Friday, May 4, 2018

Two socialist implications of "Render unto Caesar" and the odd logic that God thinks you can keep your wealth if you don't want to share

Capitalist Christians say we should not make laws forcing them to share their wealth because God wants sharing to be voluntary. They seem to think being required to do what the Bible recommends means they don't have to do it. By their logic, we should not have laws about murder or theft—we should just wait until murderers and thieves feel like stopping.

The Bible's filled with inconvenient passages for capitalists, like "Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and unto God the things that are God's." It has two possible interpretations:

1. Pay your taxes—material things belong to the government.

2. Don't pay your taxes—everything belongs to God and the children of God.

Capitalists who think it's the first should pay their taxes without complaint, and then they should give half of what they have to the poor. Call that the Way of John the Baptist. It's what Zacchaeus practiced and Jesus praised.

Capitalists who think it's the second should follow Jesus's advice to sell all they have and give the money to the poor. Call that the Way of Jesus. If you have nothing that belongs to Caesar, you have no need to pay him.

There is a third option, of course. Call that the Way of the Hypocrite.