April 2, 2018
Acts 4:32-35…“There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold.” vs. 34
For many American Christians, capitalism and individualism have become central tenets of faith. Among some, there is even a general suspicion of welfare and governmental programs to help the poor and needy. According to them, people have to learn how to take care of themselves without outside assistance. Early followers of Jesus had an opposite perspective. They eschewed private property and held that believers should hold all things in common. We might call them radical socialists. Somewhere in the course of the centuries that notion has fallen by the wayside. Seldom do we see modern Christians selling what they own and giving it for the benefit of the community. As a result of that shift, a central biblical principle has become endangered and we’re losing our communitarian spirit! Many believers no longer put the needs of others before their own–sharing is what they do with their excess. It’s no stretch to say that the triumph of individualism in our culture has severely challenged the ethics of Christian living! When we take care of ourselves first we miss the opportunity to encounter Christ in the hungry, the homeless, and the naked–the one place he has promised to meet us. God has blessed our world with incredible riches, and those blessings are meant to be shared! It’s the essence of Easter living!
Thought for the Day: Why are so many Americans suspicious of socialism?