Can Christian Socialism
Be Reconciled With
The Ten Commandments?
an there be such a hybrid as Christian
very concept of
Christian Socialism is difficult to define because
it implies that there are other denominational species of
socialism...Jewish socialism...Muslim socialism...Hindu
socialism...well you get the idea.
Where did this idea come from? It's not scriptural.
So here is...
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A short history of socialism
The attempt to integrate
began in the middle of the 19th century with the rise of the
industrial revolution...when entrepreneurs produced goods and services
on a large scale.
This concentrated significant wealth in the hands of those creative
people and companies. While the rest became workers producing
and laying the vast miles of railroad track needed to move people and
weaving the cloth that sewing factories would make into clothing...or
importing tea or coffee or wine into countries that couldn't grow those
things. And so on.
Christian socialism appeared at the beginning of the industrial
revolution and coincided with the publication in 1848 of Karl
Then Anglicans and Catholics...unmoved by the
centuries old rich-overlord/poor-serf relationship...developed troubled
consciences that the rich-industrialist/poor-worker
relationship was neither fair
And thus began religion's attempt to close
the gap between the poor and the industrialists...on the theory that
of competitive private ownership of property...which is capitalism...undermined
Christian ideals (not principles) of what economics should do to the rich and
So let's compare the two...
Christian socialism and the gospels
If the Christian ideal is to keep the
covenant with God
...and so it must be...then Christian
socialism becomes a contradiction
contradictions never represent truth...for they are always false.
replace or enhance Christian charity (Mt 6:1ff; 7:12;
10:42) because churches invite
your charitable donation to the welfare
of others. You may decline the invitation for any reason
whatsoever. Charity is voluntary.
Socialist welfare giving must be implemented by
force through taxation policies of a ruling dictator or elite
politicians. Your consent is not required and you are not
free to decline.
One important injustice inherent in Christian socialism is that
churches are exempt by law from contributing to the tax monies...that
must be obtained from productive working people...to fund any socialist
Such forced 'giving' has no spiritual merit even if it is called
Christian socialism. Or even if such Christian socialism has
the approval of some Christians. Baptizing something and
naming it Christian socialism doesn't make it Christian.
(For example...if you baptize a monkey...does that make it a
God's way with us is by
mutual consent through covenants and never by force.
Much of what is called Christianity is about social justice and helping the poor. Yet...
gospels do not indicate that Jesus came to save the world from
poverty through Christian socialism
...but to save it from sin... which is violating the covenant with God.
was not insensitive to the poor...and encouraged helping them (Mt
19:21). However...he does not view legitimately earned wealth
as unfair to others (Mt 20 1-16).
And he does not propagandize for a vague form of "social justice" that requires wealth transfer from society's producers to the non-productive through confiscation by
That would be a contradiction (and contradictions are always false) because you cannot provide justice to one person or group by inflicting injustice on another.
Every child understands this injustice when a parent forces one sibling to give her toys to a younger sibling.
It's probably a good guess that most Christians have not read the
tenets of socialism to understand ways Christian socialism is incompatible with God's Ten Commandments. And also to notice how many of the Manifesto's tenets are already in operation through socialist government programs. And so here are the Marxist commandments which underlie Christian socialism...
The ten 'commandments' of Karl Marx
Expropriation of property in land and all rents of land to public
Expropriation means taking by the state. This
is a violation of God's Commandment "Thou shalt not steal". God makes
this specific (Deut 2:3ff) where he tells Moses that even he may not
take what belongs to others but must pay for everything he and the
Israelites eat and drink with
silver. And God tells Moses that he is not entitled to so
much as foot of land belonging to others. By this Commandment God
recognizes and affirms private property ownership.
A heavy progressive or graduated income tax.
When Peter was confronted by the tax
collectors to know if Jesus did NOT pay their tax...Peter agreed Jesus
did NOT (Mt 17:24-25). Again Jesus is confronted with whether it is
lawful to pay Caesar's taxes (Mt 22:15-22) and Jesus looks at the coin
with the emperor's image on it and says "Render to Caesar what belongs
to him and to God what belongs to God." The word render does not mean
"to give"...it means "to give back".
Today (March 2009) there are reports in the news that various states
are attempting to give back to Caesar federal reserve notes ...which
have no instrinsic value... by not accepting his "stimulus package"
(Google "states assert sovereignty") or
by making gold and silver money the money in commerce (Google "Montana
gold and silver dollars").
of all rights of inheritance.
Your children cannot inherit what was
expropriated through coercion by the state.
Confiscation of all property of all emigrants and rebels.
If you protest socialist government policies
or try to leave the jurisdiction of the socialist government it will
confiscate all of your property. This includes
your body because...as you will see below...you have a
liability to the state to enforced labor according to its dictates.
This violates God's Commandment "Thou shalt not covet thy
neighbor's goods." As above...in this Commandment God affirms the right
to one's private property.
Centralization of credit in the hands of the state, by means of a
national bank with State capital and an exclusive monopoly
The private central bank has existed since
1913 as the
Federal Reserve. All of the notes in circulation as paper money or as
computer digits are borrowed and must be paid back at interest. Every
time the Congress borrows...in your name...a billion here or there for
program...your children and grandchildren will have to pay that back.
That is the reason why the enforced labor provision...and the
inability to escape it...is central to socialist government. (Google
"US domestic army"). This
amounts to stealing the labor and resources of future generations in
violation of God's Commandments about not stealing and about not
coveting thy neighbor's property.
Centralization of the means of communication and transport in the hands
of the State.
This is already a practice through the FCC's
control of the airwaves. Also...through the 501c3 application churches cannot express their
lack of support for politicians who are morally degenerate or habitual
liars. That is...such churches that have contracted to be supervised by
the government cannot fulfill their moral obligation to
enforce God's laws against bearing false witness or stealing or partial
birth abortion in vioaltion of the Commandment "Thou shalt not kill".
Increase of factories and instruments of production owned by the State,
the bringing into cultivation of waste-lands, and the improvement of
the soil generally in accordance with a common plan.
The socialist government will control the
means of production which will get rid of competitors from the private
sector. Without private sector competition...the socialist government
will determine the cost of everything. Currently (March 2009) the state
is buying up banks (Google "bank bailouts") to fulfill the fifth of
Marx's planks above. The socialist government will
control the land and what is grown on it. That way the socialist
government can manipulate
the food supply keeping its subjects dependent on it for life's
sustenance. By controlling the food supply and outlawing private
farming (Google "private farms outlawed") state
policy determines who gets to eat and who starves (refer to
the "common", not "private", agricultural plan above). The
ability to decide who eats and who starves potentially
violates God's Commandment "Thou shalt not
Equal liability of all to labor. Establishment of industrial armies
especially for agriculture (see above).
Almost a hundred years before Marx...the
German philosopher Immanuel Kant wrote that the highest morality a
participate in was his duty to the state. Non-socialist Christians
would hold that one's highest moral obligations are to God's laws which
supercede socialist state laws. Kantianism and Marxism violate the
First Commandment..."I am the Lord thy God...thou shalt not have
stange gods before me". For Christians...the Ten Commandments dictate morality...not Kant and Marx who turn God into the state.
Combination of agriculture with manufacturing industries; gradual
abolition of the distinction between town and country, by a more
equitable distribution of the population over the country.
It was a
characteristic of slavery that any individual slave...man...woman...or
child could be taken from
any place at any time and "distributed" somewhere else.
Husbands...wives...children could be moved at will. This makes it
impossible to fulfill God's Commandments "Honor thy father and thy
mother" if you don't know who or where they are. And "thou shalt not
covet thy neighbor's wife" if a government official can "redistribute"
someone's wife to meet the allocation needs of a socialist government.
(School busing was an early experiment in redistributing the
population...and parents had nothing to say about it. It is reported
that today there are more than 800 detention centers on American soil
ready to redistribute dissenters. In the First Commandment God tells us he freed us from slavery to the state so that we could be free and willing participants in a beneficial contract with him. Google "detention
Free education for all children in public schools. Abolition of
children's factory labour in its present form. Combination of education
with industrial production, &c., &c
Education in public schools makes it
impossible for parents to pass on to their children God's Ten
Commandments (especially since those children may be "redistributed"
elsewhere). All children will be educated to socialist government
propaganda in its schools. They may never learn of the existence of
God's laws (Google "Ten Commandments outlawed"). They will not be
children of God...they will be children of
state bureaucrats and will go to school part time and work part time
where the government needs them in order to fulfill the other tenets of
the socialist program. This violates the First
Commandment..."I am the Lord they God...thou shalt not have strange
gods before me."
The comparison between God's law and socialist laws is made only to
show that they are completely incompatible...and that Christian
socialism is a contradiction.
Many people the world over choose to live under socialism. And
they know that's what it is. It is not Christian charity
disguised as Christian socialism. There can be no such
thing as "Christian Socialism" without redefining both words.
Irreconcilable differences between God and Marx
invites us to be in a relationship with him through contracts
or covenants. We can choose freely to be or not to be
in a relationship with God. This covenant is a set
of mutually agreed upon benefits. It is binding on each party
by their consent.
a relationship imposed by a ruling elite class of humans who
enforce their will through law and physical force
without consent (slavery).
himself to act in certain ways guaranteed in the contract or covenant.
(For example Mt 19:16ff...God promises eternal life...you
promise to keep the Commandments.)
ruling elite bind themselves to nothing...and only guarantee that those
subject to their rule will act
in certain ways with or without their consent (for example...school
redistributed children according to government directive).
Anything promised by a socialist government is a
privilege...not a contractual right...and can be withdrawn on a whim.
is a penalty clause in every covenant starting with Adam
and Eve. This is invoked only if the agreement is
violated...by going back on one's freely given word to perform in a
and punishments are meted out for failing to obey the arbitrary will of
the ruling elite. People can be incarcerated without
charges...without recourse to courts and without assistance of counsel.
(For example "enemy combatants" held in Guantanamo).
for violating the contract with him is readily available.
not seek repentence from those who violate its rules. It only
seeks to punish. (For example...the fourth socialist plank
above does not provide for return of confiscated property of those who
dissent from...but later obey...the imposed rules.)
are free to live life as you choose as long as you abide by the
covenant of the Ten Commandments.
aspects of life are determined by the state.
As humans we have choice...without which there is no sin and no
morality...and can choose who our master is to be. People can
be children of God...or children of the state as defined in the
Manifesto...but not of both. Christian socialism is still
socialism even if it's not Christian.
establish a new religion and call it Christian Socialism is
trying to mix oil and water. The concoction may shimmer with
irridescent color and please the eye...but the oil only covers the
water...the oil does not blend with the water.
And like many things in nature that look pretty...the mixture is
- drink water mixed with oil?...
- bathe in water mixed with oil?...
- fill a gas tank with water mixed with oil?...
- baptize with water mixed with oil?
the life-giving water of Christianity with the oil of political
economic theory cancels the meaning of both and results in a nullity.
as we have defined it...then it is difficult to see how ministers
can ever bring themselves and
the people closer to God through state-sponsored socialism...even if it
is called Christian socialism.
Return from christian
socialism to separation of church and state to see how
churches invite government interference in their affairs through
Make sure your ministry is capable of bringing you and your
congregation safely home to God. Start by making sure you're
doing ministry for God according to the covenant, God's contract with us, and not for a worldly government.
From here you can...