If Jesus Were a Bush Republican:

Select Sayings

 

It's a commonplace that many Americans support George W. Bush because of his Christian faith.  The "values voters," the evangelicals, the Bible Belt--whatever you name this sector of the public, they're solidly behind Bush.  That this president is held up as a good "Christian leader" is something of a mystery to me.  As both a serious student of the Gospels and a White House watcher, I struggle to connect the dots.  How do Bush Administration policies relate to the president's faith?

 

In order to make a bridge between the Gospels and our current leader, I've undertaken a little thought experiment.  I've decided to present some of the more famous sayings of Jesus in a form better suited to the times.  Or at least better suited to the practice of faith in a Bush America.  In my choice of sayings and in the changes made, I've been guided by study of the president's policies on issues of war and peace, wealth and poverty, the natural environment, law, and other areas.  Simply put, I'm trying to present how Jesus might have spoken if he had been a Bush Republican.

 

This is by no means a satire of Jesus or the Gospels.  I myself am a Christian.  And so: If one finds that the sayings below don't make for a spiritually valuable doctrine, I suggest going back to the Gospels and studying Jesus' actual sayings.  After which one might ponder the question more seriously: How do our current president's policies relate to Christian faith?

 

Eric Mader

September, 2004

 

The Sayings:

 

Why take the beam of out your own eye, when the spin doctors can keep people talking about the speck in the other guy's eye?

 

If a man strikes you on the right cheek, you must be a fool.  You should have killed him and anyone around him before he got anywhere near you.

 

If a man asks for your coat, tell him to find a job.  If he asks you to go with him a mile, tell him you don't pick up hitchhikers.

 

The Kingdom of Heaven is like a corporation.  Though you see its right hand, you know not what its left hand does.

 

Do not resist an evil man.  For probably he can make a large campaign contribution.

 

The unworthy are like a forest on a mountainside.  They grow for thousands of years, then the righteous come and cut them to the ground and sell them for profit.  And then they will strip mine the sides of the mountain for precious metals, so that where the unworthy once grew there will be but rubble and erosion.  He who has ears to hear, let him hear.

 

Those who die for a cause shall receive their death.  And those who send them to die shall receive everlasting life.

 

When one white son dies it shall be worth seventy black or brown sons in payment.  And so the righteous man gets his due.

 

If your right eye offends you, talk about Clinton's left eye.  If your right hand is covetous, talk about Clinton's social spending.  And then freely spend much, much more, for your cronies deserve their due.

 

Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law.  I have not come to abolish it, but to erase it piece by piece, until the Law shall be me, and I shall be the Law.

 

My father's house has many rooms in it, as is only right.  I too will have many rooms some day.

 

It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a European to enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

 

Follow me.  My yoke is light.  The more you have, the bigger your tax cut will be.

 

Do not think that have I come to bring peace.  No, I have come to bring corruption on a grand scale.  And where there is corruption, there is injustice.  And where injustice reins, there wars must be waged.  And when war is waged, we cut a healthy profit.

 

Indeed faith can move mountains.  But strip mining is more efficient.

 

Do unto others as much as you like, as long as they are helpless and have no voice.

 

The Kingdom of Heaven is like a tax shelter.

 

Approach like a dove, then devour like a snake.  And then, digesting, put on the dove act again.

 

Consider the lilies of the field, then plow them under and drill for oil.

 

There was a man who owned a small vineyard.  And he hired men from his village to labor therein, and they did labor honestly for him.  And the man became richer and richer, so that finally he owned all the vineyards around that village.  And then did the man kick out all his original laborers, and hired foreigners to labor in his vineyards.  For the foreigners worked for almost no wages.  And the villagers, the first laborers, did cry unto him that they had no land to themselves, and no wages with which to live.  And the man said: "You should have thought of that before.  For many must labor in the vineyard, so that one may enter the Kingdom."  

 

Woe to you, academics and intellectuals!  You carp on and on about justice and truth, while the world's riches are there for the taking!  You neither use your wits to grab what you can, nor will you let others grab what they can! 

     Woe to you, academics and intellectuals!  You quote from laws and statutes as if men were made to follow laws, when it is otherwise, law was made to be changed by the righteous! 

     Woe to you, academics and intellectuals!  You trouble yourselves washing the inside of the cup, when all the customer sees is the outside!  Your ventures will sink under such scruples!

 

Blessed are the selfish, for they shall inherit the earth.

     Blessed are the rich, for they shall become much richer, and shall keep their riches to the last penny. 

     Blessed are those who think themselves righteous, for they shall dictate unto the others, and the others shall find themselves without rights.

     Blessed are those who find loopholes for their misdeeds, for their misdeeds shall be overlooked.

     Blessed are those who are well placed, for they shall receive protection.

     Blessed are the liars, for their lies repeated often and loudly enough shall become truth.

     Blessed are you when people criticize you and point to your crimes, for you shall be given dodges to evade any truth.  For God sees your shrewdness, and you shall be rewarded.

 

****

 

Those tired of the right-wing Republican Jesus may find a little light in the following: The Durationist Gospel.

 

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