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Tue Sep 9, 2014, 10:39 AM

Jesus was a Marxist

Reza Aslan Blasts 'Prosperity Gospel' Preachers: Jesus Was 'As Close To Marxism As It Gets'
HuffPost Live | By Ryan Buxton

Posted: 09/08/2014 6:10 pm EDT Updated: 09/08/2014 6:59 pm EDT

Religious scholar Reza Aslan has news for "prosperity preachers" like Joel Osteen and T.D. Jakes: Jesus was pretty much a Marxist.

Aslan spoke out against the message of Osteen and Jakes, who he called "charlatans" at the 2014 Indian Summer Festival, where Aslan expressed his viewpoint bluntly: "The argument of the prosperity gospel, if I can put it flippantly, is that Jesus wants you to drive a Bentley."

During a conversation with HuffPost Live's Marc Lamont Hill on Monday, Aslan explained that the prosperity gospel -- which recently got Victoria Osteen into hot water for its message that God wants his followers to prosper in life, including financially -- takes the Bible's metaphor about "what you give will be returned to you tenfold" and interprets it literally. That doesn't sit well with Aslan, whose book Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth explores the historical roots of Jesus as a revolutionary figure.

"If there's one thing you can really zero in on when it comes to Jesus' preachings -- I mean the historical Jesus -- was his absolute hatred of wealth," Aslan said. "This wasn't a man who was neutral about it. Jesus wasn't about equality. His preaching wasn't that the rich and the poor should meet in the middle. That's not what he preached. What he preached was that those who have wealth, that wealth will be taken away. Those who are poor, they shall be the inheritors of the earth."

More here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/09/08/reza-aslan-jesus-marxist_n_5786932.html

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Reply Jesus was a Marxist (Original post)
TBF Sep 2014 OP
daleanime Sep 2014 #1
FiveGoodMen Sep 2014 #2
Starry Messenger Sep 2014 #3
TBF Sep 2014 #4
Starry Messenger Sep 2014 #5
TBF Sep 2014 #6
Starry Messenger Sep 2014 #7

Response to TBF (Original post)

Tue Sep 9, 2014, 10:42 AM

1. K&R....

and yet another book added to the reading list.

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Response to TBF (Original post)

Tue Sep 9, 2014, 05:02 PM

2. And Americans would hate him for it if they could bring themselves to admit it.

If Jesus showed up today, his own followers would kill him in no time flat.

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Response to TBF (Original post)

Tue Sep 9, 2014, 11:53 PM

3. k&r

I didn't realize until a few years ago the the fundies on the right have a fully-developed capitalist Jesus ideology that they fling all over their followers. I'm an atheist myself, but I'm intrigued by the possibilities for making some headway on economic issues in believers who might be interested in a point of view more reflective of their experiences with poverty, etc.

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Response to Starry Messenger (Reply #3)

Wed Sep 10, 2014, 07:20 AM

4. This is a big issue for me because it is the major

change I've seen in my family members and friends back home in the midwest. In the 60s/70s those industrial states in the north central area of the country had tons of manufacturing and farms. The voters were blue collar workers (union members) and farmers (who liked their farm subsidies). With the exception of the small business owners in the area these were largely democratic voters. Fast forward 40-50 years and all of that has changed. The rank and file have lost their manufacturing and family farms. They are largely working in service jobs for much less money. The gathering place is the local church - they all go because frankly that's the social outlet. It could potentially be a place of progressive gathering but it's not because religion was infiltrated by republicans in the 1980s. As an agnostic who moves between the two worlds I can say without reserve that this is the biggest transformational change I've seen in this country in my lifetime. And it's not good for anyone but the rich white males in charge.

A pretty good article from Salon a few years ago describing how this came to be - http://www.salon.com/2012/08/05/republicans_slouching_toward_theocracy/

And theocracy watch (lots of details tracing what happened): http://theocracywatch.org/taking_over.htm#Happened

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Response to TBF (Reply #4)

Wed Sep 10, 2014, 07:34 AM

5. Michael Moore talked about the takeover of the rust belt

by the right wing churches in "Roger and Me." I can't find a clip or article on it, but you might have seen the film already.

It was really chilling and predatory the way the churches swooped in on communities that were facing offshoring of their jobs.

If I recall correctly, Moore found ties between the preachers and organizations like the Chamber of Commerce and other corporate entities. I wish I could find what I am thinking of. It was the same thing you are talking about, with the about-face in politics. Union towns going reactionary.

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Response to Starry Messenger (Reply #5)

Wed Sep 10, 2014, 07:47 AM

6. You know I haven't watched that

but I will now. I'm not surprised that there is actual linkage there - getting the evidence is the hard thing but kudos to him if he's managed to do it.

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Response to TBF (Reply #6)

Wed Sep 10, 2014, 09:48 AM

7. Yes, it is good and very poignant.

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