Jesus of Nazareth, Republican?

Hey, you “Christian” Republicans out there!

Jesus was a liberal.

That’s right.

Jesus said to sell all you have and give it to the poor, and he said that it was easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.

Doesn’t that sound just like a liberal?

He said, “Blessed are the poor, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (That’s in the gospel of Luke.)

And he said, “If a man asks for your shirt, give him your coat also.” (That’s in Matthew.)

And he said, “Blessed are the peacemakers,” and “those who take up the sword will perish with the sword.”

I swear it’s all in the gospels (and the gospels tell us NOT TO SWEAR AT ALL, and that would include upon the Bible, and yet all you conservatives FREAKED when Obama didn’t put his hand on a Bible during his second swearing-in ceremony).

Oh, and Jesus never married, but hung around with 12 guys who abandoned their families for his “higher cause.”

Did you catch that, all you “Christians” who call yourselves Republicans?

Jesus’s apostles DITCHED THEIR WIVES AND KIDS, as well as their RESPONSIBILITIES TO THEIR PARENTS. Jesus told them, “Let the dead bury their own dead.”

Okay, I admit that this last quote of Jesus is callous and sounds like a Republican, but most everything else that Jesus said sounds like Al Franken!

I really can’t imagine any Republican politician talking about the poor, the rich, peace, the family, or obligations to parents in ways that Jesus would have approved, can you?

In fact, Jesus sounds a little bit more like Barack Obama and Martin Luther King than Rush Limbaugh or Tom DeLay.

But really now, neither American political party has much similarity to the Jesus of any of the gospels.

And all the vitriol spitting that comes from Republican “Christian” conservatives hardly matches Jesus’s command to “love your enemies” and to engage people with understanding and compassion, as in, “Father forgive them, they know not what they do” (Luke again).

I can’t imagine how any obviously committed person of the right could enlist, honestly, Jesus to his or her cause.

Indeed, what kind of cultish “Christianity” is this that can blatantly make a mockery of both the words and spirit of Jesus, and then call this the true “Christian religion” and mix it with the crassest Machiavellian politics and verbal slanders?

Oh, that’s the Republican Party circa 2010.

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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6 Responses to Jesus of Nazareth, Republican?

  1. theologigal says:

    The beginning of your post made me laugh out loud!

    There’s a song by Christian artist Derek Webb that contains this verse:
    “There are two great lies that I’ve heard: “The day you eat the fruit of that tree you will not surely die” and that Jesus Christ was a white, middle-class Republican and if you want to be saved you have to learn to be like Him.”

    There is indeed a great difference between American Cultural Christian Jesus and the Jesus of the Bible.

    Thanks for sharing!

    – Amanda

  2. santitafarella says:

    Amanda:

    Thanks for reading my rant, but the problem is that there is not one “Jesus of the Bible” either. All four gospels seem to have a different, even contradictory, spin on him:

    https://santitafarella.wordpress.com/2010/06/16/are-luke-246-and-mark-166-7-in-contradiction/

    Same as it ever was.

    —Santi

  3. Roger Salyer says:

    Well, I certainly agree that the Christ does not seem to represent a philosophy of “enlightened self-interest.” So, to that extent, He could not be characterised as Republican.

    He doesn’t appear to be a pacifist or a globalist either:

    “Do not think that I came to send peace upon earth: I came not to send peace, but the sword…. Think ye, that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, no; but separation…” (Luke 12; Matthew 10 (Douay))

    As such, St. Paul apparently doesn’t take your particular interpretation in all the matters to which you have alluded:

    “But if any man have not care of his own, and especially of those of his house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.” (First Letter to Timothy 5 (Douay))

  4. santitafarella says:

    Roger:

    So which one is the true Jesus—or are there a dozen of them represented in the NT?

    Should we talk about Jesuses?

    Here’s a riddle for you: who is Christianity’s most influential theologian, and yet he also never happened to read the gospels?

    —Santi

  5. Roger Salyer says:

    Christianity is not the Bible, nor any other set of assertive statements. So in the same vein, so whether or not there may be multiple Jesuses in the Bible, is not the question. There is only one Christ. I would say that He is a single entity in the tradition embodied by the Church. You know, the Church that preached the Albigensian Crusade and canonises martyrs from Buchenwald.
    If you make apparently contradictory statements, such as “preserve the environment,” and “heat your home,” are you two people? Do these statements even necessarily mean that you have changed your mind?

    How about: “Thou shall not kill.” and “Thou shall stone them to death.”

    I would have said St. Augustine, but I gather that is not who you have in mind.

  6. santitafarella says:

    Roger:

    St Paul.

    Think about it.

    —Santi

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