To be a Socialist is to Reject Christ
To be a Socialist is to reject Christ. Many of my radically left friends might disagree with this statement, but I would not get any objection from the likes of Marx, Engels, Lenin, Trotsky, Mao, or Stalin. In fact, those fathers of worldwide Socialist revolution would completely agree, though they might phrase it differently.
The far left's animosity toward religion as a whole is well documented. Everyone knows that Marx called religion the "opiate of the masses." Mao said that "religion is poison." Lenin taught that religion was used by exploiters to make themselves feel better for oppressing the lower classes. He believed religion to be a yoke that weighed down the people (contrary to Christ saying His yoke was light). Stalin created an "atheist five year plan" to completely stamp out religion. And Earl Browder, the former General Secretary of the Communist Party USA (CPUSA), wrote unequivocally in his 1935 book Communism in the United States that, "It is quite clear that the Communist Party is the enemy of religion."
Not only would the fathers of Socialist revolution agree with me that to be Socialist is to reject Christ, but so would the popes. Pope Pious XI was quite direct when he stated that, "Religious socialism, Christian socialism are contradictory terms; no one can be at the same time a good Catholic and a true socialist." Pope Pious XII was so anti-communist that he issued the Decree Against Communism in 1949, declaring that any Communists within the Catholic Church should be excommunicated as apostates. Even the current Holy Father, Pope Francis, who is considered to be an extremely liberal pope has stated unequivocally that "Marxist ideology is wrong." And the Catechism of the Catholic Church states that, "The Church has rejected the totalitarian and atheistic ideologies associated in modern times with 'communism' or 'socialism'."
"But wait!" cry the modern radical left. "If Jesus was alive today, he would be a Socialist!" Nope. But the Socialists have convinced a large number of Christians of that lie. How? Simple, they have infiltrated the churches. They have filled the pulpits with their propaganda. However, the infiltration of Christian churches by Socialists is not the subject of this post, and thus, I will not get into it in detail. If you are interested in reading more about it, the infiltration is well documented in the excellent book The Devil and Karl Marx by Paul Kengor.
While the radical left has done a good job of hoodwinking Christians into believing the lie that Christianity and socialism are compatible, if not the same, the truth is that they are not. When arguing that Jesus would be a Socialist if He were alive today, many Socialists like to point to Acts 4:34-35 which states that, "There was no needy person among [the Christians], for those who owned property or houses would sell them, bring the proceeds of the sale, and put them at the feet of the apostles, and they were distributed to each according to need." That does sound a lot like Marx's mantra, "from each according to ability; to each according to need," doesn't it? How were the early Christians different from Socialists?
The answer can be discovered in two ways. First, by comparing the goals of Socialists to those of Christians. Second, by comparing the different methods of achieving those goals.
Despite what Socialists and bad Sunday school teachers tell us, the purpose of Christianity is NOT to help the poor get fed or the sick get well. The purpose is to redeem mankind. Jesus is not looking for us to save people in this world so that they can live a long happy life with a full belly. He wants us to save people's souls for eternity. We are to help those with physical needs for two primary reasons. First, to provide good witness to the love of God, thereby winning other souls to Christ. Second, and perhaps even more importantly, is to purify our own souls, by turning our hearts away from our own selfishness, and instead sacrifice for others as Christ did.
Thus, the goal of Christianity is making disciples of all nations so that all might be saved and live with Christ. It is NOT to end poverty or bring about economic or social equality. In fact, Jesus told us that we could NOT end poverty when He stated, "The poor you will always have with you." Only God can end poverty, and one day He will. When Christ returns, there will be no more hunger or suffering. Until then Christians are to live a life of personal holiness, sacrifice, charity, and Christian witness. Our goal is to purify our souls and to save others from damnation. Helping those in need (the poor, the sick, etc.) is a fantastic way to achieve both of those goals.
The goal of Socialism--giving them the benefit of the doubt and looking at them in the best possible light--is to bring about complete equality and eliminate poverty and class distinction. Whereas Christians are more concerned with a person's soul, Socialists are completely materialistic. In other words, to the Socialist, "man lives by bread alone."
So the goals of Christians and Socialists are not the same. For Christians it is primarily a spiritual goal. For Socialists it is completely--100%--a materialistic goal. Where Christians are instructed to reject carnal desires, Socialists see nothing as more important than the desires of this world.
Not only are the goals of Christians and Socialists dissimilar, but so too are the methods of attaining those goals. Socialists like to point out that Christ did not charge people a co-pay when He healed them. They like to point out that the early Christians shared everything (as I wrote above by quoting Acts 4:34-35). What the Socialists always fail to mention is that the Christians are to do so voluntarily. Socialists, on the other hand, use the power of the state to force "charity."
It is true that Jesus did not charge a fee to heal people. But neither did He take resources from others to pay for the healing. When Socialists give people "free" healthcare, that healthcare has to be paid for somehow. They pay for it by taking it from someone else. Christ did not rob Peter to pay Paul, as the saying goes. He truly healed for free. And yes, He wants us to as well. He wants us to volunteer our time and money to help others. Doctors who volunteer (work without pay) at free clinics, for example, are doing as Christ did. Doctors who are paid by the state which took the money from you and me to pay the doctor so that he could give "free" healthcare to people are NOT doing as Christ did.
To state it simply: Christians voluntarily give to the needy. Socialists FORCE others to give to the needy.
The Apostle Peter makes it clear that Christian charity is voluntary at the beginning of Acts 5, just after the passages in Acts 4 that the Socialists love to quote. Ananias and his wife Sapphira had sold their property and given half of the money to the Apostles to share with the other Christians. They lied, however, and said they had given all of the money. Because of the lie, God struck both Ananias and his wife down.
Peter made it clear that Ananias and his wife could have done whatever they wanted with their property. It was theirs. Their crime was not holding back some of the proceeds. Their crime was lying and saying they had given it all. They lied to look good in the eyes of man instead of in the eyes of God. It was their choice!
Christianity puts a great emphasis on choice. Free will is important to God. Socialism rejects the importance of free choice. As Saint Pope John Paul II states, "Socialism likewise maintains that the good of the individual can be realized without reference to his free choice, to the unique and exclusive responsibility which he exercises in the face of good or evil."
Furthermore, Socialism cares only for society as a whole. It cares little or nothing for the individual. But Christ cares for the individual. Christ asserts that, "there will be more rejoicing in Heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent." John Paul II calls the rejection of the importance of the individual the "fundamental error of socialism." "Socialism," according to John Paul II, "considers the individual person simply as an element, a molecule within the social organism, so that the good of the individual is completely subordinated to the functioning of the socio-economic mechanism." So much for leaving the 99 to go after the one lost soul.
Socialists want to fix society as a whole by eliminating all social ills. Christians realize that only God can fix society as a whole and eliminate all social ills. Christians help people in order to help the individual, to learn compassion, to save our own soul and the souls of others. It is not the goal of Christians to create a utopian society, because we realize that such a society is not possible for man. (This was demonstrated in the 20th century when 100 million people were killed by socialist regimes attempting to create the perfect society.) But with God all things are possible. Thus, Christians hold on to the hope of living for eternity in the perfect society, created and ruled over by Christ when He returns, and share that hope with others.
Socialists reject Christ because THEY want to be the gods of the world. Socialists want to reshape human nature in THEIR image. They want to build THEIR perfect society--a society based completely on the material desires of this world--and they don't believe they need God to do it. They care nothing for the individual. Those who oppose them must be forced to obey or be eliminated. We see this in every attempt at creating a socialist paradise--with millions killed and millions more imprisoned. And we see it happening today. Anyone who dares to disagree with the Socialists now running our institutions must be "cancelled." If you do not bow to the Socialist gods they want you and your family to starve. This is not Christian. A true Christian loves his neighbor. A true Socialist informs on his neighbor
R.C. VanLandingham lives in Florida with his wife and kids. Get his Christian fantasy book Peter Puckett & The Amulet of Eternity FREE Here!