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Friday, November 25, 2011

With great power [and/or wealth]...

Called to Passion: Occupy Wittenberg?
Martin Luther saw the poor being exploited by the wealthy, and he attacked the underlying theological system that allowed such exploitation to take place. At the end of the day, the truth our current system believes in is this: Those who have the most deserve it, because they have worked the hardest.
I don't know if my response was received (it didn't appear on the page after I sent it and there was no notification that it was awaiting moderation), but here it is:
A closer modern-day equivalent to indulgences, I believe, would be "prosperity theology" as its leaders often urge their followers to give regardless of their (i.e., the followers) financial ability to do so.  The main difference between the two is that indulgences offered rewards in the afterlife, while prosperity theology tends to focus on the here and now.  Still, I agree with your central point.  The Bible condemns oppression and exploitation of the poor too clearly for me to do otherwise.
One more point, regarding "Those who have the most deserve it, because they have worked the hardest."  We have gained nothing that we have by our own merits.  On the contrary, everything that we have- physical as well as spiritual- was originally given to us by God.  I think Job recognizes this when he states, "Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD" (1:21, KJV).  Or, as a certain famous superhero is often heard to exclaim, "With great power [and to this I would add "and/or wealth"] comes great responsibility".

1 comment:

  1. Yes, I would agree that the prosperity gospel is a good analogy to indulgences.

    Thank you for your comment.

    ~Pastor David


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