Weekly Update 12/01/2018 -- This is our first post using our new, updated layout and design! Isn't it great!?
The news this week has further illustrated that the Donald J. Trump administration is an embarrassing cabal of liars and criminals. Trump ran his business like a mob organization for decades and he just moved the operation to the White House after the Russians helped him steal the election.
The worst part of it all is the “Christians” support him and put forth the deluded lie that they’re the guardians of a “Christian Nation.”
“Christian Nation?” Really? Let’s take a look at the fruits of their “Christian” ideology. They take away food from people who don’t have enough as it is. They take away medical care from those who will suffer and die without it. They take away housing assistance and force people to live on the violent streets. They give gigantic tax cuts to people who don’t even need them and increase taxes on the poor and the middle class.
They bully and pick on the oppressed and vulnerable (the easiest targets for them), the LGBTQ, pregnant women in bad situations, undocumented people brought here as children who know no other country but America. They keep wages artificially flat for decades while the cost of living skyrockets.
They go home and stand in front of their constituencies and congregations and tell them they’re doing ‘God’s work.’ They are ‘God’s party.’ The people believe them. They watch Fox “News” and their beliefs are validated and reinforced further. Their preachers feed them the same lines every week as well. God has turned over all who participate in this ugly mess to being of reprobate minds. Something has gone wrong. Something has gone very wrong. It’s a cult.
It’s always funny to us when Christians say we should have nothing to do with government. God spent most of the Old Testament either telling us how to set up our governments, or warning unruly, disobedient kings via the prophets that they were messing up and abusing the people.
In the Old Testament, God commands Moses to “bring me seventy of Israel's elders who are known to you as leaders and officials among the people. Have them come to the Tent of Meeting, that they may stand there with you” (Numbers 11:16). In Deuteronomy 16:18 we read, “You shall appoint for yourselves judges and officers in all your towns which the Lord your God is giving you, according to your tribes and they shall judge the people with righteous judgment.”
In Deuteronomy 14 and 15 God says, “At the end of every three years, bring all the tithes of that year's produce and store it in your towns, so that the Levites (who have no allotment or inheritance of their own) and the aliens, the fatherless and the widows who live in your towns may come and eat and be satisfied. There should be no poor among you, for in the land the LORD your God is giving you to possess as your inheritance, he will richly bless you. If there is a poor man among your brothers in any of the towns do not be hardhearted or tightfisted toward your poor brother.”
In Leviticus 25 God says, “If any of your fellow citizens become poor and are unable to support themselves among you, help them as you would a foreigner and stranger, so they can continue to live among you. Do not take interest or any profit from them, but fear your God, so that they may continue to live among you. Don’t lend them money at interest or sell them food at a profit. If they become poor do not make them work as slaves. They are to be treated as hired workers. Do not rule over them ruthlessly, but fear your God.”
In Isaiah 58 God says, “Is it not you I have chosen to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Is it not you I have chosen to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter? Is it not you I have chosen when you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? Is it not you I have chosen to end exploitation of workers? Have I not chosen you to raise up the age-old foundations and be the repairer and restorer of streets and dwellings?”
Over and over again God says, “Better to be lowly in spirit and among the oppressed than to share plunder with the proud, Proverbs 16:19. He who mocks the poor shows contempt for their Maker, Proverbs 17:5. He who is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward him for what he has done, Proverbs 19:17. If a man shuts his ears to the cry of the poor, he too will cry out and not be answered, Proverbs 21:13. The righteous care about justice for the poor, but the wicked have no such concern, Proverbs 29:7. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy, Proverbs 31:9.”
It’s fair to say that most of God’s communication with us has been how we should treat one another, in all aspects of life including government.
In Matthew 25 Jesus explains his final judgment, “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered before him. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me. Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’”
How many times does God need to say it? How many ways does God have to explain it? How many prophets does God need to send with the same message? Was it not enough that God became flesh and explained it to us eye to eye?
Yet here we are again. We’ve built the golden calf again. We’ve disregarded God’s instructions again. We’ve invented our own system of morality again. Now the two things God is allegedly most concerned about are fetuses and homosexuals. Now the poor are ‘lazy freeloaders’ and ‘why should we have to help them with a gun to our head?’ According to our president most resident aliens are ‘rapists, gangsters and drug dealers, and we need to get rid of them.’ People who say we should actually help the poor using the methods God outlined are labeled 'Socialists' and ‘Communists.’
We’re right back at square one, where we always seem to end up no matter how obvious God makes it for us. That's why it's so important for each new generation to carry the message of Jesus forward. We intend to do our part, and we do.
David LaChapelle, "Last Supper," 2003
While Jesus was having dinner at Levi’s house, many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him. When the teachers of the law who were Pharisees saw him eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they asked his disciples: “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?” - Mark 2: 15-16
Then people brought little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked them. Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” When he had placed his hands on them, he went on from there. -- Matthew 19:13-15
Then Jesus said to his host, “When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or sisters, your relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.” -- Luke 14:12-14
A Brief Note On Who We Are:
We show up here every day, 7 days a week, and provide a continuous flow of news stories illustrating the truth of everything we just stated. Who else does that? Where else would you find that in real time every day? Where else can Christian progressives and their allies gather 24/7/365 and discuss the issues of the day, support one another, offer comfort, share hopes and dreams, ask for advice, share struggles, talk about God anytime without being harassed, and learn from the content and from each other how to apply the teachings of Jesus to our daily lives?
About TCL Blog
We’re not about Dogma here. We’re just Christians who think the political and Christian right-wing have their priorities wrong.
Charles Toy is the founding member of The Christian Left. We're sure you will enjoy his passion as well as his wit. Guest bloggers featured often.