Freedom from the Empire’s Yoke

Jesus is ready to set us free from the heavy yoke of an oppres­sive way of life. Plen­ty of wealthy Chris­tians are suf­fo­cat­ing from the weight of the Amer­i­can dream, heav­i­ly bur­dened by the life­less toil and con­sump­tion we embrace. This is the yoke from which we are being set free. And as we are lib­er­at­ed from the yoke of glob­al cap­i­tal­ism, our sis­ters and broth­ers in Guatemala, Liberia, Iraq, and Sri Lan­ka will also be lib­er­at­ed. Our fam­i­ly over­seas, who are mak­ing our clothes, grow­ing our food, pump­ing our oil, and assem­bling our electronics—they too need to be lib­er­at­ed from the empire’s yoke of slav­ery. Their lib­er­a­tion is tan­gled up with our own. The new yoke isn’t easy. (It’s a cross, for heav­en’s sake.) But we car­ry it togeth­er, and it is good and leads us to rest, espe­cial­ly for the wea­ri­est trav­el­er. Jesus for Pres­i­dent, Shane Clai­borne & Chris Haw, page 113

Near­ly every page of Jesus for Pres­i­dent has pre­sent­ed a new chal­lenge for my faith. Nev­er before have I been exposed to the incred­i­ble rich­ness of the polit­i­cal and eco­nom­i­cal lan­guage of the Scrip­tures. What pol­i­tics there were to be found were always rel­e­gat­ed to the Hebrews, with Chris­t­ian pol­i­tics paint­ed with the broad brush of obey the law and pay your tax­es. Oh, and vote Republican.

But what if our being strangers in a strange land, a pecu­liar peo­ple… a holy nation… has prac­ti­cal impor­tance to our every­day life? What if we have been not only set free from our sins by the Lam­b’s sac­ri­fice but have also been offered release from the yoke of this world’s over­bear­ing pol­i­tics and economics?

What if we aren’t called to change the world through leg­is­lat­ing our moral­i­ty but instead should change the world by infect­ing it, spread­ing the King­dom of God like leav­en spreads through dough?

I’m about a third of the way through Jesus for Pres­i­dent, and those are some of the ques­tions which have been pre­sent­ed, which are chal­leng­ing my faith. 

I strong­ly sus­pect that there will be more.

1 thought on “Freedom from the Empire’s Yoke”

  1. nice!

    My thoughts: Mes­sian­ic Jews expect­ed a con­quer­er. Yahshau said him­self and I’m para­phras­ing- think not that I could ask God for help and he’d sent a legion of angels to con­quer? My king­dom is not of the world. if it was of the world he would not have died on the cross, of course. And do we know bet­ter than christ? Are we not to fol­low his exam­ple? chris­tians who believe in the king­dom of heav­en by means of neo-con­ser­vatism.. I don’t believe 

    To para­phrase oscar wilde with my own twist- to throw in some humor: I like peo­ple more than pol­i­tics and I like peo­ple with­out pol­i­tics the most. 

    I imag­ine Yahshua’s kind­gom is of beau­ti­ful heav­en­ly worlds of great wealth bey­ong human imag­i­na­tion. In my fathers house are many man­sions. I go to pre­pare a place. 

    Besides- are we greater than God? I think every­thing has to be this way for God must be the per­fec­tion of all virtues. Is gen­eros­i­ty not a virtue? That’s why he, as Most Gen­er­ous, gave the gift of life, the great­est gift, to oth­er souls, name­ly us. The next virtue to play is wis­dom, and as Most Wise, he real­ized he must give us free­dom of will or he only cre­ates zom­bies and slaves and a race of robots. right? that’s also why he rarely exer­cis­es his pow­er but just lets things be and let’s us go about our busi­ness of what we desire. at the same time though he cre­at­ed a law of cause and effet- as ye sow ye reap- which we can­not escape from and are bound by. what we do onto oth­ers we do onto our­selves, right? Am I mak­ing any false assump­tions? Is my log­ic flawed in any way in all of this? If I am blind to the truth, help me to see!

    So… not being greater than God, we, as the saints have done, must
    1. renounce the world of mate­r­i­al things and flesh. Not easy but nec­es­sary! and
    2. Not try to leg­is­late moral­i­ty because we are not greater than God and he gives us free­dom of will, but as I always say, there is no real free­dom from the law, only free­dom through the law. God’s law, woven into the fab­ric of our being. Not one jot or tit­tle shall pass away. But to not try to gov­ern oth­ers, only to gov­ern our low­er sin­ful selves with the help of the Holy Spir­it. Yes?

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Rick Beckman