taking the words of Jesus seriously

Perhaps a greater question than whether Jesus was a Communist or a Capitalist would be, was Jesus concerned with fitting into an economic system during first Century Roman Empirical Rule? Both Shane Claiborne and Peter Greer would answer “no.”

Jesus’ concern was not with establishing a specific economic system upon which his disciples and followers would bank their funds. Rather, Christ’s concern was fixed upon the people with whom he spoke and resided. As Greer states: “He [Jesus] didn’t fit in any of the camps, but he did come to make things right.”

Despite the question at hand, the concerns of both Shane and Peter are focused on the poor and impoverished of our world. As Red Letter Christians our concern should be to focus on these people as well. Consider Christ’s words in Luke 11:41, “But now as for what is inside you—be generous to the poor, and everything will be clean for you.”

Our economic system is broken and because of it thousands of individuals die daily from not receiving the basic necessities of life. I encourage you to read the article, “Was Jesus a Communist or a Capitalist?” and then perform an act of service to the poor in your world. However, lets not make this just one act. Together lets continually work to make poverty an issue we address daily.

About The Author


Tony Campolo is Professor of Sociology at Eastern University, and was formerly on the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania. For 40 years, he founded and led the Evangelical Association for the Promotion of Education, an organization that created and supported programs serving needy communities in the Third World as well as in “at risk” neighborhoods across North America. More recently, Dr. Campolo has provided leadership for the Red Letter Christians movement. He blogs regularly at his own website. Tony and his wife Peggy live near Philadelphia, and have two children and four grandchildren.

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