Christianity should be synonymous with class warfare
President Obama just drew the economic battle lines more clearly in his call to raise $1.5 trillion in new revenue primarily through increased taxes on the wealthy, letting the Bush tax cuts expire, and closing tax loopholes.
“Class warfare!” countered the Republicans.
Americans sharing more equally in the burden of pulling our country out of massive debt, and using tax revenue to stimulate the economy and create jobs isn’t “class warfare,” it’s actually Christianity.
According to some Christian conservatives, unregulated capitalism, with all its inherent inequalities of wealth, is God’s plan. Many Christians are starting to find the increasing concentration of wealth in the hands of a few very rich people to be an enormous moral and ethical problem.
Let me be clear as I can be. We need to understand the so-called “Christian” underpinnings of the anti-tax, anti-government, anti-the-poor, “let him die” approach to economics and public policy today as completely un-Christian, as well as un-American. What we need to do is re-establish our national values of fairness, equality and opportunity for all, values that I believe are actually the core of the Christian faith, (as well as of other religious traditions and of humanist values).
The Bible is all about taking care of each other, including taking care of each other by sharing what we have, not through amassing wealth. Part of the way we got here is by Christian conservatives ignoring a lot of what the Bible says on wealth and poverty, and being highly selective in what they call “biblical.” In all these reference to the “Bible,” the self-styled Christian capitalists don’t ever seem to recall that in the Book of Acts, the early disciples “shared all things in common.”
This is what the Bible actually says about the economic practices of Jesus’ followers: “[Of] the company of those who believed … no one said that any of the things which he possessed was his own, but they had everything in common… There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles feet; and distribution was made to each as any had need.” Acts 4:32-35.