Friday, July 2, 2010

Marx Would Be Proud

They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Acts 2: 42-45

Today’s Reading: Nehemiah 4-6; Acts 2:22-47

As a student of political philosophy I couldn’t help but to take note of this passage.

The early church folk had a socialist community going on!

One of the key things that I remember when studying Marx was this notion that all of the people would work together for the common good. The key questions of course were who decides this common good? Is this “common good” good for everyone? Why would I work for the common good instead of working for my own good?

It’s pretty cool to see how this played out in the beginning. Clearly it didn’t continue all hunky dory forever but wow… folk were so devoted to the cause and to each other that they took on a “what’s yours is mine and what’s mine is yours” policy.

I don’t know if I have ever believed in anything to that degree.

Kudos to them for solving the timeless societal question of how to allocate resources… even if this way of life didn’t last too long…

It does beg the question though… if a group of people were to try to live by Jesus’ message word for word what kind of society would they create? Would the society crumble? What would prove triumphant in the battle between faith in God and our fellow man vs fear of scarcity so I gotta get mine?

When I look at the world it seems like the latter has won over the former… but I’m sure that there are some small groups and communities that would beg to differ.

Food for thought…

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A Convo With God by Clarence Mitchell III is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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