Sunday, January 23, 2005

Jesus' death a political statement?

One of the contenders for the leadership of the Australian Labor Party is committed Anglican Kevin Rudd. Mr Rudd has some striking views about the connection between politics and Christianity.

In a recent profile in the Herald Sun (22/1/05 - not yet online) he says that Jesus "told us to feed the hungry, give shelter to the homeless and so on - he put no division between the spiritual and the professional". The professional? Is Mr Rudd redefining Chritian charity here to make it more technocratic or welfarist?

Even more challenging is his view that "Jesus was a profoundly spiritual person but his death was a major political statement." The crucifixion as a political statement? I've never heard this claimed before, and it seems very difficult to reconcile with Christian orthodoxy.

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