Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence. God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways.
- Genesis 6:11-12
Then the Lord raised up judges, who saved them out of the hands of these raiders. Yet they would not listen to their judges but prostituted themselves to other gods and worshiped them. They quickly turned from the ways of their ancestors, who had been obedient to the Lord’s commands. Whenever the Lord raised up a judge for them, he was with the judge and saved them out of the hands of their enemies as long as the judge lived; for the Lord relented because of their groaning under those who oppressed and afflicted them. But when the judge died, the people returned to ways even more corrupt than those of their ancestors, following other gods and serving and worshiping them. They refused to give up their evil practices and stubborn ways.
- Judges 2:16-19
The fool says in his heart,
“There is no God.”
They are corrupt, their deeds are vile;
there is no one who does good.
The Lord looks down from heaven
on all mankind
to see if there are any who understand,
any who seek God.
All have turned away, all have become corrupt;
there is no one who does good,
not even one.
Do all these evildoers know nothing?
They devour my people as though eating bread;
they never call on the Lord.
But there they are, overwhelmed with dread,
for God is present in the company of the righteous.
You evildoers frustrate the plans of the poor,
but the Lord is their refuge.
Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion!
When the Lord restores his people,
let Jacob rejoice and Israel be glad!
- Psalm 14:1-7
That, however, is not the way of life you learned when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
- Ephesians 4:20-24
“Although Marx did not foresee communism being implemented in such a barbaric manner in these primarily agricultural societies, his ideas are nevertheless still open to a variety of criticisms. First, Marx always argued for the inevitability of revolution. This was the essential part of the dialectic, but it is clearly too simplistic, as human creativity is always able to produce a variety of choices, and the dialectic fails to allow for the possibility of improvement by gradual reform.
“Second, Marx tended to invest the proletariat with wholly good attributes, and to suggest that a communist society would give rise somehow to a new type of human being. He never explained how the dictatorship of this perfect proletariat would be different from earlier, brutal forms of dictatorship, nor how it would avoid the corrupting effects of power.
“Third, Marx rarely discussed the possibility that new threats to liberty might emerge after a successful revolution; he assumed that poverty was the only real cause of criminality. His critics have also alleged that he did not sufﬁciently understand the forces of nationalism, and that he gave no proper account of the role of personal leadership in politics. In fact, the 20th-century communist movement was to produce immensely powerful personality cults in virtually every country in which communists came to power.”
- Sam Atkinson (senior editor), The Philosophy Book, Big Ideas Simply Explained
Karl Marx (1818-1883) wrote his Communist Manifesto based on many mistaken ideas. He rejected God, thinking that rejecting God would avoid any religious fervor in overthrowing a new government. Indeed, Communist governments today are among the most ruthless in Christian persecution. They see Christianity as being one of the greatest threats to their totalitarian rule.
I thought of skipping Karl Marx in the philosophy book that I am quoting from. I served in the military in West Germany in the Cold War, and I visited Karl Marx’s birthplace of Trier. Not to see his birthplace, but to see the Roman aqueducts in the city. Having fought against the spread of Communism, and seeing the criticisms in the quote above firsthand, I cannot believe how low we have fallen to ever consider Socialist / Communist values, as if of any value at all. As Rev. David Robertson says, Communist governments have led to the largest instances of genocide, much larger than the Nazi government just before and during World War II. Why would anyone wish this form of government upon a nation? And it is the poor that suffers the most, and all outside the “party” will be poor.
The criticisms above have played out in the world, and the one that I would place at the top, the lack of religious freedom and specifically the persecution of Christians, is not among the criticisms in the book. As I have written before, the book has a subtle antichristian agenda although the philosophies of some Christians are discussed.
The philosophy of Karl Marx is largely the dialectic of Georg Hegel, but dumbed down with the agenda of making the peasants the rulers and revolting against the ruling class. Since Marx rejected Christianity, he could not see the corruption coming and he had no back-up plan. The Scriptures point to the fact that given enough time, humans will become corrupt, and power will go to the heads of those with power. Beware of these young politicians who wish for that power, already admitting neo-Marxist views. They are well on their way to implementing totalitarian plans and the poor will suffer the most if they gain power.
As for Marx’s revolution, each state within the German speaking states had a revolution in 1848. The ruling class could not solidify and unite under a single ruler for all of Germany. The peasants gained the only true ground, eliminating the practice of serfdom. They were still dirt poor with no prospects to better themselves, but they were free to be dirt poor with no prospects, instead of a serf of the ruling class, not even human.
As a result of all the revolutions being quashed, Marx escaped to London where he lived in poverty until his death, in exile. He had eleven mourners at his funeral, forgotten except for his book that survived him.
I will not discuss the philosophy of Karl Marx beyond the objections. It ranks that little of merit. As history has progressed, or regressed, we have only seen success in Communist countries in their propaganda and brainwashing that shows small farms and communities succeeding. Of course, this is carefully staged, and visitors are never allowed to see the oppression behind the scenes and away from the carefully staged ‘movie sets purporting to be the average village.’ But the proof of the oppression emerged in spite of totalitarian rule with an iron fist.
The Scriptures are a combination of historical evidence that given a chance, we will become corrupt, especially when we turn from God. The entirety of Psalm 14 states it eloquently. But the Ephesians 4 Scripture states that in Christ, we are new creatures, who do not need to follow our base instincts.
In keeping our eyes on Jesus, we can, with God’s strength, avoid slipping down that slope.
Our only hope is in Christ and Christ alone. We need to, as a nation (any and all nations on earth), repent and turn to God. But that starts with each individual doing so and then making their voice heard. If we remain silent, our government will turn against us. This is one good reason to rely on God and not a man or a government.
If you like these Tuesday morning essays about philosophy and other “heavy topics,” but you think you missed a few, you can use this LINK. I have set up a page off the home page for links to these Tuesday morning posts. I will continue to modify the page as I add more.
Soli Deo Gloria. Only to God be the Glory.