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Jesus and the 99%, Is there a place for God in Social Change?

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posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:01 PM
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I came across an enlightening article, and I have decided that it's time to throw my two cents in to the Occupy movement. I guess I will start at the beginning of my lack of involvent in this social movement and why. I heard about OWS about a week before it started, and I had mixed feeling on it. My first thought was, "Really? Now? You decide to throw this shindig now, three years after the collapse of 2008? Well, better late than never..." My second thought was "Well I'm glad it didn't happen in 2008, because knowing where I was back then I probably would have dropped out college to be a part of this." I used to love activism. Loved it. Lived for it. My weekend activity was marching for some sort of cause. I was proud to say that I actually stood for what I believed in.

Fast-forward to late 2011, and I did not pay attention to what was going on at Occupy Wall Street for two months. Why such the radical change? First of all, I am not against the protest at all. I firmly agree with my favorite comic book author Alan Moore's astute observation: “As far as I can see, the Occupy movement is just ordinary people reclaiming rights which should always have been theirs." There are simply no excuse for the horrific financing mess we are in, we got here by putting to much faith in government to regulate properly and in banks to have integrity. Too much faith in all the wrong places. I became a Christian in November 2010, a crazy change from a outspoken Atheist liberal. As I matured in my faith, I gain knowledge on who God is and how He works in this life, and who men are and how they work. It was this knowledge and warranted my lack of interest in OWS.

This article, published by a Word Fifty; an awesome site for Christian Alternative News, (I do NOT prescribe to mainstream Christian news
made alot of interesting points on the movement. I was previously unaware that in New York, local clergy and seminary students have taken part in the movement, claiming the moniker "Occupy Faith." It was previously stated in this thread that prominent Christian leaders have discouraged involvement in the protest.

I concur with this point made in the article.



OWS pushes us to re-examine our fundamental understandings of Christianity to discover what our role is in this historic moment. When it comes to greed the Christian message should be pretty clear across the board. Jesus quite clearly said, "Blessed are the poor" - not the rich. Jesus constantly challenged his listeners to understand that the choice before them was between wealth and fidelity to the Empire of God: "You cannot serve God and wealth" (Matthew 6:24). He also spoke to the issue in Luke 18:25: "Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God." So it should be immediately obvious that the church from left to right should be doing all it can to breathe life into OWS.


Scripture seems to directly contradict the teachings of Christian leaders against OWS. There is also this scripture found in Mathew 22:15-22


Then the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words. They sent their disciples to him along with the Herodians. “Teacher,” they said, “we know that you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren’t swayed by others, because you pay no attention to who they are. Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay the imperial tax to Caesar or not?” But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, “You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? Show me the coin used for paying the tax.” They brought him a denarius, 20 and he asked them, “Whose image is this? And whose inscription?” “Caesar’s,” they replied. Then he said to them, “So give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”

As Christians, we are told by God to obey the laws of our land, unless those laws directly override the doctrines of our faith. In the above Scripture, the Pharisees are attempting to trap Jesus into breaking Roman law by sating that paying Rome's outrages taxes on the people of Israel is wrong. Seeing their malicious intent, Jesus responded as he did. However, there are also many scriptures on how leaders should manage their nations, and many that warn against the abuse of power.

Greed is a result of the sinfulness of man. No human power can stop men from being sinful, only an act of God can. And I believe that only an act of God can turn this corrupt financial system on its head . However, there is no harm in exposing the wrongdoing, and that is the only good I can see coming out of this protest. Another quote from the article:



Upon serious reflection, the question emerges as to whether the Christian church has a message for OWS or whether the movement has a message for us. Of course the answer is "yes" and "yes." Occupy Wall Street's message to the church is, "If you were doing your job we wouldn't be necessary." The message of the church to OWS is, "There is an ally in the liberal progressive Christian community, and not all Christians are on the right."


If the church was doing it's job by being more active in fighting financial greed, we may not need as OWS. Thoughts?




posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:08 PM
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Do you honestly think that OWS is capable of agreeing with something as a whole?



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:10 PM
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reply to post by JoshF
 


Good point. It seems that everyone is in it for their own individual agenda, and I believe most are there simply to be a part of some historic social movement. Lack of unity is a problem for a movement like this, probably why I havent seen much change as a result of it.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:10 PM
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Please don't drag religion into the OWS movement...it's complicated enough, and unwieldy, to boot.

It's purely political. Religion has nothing to do with it. I am spiritual, not religious, but...seriously, religion takes it too far.

Does religion have to stick its nose in everything? What does money and government have to do with religion? Money is government, and there is a separation of church and state.

No, God has nothing to do with OWS. Sorry to break it to you, but these people are strictly political. Human rights, federal corruption, etc.

Nope, no Jesus here. Move along.
edit on CMondaypm414111f11America/Chicago06 by Starchild23 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:12 PM
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reply to post by Starchild23
 




and there is a separation of church and state.

OWS is not a church nor is it the state.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:13 PM
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reply to post by Starchild23
 


I believe politics and religion are inherently intertwined. If you don't, say the pledge of allegiance or check out a nickel. Anyway, i don't even believe it's a church and state type issue. The law of God is written on men's hearts, that why we consider murder to be such a heinous crime. Or the abuse of power for the good of the elite.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:14 PM
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Jesus and Christianity HAS been the same..

We, the people, have changed.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:14 PM
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Originally posted by JoshF
reply to post by Starchild23
 




and there is a separation of church and state.

OWS is not a church nor is it the state.


That's not my point. Read, please. OWS is protesting state...which means the Church is not involved.

I think it's time for the Church to cut its losses and keep to the people willing to listen instead of trying to expand, honestly. Every time something man-made tries to expand, someone gets hurt in the long run.

Just like with OWS. People have been hurt, people will continue to be hurt...and I have seen little results thus far.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:16 PM
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Originally posted by Starchild23
Please don't drag religion into the OWS movement...it's complicated enough, and unwieldy, to boot...

Nope, no Jesus here. Move along.
edit on CMondaypm414111f11America/Chicago06 by Starchild23 because: (no reason given)


That is unless it helps the OWS cause right?





posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:16 PM
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Originally posted by MarlboroRedCowgirl
reply to post by Starchild23
 


I believe politics and religion are inherently intertwined. If you don't, say the pledge of allegiance or check out a nickel. Anyway, i don't even believe it's a church and state type issue. The law of God is written on men's hearts, that why we consider murder to be such a heinous crime. Or the abuse of power for the good of the elite.


I haven't said the pledge of allegiance in years. To me, religion and government are playing the same game from different angles. Amass the people, convince them you are right, tell them what to do. In exchange, promise them massive wealth.

For government, it's money. For church, it's salvation. And they don't even have the salvation part right.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:17 PM
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God is unchanging. He is the same throughout all time. People are always changing. Goverments are made of up people. They grow and decline, God does neither.

Many social movements are based in faith. The head of the Civil Rights movement was the Reverent Martin Luther King. Malcolm X was a Muslim. The church changes on it's social stance because it is made up of people, who are constantly changing.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:18 PM
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reply to post by JoshF
 


I'm sorry, was that the actual Jesus?

Nope...okay then. My point still stands.

Note: I find it despicable that people use religion to convince believers in a political agenda. Politics is money, not spirit. Hence, why I hate politics.

Of course, I don't agree with Church, either. It just isn't what it should be...
edit on CMondaypm050523f23America/Chicago06 by Starchild23 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:24 PM
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Originally posted by Starchild23
reply to post by JoshF
 


I'm sorry, was that the actual Jesus?

No, it was OWS using Jesus to get their message across.



Nope...okay then. My point still stands.

What point? this one?


It's purely political. Religion has nothing to do with it.

Surely it appears religion does has something to do with it.



OWS is protesting state...which means the Church is not involved.

???? How does OWS protesting the state mean the "church" is not involved? And how do you get from religion to the church? Religion and church are not the same thing. Your logic fails.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:25 PM
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reply to post by Starchild23
 


Obviously not the actual Jesus, but based on a true biblical event. Look, Religion has it's ends and means; we all know that. I personally do not consider myself to be religious. Religion is a way for man to get to God by following certain doctrines and dogmas. God sought me out, and I live by how His commandments.

God reigns solverign over all the events on this earth. A pin doesn't drop without His notice. The church doesn't "sell" salvation, not can they "give" salvation. It doesn't come from the church.

Yes, in the eyes of the world OWS seems like a totally political event, having nothing to do with God. When spiritual eyes are opened, one can see that everything has everything to do with God.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:37 PM
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A statement by a leader of Occupy Faith. He doesn't sound like an out of touch loony.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 12:59 PM
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Liberation Theology. If you've never heard of it, you should do a little reading. I think you would find it enlightening. Basically, its a political/social movement inspired by religion.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 01:14 PM
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reply to post by MarlboroRedCowgirl
 


Though I am not a Christian, I read the reported words of Jesus as you do. I wish you strength in your faith as you stand, as I could not, before those who profess to follow Jesus according to their own whims.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 01:19 PM
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reply to post by TerryMcGuire
 

Wow. Challenging words. I appreciate your support. Those that follow Jesus "according to their own whims," as you so astutely states, seems to be an epidemic in the modern church. I do not and will not prescribe to such apostasy.
reply to post by smyleegrl
 

Thanks for the info! I will definitely look into it.



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 05:47 PM
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Originally posted by Starchild23
Please don't drag religion into the OWS movement...it's complicated enough, and unwieldy, to boot.

It's purely political. Religion has nothing to do with it. I am spiritual, not religious, but...seriously, religion takes it too far.

Does religion have to stick its nose in everything? What does money and government have to do with religion? Money is government, and there is a separation of church and state.

No, God has nothing to do with OWS. Sorry to break it to you, but these people are strictly political. Human rights, federal corruption, etc.

Nope, no Jesus here. Move along.
edit on CMondaypm414111f11America/Chicago06 by Starchild23 because: (no reason given)


Whatever you call the devine/god and from whatever side you wish to see it (religon), everything is connected. Religon/poletics/social structure is part of the system and I belive the system is going down. God is thru man pushing people to awake right now by pushing us for change. Arab spring/ows is god pushing us for change both as persons and collectevly. God is always where man is because he is connected to us even if we can't feel the connection. I love the fact that Obamas presidential-campaign raised the americans awarness that change is needed. I think he is part of the problem and will never make real change but collectivly he gave you the idea/hope that change was on it's way. Dangerous to give people ideas/hope because when you don't provide it they will demand it and find a way to get it.

The flood of awakeening is here.
Take That - The Flood
www.youtube.com...

Namaste



posted on Feb, 6 2012 @ 05:54 PM
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Originally posted by apushforenlightment
God is always where man is because he is connected to us even if we can't feel the connection. I love the fact that Obamas presidential-campaign raised the americans awarness that change is needed. I think he is part of the problem and will never make real change but collectivly he gave you the idea/hope that change was on it's way. Dangerous to give people ideas/hope because when you don't provide it they will demand it and find a way to get it.


God is connected to his creation by love, and that love is not threatened by our belief/disbelief. Its good that people demand change, especially when change is drastically needed. God is aware of that need and he will meet it, possibly even through a nationwide protest.



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