The Economy of Jesus: An Introduction

A few weeks ago in the theo-blogosphere there were several concerned theo-bloggers who expressed questions about the Tea Party’s rise to political power after the mid-term elections, particularly their approach to economics: see for example, J Kameron Carter, Adam Kotsko, and David Horstkoetter.

As I promised via Twitter, I want to start exploring the ancient life of Israel & Judah, Christ, and their  relationship to economic practices, particularly here in the United States. I want it to be an exploration in Christology rather than a partisan polemic, which seeks not some abstract fascist leaning Third Way , but that which is guided by some principles, perhaps the Ten Commandments for example, or maybe notions of Christian nonviolence. Perhaps we should try to re-imagine the world without monetary policy or currency? Are they really necessary? Are these inherently violent? Maybe we should consider bringing back bartering, trading possessions between individuals and families?

I object to labelling Jesus of Nazareth either a Socialist or capitalist, due in large part to my suspicion that so many Western intellectuals have a bad habit of viewing, as J Kameron Carter in his work Race: A Theological Account, Jesus as the very best that the West had to offer in the garb of the Orient.  That, and the tendency I see on some on the left and right of encapsulating Christ as the embodiment of their ideals at the direct (whether it be conscious or unconscious remains to be seen) exclusion of Jesus’ Jewishness. By this, I mean not to delve into which sect he was part of ( Second-Temple Pharisee or revolutionary Essene, etc.) but the (economic and religious) practices which formed his identity and his earthly ministry.

I hope that you will join me in this journey.

Truth and Peace,

Rod

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