Christians, Let’s Talk. Is Socialism/Communism a Better Way?
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said in a sermon: “Communism and Christianity are fundamentally incompatible. A true Christian cannot be a true Communist, for the two philosophies are antithetical and all the dialectics of the logicians cannot reconcile them.”
He goes on to say, “Yet, something in the spirit and threat of Communism challenges us. The late Archbishop of Canterbury, William Temple, referred to Communism as a Christian heresy. He meant that Communism had laid hold on certain truths that are essential parts of the Christian view of things, although bound to them are theories and practices that no Christian could ever accept.”
Dr. King observed that, like a tidal wave, Communism had spread through Russia, China, Eastern Europe and had now come to now dwell in our hemisphere . . . “such a force cannot be ignored.” Dr. King warned that Communism was Christianity’s most formidable rival.
Today, many Christians have adopted Communism/Socialism—a system in which the means of production and distribution of capital and land are controlled by the state–believing they are taking the higher moral ground. Yet attached to Communism are things that no Bible believing Christian would agree with nor promote.
Nonetheless, Dr. King goes on to state that “With all of its false assumptions and evil methods, Communism arose as a protest against the injustice and indignities inflicted upon the underprivileged. The Communist Manifesto was written by men aflame with a passion for social justice.”
Such is true today, Christians are aflame for social justice but is the duty to love the neighbor our own or our governments? Despite all good intentions, Communism renders Christianity irrelevant. The state becomes both savior and provider absent of Christ. A utopia without Christ? No wonder people reject the cross; they already have a king. No wonder they profane what is right and call the abominable things good, their is no standard. No wonder God is rejected, immorality is accepted, and the lost are disconnected from the message of salvation–the true source of freedom and liberty which is found only through a relationship with Jesus Christ.
To quote King again, he explains why Christians should not look to the State to perform the work that Christ left for his Church:
Communism attributes ultimate value to the state. Man is made for the state and not the state for man . . . Man has no inalienable rights. His only rights are derived from, and conferred by, the state. Under such a system, the fountain of freedom runs dry . . .
All of this is contrary not only to the Christian doctrine of God but also to the Christian estimate of man. Christianity insists that man is an end because he is a child of God, made in God’s image. Man is more than a producing animal guided by economic forces; his is a being of spirit, crowned with glory and honor, endowed with the gift of freedom. The ultimate weakness of Communism is that it robs man of that quality that makes him man. Man, says Paul Tillich, is man because he is free.
This freedom is expressed through man’s capacity to deliberate, decide, and respond. Under Communism, the individual soul is shackled by the chains of conformity; his spirit is bound by the manacles of party allegiance. He is stripped of both conscience and reason. The trouble with Communism is that it has neither a theology nor a Christology. Confused about God, it is also confused about man. In spite of its glowing talk about the welfare of the masses, Communism’s methods and philosophy strip man of his dignity and worth, leaving him as little more than a depersonalized cog in the ever-turning wheel of the state.
Instead of a classless and colorless society with balanced societal wealth, Communism creates equally poor, equally dependent, irreligious slaves to a godless state. And since government is now the provider, there is no room for Jesus Christ. Communism focuses on the material while disregarding the eternal.
Man has a sin problem and no governmental power can rid men’s wicked hearts of greed, selfishness, covetousness, pride, hatred, and laziness. Without hearts transformed by the good news of Jesus Christ, Communism will never achieve its lofty goals.
Many Christian Socialists will gladly petition the government to forcefully take other people’s wealth to do what they are unwilling to do with their own money. These Christians have forgotten that they have a personal responsibility to their neighbors. Christ was speaking to his followers, not the heathen and not the State, when he commanded them to love one another (Jn. 15:12).
King reminds us that the Church is not the State, nor should it ever to be a tool of the State; The Church is and should be a moral guide for the State. Yet in contemporary times, many in the Church who have accepted Socialism and Communism are eerily silent concerning issues of morality because it is impossible to serve two masters.
Yet, in every generation, God preserves a remnant who will not bow their knee to Baal. There are Christians who love God and will be that prophetic voice in this age. They proclaim God’s truths and forthcoming judgment to those who reject him.
They understand that doing what is right is not always easy and saying what is right is not always popular. They understand that wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it (Mt. 7:13).
When the secular mob attempts to silence the remnant and demonize them by calling them hatemongers and bigots for publically speaking biblical truths, they remember and take comfort in the words of Jesus Christ:
“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also.” –John 15:18-20
Jesus also warns us to “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them.” Yet many Christians seem to no longer be fruit inspectors. They listen to lofty high sounding words and driven by erroneous emotion instead of sound doctrine.
Christians in America have a unique challenge before them. We have before us a government and a citizenry who has rejected God and has rejected the Bible as a source for moral authority.
By choosing a leader who embraces Socialism as does President Barack Obama, over half of our nation has wholly embraced the heathen doctrine of Socialism/Communism/Marxism and is hostile to the God of Scripture.
The Church should be united in our one common goal–to represent Christ in the world today.
We as Christians are not the government, we are dual citizens—of heaven and of earth—we have a dual purpose. We are to warn of impeding judgment upon the nations for their refusal to turn from sin and govern righteously, and we are to seek justice, pursue it, and plead the cause of the oppressed.
Christians in this generation are no different than any other. We are the mouthpiece, the hands, and the feet of God.
So when the sheep in wolves clothing in civic life and government glowingly speak of America being more tolerant, fighting for social justice, and advocating “choice”—Christians are to inspect the fruit and see that what they are really selling is more sexual immorality, fighting for governmental control of the citizenry, and advocating mass murder of the innocent. This is a false gospel. Though packaged to sound compassionate and full of justice, their message is completely anti-biblical and anti-Christ.
We need to speak the truth in love, in this generation. It is our Christian duty and our privilege as citizens of this country.
Margaret Thatcher once said: “Consensus seems to be the process of abandoning all beliefs, principles, values and policies. So it is something in which no one believes and to which no one objects.”
We cannot compromise for the sake of consensus. Jesus didn’t compromise, and neither should we.