It appears so far that on the Internet, there are many more agnostic and atheistic sites where the position is forwarded that Jesus is a communist than there are sites created and administered by those calling themselves Christians that also speak that undeniable truth.
This is a reply (turned post also) to a comment on the post, "JESUS IS A COMMUNIST." (Opens a new tab/window.) As I mention also below, feel free to comment on that post or here if you don't want your comment(s) to be part of that thread.
Of course, there are sites that represent whole groups and communities such as for the Hutterites and other communists of various sorts. If each individual member of those groups had his or her own website, it would dramatically alter the terrain. However, many communist-leaning people calling themselves Christians have often been more than a bit put off by the technology of the Internet and not without certain understandable reasons given in justification of that position. Many groups suffered persecution on account of their pacifist and other beliefs and they consequently ended up shunning interaction with the descendents of the persecutors of their forbearers. It goes deeper than that, but I'm sure readers will be able to think about the other reasons people distance themselves from the prevailing mainstream culture. It is saturated by design with temptation to selfishness of all forms.
As anyone who examines this site in detail will find, I hold that the perfect is Christianity and the New Heaven and God all together.
So why don't the vast majority of those calling themselves Christians know and believe that Jesus is a communist? Why is it that the agnostics and atheists are the ones most often stating this obvious truth about Jesus? For the most part, it can be reduced to the following.
The capitalists of Jesus's day hated Jesus. There are those who claim there were no capitalists in Jesus's day, but that's an error. There was plenty of money used to own the means of production. There was plenty of hiring of people as labor who themselves owned no such means.
Most of the establishment at the time was the direct result of military conquest. The macroeconomic and microeconomic system was forced upon people.
People speaking out against the hardheartedness of the system were a threat to the monied interests and taken out, as was Jesus. The spirit concerning money-making (hoarding, acquisitiveness, covetousness, invasion, occupation, rationalization, negative exploitation, persecution, etc.) exists today as it did during the time Jesus walked the Earth.
The best way for the powers that be finally (they thought and still falsely imagine) to stop the movement of Jesus was to co-opt and twist the message. At first, they tried simply to eradicate the followers. That only served to heighten the truth of Jesus's message in the minds and hearts of the common people. Constantine I though came along and co-opted and subverted and usurped Jesus's message for the sake of reuniting the Roman Empire under Constantine. Everything has been down hill since then until now.
Because of Constantine's usurpation and severe twisting of, among other things, Jesus's message from pacifism to militarism, the entire faith became coercive, which is diametrically opposed to Jesus's completely non-coercive message. All sorts of horrible, abominable things resulted down through the ages. In reviewing history, many people incorrectly denounced Christianity when it was the usurpation by Constantine and his supporters and followers that caused the problems and certainly not the cause and movement defined and furthered by Jesus. The coercive usurpers gave Christianity, the Church, Jesus, and God a bad name and reputation.
Those for the giving and sharing economy for all were persecuted by the powers that be who ran the religion of Constantine — never the religion of Jesus Christ.
People who still wanted a better life for the common people were extremely turned off by the church. They turned away from everything that that church (false church; lowercase church here) put forth so dogmatically. Karl Marx and others fit this pattern.
Now we have many calling themselves conservative-Republican Christians. Many agnostics and atheists, who are largely so by virtue of having to hold their noses around greedy Republicans, are rubbing the conservatives' own noses in the truth that Jesus was and is a communist.
Gerry, as for Hillel and Shammai, I studied them a number of years ago. I've also seen materials that suggest that Jesus followed Shammai. There is no doubt that Jesus was fully aware of both of them (their competing schools of thought). While aspects of both of their positions may be seen to overlap with selective readings of the words of Jesus, if we take all of the words attributed to Jesus in their fullest context and spirit, Jesus was certainly blazing a new path. Nowhere do we see Jesus claiming to be anyone's disciple. Surely, if he had been Shammai's disciple, he would have given Shammai credit by name. One could, of course, forward the position that the scripture has undergone radical surgery at the hands of those who would most benefit by hiding Jesus's discipleship under Shammai. Shammai though hasn't caught on with the Gentiles and never will.
We can appreciate strictness, as Jesus was strict. We can also though appreciate flexibility of a kind, as Jesus was flexible. Jesus's way is strictly righteous, which means never hypocritical; however, Jesus points out the hypocrisy in both Hillel and Shammai. The Talmudic Jews don't like this. They condemn Jesus so they will they falsely imagine be justified in continuing on in less light.
Also, the school or house of Shammai is not recorded anywhere as being in sync with Jesus. If Jesus had been a disciple of Shammai, the house of Shammai would have worked to expose the twisting of Jesus by others or explain how Jesus went astray from Shammai's teachings. That shows nowhere though.
Most importantly though is that Jesus faced persecution for violating the literalists' interpretation of the Mosaic law at the time. He healed on the Sabbath (the Jewish Sabbath). Shammai wouldn't hold with doing that. Of course, Jesus showed that he was doing the will of the Father on the Sabbath. Furthermore, Jesus said clearly and plainly that he could do nothing alone. It was the Holy Spirit who did the healing. If working on the Sabbath isn't allowed, why did and does God heal people on the Sabbath? That's a rhetorical question to the atheists. Don't get me wrong here. I believe that rest is right.
Neither Hillel nor Shammai believed fully as Jesus believed. We don't read in either of their positions the spirit shown through Jesus's Sermon on the Mount for instance.
To be clear here, I am not a disciple of Paul. I am not what is termed a Pauline Christian. Paul was totally wrong in his letter (epistle) to the Romans when he said that those put in authority were put there by God to reward the righteous. Pontius Pilate, while he personally did not declare Jesus guilty, nevertheless turned his back on Jesus and allowed the murder to proceed. That fact renders Paul's declaration a dangerous, misleading farce. Paul was not Jesus. He wrote many things that run contrary to what Jesus taught. The conservative Republicans lap up Paul while ignoring and/or distorting and obfuscating Jesus. Jesus wouldn't even qualify as clergy under the spirit of Paul's rules. Paul's rules disqualify anyone who turns over the tables of moneychangers in the temple. Furthermore, there is no way that Jesus would refuse food to those too lazy to work. He would apply the Golden Rule no matter how stupid, self-centered, and shortsighted the target of his righteousness. Of course, if someone refuses to follow Jesus to the real food, Jesus doesn't drag him or even bother with him again. That's that. No one can force another to really know love. Besides, the righteous can never be rewarded (justice; proper consequences for right behavior) if they are never separated from the iniquitous.
There are a number of other errors that have to do with gender and speaking in tongues and other matters where Paul misled. He corrected Peter, so he himself is in a position to be corrected by Jesus's own words and deeds that definitely don't jibe with Paul's writings.
As for agnosticism and atheism, the problem lies largely in the terrible history of the false church but also in scientism. It is not possible for Jesus to feed the five thousand, thereby revealing God, in front of all the naysayers who would just forget within a generation. The signs aren't given to those who haven't softened enough to grasp, even feel, the cosmic interconnectedness. Just being here born in the flesh isn't enough to convince them either.
Gerry, your statement about "the son of God" is actually close to the Kingdom. Jesus taught that God and he are one in that they share all things. God will and does share all with the worthy who are the trustworthy, the righteous who will not abuse the power. Jesus further taught that his disciples were to be one with him and with each other. Consequently, we are all the sons and daughters of God who believe it and who act accordingly. This is something the self-styled strict (apostate) Jews and Muslims detest. It is their way of not having to live up to the implications, such as total pacifism for one.
Now, we see capitalist going about crediting their system and not God for provisioning the world. Wherein did Jesus pay for the means to feed the five thousand? He paid God nothing in the currency of the capitalists. Also, what labor or work did the five thousand perform for their meal?
When the brethren sold all they had and laid the money at the feet of the Apostles who in turn used the funds to meet the needs of all the brethren, where was the labor of the Apostles? The labor was in the word.
Jesus was paid in a sense (on a certain level) whenever anyone invited him in for a drink of water, a meal, a place to sleep, to wash his feet, etc. It was value for value and more. The externalities were known though, and they were all good, unlike under capitalism.
They all entered into each other's labors. They entered into the labors of the prophets of old and those to come. There was no private property among them or between them. There was no private gain or private, special advantage among them or between.
When Jesus sent them out, he told them to take no scrip. How then did they earn their way? Yet they did without laboring other than to spread the Good News that among other things, money isn't necessary among and between those who truly love. Paul taught otherwise, because Paul was unable to go out without scrip. Paul definitely diminished the spirit of sharing all within the whole. He gave excuses in anticipation of the capitalists to come.
When Jesus said that the rich will find it more difficult to get into Heaven than for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, we hear capitalist twisting this. Jesus said to be perfect. He said quite clearly that perfection begins with giving all, not some but all, for the sakes of the many needy. Jesus never said to be less than perfect. He never said to anyone not to give all. We hear the capitalist echoing each other that the parable is not about the eye of a sowing needle but rather the needle gate (next to the larger gate of the city) which needle gate a camel could not walk through while loaded with a pack. Well, so what? Even if that were what Jesus was referring to, it would still mean that in order to enter the gate, one must be divested of all his private material possessions (worldly riches). How can one then be a capitalist and at the same time Christian? How can one not share all with all in the Church?
Jesus didn't say that one must be perfect to have life. He did though make clear that once one knew better, perfection becomes required. Had the rich man not asked, he would have remained ignorant and therefore less sinful.
We also see that Jesus referred to money (mammon) as an unrighteous thing. It was Paul who said the love of money is the root of all evil; however, Jesus called money itself unrighteous. The whole construct of a medium of exchange, whereby some have more than others (those "some" being the greedier of the lot), is evil when viewed in light of all Jesus said and did. We also know that he said the children of God ought not to be taxed. That's for the self-styled liberals to chew on, swallow, and digest. Of course, there is to be no funding of the military either.
We also hear the Republicans and fascists stating that it is against human nature, that we can never do it (live communistically), etc. However, many of these same people call themselves Christians and swear that Jesus will come to reign over a the no-longer iniquitous, selfish humanity on Earth. Can they have it both ways? No, they cannot.
I look forward to other comments.
God bless all,
Feel free to comment on the post, "JESUS IS A COMMUNIST," (opens a new tab/window) or here if you don't want your comment(s) to be part of that thread.