresa said that there is enough money in the world so that nobody should have to go hungry. The problem is not that there are not enough resources to help “the least of these.” The problem is that the more (in this case) money we get, the more we want, the more we hoard it, the more selfish we get and the more afraid we get that we are going to lose it.
Let’s get back to God, though, and Jesus. Were they Marxist? Socialist? Was their desire for all people to be fed and clothed and housed an indication that their social proclivities were not and are not amenable to one adhering to in an economy based on free enterprise?
Do we who profess love for the Christ do it only with our lips, but in reality, our hearts are far away from God, as is stated several times in the Hebrew scriptures?(God’s complaint). Do we really know this God and this Jesus we say we love?
It would seem that there is a problem, a serious disconnect.
Just a candid observation.