Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Matt. 23 -- beware The Man

The resentment-driven underclass in America esteems a practice they call "sticking it to The Man." The Man is the personification of the social structure they blame for their woes.[1]

Jesus had a better idea -- outperform The Man. Self-governing people, people who honor the Lord as their king, live better lives than slaves.[2] This chapter is a withering indictment of the ruling class of first century Israel. Like the Mayor played by Bill Murray in the excellent little movie City of Ember, these people were willing to see their society collapse, as long as their own nests were feathered.[3] Let's look at a few extracts from this chapter:
Mat 23:1,2 Bundan sonra İsa halka ve öğrencilerine şöyle seslendi: "Din bilginleri ve Ferisiler Musa'nın kürsüsünde otururlar.
Mat 23:3 Bu nedenle size söylediklerinin tümünü yapın ve yerine getirin, ama onların yaptıklarını yapmayın. Çünkü söyledikleri şeyleri kendileri yapmazlar.
These folks are in power. To stay out of trouble, take them at their word and live up to the values they assert. Socialists claim to care for "the poor." So, our lives should be characterized by true benevolence, true charity. However, this concern of their rarely, if ever, translates into practical, sacrificial action on their parts.

The ruling class is where it is, so we need to be aware of them. However, we do not need to take them as seriously as they take themselves. Rush Limbaugh became an overnight success after 17 years, by simply pointing out the discrepancies between what the ruling class said, and what they actually did. The "filling" in this sandwich chapter is withering scorn poured upon the heads of the ruling elite and its media outlets. Injunctions for His disciples to do better. As Kingdom people, as self-governing people, we should not be driven by the power lust that characterizes contemptible rulers.

Let's drop down to verse 37 to see the bottom line, wherein Jesus compares Himself to a chicken:
Mat 23:37 "Ey Yeruşalim! Peygamberleri öldüren, kendisine gönderilenleri taşlayan Yeruşalim! Tavuğun civcivlerini kanatları altına topladığı gibi ben de kaç kez senin çocuklarını toplamak istedim, ama siz istemediniz.
Mat 23:38 Bakın, eviniz ıssız bırakılacak!
Mat 23:39 Size şunu söyleyeyim: 'Rab'bin adıyla gelene övgüler olsun!' diyeceğiniz zamana dek beni bir daha görmeyeceksiniz."
The bridge is out. Israel has just driven past the last exit ramp.

[1] This sense of entitlement leads to numerous acts of pillage and pilferage. For examine, Social Security Supplemental funds are paid out to handicapped folks, or the parents of handicapped children. SO, coach the kids to act crazy, and the government will send you another check in the mail. The raids on the nation's productive class are sanctioned by the politicians whose role in this danse macabre is to buy the votes of the underclass with "public" money.

[2] The Finno-Russian War of 1939 quantified this observation. The Finns were outnumbered by around 12 to 1 -- but their soldiers were free men protecting their homes. The Russian invaders were conscripts.

[3] At the end of the Ottoman Empire, the ruling class in Istanbul were willing to sign away a whole nation to foreign masters, in exchange for their own continuing roles as pampered puppet rulers.

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