THE BLOG
02/20/2014 01:19 pm ET Updated Apr 20, 2014

Jesus Was a Marxist, Not a Theologian

"The problem with Marxism is the proletariat isn't going to rise up against capitalism and consumerism. The only time they'll rise up is during a commercial break to either go to the bathroom or grab more beer." -- Jarod Kintz,

Sin for Jesus wasn't some internal issue that was wrong with each person (corporately). Sin, from the Hebrew is chait, one of the functions of this kind of sin was that it was defined individually and singularly, meaning that it wasn't something chronically wrong, but something someone bought into -- an ideology. It was a socio-asymmetrical discrepancy. The fact that it is an individually subjective issue, makes this all the more interesting. Why? Because it seems the ancient world and our current world have a similar epidemic: individualism. I don't see Jesus dealing with sin in any traditional spiritual sense, but rather in a material sense. Not that the material did not have spiritual significance, its just that they were one in the same. That's what the incarnation is about, not some doctrinal belief, but a confession from the gods that the spiritual activity we could experience is everyday life. Jesus was a strict materialist (both philosophically and in everyday life). And so the issue of individualism creates the gap between the individual and the collective.

It creates and sustains the gap between any hope for a collective commons from which to draw and experience. In the story of the rich man. we have two characters: a rich guy and the bourgeois; and the poor man and the proletariat. We have the 99 percent and the 1 percent. Notice that they both start out as individuals? This is crucial to get, because only in a society where the individual and their happiness (aka, capitalistic democracy) take presence over any sense of the whole, the individual reigns supreme and sustains the perverse gap between the two and always will.

Libertarian ideology is just this. Can we not also find this same ideology in the current controversy of the Russian games? That the spirit of heternormative individuality has made itself seem so ubiquitous that to treat another fellow human being with a shred of decency can be illegal?! Why is it individualistic? Mainly to the point, because it assumes that we all should assume that those in the homosexual community should either be single, married heteronormatively, or purging themselves from some grotesque lifestyle.

The rule then is: Be "hetero-normal" (whatever that is!), or we will find ways (i.e., politically, socially, organizationally,legislatively and so on) to keep the world homogenous. To keep all of the individuals the same. It's totalitarianism at its worst peak. Another way to say this is that the heterosexual individual are the current template for social normalization.

It seems Jesus wasn't here to create, endorse or sustain religion, but rather abolish it. Abolish the idea that we need some systematic expression of the lived life to fulfill human happiness. His worked seemed to critique the idea of gender exclusion, which in itself would have you gotten you killed in a socio-cultural context like the ancient Levant where patriarchy reigned supreme. He also didn't seem to occupied with spending time at the local synagogue, he wasn't a devout Jew, like some are today.

But why? Because people mattered, not the system. The system was an after-effect of bourgeois thinking. It was propped up through capital. There is this, what can only be explained as vitriolic chapter, in the compiled narrative that derived from the Matthean community, that depicts Jesus as being [if not partially, then fully] anti-semitic. He attacks their allegiance to almost anything in reality. From politics, to religion, to burial rites, down to identity politics and ancestry worship. He essentially calls them zombie idiots.

Here is where it gets interesting: 8 "But you are not to be called 'Rabbi,' for you have one Teacher, and you are all brothers. 9 And do not call anyone on earth 'father,' for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. 10 Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one Instructor, the Messiah. 11 The greatest among you will be your servant. 12 For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted."

Notice he doesn't refer to himself as the Messiah. He isn't here to save anyone. But what if he is referring to something bigger than humanity itself. Something true of the human experience. That in one sense, we can equate the Messiah with Communism. Let me be frank here, I don't mean failed Marxist communism or even historical materialism, but rather I mean a global space where the commons (justice, economics, government, spirituality, absence of universal normality and etc.) is open to one and all and we all fight for that. Is that too utopian? Maybe.

But utopia doesn't have to mean heaven or even perfect. But it can be something we all fight for. It seems we have bought into the lie of fighting for the illusion of rights, but what about responsibility? What about that, as Jesus says here, we only have one Teacher (i.e., commons/communism) and we are all brothers/sisters/mothers/fathers and etc. Maybe that's the point, we all get up and get out out bed to fight for the responsibility of keeping each other as equals, not for some-rights based thinking that allows for such grotesque inequalities.