What?! Yes, some people actually believe Jesus was a socialist (or would have been a proponent of it). I’m sorry. I should not have stated it that way (I don’t want to belittle anyone by any means). Frankly, it just ain’t so.
From my understanding, which is limited, socialism calls (at least to some extent) for people to regulate each other by agreeing to share what we are entitled to as per our natural rights, thus ensuring that all men enjoy what’s rightfully theirs according to natural law. Again, my understanding is limited, so please mind any inaccuracies with some mercy.
Now, Jesus really only commanded but a few things, which were all summed up in loving God, yourself, your neighbors, and your enemies. At first glance, one might assume that this appears to call for socialism. However, what is love? How is it executed? Is socialism the best conduit for love?
What is love? (Baby don’t hurt me…sorry, had to do it). There are several different forms of love. What is love Jesus calls for? Without getting academic, it should suffice to say that Jesus calls for unconditional love. It is the sacrifice of one’s own benefit for the benefit of another (time, money, words, space, goods, etc) without anything/anyone forcing you to do so, and without any expectation of receiving anything in return.
So, is socialism an adequate (let alone, the best) conduit for the love Jesus is looking for?
(1) Love is voluntary socialism
(2) Love is the sacrifice of one’s own benefit for the benefit for the benefit of another: socialism
(3) Love asks for nothing in return: socialism
Now, for love to be love, all three variables must be true (socialism underlined). Even if there was one socialism, love would not exist as Jesus calls for.
Does that mean that Jesus love cannot exist in socialism? No! Of, course it can! What this means is that the socialistic giving/sharing is not in agreement with Jesus’ will. So, to say that Jesus was/is socialist (thereby calling all Christians to be socialist) is erroneous at it’s foundation.
As much as Jesus calls for love between individuals, he is primarily interested in the individual. He wants the individual’s genuine will to evolve towards His own.
If a decision is forced on you, you have not made that decision. It is therefore not a reflection of your will. To become better individuals, and thereby a better society, we must be fully responsible for each and every decision we make. That is why I fight any move toward the intrusion of one’s will by either their neighbor or their government.
We must choose to help one another without violating one another.
First, we must check ourselves.