Jesus and Politics: Confronting the Powers - Alan Storkey
This is simply the best book I have read on Christianity and politics. Alan Storkey is a gifted writer with some memorable turns of phrase. He starts by putting Jesus in the political arena that resulted from the despotism of Herod the Great. This is a most informative book on the history of the land in Jesus time. One learns about the various parties in Israel and the centrality of the temple in their lives.
Storkey writes with real scholarship using the Gospel accounts to show us the political implications of stories related by their authors for Christian purposes. He gives new insights into John the Baptist, Herod Antipas, the concept of messiah, and how God's government has the prime authority, not any worldly power. Jesus is shown to have political principles, statecraft and world rule. After examining taxation in the time of Jesus, we are taken to Jerusalem, the cross and resurrection. The gospel is shown to have political events as its historic setting. The life of Jesus transforms politics for the Christian.
This is one of those rare books where Christian scholarship is united with real devotion to the risen living Christ. It is heart warming Christian political writing.
I have only one area where I seriously depart from the author's viewpoint. He writes that taxation can be an expression of the nation's system of care and neighborly love. He favours high taxation for spending on social provision and health care. He has no critique of the idolatry that results when the state is regarded as the great provider. I read no critique of the dependency culture that pervades Western societies nor of the ever growing beast that is the modern state. He is though rightly scathing about the uncritical nationalism of many western Christians.
Simply the best introduction to Christian political thinking that I have read.
11 people found this helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?