Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 13 Share on Twitter Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
Exclusive to OpEdNews:
Life Arts    H2'ed 11/4/18

Synagogue Terrorist, Robert Bowers, Tried to Kill the God of Moses and Jesus

By       (Page 2 of 2 pages) Become a premium member to see this article and all articles as one long page.     (# of views)   8 comments, In Series: Sunday Homilies for Progressives
Follow Me on Twitter     Message Mike Rivage-Seul
Become a Fan
  (44 fans)
- Advertisement -

Jesus, of course, appears in that prophetic tradition. In fact, his words in today's Gospel indicate that he actually considers sinful any attitude that places other laws above God's. Jesus' response to the scribe is subversive of any religion or empire (like Rome's or the United States') that stands willing to sacrifice women, children, and foreigners to "law and order."

Why then do right wingers like Robert Bowers, Donald Trump, and Republicans in general do exactly that? Why do they prioritize human-fabricated borders along with supporting laws intended to solidify privilege, over what Jesus' Jewish tradition identified as supreme?

The short answer is that the subversive character of the Judeo-Christian tradition was lost following the conversion of Constantine at the beginning of the 4th century C.E. Afterwards, the anarchistic Mosaic tradition championed by Jesus became Romanized, as those in power reinterpreted the Bible in the light of their own experiences as imperial servants. Subsequently, the laws of empire turned on their heads the teachings of Moses and Jesus. Imperialists championed state law over divine law which was increasingly relegated to the private sphere.

Even worse, the teachings of Moses and Jesus with their overriding concern for widows, orphans, and resident aliens became vilified as somehow heretical, diabolical, and disloyal to Caesar. Luther and Calvin routinely referred to such concerns as "Jewish Madness," and "Jewish Materialism."

- Advertisement -

As everyone knows, such sentiments were adopted by Hitler's Third Reich. What usually goes unnoticed, however, is that Hitler's anti-Semitism was more proximately inflamed by Russia's October 1917 Revolution and its originary insistence on social justice. It was the threat of reviving the biblical vision of a world with room for everyone (Acts 2:43-47) that terrified Hitler and his U.S. successor.

Even from the middle of the nineteenth century, socialism was constantly referred to as specifically "Jewish madness," and as "Jewish materialism." Hitler called it "Jewish Bolshevism." Winston Churchill agreed. [Karl Marx, of course, was a Jew. German theologian, Bernard Haring (one of my great teachers in Rome) even referred to Marx as "the last of the great Jewish prophets."]

In this light, Hitler's persecution of the Jews was part of his offensive against communism and capitalist liberalism. His was the West's "final solution" to the problem posed by the Jewish God of Moses and Jesus. Der Fuhrer's anti-Semitism was also in complete harmony with that phenomenon which found open expression throughout Europe and in the United States in movements such as the Ku Klux Klan. All of those legalistic projects represented attempted deicide.

- Advertisement -

So, there we have our answer.

Whatever Bowers' consciousness, his anti-Semitism is really hatred of the forgotten and anarchistic Jewish God who champions the poor and vulnerable and places love of neighbor above all national laws. That God stands with the enslaved, with mothers who have lost husbands, with children orphaned by wars and "zero tolerance policies," and with refugees, immigrants and undocumented residents.

Terrorists like Bowers, Roof, Trump, along with present and past U.S. governments (both Democrat and Republican) realize all of that. So, they hate such people and by extension the God those people study, worship, serve and invoke.

Consequently, prophets like King, Malcolm X, and Romero must die. So must liberation theologians and oppressed people who take seriously the God of Moses and Jesus.

That God must die.

When you think about it (thanks to agents like Luther, Calvin, the Inquisition, the Klan, Hitler and Trump) perhaps such deicide is already a fait accompli.

- Advertisement -
Ironically however, those slaughtered at Tree of Life (along with the Great Christian Refugee Caravan) remind us that the resuscitation of Jesus' subversive and anarchistic God might still be possible.

Next Page  1  |  2

 

- Advertisement -

Well Said 2   Supported 1   Interesting 1  
Rate It | View Ratings

Mike Rivage-Seul Social Media Pages: Facebook Page       Twitter Page       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Mike Rivage-Seul is a liberation theologian and former Roman Catholic priest. Retired in 2014, he taught at Berea College in Kentucky for 40 years where he directed Berea's Peace and Social Justice Studies Program.Mike blogs (more...)
 

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Follow Me on Twitter     Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Sunday Homily: Pope Francis to Women: The Next Pope Should Be One of You!

The Case for and Intimate Relationship between Jesus and Mary Magdalene

"Cloud Atlas": A Film for the Ages (But perhaps not for ours)

Muhammad as Liberationist Prophet (Pt. 2 of 4 on Islam as Liberation Theology)

What You Don't Know About Cuba Tells You About YOUR Future

Sunday Homily: Pope Francis' New Song -- Seven Things You May Have Missed in 'The Joy of the Gospel'