[ the actual title of this page:]
http://WhatWouldJesusThink.info/fundamentalism-1.html

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The trouble with Christian "Conservatives", "Evangelicals" and
or "Fundamentalists" is that their "fundamentals" aren't at all
what was important or fundamental to Jesus Christ !

  Pages :   [ 1 ]   ~   2,  of Fundamentalism

Christian Fundamentalism is officially defined
as the belief in these "basic Fundamentals" :

  1. the inerrancy and infallibility of the Bible;
  2. the virgin birth of Jesus from Mary;
  3. the divinity of Jesus Christ;
  4. substitutionary death of Christ to atone for the sins of mankind ;
  5. the bodily resurrection of Christ and eventual return of Christ to judge the world.

Now Jesus said this about building on sound foundations:

{Matthew 7: 21–29}  

"Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.  On that day many will say to me, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many deeds of power in your name?'  Then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; go away from me, you evildoers.'  "Everyone then who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock.  The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on rock.  And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on sand.  The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell – and great was its fall!"  Now when Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were astounded at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority, and not as their scribes."


The trouble with "fundamentalists" is that – far from believing and acting on what Jesus surely would have called his "fundamentals", so-called "fundamentalists" have a knack for ignoring most of what was truly important to Jesus, while obsessing about issues about which Jesus said little or nothing.
        Although fundamentalists claim to believe in Jesus, it's Paul of Tarsus who is their real guiding star .Rather than being guided by what Jesus said himself, they have latched onto what Paul said about Jesus, as though Jesus lived and died not knowing who he was, and had to be explained to his followers after he was dead and gone

W A N T E D :

Preachers who will dare to preach what Jesus preached,
at the risk of suffering as Jesus predicted they would!

Jesus

        I invite you now to see for yourself what Jesus himself identified as his most important or "foundational" teaching, that upon which those who really want to follow Jesus should build their faith and their lives.  How many Christians do you know who call themselves "Conservatives", or "Fundamentalists", or "Evangelicals" live up to their names when it comes to believing and promoting these truths, which Jesus clearly indicated were uppermost in his mind?
        How many clergy in America today are in a position where they cannot or will not preach what Jesus taught because their very livelihood and their church buildings are entirely dependent on the whims of today's equivalent of "the Rich Young Man", who would reject the challenge of Jesus to turn their backs on their wealth, if anyone dared confront them with that challenge?
        This web page shows what Christian preachers would be preaching, if they were the true spokesmen for Jesus that they claim to be.

This is what Jesus preached :

1) The Supreme Importance of Liberality :

{ Matthew 19:16, 21-26 }
      When someone came to Jesus with this crucial question: "Good Master, what must I do to have eternal life and happiness?
        [ Jesus told him that he must begin by obeying the ten commandments.  But, then...]

"If you want to be perfect, go and sell everything you have and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me."  But when the young man heard this, he went away sadly, for he was very rich.

Without walking away, most "Christians" just tune out this teaching of Jesus these days, and pretend to follow Christ without really doing so.

. . .  Then Jesus said to his disciples, "It is almost impossible for a rich man to get into the Kingdom of Heaven.  I say it again – it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God!  When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astounded and said, "Then who can be saved?"   And Jesus replied, "For mortals it is impossible, but for God all things are possible."

"For the last two centuries it has been common teaching in Sunday School that there is a gate in Jerusalem called the eye of the needle through which a camel could not pass unless it stooped and first had all its baggage first removed.  After dark, when the main gates were shut, travellers or merchants would have to use this smaller gate, through which the camel could only enter unencumbered and crawling on its knees!  Great sermon material, with the parallels of coming to God on our knees without all our baggage."

Hebrew New Testament Studies

'The camel and the eye of the needle', Matthew 19:24, Mark 10:25, Luke 18:25
Just where is that gate in Jerusalem?
www.biblicalhebrew.com/nt/camelneedle.htm

"A lovely story and an excellent parable for preaching but unfortunately unfounded!  From at least the 15th century, and possibly as early as the 9th but not earlier, this story has been put forth, however, there is no evidence for such a gate, nor record of reprimand of the architect who may have forgotten to make a gate big enough for the camel and rider to pass through unhindered.
        Variations on this theme include that of ancient inns having small entrances to thwart thieves, or the story of an old mountain pass known as the "eye of the needle", so narrow that merchants would have to dismount from their camels and were thus easier prey for brigands lying in wait.
      . . .  Try as people may to rationalize away the difficulty of getting a camel through a needle's eye, it really appears that Jesus meant exactly what it appears that he meant: getting into Heaven while one is rich is as impossible as getting through a tiny space when one is the size of a camel – save through the miraculous intervention of God. –   He used a beautiful Hebrew hyperbole, as in the tree sticking out of one's eye whilst one is removing a speck in another's eye!  Indeed, Jewish Talmudic literature uses a similar aphorism about an elephant passing through the eye of a needle as a figure of speech implying the unlikely or impossible. (Babylonian Talmud, Berakoth, 55b)


If we paraphrase Matthew 19:16 – 22 only a little, in order to make it a monologue applying to all of us, instead of a dialogue applying to only one person, the words of Jesus take on a powerful new meaning :
        "This is the kind of behavior that God requires of those who hope to earn eternal life:"
( First, keep the basic commandments.)   But then,

"If you wish to be perfect, (which will be almost impossible for a rich person) go, sell your possessions, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me."
When the young man heard this word, he went away grieving, for he had many possessions."

In this time of unimagined prosperity in countries like America, in contrast to unimaginable misery in many other parts of the world, how many "Christians" are being taught what Jesus actually taught, as opposed to the pablum passed off as his teaching?  Instead of being concerned about taking and passing the test of salvation which Jesus gave to the "Rich Young Man",  millions of "Christian Conservatives" much prefer Paul's incredibly easier test of "salvation by faith alone".  { Compare and contrast the teaching of Jesus to that of Paul – in their own words – on this most important subject at http://WhatWouldJesusThink.info/salvation }.   How many churches in America take Jesus' teaching seriously when it comes to telling their members – who are rich, by the Bible's standard – that   "It is almost impossible for those who are much more prosperous than others to be saved," unless they are willing to share their extra shirts and food (and everything else) with those deprived of even the most basic of necessities of life?
        Jesus knew full well how very alienating his teaching would be to those who are "successful" at accumulating great amounts of the world's goods.  And yet, because this part of his teaching is the heart and soul of his message, there was no way that he would water it down.  Sadly, however, in order to avoid the alienation and persecution that Jesus predicted would accompany the teaching of his message of detachment, unselfishness and generosity, that is precisely what his so-called followers have done to their supposed Master's teaching.   Just look at the contrast between what the Master himself said, and what most paid clergy teach regarding the accumulation of wealth :

2) You cannot be both rich and a follower of Christ :

{ Luke 16:13-15}  

No slave can serve two masters; for a slave will either hate the one and love the other, or be devoted to the one and despise the other.  You cannot serve God and wealth."  The Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard all this, and they ridiculed him.  So he said to them,  "You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of others; but God knows your hearts; for what is prized by human beings is an abomination in the sight of God."

For Jesus, as for many other great prophets of the Bible, the pursuit of riches and the pursuit of salvation are so incompatible  that choosing one automatically turns one away from the other.  And the more riches one possesses the harder it is to choose salvation, because the sacrifices that must be made are that much greater.  Any true follower of Christ who sees today's "Religious Right" inviting the wealthy to come into their churches, to bring all their money in with them, to share it generously – not with the poor, as Jesus taught – but with the churches and their clergy, knows that there is something very wrong with this picture.  When they see people claiming to be "men of God" sharing the hopes and dreams of the Republican Party of reducing or eliminating services for the poor, so as to lower taxes on the well-to-do,   true Christians (and Jews) recognize that this so-called "Christian Coalition" is no marriage made in heaven, but an unholy alliance, designed to advance not GOD's cause but the G.O.P.'s.
      The multi-millionaire founder and president of the "Christian Coalition" Pat Robertson, who also owns the 700 Club and the "Christian Broadcasting Network", wasn't a particularly religious Baptist until he met a Dutch "mystic" named Cornelius Vanderbreggen, who taught him that a man of God can be rich. " God is generous, not stingy,"  Vangerbreggan told Robertson, as they dined at an elegant hotel.  "He wants you to have the best."
        Given the choice between the Gospel according to Jesus, and the Gospel according to Robertson and Vanderbreggan, Conservatives don't hesitate to embrace the one that tells them they are saved just the way they are, no matter how wealthy they are, or how much misery they are able to ignore in the world around them.
        That certainly wasn't the way those closest to Jesus understood his teaching.  (according to the Acts of the Apostles, Ch.2 , 44 :) 

" All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need."
{ Luke 14:33-35}  

So therefore, none of you can become my disciple if you do not give up all your possessions.  Salt is good; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is fit neither for the soil nor for the manure pile; they throw it away.  Let anyone with ears to hear listen!"

        This is the way the earliest of the gospels, relates Jesus teaching:
{ Mark 10:17-27}  

As he was setting out on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before him, and asked him, "Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?""You know the commandments: 'You shall not murder; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness; You shall not defraud; Honor your father and mother.'"
        He said to him, "Teacher, I have kept all these since my youth."
        Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said, "You lack one thing; go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me."

{Luke 12:15-21}

And he said to them,   "Take care!   Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one's life does not consist in the abundance of possessions."   Then he told them a parable:   "The land of a rich man produced abundantly.  And he thought to himself,  'What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?'   Then he said, 'I will do this:  I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods.  And I will say to my soul,  'Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many year; relax, eat, drink, be merry.'  
      But God said to him, 'You fool!  This very night your life is being demanded of you.  And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?'  So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God."  "Yes, every man is a fool who gets rich on earth but not in heaven.  Sell what you have and give to those in need.  This will fatten your purses in heaven!   And the purses of heaven have no rips or holes in them.  Your treasures there will never disappear; no thief can steal them; no moth can destroy them.  Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be."

Rich like Jesus :

It appears that the very "successful" Pentecostal African American preacher, Bishop Jakes, shares the Gospel according to Robertson:
        "Jakes felt betrayed by West Virginians for criticizing his opulent lifestyle. . .  Jakes contended that soldiers gambled for Jesus Christ's cloak while he was on the cross, so he must have had great wealth (everybody who has a shirt on their back knows how weathy that makes them !?!), and therefore Christ's followers should emulate him by being wealthy."
INFOMERCIALS :

"Rather than simply spreading the gospel, Jakes' television broadcasts double as infomercials to promote his movie, his forthcoming conferences, cruises, and the sale of his latest video or book. Every time Jakes preaches a new sermon series. . .  it can procure him a fortune."

[ from http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/dn/ religion/stories/012106dnreljakesbook.1ee95159.html ]

The following was reported on a web site that approved of these 15 wealthiest U.S. preachers, all conservatives and Christians (except for the 15th) :

WealthiestUSpreachers
  [ http://www.etinside.com/?p=11679 ]

After riding in the same carriage to the Fifth Avenue Baptist Church in New York, along with another of the richest Christian multi-millionaires of the twentieth century, John D. Rockefeller, these are the "biblical words of wisdom" which Andrew Carnegie addressed to a bible class on that day: "I was born to the blessed heritage of poverty . . .  We hear a good deal in these days about poverty – 'Oh, abolish poverty!'  But the saddest day that civilization ever saw will be that in which poverty doesn't win its way.  The poor, thank God, we will always have with us."
        Commenting on gifts by this same Andrew Carnegie, a contemporary N. Y. Times editor gushed :   "When a man who is a great many times a millionaire, as Mr. Carnegie is, can demonstrate that he has done good both in the accumulation and in the scattering of his fortune,  there is nothing left for the Socialist and the demagogue to say to which sensible persons will pay any attention." ( Nor do such people pay any attention to Jesus, who taught that the giving of people like Carnegie was of little value in God's eyes, when compared to the generosity of poor people who have only a mite to give, and yet give it!)   Those clergy and church members who don't dare espouse the interests of the poor, for fear of alienating their more prosperous benefactors on whose contributions their churches have been made to depend have parted with Christ centuries ago.  If they are ever going to rejoin him, they are going to need to go back to his teaching and start taking it seriously.

Can any Bible-believing Jew or Christian actually imagine that God made this world with all of its abundance so that ambitious people like the Rockerfellers, Vanderbuilts, Gates, Waltons, and the like could end up controlling vast portions of that world for their own benefit alone, and then leave that "private property" to their children, (or even to their pets, if that was their "last will and testament")?   According to New York University economist Edward Wolf, writing in 1998,  (although these figures change by the hour), "The financial wealth of the top 1% now exceeds the combined net worth of the bottom 95% of Americans .   Bill Gates' wealth alone exceeds the net worth of the bottom 45%.   The personal assets of Microsoft co-founders Paul Allen and Bill Gates, plus Berkshire Hathaway's (investment mogul) Warren Buffet exceed the combined gross domestic products of the world's 41 poorest countries, with their 550 million citizens."

The Bible upon which Jews, Christians and Muslims all base their faith portrays a Creator who intended the wealth of the world he created to belong to ALL of those he would put on this earth.  ,  How much worse do things have to get for so-called bible-believing people to recognize that this is contrary to the Creator's plans?


Many so-called "Christian" preachers teach that Jesus ( or God) has no problem with people being rich.  But the following is still another powerful illustration Jesus used to show how much God disapproves of this world's wealth being hoarded into huge piles by greedy and/or clever individuals :

{ Luke 16:20-31: } 

"One day Lazarus, a diseased beggar, was laid at the door of a rich man's house.   As he lay there longing for scraps from the rich man's table, the dogs would come and lick his open sores.   Finally the beggar died and was carried by the angels to be with Abraham in the place of the righteous dead.
        The rich man also died and was buried, and his soul went into hell.   There, in torment, he saw Lazarus in the far distance with Abraham.   'Father Abraham,' he shouted, 'have some pity! Send Lazarus over here if only to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in anguish in these flames.'  But Abraham said to him, 'Son, remember that during your life-time you had everything you wanted, and Lazarus had nothing.  So now he is here being comforted and you are in anguish. . ."

starvation figures

What if God cares enough about the whole world to hold us "Christians" in America with infinitely more wealth than millions of people in other parts of world responsible for doing our best to ignore those unlucky enough to have been born on the "other side of the tracks", in the many desperately poor communities of this world ?  Is this parable relevant only to rich vs. poor individuals?   Or does it relate to rich Christian nations vs. the many extremely poor nations of this world?

"And besides, there is a great chasm separating us, and anyone wanting to come to you from here is stopped at its edge; and no one over there can cross to us.'
        Then the rich man said,  'O Father Abraham, then please send him to my father's home – for I have five brothers – to warn them about this place of torment, lest they come here when they die.'   But Abraham said,  'The Scriptures have warned them again and again.  Your brothers can read them any time they want to.'  The rich man replied,  'No, Father Abraham, they won't bother to read them.  But if someone is sent to them from the dead, then they will turn from their sins.'  But Abraham said,  'If they won't listen to Moses and the prophets, they won't listen even though someone rises from the dead.'

Note that despite the remarkable similarity between Jesus' parable about the rich man and Charles Dickens' parable about Scrooge, Dickens is far more optimistic about the prospects for the repentance and salvation of the rich than is Jesus.  In contrast to Scrooge, whom Dickens portrays as being moved by the  ghostly apparitions to repentance and redemption, the Gospel holds out no such hope for its wealthy villains.  On the contrary, the Gospel insists : "If they won't listen to Moses and the prophets, they won't listen even though someone rises from the dead ."

        Note, too, that Jesus doesn't say the rich man is punished for the way he uses or misused his wealth, but simply because he was rich (which he wouldn't have been, if he had shared instead of accumulating his wealth).  The poor man, on the other hand, isn't rewarded for anything that he did, but simply for being poor, and unfortunate!


{ Luke 3:7-11 }  

"John (the Baptist) said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, "You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?  Bear fruits worthy of repentance.  Do not begin to say to yourselves,  'We have Abraham as our ancestor'; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham.  Even now the ax is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire."  And the crowds asked him, "What then should we do?"  In reply he said to them, "Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise."

Jesus, however, didn't have a problem only with the wealth of those whom we Americans call "the super rich", or the super powerful.  Does the parable which Jesus told of Lazarus and the Rich Man in Luke 16 apply only to millionaire individuals?  There are literally billions of people in the world today suffering like the "Lararus" of Jesus' parable, and millions of so-called Christians in countries like the United States living every day in unheard of luxury, enjoying much more comfortable lives than the "Rich Man" in the parable could even imagine, let alone afford.  Many Christians who live in great comfort in prosperous nations like America may be in for a tremendous shock on judgement day, if Jesus says these familiar words apply to them (as the inhabitants of a very wealthy nation)  :

". . . during your life-time you had everything you wanted, and billions of your brothers and sisters had nothing.  So now they are here being comforted; and you are there in anguish.   . . .


        Jesus insisted (thru the voice of Abraham) :'The Scriptures have warned them (and us) again and again.  Your brothers can read those Scriptures any time they want to.' . . . 'If they won't listen to Moses and the prophets, they won't listen even though someone rises from the dead.'

        ". . . during your life-time you had everything you wanted, and billions of your brothers and sisters had nothing.  So now they are here being comforted; and you are there in anguish.  . . .
        Jesus insisted (thru the voice of Abraham) :'The Scriptures have warned them (and us) again and again.  Your brothers can read those Scriptures any time they want to.' . . . 'If they won't listen to Moses and the prophets, they won't listen even though someone rises from the dead.'

How many so-called Christian preachers do you know who are challenging America's high-living Christians, as this web site is trying to do, to live by those scriptures ?   Unless and until they do, don't wonder why the vast majority of people who imagine themselves to be "Christians" do not identify with the down-and-out, such as :

{ John, 3: 16 – 18 }  

" We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us – and we ought to lay down our lives for one another.  How does God's love abide in anyone who has the world's goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help?  Little children, let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action."


Instead of being concerned about such issues, and supporting those who are, many so-called "Christian" preachers promote the idea that God is a kind of golden goose, whose job is to constantly bless us rather than to move us to "bless" others, by sharing our extraordinary wealth in this world with those who don't have enough to live on.  Such preachers and leaders have driven to the very top of the NY Times Best Seller List a book promising earthly blessings to those who read the book and pray "The Prayer of Jabez".


We think, on the other hand, that there are a lot of problems with the idea that God is in the business of constantly rewarding some people with "blessings", because, by the same token, he must be "cursing" the great multitude of mankind who aren't so blessed.  See blessings.html.

Why it's "almost impossible" for paid clergy
to preach what Jesus preached :

When Hitler came to power and started to do his worst, his aides asked how he'd keep the German churches from protesting.  ( Keep in mind that if, instead of siding with Hitler, the Christians of Germany - who represented some 96% of the population - had joined with the Jews, Jehovah Witnesses, handicaps, homosexuals and the "Liberals", instead of siding with Hitler, there would have no war and no holocaust !)  But Hitler responded: "I have the churches in my back pocket."  He then proceeded to arrange for the Nazi government to pay for the support of the clergy, their churches and their schools, so long as they didn't get in his way.  Now you know why so few of those clergy dared to speak out against Hitler, no matter how heinous his policies became !

bettertogive

Jesus understood the dynamic of preachers being bought off by the wealthy and the powerful very well.  To paraphrase some of his own words,  "If you join their world, the rich and the prosperous will love you as one of their very own".  (or "If you don't rock their boat, they will reward you – so to speak – with a boat of your very own to enjoy".) 
        How many so-called "Christian" preachers in America today are experiencing the anger and persecution that Jesus predicted would be the lot of those who would take up his cause?  If you read John's Gospel carefully, you will come to realize that when he uses the word "world", he doesn't mean anything like the globe that we people think of when we use that word in modern times.  You will see from the context that it means something more like what we would refer to as "the establishment" and more precisely "the religious hierarchy".

Why the clergy are often the greatest obstacle
to the good news being preached to and on behalf of the poor

{John 15: 18-21} 

"If the world hates you, be aware that it hated me before it hated you.  If you belonged to the world, the world would love you as its own.  Because you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world –  therefore the world hates you.  Remember the word that I said to you, 'Servants are not greater than their master.'  If they persecuted me, they will persecute you; if they kept my word, they will keep yours also.  But they will do all these things to you on account of my name, because they do not know him who sent me. . ."

{John 16:2-3}  

" They will put you out of the synagogues.  Indeed, an hour is coming when those who kill you will think that by doing so they are offering worship to God.  And they will do this because they have not known the Father or me.  But I have said these things to you so that when the hour comes you may remember that I told you about them."

On the other hand, Jesus said this about the clergy of his day, with whom he did battle constantly until they put him to death, just three short years after he started his ministry : "You love the seats of honor in the synagogues (houses of worship) and the respectful greetings from everyone as you walk through the markets!" 
        For every Christian clergyman who shows an interest in "seats of honor and respectful greetings everywhere they go", how many do you know who are willing to pay the price of teaching what Jesus of Nazareth emphasized in HIS preaching?   And that was as follows :
        When asked how to fulfill the second of his two great commandments, Christ replied that his followers should model their lives on non-believing "Good Samaritans" who show pity on the downtrodden, rather than follow the lead of ministers and church people who don't :

{ Luke 10 : 25-37 }

One day an expert on Moses' laws came to test Jesus' orthodoxy by asking him this question: "Teacher, what does a man need to do to live forever in heaven?"  Jesus replied, "What does Moses' law say about it?"  "It says," he replied, "that you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind.   And you must love your neighbor just as much as you love yourself."  "Right!" Jesus told him.  "Do this and you shall live!"
      But, wanting to justify himself, the man asked,  "Which neighbors must I love?"     And Jesus replied with an illustration:
        "A Jew going on a trip from Jerusalem to Jericho was attacked by bandits.  They stripped him of his clothes and money, and beat him up and left him lying half dead beside the road.  By chance a priest came along; and when he saw the man lying there, he crossed to the other side of the road and passed him by.  A temple – assistant walked over and looked at him lying there, but then went on.
        But a despised Samaritan* (a heretic) came along, and when he saw him, he felt deep pity.  Kneeling beside him the Samaritan soothed his wounds with medicine and bandaged them.  Then he put the man on his donkey and walked along beside him till they came to an inn, where he nursed him through the night.  The next day he handed the innkeeper two silver coins and told him to take care of the man.  "If his bill runs higher than that,"  he said,  " I'll pay the difference the next time I am here."
        "Now which of these three," Jesus asked, "would you say was a neighbor to the bandit's victim?"   The man replied, "The one who showed him some pity."   Then Jesus said, "Yes, now go and do the same."

        * The Jewish leaders showed just how much they despised Samaritans when they called Jesus one in { John 8:48 } :The Jews answered him, "Are we not right in saying that you are a Samaritan and have a demon?"
        Today's Pharisees would call Jesus something worst than a "Samaritan"; they would call him a "liberal".

Here is the way Jesus defined himself :


  "The Spirit of the Lord
is upon me;
he has appointed me to
preach Good News to the poor;
he has sent me to
heal the brokenhearted and to
announce that the blind shall see,
that captives shall be released
and the downtrodden shall
be freed (i.e. liberated)
from their oppressors."

{Luke 4:18} 

Some other noteworthy things to keep in mind about Jesus' teaching :


Now, be sure to proceed to our second page
on what Jesus viewed as "fundamental".