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Jesus Would Be a Democrat

Jesus Would Be a Democrat

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Jesus Would Be a Democrat

Lunghezza:
151 pagine
2 ore
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Aug 10, 2016
ISBN:
9781370121748
Formato:
Libro

Descrizione

Read His lips! Here we look at Jesus’ own words to see what He stood for. Both what Jesus said and those topics on which He was (intentionally?) silent. We begin with every recorded word Jesus said, not a select few chosen to prove our point.
In American politics, the moral high ground has been claimed by the Republican party. We are all familiar with the “Religious Right”. There is no such thing as the “Religious Left”. The implication is that if one is “religious” then one must be “Right” and Republican.
But is this Republican claim of moral superiority and Biblical correctness supported by the Bible and by what Jesus said? If Christians follow the teaching of Christ, what does Christ actually teach?
Here is an analysis of Christ’s teachings – comprehensively and non-selectively. Jesus’ teachings clearly show his priorities. Repeatedly Jesus’ teachings and priorities align themselves most closely with the priorities of the Democratic party showing clearly on which side Jesus would have been.

Editore:
Pubblicato:
Aug 10, 2016
ISBN:
9781370121748
Formato:
Libro

Informazioni sull'autore

Jim Rogers, an attorney and certified public accountant, is a life-long Southern Baptist, raised in a small conservative Baptist church in west Texas.He has read through the entire Bible, word by word, three times, taught Bible studies to large Sunday School classes for years and is very knowledgeable on the Bible, specializing on the teachings of Jesus.While some will say his perspective is liberal, he believes his perspective is extremely unbiased.To quote him, “Much of the Bible is quite clear.People will interpret the Bible to say what they want it to say to support what they believe when interpretation is unnecessary.These were letters people were writing to each other and were not mystical or coded.You may not like what it says but that is what it says.”

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Anteprima del libro

Jesus Would Be a Democrat - Jim Rogers

JESUS WOULD BE A DEMOCRAT

by James F. Rogers

Smashwords Edition

©2016 James F. Rogers

TABLE OF CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION

CHAPTER ONE

How do we know what Jesus stood for?

CHAPTER TWO

How many of Jesus’ words do we have?

CHAPTER THREE

How did Biblical writers show emphasis?

CHAPTER FOUR

What do Democrats stand for?

CHAPTER FIVE

What do Republicans stand for?

CHAPTER SIX

You can use the Bible to prove anything – if you ignore context

CHAPTER SEVEN

What does Jesus say is important?

CHAPTER NINE

Jesus on wealth and the wealthy

CHAPTER TEN

Was Jesus for the rich or the poor?

CHAPTER ELEVEN

Jesus on limited government and taxation

CHAPTER TWELVE

Jesus on being critical, judgmental and hateful

CHAPTER THIRTEEN

Jesus on trying to control the government

CHAPTER FOURTEEN

Jesus on imposing one’s beliefs on others

CHAPTER FIFTEEN

Jesus on private property rights

CHAPTER SIXTEEN

Jesus and National Defense

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

What does Jesus say about abortion?

CONCLUSION

Jesus would be a Democrat

INTRODUCTION

For a number of years I have been amazed by the number of active members of Christian churches that follow the leadership of the Religious Right with an absolute assurance that they are doing what Christ wants them to do. They vote like the Religious Right leadership wants them to and strongly advocate the positions taken by the Religious Right leadership. Having read the Bible through several times during my life and having studied the Bible throughout my life, I wondered if I had missed something about Christ’s teachings and ministry. Maybe there were Bible verses that I unintentionally skipped over because they didn’t agree with what I wanted to believe. Maybe I just deemphasized some of the verses that supported the Religious Right’s agenda. Maybe there actually were instances where Jesus’ focus really was different from what I had always understood to be the case.

I grew up in a small west Texas town. If the church doors were open, I was there – Sunday morning Bible study, Sunday Morning church service, Sunday evening Bible study, Sunday evening church service, Wednesday evening Bible study and Wednesday evening church service. When I have traveled back to my hometown and have gone back to that church, it is clear that almost every member of that church votes Republican. It’s the Right thing to do. Having been a member of a very large Southern Baptist church in Dallas for many years I know from conversations on mission trips and comments during Bible studies (many of which I have led) that the vast majority of the members of this church vote Republican. I have lifetime friends who are very active church members whose perspectives align almost perfectly with the Republican Party. The question for me has been – How can these fine Christians follow the leadership of the Religious Right and support the Republican agenda and feel they are following Christ’s teachings? What have I missed? As I have always understood Jesus’ teachings, they just do not align with the priorities of the Republican Party, at least not the conservative right of today’s Republican Party. And it seems that the further to the right one is, the more certain s/he is that s/he is following in Christ’s footsteps.

To see if Jesus’ teachings were different from what I understood them to be I decided to do a methodical analysis of every word of Jesus as recorded in the Bible – to READ HIS LIPS. I started by copying every chapter in the Bible that includes a word spoken by Jesus. I then went through and took out all the verses that do not include a quote from Jesus. This left every verse that included a quote from Jesus. From this I narrowed the verses down to those in which Jesus is teaching about an issue involving interpersonal interactions or subjects with which the government or political parties concern themselves. Examples of verses excluded are those of Jesus’ teachings about his relationship with his father or his instructions to be righteous, to follow him or to repent as these are certainly issues about which the government and the political parties are not concerned.  Then I sorted the remaining Bible verses by subject and attempted to focus on what is recorded in the Bible as Jesus’ clear and explicit statements and teachings about our interactions here on earth. While many of Jesus’ teachings are not clear and explicit and are open to interpretation, many of his teachings are so very explicit, clear and direct that no interpretation would appear to be necessary.

Somewhere in all of this is the question – What does being a ‘Christian’ mean? Generally the definition of being a Christian is that the person is a follower of Christ. That surely means that the person is following Christ’s teachings. If being a Christian means following Christ’s teachings, how is it that fine upstanding Christians espouse support for political positions that do not mesh with Christ’s teachings. Do these people not know what Christ’s teachings are? Do they not read the Bible? Do they read the Bible but not focus on Christ’s teachings, or when they read Christ’s words do they automatically read the words to support what they already believe instead of reading without an agenda and with an open mind? Maybe they read the words and feel sure that some of Jesus teachings are so unreasonable in today’s world that they just ignore the parts that don’t mesh with their own beliefs.

The question I am addressing in this book is whether the overwhelming majority of Jesus’ statements and teachings align more closely with the positions supported by the Democratic Party or the Republican Party. I am not examining teachings, issues addressed, commandments, and rules taught by Paul and other authors of the New Testament.  I will assume that all other New Testament authors base their teachings on what Jesus himself believed and taught. The other authors may elaborate and expand on Jesus’ teachings but surely they do not teach anything that is contrary to Jesus’ teachings. So I will focus on the original source. The focus is on what JESUS taught and what JESUS believed and what JESUS stood for. After all, the definition of Christian is follower of Christ so what Jesus believed, taught and stood for should be controlling for Christians.

Our record of Jesus’ teachings is very limited since all we have are the quotes included in six books of the New Testament – Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts and Revelations. A further limitation on our volume of material to examine is the fact that many of these verses quoting Jesus are repeated in more than one of the Gospels. While this repetition provides emphasis, it narrows the number of topics covered.

Surely Jesus’ most important teachings and those issues about which he felt most strongly and communicated most passionately appear more often and in greater detail. So, if a subject was really important and if Jesus emphasized that subject in his teaching more often, it will show up more often in the record we have. If Jesus and the writers of the Gospels felt other issues were truly important, they would have included those positions on those issues and the Gospels would just be longer. They certainly had no word limit. Jesus and the writers could have and one may assume they did include all the issues and topics they considered important.

Had Jesus lived in the past 50 years there would be recordings, films, books of speeches and probably a Jesus Library filled with almost everything he ever said, but we don’t have that. Of our very limited record of what Jesus said and the subjects on which he took positions, much of it focuses on his relationship with his heavenly father, theological discussions, and examples about man’s relationship with God. In evaluating what Jesus’ positions were on issues involving matters that the political parties and the government affect, we are limited to examining those scripture passages that deal with men’s and women’s interactions with each other and their interactions with the government, taxation, and those issues we have to deal with here on earth.

While many people claim that their religious and moral perspectives are based on Christ’s teachings, many of their perspectives are actually derived by taking one teaching about one subject and extrapolating it to apply to other subjects. This is often done even though Jesus himself may have said absolutely nothing about these other subjects. It would seem that if Jesus was silent on a matter and the writers of the Bible didn’t mention the subject then it was probably not something Jesus cared about. Often the extrapolation results in a position directly contrary to what Jesus himself taught but people will read right past these clear and explicit teachings that are contrary to their personal beliefs. Unfortunately, these people are usually absolutely certain that Jesus’ teachings completely support their position.

This book is substantially limited to what Jesus himself taught and said explicitly and directly. From this we gain an extremely accurate understanding of Jesus’ true beliefs and viewpoints and whether those beliefs and viewpoints correlate more closely with the positions of the Democratic Party or Republican Party. To refine the examination even further, the primary focus is on those teachings and sayings that are not reasonably subject to debate or interpretation but are clear and explicit.

Were there not enough of these clear, direct and explicit teachings and statements of belief, one might need to look elsewhere. The fact is that there are more than enough very clear and explicit teachings attributed directly to Jesus to make a determination as to which current U.S. political party Jesus would be most closely aligned.

CHAPTER ONE

How do we know what Jesus stood for?

We know what Jesus stood for because what he said is recorded in the Bible in the four Gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John – as well as some quotes in Acts and Revelations. There are many subjects about which we have no record of Jesus’ teaching (if he taught on the subject at all), but on those on which we have his teachings, we know what he stood for. It would be fair to expect that Jesus talked about many things of which we have no record and that the

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