Today is the official launch date for Was Jesus a Socialist?, published by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute. Major online booksellers from Amazon to Barnes & Noble are featuring it now. The media campaign gets underway with Dennis Prager interviewing me on his nationally-syndicated radio show at 2:30 p.m. EDT today. Tomorrow (June 9), the Kindle version goes live.
Editor and publisher Steve Forbes endorses it as “a timely, lively, learned and well-argued masterpiece.” In the Foreword, Daniel Hannan of Britain concludes that ‘It is hard to find any argument for coercive force in Jesus’s teachings.” Historian Burton Folsom says, “Thanks to this book, progressives will never again be able to claim with any credibility that Jesus would stoop to be a socialist.”
If you’re asking yourself, “Didn’t I already read that several years ago?”, the answer is NO. I wrote a short essay under the same title in 2015, but this new offering is a 160-page book. It’s meant to be a more thorough examination of the subject. Aimed at a broad, lay audience, it debunks the “Jesus was a socialist” canard that has deceived so many people for decades.
Perhaps you’re asking yourself this question too: “I’m neither a socialist nor a Christian, so why should I read this book?” My answer is, For the same reason you might read a book on ancient Rome even though you’re neither ancient nor Roman: You want to know what happened. You want to know what an important man in world history actually said, instead of what prevaricators claim he really meant.
Or maybe you’re an atheist who is skeptical of socialism but you don’t know how to respond to a Christian who says Jesus was sympathetic to it. I suppose you could insist that the Christian convert to atheism before he can understand why socialism is neither Christian nor a good idea. Good luck with that; you’ll waste both his time and yours. But if you let it, this book can be a powerful weapon in your intellectual arsenal. Here are just seven things you’ll learn in this book, each one a good reason in itself to get a copy:
- MSNBC host Laurence O’Donnell claimed to a nationwide audience that Jesus supported a 100 percent income tax rate. That’s a total fabrication.
- Tax collectors are repeatedly admonished in the New Testament and Jesus himself never called for a tax hike.
- The Apostle Peter warned against “busybodies and meddlers” in the affairs of others.
- It can be harder for a socialist to get to Heaven than for a camel to go through the eye of a needle because getting there doesn’t depend on one’s political beliefs.
- Jesus’s economics-related parables all support private property, the sanctity of contract, voluntary association, peaceful exchange and supply and demand.
- No one in the New Testament claimed that money itself was evil, but Jesus and others cautioned that worshiping it or allowing it (or anything else) to corrupt your character certainly was.
- Theft is an injustice that’s never justified by the cause or purpose its practitioners claim for it.
In my dreams, I think of the difference this book could make if everybody who reads it were to buy a second copy for their pastor, priest, son or daughter, friend or business associate. It could be huge. If you’re concerned about winning the future in the battle against socialism, please consider joining us in getting this book in the hands of as many people as possible. Thank you!