Monday, April 10, 2006

God's politics?

"But doesn't Jesus say to care for the poor? Repeatedly and insistently, but what he says goes far beyond politics and is of a different order. He declares that only one test will determine who will come into his reign: whether one has treated the poor, the hungry, the homeless and the imprisoned as one would Jesus himself. "Whenever you did these things to the lowliest of my brothers, you were doing it to me" (Matthew 25:40). No government can propose that as its program. Theocracy itself never went so far, nor could it.

"The state cannot indulge in self-sacrifice. If it is to treat the poor well, it must do so on grounds of justice, appealing to arguments that will convince people who are not followers of Jesus or of any other religion. The norms of justice will fall short of the demands of love that Jesus imposes. A Christian may adopt just political measures from his or her own motive of love, but that is not the argument that will define justice for state purposes. ...

"Some may think that removing Jesus from politics would mean removing morality from politics. They think we would all be better off if we took up the slogan 'What would Jesus do?'

"That is not a question his disciples ask in the Gospels. They never knew what Jesus was going to do next. He could round on Peter and call him 'Satan.' He could refuse to receive his mother when she asked to see him. He might tell his followers that they are unworthy of him if they do not hate their mother and their father. He might kill pigs by the hundreds. He might whip people out of church precincts."From "Christ among the Partisans," NYT 4/9/06.

1 Comments:

At 4/11/2006 12:38:00 PM, Anonymous rudy said...

dang i was about to post that last paragraph at my blog... dang dang...

it's great: what would jesus do?

the disciples never knew what the heck he was gonna do next...

lots to reflect on in that article...

 

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