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"Where do we find the fulfillment of God’s dream for Israel and humanity? In the way things are now? Or only beyond death? Or in a very different world this side of death?"    - Borg, Marcus J.; Crossan, John Dominic ; The First Christmas


"Emphasis on the Marginalized . . . in Luke the angelic announcement of his birth is made to 'shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night' (2: 8). As a class, shepherds are even lower in the social order than peasants and would qualify quite well as the 'lowly' and the 'hungry' of Mary’s hymn, the Magnificat. This is another overture preparation for a theme very much emphasized in Luke’s gospel. He insists, again more than the other gospels, on the obligations of the rich to the poor, the outcasts, and the marginalized."    - Borg, Marcus J.; Crossan, John Dominic ; The First Christmas


"What would you think of a book that started with the opener, 'I am going to discuss Mahatma Gandhi as a Hindu saint, but I’ll skip all that distracting stuff about British imperial India'? Or another with, 'I am going to describe Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as a Christian saint, but I’ll get right to his biography and skip all that stuff about racism in America as background baggage'?"    - Borg, Marcus J.; Crossan, John Dominic ; The First Christmas


"Eschatology is not, of course, about the destruction of the earth, but about its transfiguration, not about the end of the world, but about the end of evil, injustice, violence— and imperialism. Think of the eschaton as the Great Divine Cleanup of the World."    - Marcus Borg & John Dominic Crossan ; The First Christmas


"The titles of the Roman emperor Caesar Augustus were: Divine, Son of God, God, God from God, Lord, Redeemer, Liberator, and Savior of the World. To use any of them of the newborn Jesus would be either low lampoon or high treason. And, since empires always know their opponents, Rome was not laughing. But for now, what did those titles mean as applied to Caesar Augustus? Without knowing that we will never understand what they meant when transferred by some Jews to Jesus."
 
   - Marcus Borg & John Dominic Crossan ; The First Christmas


"We think hearing their ancient and contemporary meanings matters particularly for American Christians today. To say the obvious, America is in the powerful and perilous position of being the empire of our day. As we will see, the stories of the first Christmas are pervasively anti-imperial. In our setting, what does it mean to affirm with the Christmas stories that Jesus is the Son of God (and the emperor is not), that Jesus is the savior of the world (and the emperor is not), that Jesus is Lord (and the emperor is not), that Jesus is the way to peace on earth (and the emperor is not)."    - Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan ; The First Christmas


"[The Christmas stories] are about a different kind of world. God’s dream for us is not simply peace of mind, but peace on earth."    - Marcus Borg & John Dominic Crossan ; The First Christmas


"For Augustus and for Rome it was always about peace, but always about peace through victory, peace through war, peace through violence."    - Marcus Borg & John Dominic Crossan ; The First Christmas


"There are, in other words, two utterly divergent descriptions of God’s final solution to the existence of imperialism, one violent and the other nonviolent, one extermination in a Great Final Battle and the other conversion at a Great Final Feast. They are both there from one end of the Christian Bible to the other. Which one, do you think, is announced by those Christmas stories? When Luke’s angels announce “peace on earth” to those shepherds at Bethlehem, is it peace through victory or peace through justice?"    - Marcus Borg & John Dominc Crossan ; The First Christmas


"Because of the importance of Christmas, how we understand the stories of Jesus’ birth matters. What we think they’re about – how we hear them, read them, interpret them – matters . . . The Christmas story is the entire Christian gospel in miniature. Get it, and you get everything; miss it, and you miss all."    - Marcus J. Borg & John Dominic Crossan ; The First Christmas


After all, are we not all oppressed, especially those who think that their freedom is found in social, political, and economic domination of others? Although these questions point to an essential truth of the gospel of liberation, they have been used by oppressors for untruth. The untruth of these questions lies in the subjective and often undisclosed intention of the people who ask them. While pretending to be concerned about the universal character of the human condition, oppressors are in fact concerned to justify their own particular status in society. They want to be oppressors and Christians at the same time. Since the oppressed are the only true Christians, oppressors claim to be victims, not for the purpose of being liberated but for their own social interests in retaining a "Christian" identity while being against Jesus Christ. This is what Dietrich Bonhoeffer in another context called "cheap grace." I call it hypocrisy and blasphemy.    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


"[Jesus's] basic issue, still basic today, is that most people have solved the human dilemma for themselves at the expense of everyone else, putting them down so as to stay afloat themselves. This vicious, antisocial way of coping with the necessities of life only escalates the dilemma for the rest of society. All of us know the result all too well, for we have experienced it ourselves in one form or another: the breakdown of mutually supportive human relations that results in the distinction between the haves and have-nots; the ruling class subjugating serfs, sharecroppers, and blue-collar workers; the battle of the sexes; dictatorships of one kind or the other; exploitation in the workplace; and on and on."    - James Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus: A Historical Search for the Original Good News


Jesus’ message was simple, for he wanted to cut straight through to the point: trust God to look out for you by providing people who will care for you, and listen to him when he calls on you to provide for them.    - James M. Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus


Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the gentile world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well. Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor.    - Jesus ; Luke 12.27-33


Anyone who chooses to do the will of God [what Jesus taught] will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own.    - Jesus ; John 7.17


"Their [the acts of Jesus] 'divine power' lay not in a manipulation of nature but in confrontation with the dominant order of oppression and in witness to different possibilities."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5:5


“Profit should never come at the cost of human blood. Any government that places profit before people is pure evil.”    - Suzy Kassem ; Rise Up and Salute the Sun: The Writings of Suzy Kassem


“Our nation was born in genocide when it embraced the doctrine that the original American, the Indian, was an inferior race. Even before there were large numbers of Negroes on our shore, the scar of racial hatred had already disfigured colonial society. From the sixteenth century forward, blood flowed in battles over racial supremacy. We are perhaps the only nation which tried as a matter of national policy to wipe out its indigenous population. Moreover, we elevated that tragic experience into a noble crusade. Indeed, even today we have not permitted ourselves to reject or feel remorse for this shameful episode. Our literature, our films, our drama, our folklore all exalt it. Our children are still taught to respect the violence which reduced a red-skinned people of an earlier culture into a few fragmented groups herded into impoverished reservations.”    - Martin Luther King Jr. ; Why We Can’t Wait


“To be sure, the church has greatly assisted the colonialist; backing his ventures, helping his conscience, contributing to the acceptance of colonization even by the colonized.”    - Albert Memmi ; The Colonizer and the Colonized


“Colinialism hardly ever exploits the whole of a country. It contents itself with bringing to light the natrual resources, which it extracts, and exports to meet the needs of the mother country's industries, thereby allowing certain sectors of the colony to become relatively rich. But the rest of the colony follows its path of under-development and poverty, or at all events sinks into it more deeply.”    - Frantz Fanon ; The Wretched of the Earth


“It’s about how we show up in this world in the limited time we have.”    - Michelle Alexander ; Spirit of Justice with Michelle Alexander & Angela Davis


"We have to imagine another way of being, another way of existing in the world.”    - Angela Davis ; Spirit of Justice with Michelle Alexander & Angela Davis


“We always have to act as if revolution were possible. We have to act as if it were possible to change the world. And if we do that work, the world is gonna change. Even if it doesn’t change the way we need it to change right now, it will change.”    - Angela Davis ; Spirit of Justice with Michelle Alexander & Angela Davis


"'Go,' said Jesus, 'your faith has healed you.'”    - Mark ; Mark 10.52


“Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”    - Mark ; Mark 5.34


“It is these [the marginalized] whom Jesus tells to have hope, that God is not like their oppressors have made them think, that the end of their misfortunes is at hand, that the Kingdom of God is coming and is for them.”    - Jon Sobrino ; Jesus the Liberator


“Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them."    - Mark ; Mark 11.23


"He replied, 'If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.'"    - Luke ; Luke 17.6


"He replied, 'Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.'"    - Matthew ; Matthew 17.20


"Liberation theologies including Christian feminists, charge that the experience out of which Christian theology has emerged is not universal experience but the experience of the dominant culture . . . liberationists therefore, propose that theology must emerge out of particular experiences of the oppressed people of God."    - Jacquelyn Grant ; White Women’s Christ and Black Women’s Jesus


"Theology as developed in Europe and America is limited when it approaches the majority of human beings."    - Jacquelyn Grant ; White Women’s Christ and Black Women’s Jesus


“So watch yourselves. If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them. Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying ‘I repent,’ you must forgive them.”    - Luke ; Luke 17.3-4


“If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand.”    - Mark ; Mark 3:25


“From a Black women’s vantage point then, the language of partnership is merely a rewording of the language of reconciliation, which proves empty rhetoric unless it is preceded by liberation.”    - Jacquelyn Grant ; White Women’s Christ and Black Women’s Jesus


“By its very nature  Primitive Christianity stood contrasted with the upper class not first as Christianity, but as a movement of the proletarian lower class.”    - Adolf Deissmann ; New Light on the New Testament From the Records of the Graeco-Roman Period


"If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over."    - Matthew ; Matthew 18:15


"There has been a tendency to isolate the cross from the historical course that led Jesus to it by virtue of his conflicts with those who held political religious power. In this way the cross has been turned into nothing more than a paradigm of the suffering to which all human beings are subject insofar as they are limited beings. This has given rise to a mys- tique of suffering rather than to a mystique of following Jesus, whose historical career led to the historical cross."    - Jon Sobrino ; Christology at the Crossroads


"We would not reject the image of God as a Suffering God and would welcome the demise of that distant, impassive patriarch in the clouds who is beyond being affected by the turmoil below. The advent of the Suffering God changes the entire face of theology, but it does not necessarily offer liberation for those who suffer."    - Joanne Carlson Brown & Rebecca Parker ; God So Loved the World? (Christianity, Patriarchy, and Abuse)


"The only legitimate reason for women to remain in the church will be if the church were to condemn as anathema the glorification of suffering. If the church is the place where cycles of abuse are named, condemned, and broken can it be a haven of blessing and a place of peace for women. That the church is such a place is not clearly evident. Whether Christianity in essence frees or imprisons is the issue that must be considered."    - Joanne Carlson Brown & Rebecca Parker ; God So Loved the World? (Christianity, Patriarchy, and Abuse)


"Many women, however, even when conscious of the church's contribution to our suffering, do not leave. We stay in the institution. Feminist theologians who attempt to rework the tradition by finding feminist undercurrents and countercultures, doing new quests for the historical feminist Jesus, and writing women back unto the Bible and the tradition (the Inclusive Language Lectionary is a good example) are trying valiantly to 'fix' the institution so that they can remain in it. They enter the ordained ministry in order to 'redeem' the church, but they pay so high a personal, emotional, and psychological price that they begin to resemble the very people they want to redeem. All the while, they call to their crucified lord to understand their suffering and support them in their times of trial and martyrdom."
   - Joanne Carlson Brown & Rebecca Parker ; God So Loved the World? (Christianity, Patriarchy, and Abuse)


"The qualities that Christianity idealizes, especially for women, are also those of a victim: sacrificial love, passive acceptance of suffering, humility, meekness, etc. Since these are the qualities idealized in Jesus 'who died for our sins,' his functioning as a model reinforces the scapegoat syndrome for women"
   - Mary Daly ; Beyond God the Father


"Christianity has been a primary—in many women's lives the primary—force in shaping our acceptance of abuse. The central image of Christ on the cross as the savior of the world communicates the message that suffering is redemptive. If the best person who ever lived gave his life for others, then, to be of value we should likewise sacrifice ourselves. Any sense that we have a right to care for our own needs is in conflict with being a faithful follower of Jesus. Our suffering for others will save the world."    - Joanne Carlson Brown & Rebecca Parker ; God So Loved the World? (Christianity, Patriarchy, and Abuse)


"Women are acculturated to accept abuse. We come to believe that it is our place to suffer. Breaking silence about the victimization of women and the ways in which we have become anesthetized to our violation is a central theme in women's literature, theology, art, social action, and politics. With every new revelation we confront again the deep and painful secret that sustains us in oppression: We have been convinced that our suffering is justified."
   - Joanne Carlson Brown & Rebecca Parker ; God So Loved the World? (Christianity, Patriarchy, and Abuse)


"The basic fact is that Christianity as it was born in the mind of this Jewish teacher and thinker appears as a technique of survival for the oppressed."    - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


"There is one overmastering problem that the socially and politically disinherited always face: Under what terms is survival possible? . . . [Jesus's] words were directed to the House of Israel, a minority within the Greco-Roman world, smarting under the loss of status, freedom, and autonomy, haunted by the dream of the restoration of a lost glory and a former greatness."    - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


"We begin with the simple historical fact that Jesus was a Jew . . . The second important fact for our consideration is that Jesus was a poor Jew . . . The third fact is that Jesus was a member of a minority group in the midst of a larger dominant and controlling group."    - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


"It is necessary to examine the religion of Jesus against the background of his own age and people, and to inquire into the content of his teaching with reference to the disinherited and the underprivileged."    - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


"The masses of men live with their backs constantly against the wall. They are the poor, the disinherited, the dispossessed. What does our religion say to them? The issue is not what it counsels them to do for others whose need may be greater, but what religion offers to meet their own needs. The search for an answer to this question is perhaps the most important religious quest of modern life."    - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


"What word does Christianity have to offer for those of us who live with our backs constantly against the walls of white supremacist heterosexist patriarchal ableist capitalism?"    - CHANEQUA WALKER-BARNES ; Why I Gave Up Church; Bearings Online. October 12, 2017


"To those who need profound succor and strength to enable them to live in the present with dignity and creativity, Christianity often has been sterile and of little avail. The conventional Christian word is muffled, confused, and vague. Too often the price exacted by society for security and respectability is that the Christian movement in its formal expression must be on the side of the strong against the weak. This is a matter of tremendous significance, for it reveals to what extent a religion that was born of a people acquainted with persecution and suffering has become the cornerstone of a civilization and of nations whose very position in modern life has too often been secured by a ruthless use of power applied to weak and defenseless peoples."    - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


"A community cannot be resisting the powers' exercise of domination while reproducing their patterns in its own midst."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The contrast between the discipleship rejection story of the rich man and the discipleship acceptance story of Bartimaeus—representing opposite ends of the social scale—would appear to be another indication of a clear 'class bias' of Mark. The conclusion to that story in turn identifies the discipleship community with and alternative economic order based on sharing. The reader has been prepared for both the class-criticism and the communist solution in the first construction cycle, especially in the wilderness feeding stories, in which the little on hand is transformed into 'enough' through the practice of sharing. This symbolic action becomes concretized in the new community of shared assets and extended family. Mark reflects an economic ideology of neither charity-dependent 'wandering charismatic poverty,' nor respectable middle-class autonomy (the ideology of the 'ten percent tithe'). It was a community of shared production and consumption."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"There are many today who simply to not believe that their liberation is dependent upon being able to talk or walk. They insist on their right to live fully human and 'whole' lives in a society that continues to define them as 'handicapped' only because they are different. Nonphysically disabled readers must be aware of the biases we unconsciously bring to the biblical narratives of 'healing.' Obviously any interpretation that stresses the biomedical definition of 'wholeness' excludes the physically disabled from the good news. If, however, we focus on the broader socio-symbolic meaning of illness and healing, the stories address us all equally. After all, in Mark the true impediments to discipleship have nothing to do with physical impairment, but with spiritual and ideological disorders."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"In the 1820s and 1830s, Paine’s memory was kept alive only by small, marginalized groups of freethinkers. In the early nineteenth century, Americans who cherished similar political, social, and religious views affirmed their common values by celebrating the birthdays of their heroes."      - Susan Jacoby ; Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism


"Mark's Jesus seeks always to restore the social wholeness denied to the sick/impure by this symbolic order. That is why his healing of the sick/impure is vitally interchangeable with his social intercourse with them. To one 'leper' he offers a declaration of wholeness, to another simply the solidarity of table fellowship. Both acts defy the symbolic order that segregates those lacking bodily integrity; both challenge the prevailing social boundaries and class barriers. This is why Jesus the healer was a threat to 'civic order.'"    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


Those who shut their ears to the cry of the poor will also cry out and not be answered.    - Wisdom ; Proverbs 21.13


"Happy are those who are concerned for the poor; the Lord will help them when they are in trouble."    - Psalmist ; Psalm 41:1 TEV


"God judges in favor of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry."    - Psalmist ; Psalm 146:6-7


“The denunciation of injustice implies the rejection of the use of Christianity to legitimize the established order.”     - Gustavo Gutiérrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


“Charity is today a 'political charity.'. . . it means the transformation of a society structured to benefit a few who appropriate to themselves the value of the work of others. This transformation ought to be directed toward a radical change in the foundation of society, that is, the private ownership of the means of production.”    - Gustavo Gutiérrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


“If there is no friendship with them [the poor] and no sharing of the life of the poor, then there is no authentic commitment to liberation, because love exists only among equals.”    - Gustavo Gutiérrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


“But the poor person does not exist as an inescapable fact of destiny. His or her existence is not politically neutral, and it is not ethically innocent. The poor are a by-product of the system in which we live and for which we are responsible. They are marginalized by our social and cultural world. They are the oppressed, exploited proletariat, robbed of the fruit of their labor and despoiled of their humanity. Hence the poverty of the poor is not a call to generous relief action, but a demand that we go and build a different social order.”    - Gustavo Gutiérrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


“So we speak of a Black God, Mother God, Worker God. This de-mystifies what's been passed on to us! In our process of organization and liberation of our people, it's important to meet a God who is more like us.”    - Silvia Regina de Lima Silva quoted by Mev Puleo ; The Struggle Is One: Voices and Visions of Liberation


"You see, there's an immediate relationship between God, oppression, liberation: God is in the poor who cry out. And God is the one who listens to the cry and liberates, so that the poor no longer need to cry out.”    - Mev Puleo ; The Struggle Is One: Voices and Visions of Liberation


“My son, the Holy Church is on the right, but Jesus Christ was always on the left.”    - Isabel Allende ; The House of the Spirits


"It is practice, not 'the right name,' that is recognized in the kingdom. This teaching also forbids the erection of exclusive and rigid social boundaries around the community of faith. Jesus seems to understand the relationship between the power of monopoly and the monopoly of power; the quickest way to undermine aspirations to social control is to keep the definitions of 'belonging' ultimately fluid and inclusive."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"In other words, disciples have no corner on the ministry of healing and liberation, and therefore should without prejudice work alongside those whose practice is redemptive."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Standing at the structural heart of Mark's story, [the cross] has redefined the meaning of the discipleship journey in decidedly concrete terms. Yet how many generations of interpreters have insisted on spiritualizing the cross, transforming it from a strictly political to a strictly religious symbol?"    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"To be 'ashamed' . . . in the New Testament denotes identification with someone or something which, according to the prevailing social dynamics, would result in loss of status."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Jesus has revealed that his messiahship means political confrontation with, not rehabilitation of, the imperial state. Those who wish to 'come after him' will have to identify themselves with his subversive program. The stated risk is that the disciple will face the test of loyalty under interrogation by state authorities."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The threat to punish by death is the bottom line of the power of the state; fear of this threat keeps the dominant order intact. By resisting this fear and pursuing kingdom practice even at the cost of death, the disciple contributes to shattering the powers' reign of death in history. To concede the state's sovereignty in death is to refuse its authority in life."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Precisely because of this singularly political connotation, some have argued that Mark may have been borrowing a recruiting phrase [take up your cross] from the Jewish insurgents, who were regularly crucified for their guerilla activities. Whether or not this is the case, the turn of phrase could have no other meaning except as an invitation to share the consequences facing those who dared challenge the ultimate hegemony of imperial Rome."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of injustice, to undo the thongs of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke? If you offer your food to the hungry and satisfy the needs of the afflicted, then your light shall rise in the darkness and your gloom be like the noonday.    - Isaiah ; Isaiah 58:6-10


"How terrible it will be for those who make unfair laws, and those who write laws that make life hard for people. They are not fair to the poor, and they rob my people of their rights. They allow people to steal from widows and to take from orphans what really belongs to them."    - Isaiah ; Isaiah 10:1-2


In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’ Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?" The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.” Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”    - Jesus ; Luke 10.30-37


Those who give to the poor will lack nothing, but those who close their eyes to them receive many curses.    - Wisdom ; Proverbs 28.27


The righteous care about justice for the poor, but the wicked have no such concern.    - Wisdom ; Proverbs 29.7


Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.    - Wisdom ; Proverbs 14.31


One who oppresses the poor to increase his wealth and one who gives gifts to the rich—both come to poverty.    - Wisdom ; Proverbs 22.16


"Crucifixion was and remains a political and military punishment . . . Among the Romans it was inflicted above all on the lower classes, i.e., slaves, violent criminals, and the unruly elements in rebellious provinces, not least Judea . . . These were primarily people who on the whole had no rights, in other words, groups whose development had to be suppressed by all possible means to safeguard law and order in the state."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The discourse of healing and exorcism is central to this section. G. Theissen, in his study of the social function of the primitive Christian miracle stories, points out that most contemporaneous Hellenistic miracle sources originated from the aristocracy, and through the highly institutionalized practice of divination and technique-magic were 'concerned with the maintenance of the accepted order and way of life.' Other pagan tradition of 'sorcery and magic represent an individualistic reaction to growing social disintegration.' In contrast, the gospel miracles assert the promise and possibility of radical socio-political change in behalf of the disenfranchised. They function to subvert, not legitimate, the dominant order."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The parable's harvest thus symbolically represents a dramatic shattering of the vassal relationship between peasant and landlord. With such surplus, the farmer could not only eat and pay his rent, tithes, and debts, but indeed even purchase the land, and thus end his servitude forever."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"People read the gospel in accordance with the space they occupy in the dominant social order, and respond accordingly. If we 'listen but do not hear' it is not because of the obscurity of the word, but because of our loyalty to the prevailing ideology."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


He was one of the greatest teachers humanity has ever had . . . he belongs not solely to Christianity, but to the entire world; to all races and people.    - Mahatma Gandhi ; What Jesus Means to Me


"The 'worries of this age, the lure of wealth, and all other passions,' this resembles the general exhortations in early Christian ethical tradition, but Mark underlines the specific corruption of affluence."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The fruits of the messianic community come only with persecutions, and they must stand firm through the great tribulation. 'Falling away' is a technical term for the inability to accept or sustain discipleship practice."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


“Cursed is anyone who withholds justice from the foreigner, the fatherless or the widow.” Then all the people shall say, “Amen!”    - Deuteronomist ; Deuteronomy 27:19


"Do not deprive the foreigner or the fatherless of justice, or take the cloak of the widow as a pledge."
   - Deuteronomist ; Deuteronomy 24:17


"He defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and loves the foreigner residing among you, giving them food and clothing."    - Deuteronomist ; Deuteronomy 10:18


"Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind, but associate with the lowly. Do not be wise in your own estimation. Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all."    - Paul ; Romans 12:15-18


"The King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'"    - Jesus ; Matthew 25:40


"Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world."    - James ; James 1:27


"The second is like it, 'YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.'"    - Jesus ; Matthew 22:39


“So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 7:12


“Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute.”    - Psalmist ; Psalm 82:3


"He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God."    - Micah ; Micah 6:8


“Thus says the Lord: Do justice and righteousness, and deliver from the hand of the oppressor him who has been robbed. And do no wrong or violence to the resident alien, the fatherless, and the widow, nor shed innocent blood in this place.”    - Jeremiah ; Jeremiah 22:3


“Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute. Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.”    - Wisdom ; Proverbs 31:8-9


“Thus says the Lord of hosts, Render true judgments, show kindness and mercy to one another, do not oppress the widow, the fatherless, the sojourner, or the poor, and let none of you devise evil against another in your heart.”    - Zechariah ; Zechariah 7:9-10


“Learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow’s cause.”    - Isaiah ; Isaiah 1:17


". . . He is not far from each one of us."    - The Apostle Paul ; Acts 17:27


“Those who profess to favor freedom and yet deprecate agitation are men who want crops without plowing up the ground; they want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters. This struggle may be a moral one, or it may be a physical one, and it may be both moral and physical, but it must be a struggle. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress. In the light of these ideas, Negroes will be hunted at the North and held and flogged at the South so long as they submit to those devilish outrages and make no resistance, either moral or physical. Men may not get all they pay for in this world, but they must certainly pay for all they get. If we ever get free from the oppressions and wrongs heaped upon us, we must pay for their removal. We must do this by labor, by suffering, by sacrifice, and if needs be, by our lives and the lives of others.”    - Frederick Douglass ; If There Is No Struggle, There Is No Progress, 1857


"Belief in miracles is concentrated here on the specific situations of distress, on possession, disease, hunger, lack of success, and danger, in other words on situations which do not strike as hard in all social groups . . . the popular character of these stories is that in them people whose social and economic position left them no other outlet articulate their hopes . . . It seems to me that a degree of class correlation in the primitive Christian miracle stories can hardly be denied."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The cross has been transformed into a harmless, non-offensive ornament that Christians wear around their necks. Rather than reminding us of the 'cost of discipleship,' it has become a form of 'cheap grace,' an easy way to salvation that doesn’t force us to confront the power of Christ’s message and mission."    - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.

   - John the beloved ; 1 John 4:16


And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ to the glory and praise of God.

   - Paul the apostle ; Philppians 1:9-11


"To be captive to the way things are, to resist criticism and change, to brutally suppress efforts at humanization—is to be bypassed by the grace of God."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The blasphemy resulting from bad apologetics will always be pardonable . . . What is not pardonable is using theology to turn real human liberation into something odious. The real sin against the Holy Spirit is refusing to recognize, with 'theological' joy, some concrete liberation that is taking place before one's very eyes."    - Juan Luis Segundo ; Capitalism Versus Socialism: Crux Theologica


"As in the modern practice of civil disobedience, which might break the law in order to raise deeper issues of its morality and purpose, so Jesus, just before 'crossing the line,' issues a challenge to his audience. Pitting his mission of compassion and justice to the poor against the imperatives of the dominant order, Jesus calls the entire ideological edifice of the law to account."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"André Trocmé, in his provocative book Jesus and the Nonviolent Revolution (1964), argued that this episode, as a turning point of Jesus' public ministry, represents carefully staged political theater. Jesus could presumably heal the man with the withered hand in private without provoking a reaction, but chooses yet again to force the issue."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"In sum, Jesus' symbolic acts were powerful not because they challenged the laws of nature, but because the challenged the very structures of social existence."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Mark's Jesus seeks always to restore the social wholeness denied to the sick/impure by this symbolic order. This is why his healing of the sick/impure is virtually interchangeable with his social intercourse with them. To one 'leper' he offers a declaration of wholeness, to another simply the solidarity of table fellowship. Both acts defy the symbolic order that segregates those lacking bodily integrity; both challenge the prevailing social boundaries and class barriers. The is why Jesus the healer was a threat to 'civic order.'"    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The demon in the synagogue becomes the representative of the scribal establishment, whose 'authority' undergirds the dominant Jewish social order. Exorcism represents an act of confrontation in the war of myths in which Jesus asserts his alternative authority. Only this interpretation can explain why exorcism is at issue in the scribal counterattack."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesusn


"Healers and magicians abounded and practiced freely in Hellenistic antiquity, but Jesus encounters official hostility almost from the outset . . . he is politically accused for both his dealings and his exorcisms. There must be more to these stories than is immediately obvious to the modern reader."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The first step [calling the fishermen] in dismantling the dominant social order is to overturn the 'world' of the disciple: in the kingdom, the personal and the political are one."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The great apocalyptic novum, which invades the world at Jesus' baptism and sets salvation history in motion again, does not occur a the center of the social order, but at its peripheries."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The new creation begins with a renunciation of the old order."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"[Jesus's baptism] is a genuine act of repentance. As such it ends his participation in the structures and values of society. It concludes his involvement in the moral order into which he was born . . . the institutions through which power is ordered . . .the totality of the Jewish-Roman social construction of reality, has been terminated. All debts that have been incurred under the elitist ordering of power and its community life have been cancelled. [The ritual experience of baptism/repentance] has redeemed Jesus from his comprehensive indebtedness and the prescribed ways and means of discharging his obligations. He has become wholly unobliged."    - H. Waetjen ; The Construction of the Way into a Reordering of Power: An Inquiry into the Generic Conception of the Gospel According to Mark


Namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 2 Corinthians 5:19


The problem of suffering has haunted me for a very long time. It was what made me begin to think about religion when I was young, and it was what let me to question my faith when I was older. Ultimately, it was the reason I lost my faith.

   - Bart Ehrman ; God’s Problem


"Needless to say, the political powers have much to gain from the strict sequestering of the gospel to the private sphere; it was promoted by Nazi racism, and still today by military regimes in South Korea, Guatemala, Chile, and elsewhere."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me,

Because the LORD has anointed me

To bring good news to the afflicted;

He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,

To proclaim liberty to captives

And freedom to prisoners;

   - Isaiah the seer ; Isaiah 61.1


For he has set a day when he will [put the world to right] with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead.    - Paul ; Acts 17.31 (Emphasis added.)


"In Jesus Christ, God disarmed himself. God surrendered himself without protection and without arms to those who keep crying for more and more protection and arms. In Jesus Christ, God renounced violence. And of course, he did this unilaterally, without waiting for us to lay down our weapons first."    - Dorothee Solle ; Of War and Lovenon


“Far from being the father of jihad, [Prophet] Mohammad was a peacemaker, who risked his life and nearly lost the loyalty of his closest companions because he was determined to effect a reconciliation with Mecca.”    - Karen Armstrong ; Muhammad


“The Christian story did not drop from heaven fully written. It grew and developed year by year over a period of forty-two to seventy years. That is not what most Christians have been taught to think, but it is factual. Christianity has always been an evolving story. It was never, even in the New Testament, a finished story.”    - John Shelby Spong ; Biblical Literalism: A Gentile Heresy: A Journey into a New Christianity Through the Doorway of Matthew's Gospel


"Gospel is not an inappropriate title for this story, for Mark will indeed narrate a battle. But the 'good news' of Mark does not herald yet another victory of Rome's armies; it is a declaration of war upon the political culture of empire."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"By anchoring the story of discipleship firmly in the lived world of his audience [Mark] stood against those who used heavenly visions to legitimate a withdrawal from political struggle into gnostic communities."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"It helps, now and then, to step back and take the long view. The kingdom is not only beyond our efforts, it is even beyond our vision. We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction of the magnificent enterprise that is God's work. Nothing we do is complete, Which is another way of saying that the kingdom always lies beyond us. No statement says all that could be said. No prayer fully expresses our faith. No program accomplishes the church's mission. No set of goals and objectives includes everything. This is what we are about. We plant the seeds that one day will grow. We water seeds already planted, knowing that they hold future promise. We lay foundations that will need further development. We provide yeast that produces effects far beyond our capabilities. We cannot do everything, And there is a sense of liberation in realizing that. This enables us to do something, and to do it very well. It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way, An opportunity for the Lord's grace to enter and do the rest. We may never see the end results, but that is the difference Between the master builder and the worker. We are workers, not master builders, Ministers, not messiahs. We are prophets of a future not our own. Amen."    - Archbishop Oscar Romero ; Taking the Long View


Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat, but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.    - John Ernst Steinbeck III ; As quoted in A Short History of Progress (2004) by Ronald Wright. This has since been cited as a direct quote by some, but the remark may simply be a paraphrase, as no quotation marks appear around the statement and no earlier publication of this phrasing has been located.


"Simply put, social justice is nothing more than God’s love with legs on it."    - Rev. Dr. Serene Jones ; 2017 Disciples of Christ General Assembly


“Growth for the sake of growth is a cancerous madness.”    - Edward Abbey ; Water, p. 114


“I happen to know that the people of Kentucky will suffer if this healthcare bill passes. You may be OK. Your friends may be OK. But the people who put you in office will suffer because of this bill. It is time to stop calling God by other names when you really want to call God capitalism.”    - Rev. Traci Blackmon, executive minister of justice and witness ministries for the United Church of Christ ; July 13, 2017; Demonstration at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s Office against the Republican plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.


"We must recognize the intersecting realities of all of these, that [misogyny, heterosexism, and homophobia] are all a part of a social political narrative of power. That is they are all a part of the white, patriarchal, imperialistic, capitalistic power. Misogyny, heterosexism, and homophobia are secreted by that narrative, and they feed the agenda of white, male hegemony.  In as much as non-white, non-male, non-heterosexual persons can be effectively marginalized, can be set against one another, and in as much as marginalized communities marginalize and oppress one another, well then. The white, male agenda of oppressive power has been served."    - Rev Dr. Kelly Brown Douglass ; Eradicating the Misogyny, Heterosexism, and Homophobia in Black Communities


“The master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house.”    - Audre Lord ; This Bridge Called My Back by Cherríe Moraga and Gloria E. Anzaldúa


"You understand what I'm saying? We knew we couldn't make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin. And then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities. We could arrest their leaders. raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did."    - John Ehrlichman; Watergate co-conspirator and top Nixon advisor ; Legalize It All: How to win the war on drugs; Dan Baum; Harper’s Magazine


In contrast to modern industrial society, there was no independent religious sector with its independent institutions, organizations, and social activities. In first-century Palestine, religion was instead embedded within all sectors of the system as a whole.    - John H. Elliot ; Social Scientific Criticism of the New Testament: More on Methods and Models


"I pay close attention to the stories of conflict in the Gospel, especially Jesus' protracted enmity with the scribes and Pharisees.  What was the social function of such stories in a  world in which scribes and Pharisees still held political power?"    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Hegemonic ideology can be combated only with subversive ideology . . . the gospel writers were not mere observers of the ideological struggles of their time, but deeply involved in the war of myths."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The preoccupation with 'historicity' belongs of course peculiarly to nineteenth-century rationalism. Contemporary historians increasingly admit that 'history in the strict sense is a story about events, not the events themselves . . . [it] is always constructed, never reconstructed.'"    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"There is perhaps no expression more traditionally misunderstood than Jesus' invitation to these workers to become 'fishers of men' (Mark 1:17). This metaphor, despite the grand old tradition of missionary interpretation, does not refer to the 'saving of souls,' as if Jesus were conferring upon these men instant evangelist status. Rather, the image is carefully chosen from Jeremiah 16:16, where it is used as a symbol of Yahweh's censure of Israel. Elsewhere the 'hooking of fish' is an euphemism for judgment upon the rich (Amos 4:2) and powerful (Ezekiel 29:4). Taking this mandate for his own, Jesus is inviting common folk to join him in his struggle to overturn the existing order of power and privilege."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"And Jesus said to them, 'Follow me, and I will make you become fishers of men.'"    - Mark ; Mark 1.17


"But I will put hooks in your jaws and make the fish of your streams stick to your scales. I will pull you out from among your streams, with all the fish sticking to your scales."    - Ezekiel ; Ezekiel 29.4


"The Sovereign LORD has sworn by his holiness: 'The time will surely come when you will be taken away with hooks, the last of you with fishhooks.'"    - Amos ; Amos 4.2


"And of course the great story-telling media and television and cinema play major roles in socialization and ideological formation. We must learn to discern hegemonic and subversive characteristics and functions of popular narrative discourse."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The only effective liberation from such a constraint begins with the recognition that there is nothing that is not social and historical—indeed, that everything is in the last analysis political."    - Fredric Jameson ; The Political Unconscious: Narrative as a Socially Symbolic Act


"We may rightly be suspicious of theologies of reconciliation that promote Christian unity at the price of political silence."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Alternately, revolutionary strategies usual repudiate the dominant symbolic system altogether, either fundamentally redefining the old terms or appealing to entirely different ones. Such an ideological project must simultaneously introduce and legitimate the new symbol even as it is 'delegitimating' the old ones. Sometimes there is no desire to transform or overthrow the dominant order, the strategy being one of withdrawal and establishment of a 'counter-culture', as in the case of Jehovah's Witnesses or Hutterites. In an atmosphere of tolerance or pluralism, such efforts represent only an incidental threat to the dominant order."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"I agree that the demythologizing project was quite wrongheaded; we should instead be about understanding how myth functions as political discourse—in antiquity and today."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Altogether too much Bible study among Christians remains preoccupied with our strictly private anguish and matters 'heavenly'—while our world hangs in the balance on an imperial cross of violence and oppression."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Mark's Gospel originally was written to help imperial subjects learn the hard truth about their world and themselves. He does not pretend to represent the word of God dispassionately or impartially, as if the word were innocuously universal in its appeal to rich and poor alike. His is a story by, about, and for those committed to Gods' work of justice, compassion, and liberation in the world."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Until recently, for example, American fundamentalism insisted that religion had nothing to do with politics. However, the recent politicization of the Christian right in the U.S.A. under the banner of Reaganism has changed the landscape drastically. Behind the leadership of the such figures as Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson, Christian groups that were once staunch privatizes now militantly insist that faith does indeed have everything to do with public life, and are busily organizing military aid to anticommunist guerrillas, picketing abortion clinics, and stumping for increased military spending. It may well be that the new ideological synthesis they offer is protofacist, with disturbing parallels to the agenda of the religious right at the time of the rise of the Third Reich as R. Pierard and R. Linder have argued. But the fact remains that the whole nature of the debate has changed: we need no longer belabor whether the Bible calls us to political practice—only what kind of practice. The churches, in my opinion, should welcome this renewed ideological struggle over how the Bible is politically interpreted and used."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"While magisteriums continue to insist that the Jesus story has nothing to do with politics, peasants in Brazil, Paraguay, and El Salvador are thrown into jail on charges of being subversive actively—for the crime of meeting to study the gospel.    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"I refer the reader again to W. Wink's brilliant tract on biblical interpretation for a systematic critique of the academic ideology of objectivism. To make matters worse, professional exegetes have rarely been able or willing to address the text to their own historical situation. Because of this, the academic theological establishment has become deeply complicity, however unwittingly, in the ideological maintenance of the locus imperium.  The truth is, the 'battle for the Bible' today has increasingly less to do with theological divisions and allegiances and more to do with political and economic allegiances."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"More embedded in popular Christianity are the hermeneutics of privatism. Fundamentalists and modern existentialists may be philosophically antagonistic, but they share in an essential commitment to approaching the text [Bible] with concerns about the individual's search for, respectively, 'holiness' and 'authentic existence.' Conversion is a fundamentally individual affair. The 'personal Savior' of American evangelicalism is domesticated and no longer Lord of the world, but of our hearts, into which we invite him."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"But however much the theological right and left might diverge philosophically, their respective political practice shares more similarities than differences in allegiant to empire. From the perspective of radical discipleship, 'biblical authority' is meaningful only insofar as it leasts us to repentance and resistance!"    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Because we understand the present crisis of empire to have everything to do with the ordering of power, the distribution of wealth, and the global plague of militarism, radical discipleship necessarily approaches the Bible with social, political and economic questions in mind."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


" . . . two key themes that I believe should characterize our theological reflection and guide our practice . . . The first is repentance, which for us implies no only a conversion of the heart, but a concrete process of turning away  from empire, its distractions and seductions, it hubris and iniquity. The second is resistance, which involves shaking off the powerful sedation of a society that rewards ignorance and trivializes everything political, in order to discern and take concrete stands in our historical moment, and to find meaningful ways to 'impede imperial progress.'"    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The fact remains that those on the peripheries will have 'eyes to see' many things that those at the center do not."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"There is clearly a noticeable resemblance between the situation here in Latin America and that in which Jesus lived . . . [but it] does not lie solely in the objective conditions of poverty and exploitation . . . [but also] in the cognizance that is taken of the situation."    - Jon Sobrino ; Christology at the Crossroads


"The ancient Mediterranean world was dominated by the rule of imperial Rome. However, whereas I read from the center, Mark wrote from the Palestinian periphery. His primary audience were those whose daily lives bore the exploitative weight of colonialism, whereas mine are those who are in a position of enjoy the privileges of the colonizer.  In this sense, Third World liberation theologians, who today also write from the perspective of the collided periphery have the advantage of a certain 'affinity of site' in their reading of the Gospels."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"White North American Christians, especially those of us from the privileged strata of society, must come to terms with the fact that our reading site for the Gospel of Mark is empire, locus imperium . . .  The 'irreducible meaning' of empire is the geopolitical control of the peripheries by the center . . . the fact remains that those on the peripheries will have 'eyes to see' many things that those of us at the center do not."    - Marty Coleman ; Introduction to Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus by Ched Myers


"The traditional way of understanding discipleship as one of taking people out of the world because it is a hostile place, promising them a better place in God's heavenly kingdom, has been radically transformed by this insight. Jesus call us rather to change the world in such a way that it will cease to be the hostile place it is, as we construct the way for God's reign on earth."    - Sam Wells ; Introduction to Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus by Ched Myers


"Since in the Old Testament [sic] the idea of catching fish with hooks is used metaphorically to represent the divine judgment upon the rich and the powerful, the call to be 'fishers of people' is not a call to save people from their sins but rather an invitation to join Jesus 'in his struggle to overturn the existing order of power and privilege."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"The point here [story of the calling of the first disciples] is the following Jesus requires not just assent of the heart, but a fundamental reordering of socio-economic relationships . . . This is not a call 'out' of the world but into an alternative social practice."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"Meeting Ched and reading Binding the Strong Man opened my eyes to the way in which the Gospels have been so completely domesticated for almost 2000 years by the culture of domination. Rather, they embody the radical word of God's liberation that comforts the poor, emboldens the prophets and causes 'the tyrants to tremble sick with fear.'"    - Jeff Dietrich ; Introuction to Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus by Ched Myers


"We seem to have picked up the idea that holiness is a trance-like sense of peace and well-being in relation to those all around, an experience of floating on a magic carpet of tranquility. Wherever that picture of holiness came from, it certainly wasn't Mark's Gospel. Jesus is constantly having heated debates with everyone who held Israel in check. The one thing everyone seems to agree on today is that there's plenty wrong with the world. There are only two responses to this—either go and put it right yourself, or, if you can't, make life pretty uncomfortable for those who can until they do. When we take stock of our relationship with the powerful, we ask ourselves, 'Does the shape of my life reflect my longing to see God set people free, and do I challenge those who keep others in slavery?"    - Sam Wells ; Introuction to Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus by Ched Myers


"I don't know any other scripture scholar or theologian who has been arrested for nonviolent civil disobedience in opposition to war, injustice, and empire. Because of those dramatic experiences, my friend Ched Myers understands the Gospels, the story of Jesus, like few other scholars."    - John Dear ; Introduction to Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus by Ched Myers


"When Jesus healed the leper, he was also challenging social, cultural and even political mores."    - Sam Wells ; Introduction to Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus by Ched Myers


"I believe scholarship that does not start and end in praxis is not worth engaging in."    - Osvaldo Vena ; Quoted by Ched Myers in Binding the Strong Man: a political reading of Mark's story of Jesus


"In the two decades since Binding the Strong Man was published I have lost many dear mentors and friends, some of whom I have named in this edition's acknowledgments. These losses have made me more conscious that this seasons of my life invites me to settle into new places. For one, I am clear that I have a role as a 'keeper of the tradition' for our scattered circles of radical discipleship which remains my true church."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man


"One trajectory of research deserves special mention: studies of the social context of ancient oral transmission among marginalized communities. Richard Horsley has shown how the popular oral storytelling of the Jesus movement, which drew on 'anti-hegemonic' cultural memory, was often in conflict with the elites's authority over texts. This is why Mark's references to scripture are always polemical . . . Moreover, Mark portrays actions in a way that calls to mind popular, oral tales about cultural heroes or peasant Israel such as Moses, Elijah, or Elisha, while the scribal class comes in for Jesus' severest criticism."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man


"Antoinette Wire (2005) believes that women may have carried primary responsibility for stewarding oral Jesus traditions and that the writer of Mark could well have been female. I delight in that possibility."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man


"My reading has also been taken in some activist Christian circles to suggest that Jesus rejected most aspects of his own Jewish culture, which could not be further from the truth. The awful legacy of Christian supersessionism dies hard; if I were to revise this book I would take more care to stress all the ways in which Mark's Jesus draws upon his heritage, particularly that of the eight-century prophets."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man


"[Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.] connected the dots between what he called the 'giant triplets' of racism, militarism, and poverty and then challenged us to take back the world from those 'who possess power without compassion, might without morality, and strength without sight.;"    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man


"Secondly, in our own time the wedge driven between theology and politics has only resulted in the domestication of the former and the sacralization of the latter."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man


"As for the first chasm, this book stands apart from academic commentaries in its fundamental commitment to contemporary practice of radical discipleship, and the place of Mark's Gospel vis-à-vis that practice.  I accept the axiom of liberation theology that practice must lie on either side of reflection."    - Ched Myers ; Binding the Strong Man


"When we take [Jesus's] sayings and distill from them our doctrines, what we have really done is manipulate his sayings for our own purposes, first of all, for the purpose of avoiding his personal address to us. Without realizing it, we reclassify his sayings as objective teachings to which we can give intellectual assent, rather than letting them strike home as the personal challenge he intended them to be. The issue is not what we think about them, but rather what we do about them."    - James Robison ; The Gospel of Jesus: A Historical Search for the Original Good News


"The problem is that we have ascribed to [Jesus] a different gospel from what he himself envisaged! We have put him on a pedestal and worshiped him, rather than walking in his footsteps. Put somewhat differently: we must work our way back through the church’s own familiar gospel and its domestication of the gospel of Jesus. Only then do we strike upon what he really had to say, which was a brittle, upsetting, comforting, challenging gospel."    - James Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus: A Historical Search for the Original Good News


"Jesus’ message was simple, for he wanted to cut straight through to the point: trust God to look out for you by providing people who will care for you, and listen to him when he calls on you to provide for them. God is somebody you can trust, so give it a try."    - James Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus: A Historical Search for the Original Good News


"'Justice and righteousness' is how the Bible, as if in a slogan, summarizes the character and spirit of God the Creator and, therefore, the destiny and future of God’s created earth. It points to distributive justice as the Bible’s radical vision of God."    - John Dominic Crossan ; The Greatest Prayer: Rediscovering the Revolutionary Message of the Lord's Prayer


"Democracy is when there is a majority of free, poor men who have authority to rule, while oligarchy is when it is in the hands of the wealthy and well-born, who are a minority."    - Noam Chomsky ; Requiem for the American Dream: The 10 Principles of Concentration of Wealth & Power


"Rather, democracy is when every free citizen has authority and oligarchy is when the rich have it."    - Noam Chomsky ; Requiem for the American Dream: The 10 Principles of Concentration of Wealth & Power


"Poverty is the cause of the defects of democracy. That is the reason why measures should be taken to ensure a permanent level of prosperity."    - Noam Chomsky ; Requiem for the American Dream: The 10 Principles of Concentration of Wealth & Power


"Concentration of wealth yields concentration of power, particularly so as the cost of elections skyrockets, which forces the political parties even more deeply into the pockets of major corporations."    - Noam Chomsky ; Requiem for the American Dream: The 10 Principles of Concentration of Wealth & Power


"If you check you find that over the course of these years the government policy has been modified completely against the will of the population to provide enormous benefits to the very rich."    - Noam Chomsky ; Requiem for the American Dream: The 10 Principles of Concentration of Wealth & Power


"The United States was a settler-colonial society, the most brutal form of imperialism."    - Noam Chomsky ; Requiem for the American Dream: The 10 Principles of Concentration of Wealth & Power


"Violence is initiated by those who oppress, who exploit, who fail to recognize others as persons— not by those who are oppressed, exploited, and unrecognized."    - Paulo Freire ; Pedagogy of the Oppressed: 30th Anniversary Edition


"The oppressors do not perceive their monopoly on having more as a privilege which dehumanizes others and themselves. They cannot see that, in the egoistic pursuit of having as a possessing class, they suffocate in their own possessions and no longer are; they merely have. For them, having more is an inalienable right, a right they acquired through their own 'effort,' with their 'courage to take risks.' If others do not have more, it is because they are incompetent and lazy, and worst of all is their unjustifiable ingratitude towards the 'generous gestures' of the dominant class. Precisely because they are 'ungrateful' and 'envious,' the oppressed are regarded as potential enemies who must be watched. It could not be otherwise. If the humanization of the oppressed signifies subversion, so also does their freedom; hence the necessity for constant control. And the more the oppressors control the oppressed, the more they change them into apparently inanimate 'things.' This tendency of the oppressor consciousness to 'in-animate' everything and everyone it encounters, in its eagerness to possess, unquestionably corresponds with a tendency to sadism."    - Paulo Freire ; Pedagogy of the Oppressed: 30th Anniversary Edition


"The oppressor consciousness tends to transform everything surrounding it into an object of its domination. The earth, property, production, the creations of people, people themselves, time— everything is reduced to the status of objects at its disposal. In their unrestrained eagerness to possess, the oppressors develop the conviction that it is possible for them to transform everything into objects of their purchasing power; hence their strictly materialistic concept of existence. Money is the measure of all things, and profit the primary goal. For the oppressors, what is worthwhile is to have more— always more— even at the cost of the oppressed having less or having nothing. For them, to be is to have and to be the class of the 'haves.'"    - Paulo Freire ; Pedagogy of the Oppressed: 30th Anniversary Edition


"With the establishment of a relationship of oppression, violence has already begun. Never in history has violence been initiated by the oppressed. How could they be the initiators, if they themselves are the result of violence? How could they be the sponsors of something whose objective inauguration called forth their existence as oppressed? There would be no oppressed had there been no prior situation of violence to establish their subjugation. Violence is initiated by those who oppress, who exploit, who fail to recognize others as persons— not by those who are oppressed, exploited, and unrecognized. It is not the unloved who initiate disaffection, but those who cannot love because they love only themselves. It is not the helpless, subject to terror, who initiate terror, but the violent, who with their power create the concrete situation which begets the 'rejects of life.' It is not the tyrannized who initiate despotism, but the tyrants. It is not the despised who initiate hatred, but those who despise. It is not those whose humanity is denied them who negate humankind, but those who denied that humanity (thus negating their own as well). Force is used not by those who have become weak under the preponderance of the strong, but by the strong who have emasculated them."      - Paulo Freire ; Pedagogy of the Oppressed: 30th Anniversary Edition


"In order for the oppressed to be able to wage the struggle for their liberation, they must perceive the reality of oppression not as a closed world from which there is no exit, but as a limiting situation which they can transform."    - Paulo Freire ; Pedagogy of the Oppressed: 30th Anniversary Edition


"This lesson and this apprenticeship must come, however, from the oppressed themselves and from those who are truly solidary with them. As individuals or as peoples, by fighting for the restoration of their humanity they will be attempting the restoration of true generosity. Who are better prepared than the oppressed to understand the terrible significance of an oppressive society? Who suffer the effects of oppression more than the oppressed? Who can better understand the necessity of liberation? They will not gain this liberation by chance but through the praxis of their quest for it, through their recognition of the necessity to fight for it. And this fight, because of the purpose given it by the oppressed, will actually constitute an act of love opposing the lovelessness which lies at the heart of the oppressors’ violence, lovelessness even when clothed in false generosity."    - Paulo Freire ; Pedagogy of the Oppressed: 30th Anniversary Edition


"Any attempt to 'soften' the power of the oppressor in deference to the weakness of the oppressed almost always manifests itself in the form of false generosity; indeed, the attempt never goes beyond this. In order to have the continued opportunity to express their “generosity,” the oppressors must perpetuate injustice as well. An unjust social order is the permanent fount of this 'generosity,' which is nourished by death, despair, and poverty. That is why the dispensers of false generosity become desperate at the slightest threat to its source, True generosity consists precisely in fighting to destroy the causes which nourish false charity. False charity constrains the fearful and subdued, the 'rejects of life,' to extend their trembling hands. True generosity lies in striving so that these hands— whether of individuals or entire peoples— need be extended less and less in supplication, so that more and more they become human hands which work and, working, transform the world."    - Paulo Freire ; Pedagogy of the Oppressed: 30th Anniversary Edition


"In order for this struggle to have meaning, the oppressed must not, in seeking to regain their humanity (which is a way to create it), become in turn oppressors of the oppressors, but rather restorers of the humanity of both. This, then, is the great humanistic and historical task of the oppressed: to liberate themselves and their oppressors as well. The oppressors, who oppress, exploit, and rape by virtue of their power, cannot find in this power the strength to liberate either the oppressed or themselves. Only power that springs from the weakness of the oppressed will be sufficiently strong to free both."    - Paulo Freire ; Pedagogy of the Oppressed: 30th Anniversary Edition


But the primary meaning of “justice” is not retributive, but distributive.    - John Dominic Crossan ; The Greatest Prayer: Rediscovering the Revolutionary Message of the Lord's Prayer


"You have been waiting for God, he said, while God has been waiting for you. No wonder nothing is happening. You want God’s intervention, he said, while God wants your collaboration. God’s kingdom is here, but only insofar as you accept it, enter it, live it, and thereby establish it."    - John Dominic Crossan ; The Greatest Prayer: Rediscovering the Revolutionary Message of the Lord's Prayer


The eschaton is not about the destruction of the world, but about its transformation into a place of justice and nonviolence. It is not about the annihilation of the earth, but about its transformation into a location of freedom and peace.    - John Dominic Crossan ; The Greatest Prayer: Rediscovering the Revolutionary Message of the Lord's Prayer


"I have three conclusions from all of that textual activity. One is that 'debts' was originally intended quite literally. Jesus meant that eternal peasant dyad of enough bread for today and no debt for tomorrow."    - John Dominic Crossan ; The Greatest Prayer: Rediscovering the Revolutionary Message of the Lord's Prayer


Give us this day our daily bread.    - Matthew's Gospel ; Matthew 6.11


“Even when people call your truth a lie, tell it anyway. Tell it anyway.”    - Dr. Katie Cannon ; Journey to Liberation: The Legacy of Womanist Theology


"When you start with an understanding that God loves everyone, justice isn’t very far behind."    - Dr. Emilie M. Townes ; Journey to Liberation: The Legacy of Womanist Theology


I would like to make an appeal in a special way to the men of the army, and in particular to the ranks of the National Guard, of the police, to those in the barracks. Brothers, you are part of our own people. You kill your own campesino brothers and sisters. And before an order to kill that a man may give, the law of God must prevail that says: Thou shalt not kill! No soldier is obliged to obey an order against the law of God. No one has to fulfill an immoral law. It is time to recover your consciences and to obey your consciences rather than the orders of sin. The church, defender of the rights of God, of the law of God, of human dignity, the dignity of the person, cannot remain silent before such abomination. We want the government to take seriously that reforms are worth nothing when they come about stained with so much blood. In the name of God, and in the name of this suffering people whose laments rise to heaven each day more tumultuous, I beg you, I ask you, I order you in the name of God: stop the repression!
   - Archbishop Oscar Romero ; The Word Remains: A Life of Oscar Romero


If you really wish to defend human rights . . .  guarantee that your government will not intervene directly or indirectly, by military, economic, diplomatic, or other pressures, in determining the destiny of the Salvadoran people. It would be unjust and deplorable for foreign powers to intervene and frustrate the Salvadoran people, to repress them and keep them from deciding autonomously the economic and political course that our nation should follow.
   - Archbishop Romero ; quoted by Brockman in The Word Remains: A Life of Oscar


If the great nations can shed the fear of destruction, if they disarm themselves, they will automatically help the rest to regain their sanity. But then these great powers will have to give up their imperialistic ambitions and their exploitation of the so-called uncivilized or semi-civilized nations of the earth and revise their mode of life. It means a complete revolution.
   - Mohandas Gandhi ; Gandhi on Nonviolence, edited by Thomas Merton


These are revolutionary times; all over the globe people are revolting against old systems of exploitation and oppression. The shirtless and barefoot people of the land are rising up as never before. ‘The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light.’ We in the West must support these revolutions. It is a sad fact that because of comfort, complacency, a morbid fear of communism, and our proneness to adjust to injustice, the Western nations that initiated so much of the revolutionary spirit of the modern world have now become the arch-antirevolutionaries.
 
   - Martin Luther King, Jr. ; The Trumpet of Conscience


In 1957 a sensitive American official overseas said that it seemed to him that our nation was on the wrong side of a world revolution. I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. A true revolution of values will soon look uneasily on the glaring contrast between poverty and wealth. With righteous indignation, it will look across the seas and see individual capitalists of the West investing huge sums of money in Asia, Africa, and South America only to take the profits out with no concern for the social betterment of these countries, and say, ‘This is not just.’ It will look at our alliance with the landed gentry of Latin America and say, ‘This is not just.’ A true revolution of values will lay hands on the world order and say of war, ‘This way of settling differences is not just.’ This business of burning human beings with napalm, of filling our nation’s homes with orphans and widows, of injecting poisonous drugs of hate into the veins of people normally humane, of sending men home from dark and bloody battlefields physically handicapped and psychologically deranged, cannot be reconciled with wisdom, justice and love. A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual doom.
   - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; The Trumpet of Conscience


Here I should say that the person who had the most impact on my life at that time, by his way of living his Christianity, was Martin Luther King, Jr. I carried a little picture of him with me. There were photos of him on the walls of my room. I looked at Martin Luther King as a very special human being — someone very consistent. I’d taken steps to get him to visit Chile before I came back to the United States, and he’d accepted, but he didn’t make it. He was killed. I always thought of Martin Luther King as a kind of reproach to myself, because I was so afraid to follow in his footsteps. I looked on him as a guide, as a standard.
   - Miguel D’Escoto ; Quoted in Ministers of God, Ministers of the People.


I have come to believe that creative nonviolence has to be a constitutive element of evangelization and of the proclamation of the gospel. But in Nicaragua nonviolence was never included in the process of evangelization. The cancer of oppression and injustice and crime and exploitation was allowed to grow and finally the people had to fight with the means available to them, the only means that people have found from of old: armed struggle. Then (some) arrogantly said violence was bad, nonviolence was the correct way . . . But that spirituality and prayer and work with people’s consciences has never been done. We have no right to hope to harvest what we have not sown.
   - Miguel D’Escoto ; An Unfinished Canvas: Building a New Nicaragua; Sojourners Magazine, March, 1983


I came here to a country that’s been governed for nearly half a century by an unjust, murderous, bloody dictatorship, one that eradicated whole families. I read to the U.S. Congress whole lists of families — father, mother, grandparents, teenagers, and younger children — murdered in the mountains. In the final 52 days of the offensive alone, 50,000 persons died in Nicaragua. Here, then, taking sides with the people by joining with those who are struggling and offering their lives to defend the people — supporting them and becoming one of them, in the people’s defense . . . We’re taking sides, yes — with the good Samaritan. Here you have to take sides, you have to be a partisan. Either you’re with the slaughtered or you’re with the slaughterers. From a gospel point of view, I don’t think there was any other legitimate option we could have made.
   - Fernando Cardenal ; Ministers of God, Ministers of the People


A theology of love cannot afford to be sentimental. It cannot afford to preach edifying generalities about charity, while identifying ‘peace’ with mere established power and legalized violence against the oppressed. A theology of love cannot be allowed merely to serve the interests of the rich and powerful, justifying their wars, their violence and their bombs, while exhorting the poor and underprivileged to practice patience, meekness, longsuffering, and to solve their problems, if at all, nonviolently. A theology of love may also conceivably turn out to be a theology of revolution. In any case, it is a theology of resistance, a refusal of the evil that reduces a brother or sister to homicidal desperation . . .  Instead of preaching the Cross for others and advising them to suffer patiently the violence which we sweetly impose on them, with the aid of armies and police, we might conceivably recognize the right of the less fortunate to use force, and study more seriously the practice of nonviolence and humane methods on our own part when, as it happens, we possess the most stupendous arsenal of power the world has ever known.
   - Thomas Merton ; Toward a Theology of Resistance


Gandhi was not blind to the realities of conflict often involved in wars, and to the fact that one side might well have much more right on its side than the other. In such cases, ‘neutrality’ or ‘impartiality’ played no role in Gandhi’s thinking. Gandhi wrote, ‘Whilst all violence is bad and must be condemned in the abstract, it is permissible for, it is even the duty of, a believer in ahimsa (nonviolence) to distinguish between the aggressor and the defender. Having done so, he will side with the defender in a nonviolent manner, i.e., give his life in saving him.’ Even if the defender continued to struggle by violent means in such an instance, Gandhi believed that such nonviolent intervention and assistance would contribute to a quicker and less vindictive peace.
   - Gene Sharp ; Gandhi As A Political Strategist


Nonviolence training is important because it empowers us and forces us to consider means and ends, and because it decentralizes power. Most important, however, it strengthens the movement for social change. Feminism remains as important as nonviolence in my thinking. It is my concern to work out any apparent contradictions since I think that one without the other would be unsuccessful.
   - Lynne Shivers ; quoted in Reweaving the Web of Life


"The women’s movement displays its real strength when it presents a vision of life that differs from the prevailing one. Women will become strong when they stop worshiping the golden calves that men worship: unlimited economic growth, national security, the balance of terror . . . We shall become free only when we beat our swords into plowshares, as Isaiah says, and when we learn to operate irrigation systems, not tanks. We shall be free and we shall be women only when we join forces with life against production for death and the ongoing preparation for murder. We shall not become free by retiring into the private sphere and saying, ‘Count me out,’ nor shall we become free by conforming to a society that holds its generals and millionaires in particularly high regard. We shall become free when we learn to work for peace actively, deliberately, and militantly."
   - Dorothee Sölle ; Of War and Love


[Nonviolence] does not mean meek submission to the will of the evil-doer, but it means the pitting of one's whole soul against the will of the tyrant. Working under this law of our being, it is possible for a single individual to defy the whole might of an unjust empire to save his honour, his religion, his soul and lay the foundation for that empire's fall or its regeneration.
   - Mohandas Gandhi ; Young India; January 8, 1920, p.3


"The higher level is mass civil disobedience. There must be more than a statement to the larger society; there must be a force that interrupts its functioning at some key point. That interruption must not, however, be clandestine or surreptitious. It is not necessary to invest it with guerrilla romanticism. It must be open and, above all, conducted by large masses without violence. If the jails are filled to thwart it, its meaning will become even clearer. Boycotting buses in Montgomery, demonstrating in Birmingham, the citadel of segregation, and defying guns, dogs, and clubs in Selma, while maintaining disciplined nonviolence, totally confused the rulers of the South. If they let us march, they admitted their lie that the black man was content. If they shot us down, they told the world they were inhuman brutes. They tried to stop us by threats and fear, the tactic that had long worked so effectively. But nonviolence had muzzled their guns and Negro defiance had shaken their confidence. When they finally reached for clubs, dogs, and guns, they found the world was watching, and then the power of nonviolent protest became manifest. It dramatized the essential meaning of the conflict and in magnified strokes made clear who was the evildoer and who was the undeserving victim. The nation and the world were sickened and through national legislation wiped out a thousand Southern laws, ripping gaping holes in the edifice of segregation."
   - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; The Trumpet of Conscience


"To question and rebel means to organize resistance. What we need now and what we will need in the coming years is a broad, comprehensive resistance movement against militarism, a movement that includes members of every political grouping from the center to the left. We have to take up the cause of peace, take sides with life, interfere nonviolently and illegally. I think we can learn the most for our purposes from the liberation struggles in the Third World. I have been given a leaflet from the resistance movement in Chile, a leaflet that can be distributed there only at the risk of one’s life. These Chileans are reflecting on their situation, on what it means to live under a dictatorship and what is happening to them as a result. I think we can adopt a great deal of what they say, for they say: ‘Rebel! Don’t cooperate with death! Choose life!’ They also say: ‘Don’t let them steal away your soul! Amen!’"
   - Dorothee Sölle ; Of War and Love


"There is nothing wrong with a traffic law which says you have to stop for a red light. But when a fire is raging, the fire truck goes right through that red light, and normal traffic had better get out of its way. Or, when a man is bleeding to death, the ambulance goes through those red lights at top speed . . .  Disinherited people all over the world are bleeding to death from deep social and economic wounds. They need brigades of ambulance drivers who will have to ignore the red lights of the present system until the emergency is solved. Massive civil disobedience is a strategy for social change which is at least as forceful as an ambulance with its siren on full."
   - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; The Trumpet of Conscience


I intended to show that nonviolence will be effective, but not until it has achieved the massive dimensions, the disciplined planning, and the intense commitment of a sustained, direct-action movement of civil disobedience on the national scale. The dispossessed of this nation — the poor, both white and black — live in a cruelly unjust society. They must organize a revolution against that injustice, not against the lives of the persons who are their fellow citizens, but against the structures through which the society is refusing to take means which have been called for, and which are at hand, to lift the load of poverty.
   - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; The Trumpet of Conscience


We struggle by rendering operative the force of love in the battle of liberation. Active nonviolence is a response, a step forward (whether the world realizes it or not) that is based on the gospel. Nonviolence is a way of answering evil and injustice with truth, and hate with love. For truth and love are the weapons of the spirit in the face of repression. Nonviolence is not passivity or conformism. It is a spirit and a method. It is a spirit of prophecy, for it denounces all sundering of a community of brothers and sisters and proclaims that this community can only be rebuilt through love. And it is a method — an organized set of ruptures in the civil order so as to disturb the system responsible for the injustices we see around us. Here we see the power of the dispossessed, the weapon of the poor. The struggle, then, will be the people’s struggle. Here is participation indeed. Here is no elitist contest, no partisan struggle. The means will include boycotts, strikes, noncooperation, civil disobedience, hunger strikes, and many other actions.
   - Adolfo Perez Esquivel ; Christ in a Poncho


"We in the West must bear in mind that the poor countries are poor primarily because we have exploited them through political or economic colonialism. Americans in particular must help their nation repent of her modern economic imperialism. But movements in our countries alone will not be enough. In Latin America, for example, national reform movements have almost despaired of nonviolent methods; many young men, even many priests, have joined guerrilla movements in the hills. So many of Latin America’s problems have roots in the United States of America that we need to form a solid, united movement, nonviolently conceived and carried through, so that pressure can be brought to bear on the capital and government power structures concerned, from both sides of the problem at once. I think that may be the only hope for a nonviolent solution in Latin America today; and one of the most powerful expressions of nonviolence may come out of that international coalition of socially aware forces, operating outside government frameworks."
   - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; The Trumpet of Conscience


This is intended as a call to resistance so that we can learn deliberate violation of the rules, nonviolent illegality, and civil disobedience together. It is possible to violate laws and regulations governing property without committing violence against human beings. Our imaginations in this area are underdeveloped. If we want to take part in liberation movements, then the militarism that dominates us is our main enemy.
   - Dorothee Sölle ; Of War and Love


"The faith and courage of the members of our communities in the face of threats, misunderstandings, and persecution for justice’ sake are sustained and strengthened by the support each individual gives the others, by the support each community gives the others, by our very struggle and activity, by meditation on the word of God, and by the recollection of the witness given by those who have struggled for justice."
   - Gustavo Gutierrez ; We Drink From Our Own Wells


We regard ourselves as guilty for keeping silence in the face of the events agitating our country. In the face of repression, detentions, the economic crisis, the loss of jobs by so many workers, murders and tortures, we have kept silent as though we did not belong to that world. The cowardice that keeps silent in the face of the sufferings of the poor and that offers any number of adroit justifications represents an especially serious failure.
   - Gustavo Gutierrez ; We Drink From Our Own Wells


Christ asks us not to fear persecution, because — believe me, brothers and sisters — whoever has cast his or her lot with the poor will have to endure the same fate as the poor, and in El Salvador we know what the fate of the poor is: to disappear, to be tortured, to be a prisoner, to be found dead.
   - Archbishop Oscar Romero ; The Word Remains: A Life of Oscar Romero


"There remains an experience of incomparable value . . . to see the great events of world history from below; from the perspective of the outcast, the suspects, the maltreated, the powerless, the oppressed, the reviled — in short, from the perspective of those who suffer."
   - Dietrich Bonhoeffer ; Letters and Papers from Prison


It used to be called mercy, then charity, then commitment; today it is called solidarity. To give food to the hungry... drink to the thirsty... clothing to the naked... shelter to the homeless... and to welcome the stranger are actions so basic that at the end of time we shall have to render an account of them. It is a work of concrete, authentic love for the poor that is not possible apart from a certain integration into their world and apart from bonds of real friendship with those who suffer despoliation and injustice. The solidarity is not with ‘the poor’ in the abstract but with human beings of flesh and bone. Without love and affection, without — why not say it? — tenderness, there can be no true gesture of solidarity.
   - Gustavo Gutierrez ; We Drink From Our Own Wells


Present events form part of our own universe and demand of the individual a personal decision, a rejection of every kind of complicity with executioners, a straightforward solidarity, an uncompromising denunciation of evil, a prayer of commitment.
   - Gustavo Gutierrez ; We Drink From Our Own Wells


As a pastor and as a Salvadoran citizen, I am deeply grieved that the organized sector of our people continues to be massacred merely for taking to the street in orderly fashion to petition for justice and liberty. I am sure that so much blood and so much pain caused to the families of so many victims will not be in vain. It is blood and pain that will water and make fertile new and continually more numerous seeds — Salvadorans who will awaken to the responsibility they have to build a more just and human society — and that will bear fruit in the accomplishment of the daring, urgent, and radical structural reforms that our nation needs. The cry for liberation of this people is a shout that rises up to God and that nothing and no one can now stop.
   - Archbishop Oscar Romero ; The Word Remains: A Life of Oscar Romero


The fact that these stories are remembered and included at all within the canonical witness suggests that, already in ancient Israel, patriarchy is not conceived in absolute terms, and more importantly, that there is an implicit recognition in Scripture that God raises up both men and women as leaders for the covenant people, often in contrast to traditional societal expectations.    - Bible, Gender, Sexuality: Reframing the Church's Debate on Same-Sex Relationships ; James V. Brownson


Thus says the Lord: Do justice and righteousness, and deliver from the hand of the oppressor him who has been robbed. And do no wrong or violence to the sojourner, the fatherless, and the widow, nor shed innocent blood in this place.    - Jeremiah ; Jeremiah 22:3


The overall movement of the moral logic of Scripture with respect to patriarchy is thus away from roles defined by household responsibilities in the ancient world — including the divisions of honor, status, and worth defined along gender lines — and toward a vision of mutuality and equality in which the procreative enterprise of male and female no longer defines human identity at its core.    - Bible, Gender, Sexuality: Reframing the Church's Debate on Same-Sex Relationships ; James V. Brownson


Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute. Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.    - Wisdom ; Proverb 31:8-9


The same dynamics can be seen in the nineteenth-century debate over slavery and the twentieth-century debate concerning women in leadership in the church. In each of these cases, the Bible was not simply discarded when it didn’t cohere with changes happening in society. Instead, the changes happening in society and across cultures caused people to go back to the biblical texts and read them with fresh eyes — looking more deeply and searching for different underlying values and forms of moral logic that they had not seen so clearly before.    - Bible, Gender, Sexuality: Reframing the Church's Debate on Same-Sex Relationships ; James V. Brownson


Learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow's cause.    - First Isaiah ; Isaiah 1.17


We do not interpret rightly any single passage of Scripture until we locate the text within this larger fabric of meaning in Scripture as a whole.    - Bible, Gender, Sexuality: Reframing the Church's Debate on Same-Sex Relationships ; James V. Brownson


The LORD works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed.    - Psalmist ; Psalms 103.6


Ravens and lilies do not seem to focus their attention on satisfying their own needs in order to survive, and yet God sees to it that they prosper. Sparrows are sold a dime a dozen and, one might say, who cares? God cares! Even about the tiniest things—he knows exactly how many hairs are on your head! So God will not give a stone when asked for bread or a snake when asked for fish, but can be counted on to give what you really need. You can trust him to know what you need even before you ask. This utopian vision of a caring God was the core of what Jesus had to say and what he himself put into practice. It was both good news—reassurance that in your actual experience good would happen to mitigate your plight—and the call upon you to do that same good toward others in actual practice. This radical trust in and responsiveness to God is what makes society function as God’s society. This was, for Jesus, what faith and discipleship were all about. As a result, nothing else had a right to claim any functional relationship to him . . . [Jesus] sought to focus attention on trusting God for today’s ration of life, and on hearing God’s call to give now a better life to neighbors . . . All this is as far from today’s Christianity as it was from the Judaism of Jesus’ day. Christians all too often simply venerate the “Lord Jesus Christ” as the “Son of God” and let it go at that. But Jesus himself made no claim to lofty titles or even to divinity. Indeed, to him, a devout Jew, claiming to be God would have seemed blasphemous! He claimed “only” that God spoke and acted through him.    - James Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus


Do not remove an ancient landmark or encroach on the fields of orphans,  for their redeemer is strong; he will plead their cause against you.    - Wisdom ; Proverbs 23.10-11


While [Darwin] was chiefly using the term [survival of the fittest] in its narrow sense for his own special purpose, he warned his followers against committing the error (which he seems once to have committed himself) of overrating its narrow meaning. In The Descent of Man he gave some powerful pages to illustrate its proper, wide sense. He pointed out how, in numberless animal societies, the struggle between separate individuals for the means of existence disappears, how struggle is replaced by co-operation, and how that substitution results in the development of intellectual and moral faculties which secure to the species the best conditions for survival. He intimated that in such cases the fittest are not the physically strongest, nor the cunningest, but those who learn to combine so as mutually to support each other, strong and weak alike, for the welfare of the community. ‘Those communities,’ he wrote, ‘which included the greatest number of the most sympathetic members would flourish best, and rear the greatest number of offspring’ (2nd edit., p. 163). The term, which originated from the narrow Malthusian conception of competition between each and all, thus lost its narrowness in the mind of one who knew Nature.    - Pëtr Kropotkin ; Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution


Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and will be repaid in full.    - Wisdom ; Proverbs 19.17


Without a moral or spiritual awakening, we will remain forever trapped in political games fueled by fear, greed and the hunger for power.    - Michelle Alexander ; Something Much Greater At Stake; RADICAL DISCIPLESHIP, SEPTEMBER 18, 2016


Those who oppress the poor insult their Maker, but those who are kind to the needy honor him.    - Wisdom ; Proverbs 14.31


The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free.    - Luke ; Luke 4.18


In terms of its bloodthirsty and intolerant passages, the Bible raises considerably more issues than does the Qur’an. Some Bible passages justify genocide and multigenerational race war; the Qur’an has nothing comparable. While many Qur’anic texts undoubtedly call for warfare or bloodshed, these are hedged around with more restrictions than their biblical equivalents, with more opportunities for the defeated to make peace and survive. Furthermore, any of the defenses that can be offered for biblical violence—for instance, that these passages are unrepresentative of the overall message of the text—apply equally to the Qur’an.    - Philip Jenkins ; Laying Down the Sword: Why We Can't Ignore the Bible's Violent Verses


The LORD rises to argue his case; he stands to judge the peoples. The LORD enters into judgment with the elders and princes of his people: It is you who have devoured the vineyard; the spoil of the poor is in your houses. What do you mean by crushing my people, by grinding the face of the poor? says the Lord GOD of hosts.    - Isaiah ; Isaiah 3.13-15


[A Theology of Liberation] is a theological reflection born of the experience of shared efforts to abolish the current unjust situation and to build a different society, freer and more human.        - Gustavo Gutierrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


For he will rescue the needy from their rich oppressors, the distressed who have no protector. He will have pity on the poor and the needy, and deliver the needy from death; he will liberate them from oppression and violence and their blood will be of high value in his eyes.    - Psalmist ; Psalms 72.12


Faith, hard won, has taught me how to value the gains, losses, stand-offs and victories in my life. Many times the painful moments would not have been healed were it not for the road I traveled to faith—learning to trust the righteousness of God in spite of trouble and injustice; learning to trust women of many colors regardless of sexism, racism, classism and homophobia in our society; learning to believe in the sanctuary power of family defined in many ways in addition to nuclear; discovering love in a variety of forms that heal, but also believing serious political action is absolutely necessary for justice to prevail in the world of my four black children and other mothers’ children.    - Delores S. Williams  ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


Wash and be clean; put away your evil deeds far from my sight; cease to do evil, learn to do good. Pursue justice, guide the oppressed; uphold the rights of the fatherless, and plead the widow’s cause.    - Isaiah ; Isaiah 1.16-17


For among my people there are scoundrels who, like fowlers, lay snares and set deadly traps; they prey on their fellows. Their houses are full of fraud, as a cage is full of birds. They grow great and rich, sleek and bloated; they turn a blind eye to wickedness and refuse to do justice; the claims of the fatherless they do not uphold, nor do they defend the poor at law.    - Jeremiah ; Jeremiah 5.26-28


Saying, “When will the new moon be over so that we may sell grain; and the sabbath, so that we may offer wheat for sale? We will make the ephah small and the shekel great, and practice deceit with false balances, buying the poor for silver and the needy for a pair of sandals,and selling the sweepings of the wheat.” The LORD has sworn by the pride of Jacob: Surely I will never forget any of their deeds.      - Amos ; Amos 8.5-8; 9.7-8


  But you have turned into venom the process of the law and justice itself into poison.    - Amos ; Amos 6:12 NEB


I cared for you in the wilderness, in a land of burning heat, as if you were in a pasture . . . [you] forgot me . . . [becoming] an oppressor trampling on justice, doggedly pursuing what is worthless.    - Hosea ; Hosea 13:5-6; 5:11 NEB


For you alone have I cared among all the nations of the world; therefore I will punish you  for all your iniquities . . . the Lord has sworn by his holiness that your time is coming . . . [because you] grind the destitute and plunder the humble.    - Amos ; Amos 3:2, 4.2, 8.4 NEB


You shall not ill-treat any widow or fatherless child. If you do, be sure that I will listen if they appeal to me.    - Torah ; Exodus 22:23-24, NEB


“Do not oppress a foreigner."    - Torah ; Exodus 23.9


“Do not mistreat or oppress a foreigner."    - Torah ; Exodus 22.21


You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I have carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you here to me.    - Torah ; Exodus 19.4


The Lord is my refuge and my defence; he has shown himself my deliverer.    - Torah ; Exodus 15.2 (REB)


Then Moses and the Israelites sang this song to the LORD: “I will sing to the LORD, for he is highly exalted. Both horse and driver he has hurled into the sea."    - Torah ; Exodus 15.1


For theologians to speak of this God, they too must become interested in politics and economics, recognizing that there is no truth about Yahweh unless it is the truth of freedom as that event is revealed in the oppressed people's struggle for justice in this world.    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


God heard their groaning and he remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac and with Jacob. So God looked on the Israelites and was concerned about them.    - Torah ; Exodus 2.24-25


"First you must commit yourself to the ethical life; then disciplined and habitual benevolence, not metaphysical conviction, would give you intimations of the transcendence you sought."    - Karen Armstrong ; The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions


"The Axial sages changed this; they still valued ritual, but gave it a new ethical significance and put morality at the heart of the spiritual life. The only way you could encounter what they called 'God,' 'Nirvana,' 'Brahman,' or the 'Way' was to live a compassionate life. Indeed, religion was compassion."    - Karen Armstrong ; The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions


"What mattered was not what you believed but how you behaved. Religion was about doing things that changed you at a profound level."    - Karen Armstrong ; The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions


"'Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind.' 'And I saw that the sacred hoop of my people was one of many hoops that make one circle.' In our quest to make sense of the miracle of our lives we, at some point, consciously or otherwise, make a choice . . .  To say that we believe in compassionate action is to say that we define our meaning in terms not of what we can accomplish for ourselves, but of what we can accomplish with and for others. And we welcome all, all whose spiritual paths have brought them here, to strive for a life built on compassionate action."    - Steven Greenebaum ; The Interfaith Alternative: Embracing Spiritual Diversity


"Their objective was to create an entirely different kind of human being. All the sages preached a spirituality of empathy and compassion; they insisted that people must abandon their egotism and greed, their violence and unkindness. Not only was it wrong to kill another human being; you must not even speak a hostile word or make an irritable gesture. Further, nearly all the Axial sages realized that you could not confine your benevolence to your own people: your concern must somehow extend to the entire world."      - Karen Armstrong ; The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions


"It is when compassion is linked to positive action that we at last start to get somewhere."    - Steven Greenebaum ; The Interfaith Alternative: Embracing Spiritual Diversity


Maybe dividing ourselves into righteous pockets of spiritual belief is not the best way to bring about love.    - Steven Greenebaum ; The Interfaith Alternative: Embracing Spiritual Diversity


Theology as critical reflection on historical praxis is a liberating theology, a theology of the liberating transformation of the history of humankind and also therefore that part of humankind—gathered into ecclesia—which openly confesses Christ. This is a theology which does not stop with reflecting on the world, but rather tries to be part of the process through which the world is transformed.    - A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition ; Gustavo Gutierrez


The goal is not only better living conditions, a radical change of structures, a social revolution; it is much more: the continuous creation, never ending, of a new way to be human, a permanent cultural revolution.    - A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition ; Gustavo Gutierrez


The goal is not only better living conditions, a radical change of structures, a social revolution; it is much more: the continuous creation, never ending, of a new way to be human, a permanent cultural revolution.    - A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition ; Gustavo Gutierrez


The poor countries are not interested in modeling themselves after the rich countries, among other reasons because they are increasingly more convinced that the status of the latter is the fruit of injustice and coercion.    - A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition ; Gustavo Gutierrez


To speak about a theology of liberation is to seek an answer to the following question: what relation is there between salvation and the historical process of human liberation?    - A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition ; Gustavo Gutierrez


If there is no friendship with them and no sharing of the life of the poor, then there is no authentic commitment to liberation, because love exists only among equals.    - A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition ; Gustavo Gutierrez


In the final analysis, poverty means death: lack of food and housing, the inability to attend properly to health and education needs, the exploitation of workers, permanent unemployment, the lack of respect for one's human dignity, and unjust limitations placed on personal freedom in the areas of self-expression, politics, and religion.    - A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition ; Gustavo Gutierrez


Be full of compassion, just as your Father is full of compassion.    - Editorial Board of the International Q Project ; Sayings Gospel Q 6:36


When you pray, say: Father — may your name be kept holy! — let your reign come: Our day’s bread give us today; and cancel our debts for us, as we too have cancelled for those in debt to us; and do not put us to the test!    - Editorial Board of the International Q Project ; Sayings Gospel Q 11:2b-4


And raising his eyes to his disciples he said: Blessed are you poor, for God's reign is for you. Blessed are you who hunger, for you will eat your fill. Blessed are you who mourn‚ for you will be consoled.    - Editorial Board of the International Q Project ; Sayings Gospel Q 6:22-23


Blessed are you when they insult and persecute you, and say every kind of evil against you because of the son of humanity. Be glad and exult‚ for vast is your reward in heaven. For this is how they persecuted the prophets who were before you.    - Editorial Board of the International Q Project ; Sayings Gospel Q 6:22-23


Why do you call me: Master, Master, and do not do what I say?    - Editorial Board of the International Q Project ; Sayings Gospel Q 6:46


Can a blind person show the way to a blind person? Will not both fall into a pit?    - Editorial Board of the International Q Project ; Sayings Gospel Q 6:39


And the way you want people to treat you, that is how you treat them.    - Editorial Board of the International Q Project ; Sayings Gospel Q 6:31


Those who were Christians did not speak of "entering the ministry." They were already in it. Everyone entered the ministry at baptism. To be in Christ was to be in the ministry. No one went away to study for "the Ministry." Each one began where he was and announced the Messiah who had come. People did not send for a preacher. They just began preaching. All who had been inducted into the kingdom could tell what they did and why they did it. Every Christian was a minister, everyone was a priest. The congregation was a priesthood--a royal priesthood composed of all believers.    - W.C. Ketcherside ; The Royal Priesthood


Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.23-24


If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.    - The Apostle Paul ; 2 Timothy 2:13


Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”    - Luke ; Luke 23.34 


So God created human beings in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

   - Moses ; Genesis 1.27


God saw what was going on with Israel. God understood.

   - Moses the prophet ; Exodus 2.25,The Message


"Learn to do good; seek justice, rescue the oppressed, defend the orphan, plead for the widow."    - Isaiah ; Isaiah 1:17 


So the womanist theologian uses the sociopolitical thought and action of the African-American woman's world to show black women their salvation does not depend upon any form of surrogacy made sacred by traditional and orthodox understandings of Jesus’ life and death. Rather their salvation is assured by Jesus’ life of resistance and by the survival strategies he used to help people survive the death of identity caused by their exchange of inherited cultural meanings for a new identity shaped by the gospel ethics and world view.    - Delores S. Williams ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


This spiritual-political connection in black Christian women's experience has continued beyond Tubman's death in the life and work of such women as Ida Wells, Rosa Parks, Fannie Lou Hamer and others.    - Delores S. Williams ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


In the biblical account in Genesis Hagar's experiences in the wilderness are constituted by political and spiritual interconnections.    - Delores S. Williams ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


Second, the Hagar (and child) content of the wilderness symbolism brings together the spiritual and the political.    - Delores S. Williams ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


Tubman herself believed her success in singlehandedly liberating over three hundred slaves was superintended by God, who had preordained her political action.    - Delores S. Williams ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


"It is my contention that Christianity is essentially a religion of liberation. The function of theology is that of analyzing the meaning of that liberation for the oppressed so they can know that their struggle for political, social, and economic justice is consistent with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Any message that is not related to the liberation of the poor in a society is not Christ’s message. Any theology that is indifferent to the theme of liberation is not Christian theology."    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation - Fortieth Anniversary Edition


There can be no Christian theology that is not social and political. If theology is to speak about the God of Jesus who is revealed in the struggle of the oppressed for freedom, then theology must also become political, speaking for the God of the poor and the oppressed.    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


Violence simply is not radical enough, since it generally changes only the rulers but not the rules. What use is a revolution that fails to address the fundamental problem: the existence of domination in all its forms, and the myth of redemptive violence that perpetuates it?    - Walter Wink ; Jesus and Nonviolence: A Third Way (Facets)


There can be no Christian theology that is not identified unreservedly with those who are humiliated and abused. In fact, theology ceases to be a theology of the gospel when it fails to arise out of the community of the oppressed. For it is impossible to speak of the God of Israelite history, who is the God revealed in Jesus Christ, without recognizing that God is the God of and for those who labor and are overladen.    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


Violence lence is not an absolute evil to be avoided at all costs. It is not even the main problem, lem, but only the presenting symptom of an unjust society. And peace is not the highest good; it is rather the outcome of a just social order.    - Walter Wink ; Jesus and Nonviolence: A Third Way (Facets)


Neutrality in a situation of oppression always supports ports the status quo. Reduction of conflict by means of a phony "peace" is not a Christian goal. Justice is the goal, and that may require an acceleration of conflict flict as a necessary stage in forcing those in power to bring about genuine change.    - Walter Wink ; Jesus and Nonviolence: A Third Way (Facets)


Jesus abhors both passivity and violence as responses sponses to evil. His is a third alternative not even touched by these options. Antistenai tistenai cannot be construed to mean submission.    - Walter Wink ; Jesus and Nonviolence: A Third Way (Facets)


The issue is not, "What must I do in order to secure my salvation?" but rather, "What does God require of me in response to the needs of others?" It is not, "How can I be virtuous?" But "How can I participate in the struggle of the oppressed for a more just world?"    - Walter Wink ; Jesus and Nonviolence: A Third Way (Facets)


A proper translation of Jesus' teaching would then be, "Don't strike back at evil (or, one who has done you evil) in kind." "Do not retaliate against violence with violence." The Scholars Version is brilliant: liant: "Don't react violently against the one who is evil." Jesus was no less committed to opposing evil than the anti-Roman Roman resistance fighters. The only difference was over the means to be used: how one should fight evil. There are three general responses to evil: (1) passivity, (2) violent opposition, and 3) the third way of militant non-violence violence articulated by Jesus.    - Jesus and Nonviolence: A Third Way (Facets) ; Walter Wink


Why then does he counsel these already humiliated people to turn the other cheek? Because this action robs the oppressor of the power to humiliate. The person who turns the other cheek is saying, in effect, "Try again. Your first blow failed to achieve its intended effect. I deny you the power to humiliate me. I am a human being just like you. Your status does not alter that fact. You cannot demean me."    - Walter Wink ; Jesus and Nonviolence: A Third Way (Facets)


My point is that one's social and historical context decides not only the questions we address to God but also the mode or form of the answers given to the questions.    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


Theology is subjective speech about God, a speech that tells us far more about the hopes and dreams of certain God-talkers than about the Maker and Creator of heaven and earth.    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


"Any interpretation of the gospel in any historical period that fails to see Jesus as the Liberator of the oppressed is heretical. Any view of the gospel that fails to understand the Church as that community whose work and consciousness are defined by the community of the oppressed is not Christian and is thus heretical."    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


Faith is born out of suffering, and suffering is faith's most powerful contradiction. This is the Christian dilemma. The only meaningful Christian response is to resist unjust suffering and to accept the painful consequence of that resistance.    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


Theology is not universal language; it is interested language and thus is always a reflection of the goals and aspirations of a particular people in a definite social setting.    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


"What has the gospel to do with the oppressed of the land and their struggle for liberation? Any theologian who fails to place that question at the center of his or her work has ignored the essence of the gospel."    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


"Christian theology is language about the liberating character of God's presence in Jesus Christ as he calls his people into being for freedom in the world."    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


There must be better distribution of wealth and maybe America must move toward  a democratic socialism. Call it what you may, call it democracy, or call it democratic socialism, but there must be a better distribution of wealth within this country for all of God's children.    - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; May 1965 speech to the Negro American Labor Council


We believe firmly in the revelation of God in Jesus Christ. I can see no conflict between our devotion to Jesus Christ and our present action. In fact, I can see a necessary relationship. If one is truly devoted to the religion of Jesus he will seek to rid the earth of social evils. The gospel is social as well as personal.    - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; Stride Toward Freedom


We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy; for no document from human hands can make these humans any less our brother.    - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; Martin Luther King: The Inconvenient Hero; Vincent Harding


"Woe to you, because you build tombs for the prophets, and it was your ancestors who killed them. So you testify that you approve of what your ancestors did; they killed the prophets, and you build their tombs."    - Luke ; Luke 11.47-49


"To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”    - ;


Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You build tombs for the prophets and decorate the graves of the righteous. And you say, ‘If we had lived in the days of our ancestors, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’ So you testify against yourselves that you are the descendants of those who murdered the prophets. Go ahead, then, and complete what your ancestors started!    - Matthew ; Matthew 23.2-32


"If you had known what these words mean, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice,’  you would not have condemned the innocent."    - Matthew ; Matthew 12.7


"For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings."    - Hosea ; Hosea 6.6


"The only way to erase those who have died unjustly is to erase memory, but not even memory can be erased permanently."    - Karen Baker Fletcher ; My Sister, My Brother; Womanist and Xodus God Talk


But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’  For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”    - Matthew ; Matthew 9.13


When I survey the "wondrous cross" of Jesus, I must take account of this unconventional naming of "the Blood" because it compels the spiritual imagination to consider the interconnections between the sufferings of Jesus caused by humanity and the suffering of nature caused by humanity.    - ;


Suppose someone comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor person in filthy old clothes also comes in. If you show special attention to the one wearing fine clothes and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but say to the one who is poor, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor by my feet,” have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?    - James ; James 1.2-4


For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich will fade away even while they go about their business.    - James ; James 1.11


Believers in humble circumstances ought to take pride in their high position. But the rich should take pride in their humiliation—since they will pass away like a wild flower.    - James ; James 1.9-10


For years it has been a part of my own quest so to understand the religion of Jesus that interest in his way of life could be developed and sustained by intelligent men and women who were at the same time deeply victimized by the Christian Church’s betrayal of his faith.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


The history of mankind is crowded with evidences proving that physical coercion is not adapted to moral regeneration, and that the sinful dispositions of men can be subdued only by love; that evil can be exterminated only by good; that it is not safe to rely upon the strength of an arm to preserve us from harm; that there is great security in being gentle, long-suffering, and abundant in mercy; that it is only the meek who shall inherit the earth; for those who take up the sword shall perish by the sword.      - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


Jesus answered: "Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?"

   - Jesus ; John 14.9


"If one of you says to them, 'Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,' but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?  In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead."    - James ; James 2.16-17


"But someone will say, 'You have faith; I have deeds.' Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do."    - James ; James 2.18


Listen, my dear brothers and sisters: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world . . .    - James ; James 2.5


"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress . . ."    - James ; James 1.27


"The issue is not what we think about [Jesus' sayings], but rather what we do about them."    - James M. Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus


[Jesus'] basic issue, still basic today, is that most people have solved the human dilemma for themselves at the expense of everyone else, putting them down so as to stay afloat themselves. This vicious, antisocial way of coping with the necessities of life only escalates the dilemma for the rest of society.    - James M. Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus


them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Liberator has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger . . . Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.    - Luke ; Luke 2.10-14


To give his people the knowledge of liberation through the forgiveness of their [national] sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.    - Luke ; Luke 1.77-79


And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him,    - Luke ; Luke 1.76


To rescue us from the hand of our enemies, and to enable us to serve him without fear in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.    - Luke ; Luke 1.74-75


(as he said through his holy prophets of long ago), Liberation from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us— to show mercy to our ancestors and to remember his holy covenant, the oath he swore to our father Abraham:    - Luke ; Luke 1.70-73


He has raised up a horn  of liberation for us in the house of his servant David.    - Luke ; Luke 1.69


Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has come to his people and liberated them.    - Luke ; Luke 1.68


If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person?    - John ; 1 John 3.17


He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, according to the promise he made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.    - Luke ; Luke 1.54-55


He has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty.    - Luke ; Luke 1.53


He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly.    - Luke ; Luke 1.52


He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts.    - Luke ; Luke 1.51


His mercy is for those who reverence him from generation to generation.    - Luke ; Luke 1.50


Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name.    - ; Luke 1.48-49


And Mary said,“My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Liberator, for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant."    - Luke ; Luke 1.46-48


He has sent me . . . to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.    - Jesus ; Luke 4.18-19


"There is something boundary shattering about the imitatio dei that stood at the center of Jesus’ message and activity. 'Be compassionate as God is compassionate.' Whereas purity divides and excludes, compassion unites and includes. (The purity system created a world with sharp social boundaries between pure and impure, righteous and sinner, whole and not whole, male and female, rich and poor, Jew and Gentile…)"    - Marcus J. Borg ; Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time


He has sent me . . . to set the oppressed free.    - Jesus ; Luke 4.18


"For Jesus, compassion had a radical sociopolitical meaning. In his teaching and table fellowship, and in the shape of his movement, the purity system was subverted and an alternative social vision affirmed. The politics of purity was replaced by a politics of compassion."    - Marcus J. Borg ; Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time


He has sent me to proclaim . . .  recovery of sight for the blind.      - Jesus ; Luke 4.18


"And cancel our debts, as we also cancel the debts of our debtors."    - Matthew's Gospels ; Matthew 6.12


"...there are certain things in our nation and in the world which I am proud to be maladjusted and which I hope all men of good-will will be maladjusted until the good societies realize. I say very honestly that I never intend to become adjusted to segregation and discrimination. I never intend to become adjusted to religious bigotry. I never intend to adjust myself to economic conditions that will take necessities from the many to give luxuries to the few. I never intend to adjust myself to the madness of militarism, to self-defeating effects of physical violence."

   - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; 18 December 1963; Western Michigan University


He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners.      - Jesus ; Luke 4.18


Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD shall be a light unto me.

   - Micah the prophet ; Micah 7.8


"But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have one Teacher, and you are all brothers. And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one Instructor, the Messiah. The greatest among you will be your servant. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted."    - Jesus ; Matthew 23.8-12


"If religion is to bring light to our broken world, we need, as Mencius suggested, to go in search of the lost heart, the spirit of compassion that lies at the core of all our traditions."    - Armstrong, Karen ; The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions


I tell you, ask and it will be given to you, search and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks will it be opened. What person of you, whose son asks for bread, will give him a stone?  Or again when he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? So if you, though evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, by how much more will the Father from heaven give good things to those who ask him!    - Q 11:9-13 ; International Q Project


Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves;

   - Paul the Apostle ; Philippians 2:3


Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 11:28-30


Woe to you Pharisees, because you give God a tenth of your mint, rue and all other kinds of garden herbs, but you neglect justice and the love of God. You should have practiced the latter without leaving the former undone.    - Jesus ; Luke 11.42


Liberation in the Hagar stories is not given by God; it finds its source in human initiative.    - Delores S. Williams ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.    - Jesus ; Matthew 23.23


Hagar becomes the first female in the Bible to liberate herself from oppressive power structures.    - Delores S. Williams ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out, till he has brought justice through to victory.    - Matthew ; Matthew 12.20


She [Delores S. Williams] contends that theologians need to think seriously about the real-life consequences of redemptive suffering, God-talk that equates the acceptance of pain, misery, and abuse as the way for true believers to live as authentic Christian disciples. Those who spew such false teaching and warped preaching must cease and desist.    - Katie G. Cannon ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


“Here is my servant whom I have chosen, the one I love, in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on him, and he will proclaim justice to the nations."    - Matthew ; Matthew 12.18


But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”    - Luke ; Luke 19.8


But when you give a banquet, invite the poor . . .    - Jesus ; Luke 14.13


Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys.    - Jesus ; Luke 12.33


But now as for what is inside you—be generous to the poor, and everything will be clean for you.    - Jesus ; Luke 11.41


So he replied to the messengers, “Go back and report to John what you have seen and heard:  . . .  the good news is proclaimed to the poor."    - Jesus ; Luke 7.22


Looking at his disciples, he said: “Blessed are you who are poor,  for yours is the kingdom of God.”    - Jesus ; Luke 6.20


“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me  to proclaim good news to the poor.”    - Jesus ; Luke 4.18


They expressed their belief that God was involved in their history, that God helped them make a way out of no way.    - Delores S. Williams ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.27


I traveled to faith— learning to trust the righteousness of God in spite of trouble and injustice; learning to trust women of many colors regardless of sexism, racism, classism and homophobia in our society; learning to believe in the sanctuary power of family defined in many ways in addition to nuclear; discovering love in a variety of forms that heal, but also believing serious political action is absolutely necessary for justice to prevail in the world of my four black children and other mothers’ children. Faith has taught me to see the miraculous in everyday life: the miracle of ordinary black women resisting and rising above evil forces in society, where forces work to destroy and subvert the creative power and energy my mother and grandmother taught me God gave black women.    - Delores S. Williams ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


If you, even you, had only recognized on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.    - Jesus ; Luke 19.42


Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.22-23


The argument that resistance to the war should remain strictly nonviolent seems to me overwhelming. As a tactic, violence is absurd. No one can compete with the government in this arena, and the resort to violence, which will surely fail, will simply frighten and alienate some who can be reached, and will further encourage the ideologists and administrators of forceful repression. What is more, one hopes that participants in nonviolent resistance will themselves become human beings of a more admirable sort.    - Noam Chomsky ; The Essential Chomsky (p. 68)


And raising his eyes to his disciples he said: Blessed are you poor, for God’s reign is for you. Blessed are you who hunger, for you will eat your fill. Blessed are you who mourn, for you will be consoled.    - Q 6:20–21 (cf. Luke 6.20-21; Matthew 5:1–4, 6 & Gospel of Thomas 54; 69:2 ; Robinson, James M.; The Gospel of Jesus


Any analysis of the gospel which did not begin and end with God's liberation of the oppressed was ipso facto unchristian.    - God of the Oppressed ; James H. Cone


Human beings are made for each other and no people can realize their full humanity except as they participate in its realization for others.    - God of the Oppressed ; James H. Cone


She [Williams] contends that theologians need to think seriously about the real-life consequences of redemptive suffering, God-talk that equates the acceptance of pain, misery, and abuse as the way for true believers to live as authentic Christian disciples. Those who spew such false teaching and warped preaching must cease and desist.    - Delores S. Williams ; Sisters in the Wilderness: The Challenge of Womanist God-Talk


The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind,to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.    - Jesus ; Luke 4.18-19


“Put your sword back in its place,” Jesus said to him, “for all who draw the sword will die by the sword."    - Jesus ; Matthew 26.52


He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’    - Jesus ; Matthew 25.45


The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’    - Jesus ; Matthew 25.40


For whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them.    - Jesus ; Matthew 25.29


Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom the master has put in charge of the servants in his household to give them their food at the proper time? It will be good for that servant whose master finds him doing so when he returns.    - Jesus ; Matthew 24.45-46


Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door. Truly I tell you, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.    - Jesus ; Matthew 24.32-35


So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the wilderness,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather.    - Jesus ; Matthew 24.26-28


From now on you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.    - Jesus ; Matthew 26.64


Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains.    - Jesus ; Matthew 24.4-8


Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. Look, your house is left to you desolate. For I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’”    - Jesus ; Matthew 23.37-39


You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape being condemned to Gehenna? Therefore I am sending you prophets and sages and teachers. Some of them you will kill and crucify; others you will flog in your synagogues and pursue from town to town. And so upon you will come all the righteous blood that has been shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah son of Berekiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar. Truly I tell you, all this will come on this generation.    - Jesus ; Matthew 23.33-36


Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.    - Jesus ; Matthew 23.27-28


Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean.    - Jesus ; Matthew 23.25-26


Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former. You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.    - Jesus ; Matthew 23.23-24


Woe to you, blind guides! You say, ‘If anyone swears by the temple, it means nothing; but anyone who swears by the gold of the temple is bound by that oath.’ You blind fools! Which is greater: the gold, or the temple that makes the gold sacred? You also say, ‘If anyone swears by the altar, it means nothing; but anyone who swears by the gift on the altar is bound by that oath.’ You blind men! Which is greater: the gift, or the altar that makes the gift sacred? Therefore, anyone who swears by the altar swears by it and by everything on it. And anyone who swears by the temple swears by it and by the one who dwells in it. And anyone who swears by heaven swears by God’s throne and by the one who sits on it.    - Jesus ; Matthew 23.16-22


Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when you have succeeded, you make them twice as much a child of hell as you are.    - Jesus ; Matthew 23.15


Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut the door of the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces. You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let those enter who are trying to.    - Jesus ; Matthew 23.13


Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 22.37-40


“So give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 22.21


Jesus spoke to them again in parables, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is like a king who prepared a wedding banquet for his son. He sent his servants to those who had been invited to the banquet to tell them to come, but they refused to come. “Then he sent some more servants and said, ‘Tell those who have been invited that I have prepared my dinner: My oxen and fattened cattle have been butchered, and everything is ready. Come to the wedding banquet.’ “But they paid no attention and went off—one to his field, another to his business. The rest seized his servants, mistreated them and killed them. The king was enraged. He sent his army and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding banquet is ready, but those I invited did not deserve to come. So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.’  So the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, the bad as well as the good, and the wedding hall was filled with guests. But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. He asked, ‘How did you get in here without wedding clothes, friend?’ The man was speechless. Then the king told the attendants, ‘Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ For many are invited, but few are chosen.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 22.1-14


“Listen to another parable: There was a landowner who planted a vineyard. He put a wall around it, dug a winepress in it and built a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to some farmers and moved to another place. When the harvest time approached, he sent his servants to the tenants to collect his fruit.  “The tenants seized his servants; they beat one, killed another, and stoned a third. Then he sent other servants to them, more than the first time, and the tenants treated them the same way. Last of all, he sent his son to them. ‘They will respect my son,’ he said. “But when the tenants saw the son, they said to each other, ‘This is the heir. Come, let’s kill him and take his inheritance.’ So they took him and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. “Therefore, when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?" "He will bring those wretches to a wretched end,” they replied, “and he will rent the vineyard to other tenants, who will give him his share of the crop at harvest time.” Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures: “ ‘The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes’? “Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit. Anyone who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; anyone on whom it falls will be crushed.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 21.33-44


“What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work today in the vineyard.’ ‘I will not,’ he answered, but later he changed his mind and went. Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. He answered, ‘I will, sir,’ but he did not go. Which of the two did what his father wanted?” “The first,” they answered. Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you."    - Jesus ; Matthew 21.28-31


"Jesus called them together and said, 'You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant.'"    - Jesus ; Matthew 20.25-26


When they received it, they began to grumble against the landowner. ‘These men who were hired last worked only one hour,’ they said, ‘and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the work and the heat of the day.’ But he answered one of them, ‘Friend, I am not being unfair to you. Didn’t you agree to work for a denarius? Take your pay and go. I want to give the one who was hired last the same as I gave you. Don’t I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous? So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 20.11-16


Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly I tell you, it is hard for the rich to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for the rich to enter the kingdom of God.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 19.23-24


If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.    - Jesus ; Matthew 19.21


Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.    - Jesus ; Matthew 19.14    


For some are eunuchs because they were born that way; others have been made eunuchs; and others have renounced marriage because of the kingdom of heaven. The one who can accept this should accept it.    - Jesus ; Matthew 19.12


"Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to him. Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt. The servant fell on his knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ he begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’  The servant’s master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go. But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred silver coins. He grabbed him and began to choke him. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ he demanded. His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.’ But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. When the other servants saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed and went and told their master everything that had happened. Then the master called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ In anger his master handed him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed."    - Jesus ; Matthew 18.23-34


What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety–nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off? And if he finds it, truly I tell you, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety–nine that did not wander off. In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should perish.    - Jesus ; Matthew 18.12-14


"If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for you if a great millstone were fastened around your neck and you were drowned in the depth of the sea. Woe to the world because of stumbling blocks! Occasions for stumbling are bound to come, but woe to the one by whom the stumbling block comes!"    - Jesus ; Matthew 18.6-7


"Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.  Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me."    - Jesus ; Matthew 18.3-5


Watch out, and beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.    - Jesus ; Matthew 16.6


Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like the master of a household who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old.    - Jesus ; Matthew 13.52


Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it.    - Jesus ; Matthew 13.45-46


The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.    - Jesus ; Matthew 13.44


He told them still another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into about sixty pounds of flour until it worked all through the dough.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 13.33


He told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his field. Though it is the smallest of all seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds come and perch in its branches.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 13.31-32


But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear. For truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.    - Jesus ; Matthew 13.16-17


In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah:  “You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving. For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them."    - Jesus ; Matthew 13.14-15


Then he told them many things in parables, saying: “A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. Whoever has ears, let them hear.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 13.3-9


You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.    - Jesus ; Matthew 12.34-35


"Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit."    - Jesus ; Matthew 12.33


Here is my servant whom I have chosen, the one I love, in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on him, and he will proclaim justice to the nations. He will not quarrel or cry out; no one will hear his voice in the streets. A bruised reed he will not break and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out till he has brought justice through to victory.  In his name the nations will put their hope.    - Jesus (via second Isaiah) ; Matthew 12.18-21


“If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? How much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 12.11-12


Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.    - Jesus ; Matthew 11.28-30


All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.    - Jesus ; Matthew 11.27


At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do."    - Jesus ; Matthew 11.25-26


To what can I compare this generation? They are like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling out to others: ‘We played the pipe for you, and you did not dance; we sang a dirge, and you did not mourn.’ For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon.’ The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ But wisdom is proved right by her deeds.    - Jesus ; Matthew 11.16-19


From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been subjected to violence, and violent people have been raiding it. For all the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John. And if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah who was to come. Whoever has ears, let them hear.    - Jesus ; Matthew 11.12-15


What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed swayed by the wind? If not, what did you go out to see? A man dressed in fine clothes? No, those who wear fine clothes are in kings’ palaces. Then what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. This is the one about whom it is written: ‘I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way before you.’ Truly I tell you, among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet whoever is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.    - ; Matthew 11.7-11


Go back and report to John what you hear and see: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor. Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 11.4-6


"Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn  ‘a man against his father, da daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’ Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it."    - Jesus ; Matthew 10.34-39


The student is not above the teacher, nor a servant above his master. It is enough for students to be like their teachers, and servants like their masters. If the head of the house has been called Beelzebul, how much more the members of his household!    - Jesus ; Matthew 10.24-25


"I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. Be on your guard; you will be handed over to the local councils and be flogged in the synagogues. On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you."    - Jesus ; Matthew 10.16


Do not get any gold or silver or copper to take with you in your belts—no bag for the journey or extra shirt or sandals or a staff, for the worker is worth his keep. Whatever town or village you enter, search there for some worthy person and stay at their house until you leave. As you enter the home, give it your greeting. If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you.    - Jesus ; Matthew 10.9-15


It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’  For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.    - Jesus ; Matthew 9.12


Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.    - Jesus ; Matthew 8.20


"I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the subjects of the kingdom will be thrown outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth."    - Jesus ; Matthew 8.11-12


Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”    - Jesus ; Matthew 7.24-27


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 who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’    - Jesus ; Matthew 7.21-23


Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.    - Jesus ; Matthew 7.13-14


Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.    - Jesus ; Matthew 7.9-12


Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.    - Jesus ; Matthew 7.7-8


Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.    - Jesus ; Matthew 7.6


Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.    - Jesus ; Matthew 7.3-5


Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.    - Jesus ; Matthew 7.1-2


So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the gentiles run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.31-34


Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.25-27


And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith?    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.28-30


No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.24


The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.22-23


Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.19-21


When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.16-18


For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.14-15


And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. ’    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.13


And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.12


Give us today our daily bread.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.11


This, then, is how you should pray: “ ‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.9-10


And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like gentiles, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.5-8


The goal is not only better living conditions, a radical change of structures, a social revolution; it is much more: the continuous creation, never ending, of a new way to be human, a permanent cultural revolution.    - Gustavo Gutierrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.2-4


The poor countries are not interested in modeling themselves after the rich countries, among other reasons because they are increasingly more convinced that the status of the latter is the fruit of injustice and coercion.    - Gustavo Gutierrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.1


To speak about a theology of liberation is to seek an answer to the following question: what relation is there between salvation and the historical process of human liberation?    - Gustavo Gutierrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor  and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even gentiles do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.43-48


“You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not retaliate against an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you."    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.38-42


These were the four gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) Irenaeus chose to fill out his quartet. Jesus the martyr would inspire and unite his people as they faced persecution, suffering, and even death.      - The Lost Way: How Two Forgotten Gospels Are Rewriting the Story of Christian Origins ; Patterson, Stephen J.


Again, you have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not break your oath, but fulfill to the Lord the vows you have made.’ But I tell you, do not swear an oath at all: either by heaven, for it is God’s throne; or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. All you need to say is simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.33-37


This tradition [Sayings Gospel Q] makes meaning only when people hear and contemplate it for themselves. It does not state the Truth. It provokes you to seek for truth. In that seeking, everyone is on equal footing.    - Patterson, Stephen J. ; The Lost Way: How Two Forgotten Gospels Are Rewriting the Story of Christian Origins


“Show mercy, that you may be shown mercy.” Roman rule in the eastern provinces was rarely merciful. When, after forty years of iron-fisted rule, Herod the Great finally perished from the earth, the Jews rose up and begged Caesar Augustus to spare them from more of the same from Herod’s sons, who were set to inherit his kingdom. In Galilee, a certain Judas (the son of a famous bandit whom Herod had executed) seized the moment to gather around himself a small following of bandit-rebels. Judas and his band stormed the royal palace in Sepphoris, raided its treasury, armed themselves with weapons from its armory, and began fomenting rebellion around the city. Jesus’s family lived in Nazareth, just a few kilometers from Sepphoris. They would have witnessed what happened next. The Roman governor, Varus, marched from Antioch with two legions to put things back in order. When he arrived at Sepphoris, he burned the city to the ground and sold its inhabitants into slavery. Later he rounded up two thousand of the rebels and crucified them. Jesus would have spent his youth and young adulthood rebuilding that ruined city from the ashes. If he was to imagine a new empire, it would be an empire of mercy.    - Stephen J. Patterson ; The Lost Way: How Two Forgotten Gospels Are Rewriting the Story of Christian Origins


You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.27-30


Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison. Truly I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.25-26


You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder,  and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister  will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.21-22


Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.17-20


You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.14-16


You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.13


Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.11-12


Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.9


Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.8


Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.7


Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.10


Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.5


Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.4


Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.    - ;


Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.

   - Paul the apostle ; Romans 12:10


"Christian theology is never just a rational study of the being of God. Rather it is a study of God’s liberating activity in the world, God’s activity in behalf of the oppressed."    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’ For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’ And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”    - Luke ; 18.1-8


If you keep on biting and devouring each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.    - Paul ; Galatians 5.15


So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Colossians 3:12-13


Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share.

   - Paul ; 1 Timothy 6.17, 18


"I, even I, am the one who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake,

And I will not remember your sins."

   - God ; Isaiah 43:25


To speak about a theology of liberation is to seek an answer to the following question: what relation is there between salvation and the historical process of human liberation?    - Gustavo Gutierrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


"If there is no friendship with them and no sharing of the life of the poor, then there is no authentic commitment to liberation, because love exists only among equals."    - Gustavo Gutierrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


In the final analysis, poverty means death: lack of food and housing, the inability to attend properly to health and education needs, the exploitation of workers, permanent unemployment, the lack of respect for one's human dignity, and unjust limitations placed on personal freedom in the areas of self-expression, politics, and religion.    - Gustavo Gutierrez ; A Theology of Liberation: 15th Anniversary Edition


The kingdom of God is not coming with things that can be observed; nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or ‘There it is!’ For, in fact, the kingdom of God is among you.    - Jesus ; Luke 17.20-21


The law and the prophets were in effect until John came; since then the good news of the kingdom of God is proclaimed, and everyone tries to enter it by force. But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away, than for one stroke of a letter in the law to be dropped.    - Jesus ; Luke 16.16-17


"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."    - Jesus ; Luke 14.34-35


"Whoever does not carry the cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not first sit down and estimate the cost, to see whether he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it will begin to ridicule him, saying, ‘This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.’ Or what king, going out to wage war against another king, will not sit down first and consider whether he is able with ten thousand to oppose the one who comes against him with twenty thousand? If he cannot, then, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and asks for the terms of peace. So therefore, none of you can become my disciple if you do not give up all your possessions."    - Jesus ; Luke 14.27-33


Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!"    - Luke ; Luke 12.22-24


Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it."    - Luke ; Luke 9.23-24


When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.  He told them: “Take nothing for the journey—no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, no extra shirt. Whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave that town. If people do not welcome you, leave their town and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.” So they set out and went from village to village, proclaiming the good news and healing people everywhere.    - Luke ; Luke 9.1-6


"Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both."    - Jesus ; Luke 7.41-42


But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete.”    - Jesus ; Luke 6.49


As for everyone who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice, I will show you what they are like. They are like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.47-48


Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?    - Jesus ; Luke 6.46


No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit. Each tree is recognized by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thornbushes, or grapes from briers. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.43-45


Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.41-42


The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.40


He also told them this parable: “Can the blind lead the blind? Will they not both fall into a pit?    - Jesus ; Luke 6.39


Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.38


Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.37


And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.33


If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.32


Do to others as you would have them do to you.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.31


Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.30


If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.29


Bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.28


Woe to you when everyone speaks well of you, for that is how their ancestors treated the false prophets.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.26


Woe to you who are well fed now, for you will go hungry.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.25


But woe to you who are rich, for you have already received your comfort.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.24


Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.21


Blessed are you who hunger now, for you will be satisfied.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.21


“Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God."    - Jesus ; Luke 6.20


Genuine religion is not about speculating about God or the soul or about what happened in the past or will happen in the future; it cares only about one thing—finding out exactly what should or should not be done in this lifetime.    - Leo Tolstoy ; Path of Life


People try to do all sorts of clever and difficult things to improve life instead of doing the simplest, easiest thing—refusing to participate in activities that make life bad.    - Leo Tolstoy ; Path of Life


Buttrick understood what we must now recover: that what we call “the Bible” is only the means to a deepened understanding of what Jesus called the gospel, or glad tidings, and that for us to understand this we have to understand afresh, or perhaps for the first time, the radical nature of the substance of Jesus’ preaching.    - Peter J. Gomes ; The Scandalous Gospel of Jesus


In the meantime we can understand a reluctance to focus too much on the content of Jesus’ preaching, largely because it is easier to talk about him than it is to talk about what he talked about.    - Peter J. Gomes ; The Scandalous Gospel of Jesus


"Most people do not go to church to be confronted with the gap between what they believe and practice and what their faith teaches and requires. One of the reasons that religious people are often cultural conservatives, and that cultural conservatives take comfort in religion, is that religion is seen to confirm the status quo."      - Peter J. Gomes ; The Scandalous Gospel of Jesus


When Jesus came preaching, it was to proclaim the end of things as they are and the breaking in of things that are to be: the status quo is not to be criticized; it is to be destroyed.    - Peter J. Gomes ; The Scandalous Gospel of Jesus


"If God is the God of all, and not just a tribal deity, then God has made provision, not necessarily known to us, for the healing and care of all his creation, and not simply our little part of it."    - Peter J. Gomes ; The Scandalous Gospel of Jesus


"The church, then, is made an agency of continuity rather than of change, conformity rather than transformation becomes the reigning ideology of the day, and the church that is comfortable with the powers-that-be is no threat to them."    - Peter J. Gomes ; The Scandalous Gospel of Jesus


The Bible may be put to the purposes of the comfortable, and perhaps never more so than in these early days of the twenty-first century, when the preaching of the comfortable by the comfortable, to and for the comfortable, floods every inspirational television and radio station in the world. The gospel, however, the radical words of Jesus properly understood in their full transformative power, is another story. If we understand the gospel aright, we too might be prepared to take violent action against Jesus and any who are bold enough to translate what he says into practice.    - Peter J. Gomes ; The Scandalous Gospel of Jesus


Genuine religion is not about speculating about God or the soul or about what happened in the past or will happen in the future; it cares only about one thing—finding out exactly what should or should not be done in this lifetime.    - Leo Tolstoy ; Path of Life


There is only one enduring happiness in life—to live for others.    - Leo Tolstoy ; Family Happiness


All violence consists in some people forcing others, under threat of suffering or death, to do what they do not want to do.    - Leo Tolstoy ; The Law of Love and the Law of Violence


Condemn me if you choose — I do that myself, — but condemn me, and not the path which I am following, and which I point out to those who ask me where, in my opinion, the path is.    - Leo Tolstoy ; Letter to N.N


There can be only one permanent revolution — a moral one; the regeneration of the inner man. How is this revolution to take place? Nobody knows how it will take place in humanity, but every man feels it clearly in himself. And yet in our world everybody thinks of changing humanity, and nobody thinks of changing himself.    - Leo Tolstoy ; Three Methods Of Reform


In order for this struggle to have meaning, the oppressed must not, in seeking to regain their humanity (which is a way to create it), become in turn oppressors of the oppressors, but rather restorers of the humanity of both.    - Paulo Freire ; Pedagogy of the Oppressed


I want a change,and a radical change. I want a change from an acquisitive society to a functional society, from a society of go-getters to a society of go-givers.    - Peter Maurin ; The Catholic Worker; August 1936


People say, what is the sense of our small effort? They cannot see that we must lay one brick at a time, take one step at a time. A pebble cast into a pond causes ripples that spread in all directions. Each one of our thoughts, words and deeds is like that. No one has a right to sit down and feel hopeless. There is too much work to do.

   - Dorothy Day ; The Long Loneliness


"To put it boldly, compassion for Jesus was political. He directly and repeatedly challenged the dominant sociopolitical paradigm of his social world and advocated instead what might be called a politics of compassion."    - Marcus J. Borg ; Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time


The terrible truth is that our world has never established peace through victory. Victory establishes not peace, but lull. Thereafter, violence returns once again, and always worse than before. And it is that escalator violence that then endangers our world.    - Borg, Marcus J.; Crossan, John Dominic ; The First Christmas


You who have followed me will sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.      - Q 22:28, 30 ; International Q Project


A certain person, on taking a trip, called ten of his slaves and gave them ten minas and said to them: Do business until I come. After a long time‚ the master of those slaves comes and settles accounts with them.  And the first came‚ saying: Master, your mina has produced ten more minas.  And he said to him: Well done, good slave, you have been faithful over a pittance, I will set you over much.  And the second‚ came saying: Master, your mina has earned five minas. He said to him: Well done, good slave, you have been faithful over a pittance, I will set you over much. And the other came saying: Master, I knew‚ you, that you are a hard person, reaping where you did not sow and gathering from where you did not winnow; and, scared, I went and hid your mina‚ in the ground. Here, you have what belongs to you. He said to him: Wicked slave! You knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather from where I have not winnowed? Then you had to invest‚ my money with the money·-changers! And at my coming I would have received what belongs to me plus interest. So take from him the mina and give to the one who has the ten minas. For‚ to everyone who has will be given; but from the one who does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.    - Q 19:12-13, 15-24, 26 ; International Q Project


I tell you, there will be two in the field; one is taken and one is left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one is taken and one is left.    - Q 17:34-35 ; International Q Project


As it took place in‚ the days of Noah, so will it be in the day‚ of the Son of Humanity. For as in those days‚ they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day Noah entered the ark and the flood came and took them all, so will it also be on the day the Son of Humanity is revealed.    - Q 17:26-27, 28-29, 30 ; International Q Project


Wherever the corpse, there the vultures will gather.    - Q 17:37 ; International Q Project


If they say to you: Look, he is in the wilderness, do not go out; look, he is indoors, do not follow. For as the lightning streaks out from Sunrise and flashes as far as Sunset, so will be the Son of Humanity on his day.    - Q 17:23-24 ; International Q Project


But on being asked when the kingdom of God is coming, he answered them and said: The kingdom of God is not coming visibly. Nor will one say: Look, here! or: There! For look, the kingdom of God is within you!    - Q 17:20-21 ; International Q Project


If you have faith like a mustard seed, you might say to this mulberry tree: Be uprooted and planted in the sea! And it would obey you.    - Q 17:6 ; International Q Project


If your brother sins against you‚ rebuke him; and if he repents‚ forgive him. And if seven times a day he sins against you, also seven times shall you forgive him.    - Q 17:3-4 ; International Q Project


Or what woman who has ten coins, if she were to lose one coin, would not light a lamp and sweep the house and hunt until she finds? And on finding she calls the friends and neighbors, saying: Rejoice with me, for I found the coin which I lost. Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels over one repenting sinner.    - Q 15:·8-10 ; International Q Project


Which person is there among you who has a hundred sheep, on losing one of them, will not leave the ninety-nine in the mountains‚ and go hunt for the lost one? And if it should happen that he finds it, I say to you that he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that did not go astray.    - Q 15:4-5a, 7 ; International Q Project


It is necessary for enticements to come, but woe to the one through whom they come! It is better for him if a millstone is put around his neck and he is thrown into the sea, than that he should entice one of these little [most vulnerable] ones.    - Q 17:1-2 ; International Q Project


Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and the one who marries a divorcée commits adultery.    - Q 16:18 ; International Q Project


But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one iota or one serif of the law to fall.    - Q 16:17 ; International Q Project


The law and the prophets were until John. From then on the kingdom of God is violated and the violent plunder it.    - Q 16:16 ; International Q Project


No one can serve two masters; for a person will either hate the one and love the other, or be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and Mammon [money/wealth].    - Q 16:13 ; International Q Project


Salt is good; but if salt becomes insipid, with what will it be seasoned? Neither for the earth nor for the dunghill is it fit‚ it gets thrown out.    - Q 14:34-35 ; International Q Project


The one who finds one’s life will lose it, and the one who loses one’s life for my sake‚ will find it.    - Q 17:33 ; International Q Project


The one who does not take one's cross and follow after me cannot be my disciple.    - Q 14:27 ; International Q Project


The one who does not hate father and mother can not be my disciple; and the one who does not hate son and daughter cannot be my disciple.    -  Q 14:26 ; International Q Project


A certain person prepared a large dinner, and invited many. And he sent his slave at the time of the dinner to say to the invited: Come, for it is now ready. One declined because of his farm. Another declined because of his business. And the slave, on coming, said these things to his master. Then the householder, enraged, said to his slave: Go out on the roads, and whomever you find, invite, so that my house may be filled.    - Q 14: 16-18, 19-20, 21, 23 ; International Q Project


Everyone exalting oneself will be humbled, and the one humbling oneself will be exalted.    - Q 14:·11 ; International Q Project


O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her nestlings under her wings, and you were not willing! Look, your house is forsaken! I tell you, you will not see me until the time comes when‚ you say: Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!    - Q 13:34-35 ; International Q Project


The last will be first and the first last.    - Q 13:30 ; International Q Project


And many shall come from Sunrise and Sunset and recline with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of God, but you will be thrown out into the outer darkness where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.    - Q 13:29, 28 ; International Q Project


Enter through the narrow door, for many will seek to enter and few are those who enter through it. When the householder has arisen‚ and locked the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock on the door, saying: Master, open for us, and he will answer you: I do not know you. Then you will begin saying: We ate in your presence and drank, and it was in our streets you taught. And he will say to you: I do not know you! Get away from me, you who do lawlessness!    - Q 13:24-27 ; International Q Project


And again‚ with what am I to compare the kingdom of God? It is like yeast, which a woman took and hid in three measures of flour until it was fully fermented.    - Q 13:20-21 ; International Q Project


What is the kingdom of God like, and with what am I to compare it? It is like a seed of mustard, which a person took and threw into his garden‚ and it grew and developed into a tree, and the birds of the sky nested in its branches.    - Q 13:18-19 ; International Q Project


While you go along with your opponent on the way, make an effort to get loose from him, lest the opponent‚ hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the assistant, and the assistant throw you into prison.  I say to you: You will not get out of there until you pay the last penny.    - Q 12:58-59 ; International Q Project


But he said to them: When evening has come, you say: Good weather! For the sky is flame red. And at dawn: Today it's wintry! For the lowering sky is flame red. The face of the sky you know to interpret, but the time you are not able to?    - Q 12:·54-56 ; International Q Project


Fire have I come to hurl on the earth, and how I wish it had already blazed up! Do you think that I have come to hurl peace on earth? I did not come to hurl peace, but a sword! For I have come to divide son against father, and daughter against her mother, and daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.    - Q 12:49‚ 51, 53 ; International Q Project


Who then is the faithful and wise slave whom the master put over his household to give them food on time? Blessed is that slave whose master, on coming, will find so doing. Amen‚ I tell you, he will appoint him over all his possessions. But if that slave says in his heart: My master is delayed, and begins to beat his fellow slaves‚ and eats and drinks with the drunkards‚ the master of that slave will come on a day he does not expect and at an hour he does not know, and will cut him to pieces and give him an inheritance with the faithless.    - Q 12:42-46 ; International Q Project


But know this: If the householder had known in which watch the robber was coming, he would not have let his house be dug into. You also must be ready, for the Son of Humanity is coming at an hour you do not expect.    - Q 12:39-40 ; The International Q Project


Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you are to eat, nor about your body, with what you are to clothe yourself. Is not life more than food, and the body than clothing? Consider the ravens: They neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet God feeds them. Are you not better than the birds? And who of you by being anxious is able to add to one's stature a cubit? And why are you anxious about clothing? Observe‚ the lilies, how they grow: They do not work nor do they spin. Yet I tell you: Not even Solomon in all his glory was arrayed like one of these. But if in the field the grass, there today and tomorrow thrown into the oven, God clothes thus, will he not much more clothe you, persons of petty faith! So‚ do not be anxious, saying: What are we to eat? Or what are we to drink? Or what are we to wear? For all these the Gentiles seek; for your Father knows that you need them all. But seek his kingdom, and all these shall be granted to you.    - Q 12:22b-31 ; International Q Project


Do not treasure for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and gnawing deface and where robbers dig through and rob, but treasure for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor gnawing defaces and where robbers do not dig through nor rob. For where your treasure is, there will also be your heart.    - Q 12:33-34 ; International Q Project


When they bring you before synagogues, do not be anxious about how or what you are to say; for the holy Spirit will teach‚ you in that hour what you are to say.    - Q 12:11-12 ; International Q Project


God is Love.

   - The Apostle John ; 1 John 4:8


Anyone who may speak out for me in public, the son of humanity will also speak out for him before the angels. But whoever may deny me in public will be‚ denied‚ before the angels.    - Q 12:8-9 ; International Q Project


Are not five‚ sparrows sold for two cents? And yet not one of them will fall to earth without your Father's consent. But even the hairs of your head all are numbered. Do not be afraid, you are worth more than many sparrows.    - Q 12:6-7 ; International Q Project


And do not be afraid of those who kill the body, but cannot kill the soul. But fear the one who is able to destroy both the soul and body in Gehenna.    - Q 12:4-5 ; International Q Project


And whoever says a word against the son of humanity, it will be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him.    - Q 12:10 ; International Q Project


Nothing is covered up that will not be exposed, and hidden that will not be known. What I say to you in the dark, speak in the light; and what you hear whispered in the ear, proclaim on the housetops.    - Q 12: 2-3 ; International Q Project


Therefore also Wisdom said: I will send them prophets and sages, and some of them they will kill and persecute, so that a settling of accounts for the blood of all the prophets poured out from the founding of the world may be required of this generation, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, murdered between the sacrificial altar and the House. Yes, I tell you, an accounting will be required of this generation!    - Q 11:49-51 ; International Q Project


And‚ woe to you, exegetes of the Law, for you bind burdens, and load on the backs of people, but you yourselves do not want to lift‚ your finger to move them. Woe to you, exegetes of the Law, for you shut the kingdom of God from people; you did not go in, nor let in those trying to get in. Woe to you, for you built the tombs of the prophets, but your forefathers killed them. Thus you‚ witness against yourselves that you are sons‚ of your forefathers.    - Q 11:46b, 52, 47-48 ; International Q Project


Woe for you, Pharisees, for you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and give up‚ justice and mercy and faithfulness. But these one had to do, without giving up those. Woe to you, Pharisees, for you purify the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are‚ full of plunder and dissipation. Purify‚ the inside of the cup, its outside pure. Woe to you, Pharisees, for you love the place of honor at banquets, and the front seat in the synagogues and accolades in the markets. Woe to you, Pharisees, for you are like indistinct tombs, and people walking on top are unaware.    - Q 11:39a, 42, 39b, 41, 43-44 ; International Q Projectd


The lamp of the body is the eye. If your eye is generous, your whole body is radiant; but if your eye is jaundiced, your whole body is dark. So if the light within you is dark, how great must the darkness be!    - Q 11:34-35 ; International Q Project


No one lights a lamp and puts it in a hidden place, but on the lamp-stand and it gives light for everyone in the house.    - Q 11:33 ; International Q Project


The queen of the South will be raised at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to listen to the wisdom of Solomon, and look, something more than Solomon is here! Ninevite men will arise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it. For they repented at the announcement of Jonah, and look, something more than Jonah is here!    - Q 11:31-32 ; International Q Project


But some were demanding from him a sign. But he said‚ "This generation is an evil generation; it demands a sign, and a sign will not be given to it—except the sign of Jonah! For as Jonah became to the Ninevites a sign, so also‚ will the son of humanity be to this generation."    - Q 11:16, 29-30 ; International Q Project


When the defiling spirit has left the person, it wanders through waterless regions looking for a resting-place, and finds none. Then‚ it says, I will return to my house from which I came. And on arrival it finds it swept and tidied up. Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more evil than itself, and moving in, they settle there. And the last circumstances of that person become worse than the first.    - Q 11:24-26 ; International Q Project


The one not with me is against me, and the one not gathering with me scatters.    - Q 11:23 ; International Q Project


A strong person’s house cannot be looted, but if someone still stronger overpowers him, he does get looted.    - Q 11:·21-22 ; International Q Project


And he cast out a demon which made a person mute. And once the demon was cast out, the mute person spoke. And the crowds were amazed. But some said: By Beelzebul, the ruler of demons, he casts out demons! But, knowing their thoughts, he said to them: Every kingdom divided against itself is left barren, and every household divided against itself will not stand. And if Satan is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? And if I by Beelzebul cast out demons, your sons, by whom do they cast them out? This is why they will be your judges. But if it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, then there has come upon you God’s reign.    - Q 11:14-15, 17-20 ; International Q Project


I tell you, ask and it will be given to you, search and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks will it be opened. What person of you, whose son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or again when he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? So if you, though evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, by how much more will the Father from heaven give good things to those who ask him!    - Q 11:9-13 ; International Q Project


When you pray say: Father — may your name be kept holy! — let your reign come: Our day’s bread give us today; and cancel our debts for us, as we too have cancelled for those in debt to us; and do not put us to the test!    - Q 11:2b-4 ; International Q Project


Blessed are the eyes that see what you see. For I tell you: Many prophets and kings wanted to see what you see, but never saw it, and to hear what you hear, but never heard it.    - Q 10:23-24 ; International Q Project


Everything has been entrusted to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and to whomever the Son chooses to reveal him.    - Q 10:22 ; International Q Project


At that time he said: I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for you hid these things from sages and the learned, and disclosed them to children. Yes, Father, for that is what it has pleased you to do.    - Q 10:21 ; International Q Project


Whoever takes you in takes me in, and whoever takes me in takes in the one who sent me.    - Q 10:16 ; International Q Project


Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the wonders performed in you had taken place in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago, in sackcloth and ashes. Yet for Tyre and Sidon it shall be more bearable at the judgment than for you. And you, Capernaum, up to heaven will you be exalted? Into Hades shall you come down!    - Q 10:13-15 ; International Q Project


But into whatever town you enter and they do not take you in, on going out from that town‚ shake off the dust from your feet. I tell you: For Sodom it shall be more bearable on that day than for that town.    - Q 10:10-12 ; International Q Project


Into whatever house you enter, first say: Peace to this house! And if a son of peace be there, let your peace come upon him; but if not, let your peace return upon‚ you. And at that house‚ remain eating and drinking whatever they provide for the worker is worthy of one’s reward. Do not move around from house to house, and whatever town you enter and they take you in, eat what is set before you. And cure the sick there, and say to them: The kingdom of God has reached unto you.    - Q 10:5-9 ; International Q Project


Carry no purse‚ not knapsack, nor sandals, nor stick, and greet no one on the road.    - Q 10:4 ; International Q Project


Be on your way! Look, I send you like sheep in the midst of wolves.    - Q 10:3 ; International Q Project


He said to his disciples: The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. So ask the Lord of the harvest to dispatch workers into his harvest.    - Q 10:2 ; International Q Project


And someone said to him: I will follow you wherever you go. And Jesus said to him: Foxes have holes, and birds of the sky have nests; but the son of humanity does not have anywhere he can lay his head. But another said to him: Master, permit me first to go and bury my father. But he said to him: Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead.    - Q 9:57-60 ; International Q Project


To what am I to compare this generation and what is it like? It is like children seated in the‚ market places‚ who, addressing the others‚ say: We fluted for you, but you would not dance; we wailed, but you would not cry. For John came, neither eating nor drinking, and you say: He has a demon! The son of humanity came, eating and drinking, and you say: Look! A person who is a glutton and drunkard, a chum of tax collectors and sinners! But Wisdom was vindicated by her children.    - Q 7:31-35 ; International Q Project


For John came to you, the tax collectors responded positively, but the religious authorities rejected him.    - Q 7:·29-30 ; International Q Project


And John, on  hearing about all these things‚ sending through his disciples, said to him: Are you the one to come, or are we to expect someone else? And in reply he said to them: Go report to John what you hear and see: The blind regain their sight and the lame walk around, the skin-diseased are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised, and the poor are given good news. And blessed is whoever is not offended by me.    - Q 7:18-23 ; International Q Project


And it came to pass when‚ he ended these sayings, he entered Capernaum. There came to him a centurion exhorting him and saying: My‚ boy is doing badly. And he said to him: Am I, by coming, to heal him? And in reply the centurion said: Master, I am not worthy for you to come under my roof; but say a word, and let‚ my boy be‚ healed. For I too am a person under authority, with soldiers under me, and I say to one: Go, and he goes, and to another: Come, and he comes, and to my slave: Do this, and he does it. But Jesus, on hearing, was amazed, and said to those who followed: I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such faith.    - Q 7:1, 3, 6b-9, 10 ; International Q Project


And when they had left, he began to talk to the crowds about John: What did you go out into the wilderness to look at? A reed shaken by the wind?  If not, what did you go out to see? A person arrayed in finery? Look, those wearing finery are in kings' houses. But then what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, even more than a prophet! This is the one about whom it has been written: Look, I am sending my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your path in front of you.  I tell you: There has not arisen among women's offspring anyone who surpasses John. Yet the least significant in God's kingdom is more than he.    - Q 7:24-28 ; International Q Project


And Jesus was led into the wilderness by the Spirit to be‚ tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing for forty days, he became hungry. And the devil told him: If you are God's Son, order that these stones become loaves. And Jesus answered him‚: It is written: A person is not to live only from bread. The devil took him along to Jerusalem and put him on the tip of the temple and told him: If you are God's Son, throw yourself down. For it is written: He will command his angels about you, and on their hands they will bear you, so that you do not strike your foot against a stone. And Jesus in reply‚ told him: It is written: Do not put to the test the Lord your God. And the devil took him along to a very high‚ mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor, and told him: All these I will give you, if you bow down before me. And in reply‚ Jesus told him: It is written: Bow down to the Lord your God, and serve only him. And the devil left him.    - Q 4:1-4, 9-12, 5-8, 13 ; International Q Project


I baptize you in water, but the one to come after me is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not fit to take off. He will baptize you in holy Spirit and fire. His pitchfork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather the wheat into his granary, but the chaff he will burn on a fire that can never be put out.    - Q 3:16b-17 ; International Q Project


He said to the crowds coming to be baptized:  Snakes’ litter! Who warned you to run from the impending rage? So bear fruit worthy of repentance, and do not presume to tell yourselves: We have as forefather Abraham! For I tell you: God can produce children for Abraham right out of these rocks!  And the ax already lies at the root of the trees. So every tree not bearing healthy fruit is to be chopped down and thrown on the fire.    - Q 3:7-9 ; International Q Project


People of Israel, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know. This man was sent to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.

   - Peter ; Acts 2.22-24


When you pray, say: Father, may your name be kept holy! Let your reign come: Our day’s bread give us today; and cancel our debts for us, as we too have cancelled for those in debt to us; and do not put us to the test!    - Q 11:2b-4 ; International Q Project


Everyone hearing my words and acting on them is like a person who built one’s‚ house on bedrock; and the rain poured down and the flash floods came, and the winds blew‚ and pounded that house, and it did not collapse, for it was founded on bedrock. And everyone‚ who hears my words‚ and does not act on them‚ is like a person who built one’s‚ house on the sand; and the rain poured down and the flash floods came, and the winds blew‚ and battered that house, and promptly it collapsed, and its fall‚ was devastating.    - Q 6:47-49 ; International Q Project


Why do you call me: Master, Master, and do not do what I say?    - Q 6:46 ; International Q Project


No healthy tree bears rotten fruit, nor on the other hand‚ does a decayed tree bear healthy fruit. For from the fruit the tree is known. Are figs picked from thorns, or grapes‚ from thistles? The good person from one's good treasure casts up good things, and the evil person‚ from the evil treasure‚ casts up evil things. For from exuberance of heart one's‚ mouth speaks.    - Q 6:43-45 ; International Q Project


Death and suffering were conquered, not satisfied.    - Derek Flood ; Healing the Gospel


Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom.    - Luke ; Luke 12:32


"In the last resort, 'love' and 'concern' will benefit everybody more than self-interested or shortsighted policies."    - Armstrong, Karen ; The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions


We cannot hope to reform others until we have reformed ourselves. Secularists, who reject religion, should also look for signs of secular fundamentalism, which is often as stridently bigoted about religion as some forms of religion are about secularism. In its own brief history, secularism has also had its disasters: Hitler, Stalin, and Saddam Hussein show that a militant exclusion of religion from public policy can be as lethal as any pious crusade.    - Armstrong, Karen ; The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions


"Centuries of institutional, political, and intellectual development have tended to obscure the importance of compassion in religion. All too often the religion that dominates the public discourse seems to express an institutional egotism: my faith is better than yours! As Zhuangzi noted, once people interject themselves into their beliefs, they can become quarrelsome, officious, or even unkind. Compassion is not a popular virtue, because it demands the laying aside of the ego that we identify with our deepest self; so people often prefer being right to being compassionate. Fundamentalist religion has absorbed the violence of our time and developed a polarized vision, so that, like the early Zoroastrians, fundamentalists sometimes divide humanity into two hostile camps, with the embattled faithful engaged in a deadly war against 'evildoers.' As we have seen to our cost, this attitude can easily segue into atrocity. It is also counterproductive. As the Daodejing pointed out, violence usually recoils upon the perpetrator, no matter how well intentioned he might be. You cannot force people to behave as you want; in fact, coercive measures are more likely to drive them in the opposite direction."    - Armstrong, Karen ; The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions


"The test is simple: if people’s beliefs—secular or religious—make them belligerent, intolerant, and unkind about other people’s faith, they are not “skillful.” If, however, their convictions impel them to act compassionately and to honor the stranger, then they are good, helpful, and sound. This is the test of true religiosity in every single one of the major traditions."      - Armstrong, Karen ; The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions


If, for example, every time we were tempted to say something hostile about a colleague, a sibling, or an enemy country, we considered how we would feel if such a remark were made about us—and refrained—we would, in that moment, have gone beyond ourselves. It would be a moment of transcendence.    - Armstrong, Karen ; The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions


And why do you see the speck in your brother’s eye, but the beam in your own eye you overlook? How can you say to your brother: Let me throw out the speck from your eye, and just look at the beam in your own eye? Hypocrite, first throw out from your own eye the beam, and then you will see clearly to throw out the speck in your brother’s eye.    - Q 6:41-42 ; International Q Project


A disciple is not superior to one's teacher. It is enough for the disciple that he become like his teacher.    - Q 6:40 ; International Q Project


Can a blind person show the way to a blind person? Will not both fall into a pit?    - Q 6:39 ; International Q Project


Do not pass judgment so you are not judged. For with what judgment you pass judgment, you will be judged. And‚ with the measurement you use to measure out, it will be measured out to you.    - Q 6:37-38 ; International Q Project


Try to exclude the possibility of suffering which the order of nature and the existence of free-wills involve, and you find that you have excluded life itself.

   - C.S. Lewis ; The Problem of Pain


If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.

   - Paul the apostle ; Philppians 2:1-3


"Behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people."    - Luke the physician ; Luke 2:10


Owe no one anything, except to love . . .

   - The Apostle Paul ; Romans 13:8


And the teachers of the law who came down from Jerusalem said, “He is possessed by Beelzebul! By the prince of demons he is driving out demons.” So Jesus called them over to him and began to speak to them in parables: “How can Satan drive out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.  If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand. And if Satan opposes himself and is divided, he cannot stand; his end has come. In fact, no one can enter a strong man’s house without first tying him up. Then he can plunder the strong man’s house."    - Gospel of Mark ; Mark 3:22-27


"War-makers love to talk of sacrifice, peacemakers love to practice mercy. 'Go & learn what this means, I desire mercy not sacrifice.'-Jesus"

   - Jarrod McKenna ; September 11, Facebook Post


"Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful."

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:36


Miriam the prophetess, Aaron’s sister, took a tambourine, and all the women followed her with tambourines, dancing. Miriam led them in singing...

   - Moses the Prophet ; Exodus 15.20, The Message


The desire that lives through imitation almost always leads to conflict, and this conflict frequently leads to violence.

   - Girard, Rene ; I See Satan Fall Like Lightning


What are these wounds in thine hands?" Then he shall answer, "Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends."

   - Zechariah the seer ; Zechariah 13.6


Jesus was a poor Jew . . . Jesus was a member of a minority group in the midst of a larger dominant and controlling group.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


"Before every person there marches an angel proclaiming, 'Behold, the image of God.'"    - Jewish Proverb ;


You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.43-45


Try to exclude the possibility of suffering which the order of nature and the existence of free-wills involve, and you find that you have excluded life itself.

   - C.S. Lewis ; The Problem of Pain


Be full of pity, just as your Father is full of pity.    - Sayings Gospel Q 6:36 ; International Q Project


If you love those loving you, what reward do you have? Do not even tax collectors do the same? And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive, what reward do you have? Do not even the Gentiles‚ do the same?    - Sayings Gospel Q 6:32, 34 ; International Q Project


And the way you want people to treat you, that is how you treat them.    - Sayings Gospel Q 6:31 ; International Q Project


The one who slaps‚ you on the cheek, offer him the other as well; and to the person wanting to take you to court and get your shirt, turn over to him the coat as well. And the one who conscripts you for one mile, go with him a second. To the one who asks of you, give; and from the one who borrows do not ask back what is yours.    - Sayings Gospel Q 6:29-30 ; International Q Project


Love your enemies and pray for those persecuting you so that you may become sons of your Father, for he raises his sun on bad and good and rains on the just and unjust.    - Sayings Gospel Q 6: 27-28, 35c-d ; International Q Project


Blessed are you when they insult and persecute‚ you, and say every kind of evil against you because of the son of humanity. Be glad and exult for vast is your reward in heaven. For this is how they persecuted‚ the prophets who were before you.    - Sayings Gospel Q 6:22-23 ; International Q Project


"Thus we have the twofold theme that leads to Palm Sunday. Genuine discipleship, following Jesus, means following him to Jerusalem, the place of (1) confrontation with the domination system and (2) death and resurrection. These are the two themes of the week that follows, Holy Week."    - Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan ; The Last Week


And John, on hearing about all these things, sending through his disciples, said to him: Are you the one to come, or are we to expect someone else? And in reply he said to them: Go report to John what you hear and see: The blind regain their sight and the lame walk around, the skin-diseased are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised, and the poor have the good news proclaimed to them. And blessed is whoever is not offended by me.    - Q 7:18–19, 22–23 (Cf. Luke 7.18-19, 22-23; Matthew 11:2–6) ; James M. Robinson; The Gospel of Jesus


Our real problem with Jesus is not the vast amount of detail we will never know, for most of that we do not need to know. The problem is that we have ascribed to him a different gospel from what he himself envisaged! We have put him on a pedestal and worshiped him, rather than walking in his footsteps. Put somewhat differently: we must work our way back through the church’s own familiar gospel and its domestication of the gospel of Jesus. Only then do we strike upon what he really had to say, which was a brittle, upsetting, comforting, challenging gospel.      - James M. Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus


Without realizing it, we reclassify his sayings as objective teachings to which we can give intellectual assent, rather than letting them strike home as the personal challenge he intended them to be. The issue is not what we think about them, but rather what we do about them.      - James M. Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus


[Jesus'] basic issue, still basic today, is that most people have solved the human dilemma for themselves at the expense of everyone else, putting them down so as to stay afloat themselves. This vicious, antisocial way of coping with the necessities of life only escalates the dilemma for the rest of society.    - James M. Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus


I am hungry because you hoard food. You are cold because I hoard clothing. Our dilemma is that we all hoard supplies in our backpacks and put our trust in our wallets! Such “security” should be replaced by God reigning, which means both what I trust God to do (to activate you to share food with me) and what I hear God telling me to do (to share clothes with you). We should not carry money while bypassing the poor or wear a backpack with extra clothes and food while ignoring the cold and hungry lying in the gutter. This is why the beggars, the hungry, the depressed are fortunate: God, that is, those in whom God rules, those who hearken to God, will care for them. The needy are called upon to trust that God’s reigning is there for them (“Theirs is the kingdom of God”).    - James M. Robinson ; The Gospel of Jesus


You’re blessed when you care. At the moment of being ‘carefull,’ you find yourselves cared for.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.7, The Message


Jesus’ entire ministry of healing the sick, caring for the poor, and forgiving sinners can be said to be a demonstration of restorative justice.

   - Derek Flood ; Healing the Gospel: A Radical Vision for Grace, Justice, and the Cross


During his time on earth, Jesus subverted the social norms dictating how a rabbi spoke to women, to the rich, the powerful, the housewife, the mother-in-law, the despised, the prostitute, the adulteress, the mentally ill and demon possessed, the poor. He spoke to women directly, instead of through their male-headship standards and contrary to the order of the day (and even of some religious sects today).

   - Bessey, Sarah ; Jesus Feminist: An Invitation to Revisit the Bible’s View of Women


I do not say that if you are a landowner you are bound to give up your lands immediately to the poor; if a capitalist or manufacturer, your money to your workpeople; or that if you are Tzar, minister, official, judge, or general, you are bound to renounce immediately the advantages of your position; or if a soldier, on whom all the system of violence is based, to refuse immediately to obey in spite of all the dangers of insubordination. If you do so, you will be doing the best thing possible. But it may happen, and it is most likely, that you will not have the strength to do so. You have relations, a family, subordinates and superiors; you are under an influence so powerful that you cannot shake it off; but you can always recognize the truth and refuse to tell a lie about it. You need not declare that you are remaining a landowner, manufacturer, merchant, artist, or writer because it is useful to mankind; that you are governor, prosecutor, or tzar, not because it is agreeable to you, because you are used to it, but for the public good; that you continue to be a soldier, not from fear of punishment, but because you consider the army necessary to society. You can always avoid lying in this way to yourself and to others, and you ought to do so; because the one aim of your life ought to be to purify yourself from falsehood and to confess the truth. And you need only do that and your situation will change directly of itself. There is one thing, and only one thing, in which it is granted to you to be free in life, all else being beyond your power: that is to recognize and profess the truth.    - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


Nothing has contributed so much to the obscuring of Christian truth in the eyes of the heathen, and has hindered so much the diffusion of Christianity through the world, as the disregard of [non-resistance to evil by force] by men calling themselves Christians, and the permission of war and violence to Christians.

   - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

   - Paul the apostle ; Galations 6:9,10


And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.

   - John the beloved ; John 1.14


A Voice, echoing through the corridors of time, says to every intemperate Peter, “Put up thy sword .” History is cluttered with the wreckage of nations that failed to follow Christ’s command.    - King Jr, Martin Luther ; A Tough Mind and a Tender Heart


Don’t grumble against one another, brothers and sisters, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door!    - James ; James 5.9


Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

   - Paul ; Colossians 3.13


“Son, your sins are forgiven.”    - Jesus ; Mark 2.5


How do you defeat a movement that defines defeat as victory? ... Constantine.

   - James Carroll ; Constantine’s Sword


Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.

   - Paul the apostle ; Colossians 3.15


“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free . . ."

   - Jesus ; Luke 4.8


For with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Romans 10:10


"The cross is a paradoxical religious symbol because it inverts the world’s value system with the news that hope comes by way of defeat, that suffering and death do not have the last word, that the last shall be first and the first last."    - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


"When all the trees have been cut down, when all the animals have been hunted, when all the waters are polluted, when all the air is unsafe to breathe, only then will you discover you cannot eat money."    - Cree Nation ; Cree Prophecy


"I am poor and naked, but I am the chief of the nation. We do not want riches but we do want to train our children right. Riches would do us no good. We could not take them with us to the other world. We do not want riches. We want peace and love."    - Red Cloud ; Oglala Lakota Sioux (1822-1909)


"The Red Nation shall rise again and it shall be a blessing for a sick world; a world filled with broken promises, selfishness and separations; a world longing for light again. I see a time of Seven Generations when all the colors of mankind will gather under the Sacred Tree of Life and the whole Earth will become one circle again. In that day, there will be those among the Lakota who will carry knowledge and understanding of unity among all living things and the young white ones will come to those of my people and ask for this wisdom. I salute the light within your eyes where the whole Universe dwells. For when you are at that center within you and I am that place within me, we shall be one."    - Crazy Horse ; Oglala Lakota Sioux (circa 1840-1877)


Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.10


Give to every human being every right that you claim for yourself.    - Robert Ingersoll ; The Works of Robert G. Ingersoll, Vol VII


“Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this . . . The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  There is no commandment greater than these.”    - Jesus ; Mark 12.28-31


My country is the world, and my religion is to do good.    - Thomas Paine ; Ways and means of improving the condition of Europe, interspersed with miscellaneous observations


[God] causes the sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous . . . Be complete [non-exclusive], therefore, as your heavenly Father is complete [non-exclusive].    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.45-48


Not till the sun excludes you, do I exclude you.    - Walt Whitman ; Leaves of Grass


So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.    - Jesus ; Matthew 7:12


The king was deeply moved and went up to the chamber over the gate and wept. And thus he said as he walked, 'O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you, O Absalom, my son, my son!'

   - Samuel the Prophet ; 2 Samuel 18:33


You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5:14-16


Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 4:7,8


Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.    - Ezekiel ; Ezekiel 16.49


And when they did not find his body there, they came back and told us that they had indeed seen a vision of angels who said that he was alive.

   - Luke ; Luke 24.23


He has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts. He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty.
   - Luke ; Luke 1.51-53


We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 3:14


"The very next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and yelled out, "Here he is, God's Passover Lamb! He forgives the sins of the world!"    - John the Baptist ; John 1:29, The Message


No one takes it from me; I lay down of my life of my own free will, of my own volition, voluntarily. I have the right to lay it down, and to take it up again . . .

   - Jesus ; John 10:18


As the early Christians knew, the rejection of war is not an optional ethical issue. Rather, it is the clearest indication of the church’s calling to be a community free from nationalist and other forms of domination.

   - Richard Deats ; Active Nonviolence: A Way of Life, A Strategy for Change


If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, lavishly give us all things?

   - Paul the apostle ; Romans 8:31,32


Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.11-12


"There can be no Christian theology that is not identified unreservedly with those who are humiliated and abused."    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


We have reduced the kingdom of God to private piety; the victory of the cross to comfort for the conscience; Easter itself to a happy, escapist ending after a sad, dark tale.

   - N.T. Wright. ; Simply Jesus


So the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, the bad as well as the good, and the wedding hall was filled with guests. But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. ‘Friend,’ he asked, ‘how did you get in here without wedding clothes?’ The man was speechless.    - Jesus ; Matthew 22.10-12


Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

   - Paul ; Galatians 5.26


I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed!

   - Paul the aposle ; Galatians 1:6-9


One thing I have asked from the LORD, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the LORD And to meditate in His temple.

   - David the Psalmist ; Psalm 27:4


Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behavior from their parents. Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with him and learn a life of love. Observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of himself to us. Love like that.

   - Paul ; Ephesians 5.1,2 (The Message)


And now let us frame an ideal of the just and unjust. Imagine the unjust man to be master of his craft, seldom making mistakes and easily correcting them; having gifts of money, speech, strength—the greatest villain bearing the highest character: AND at his side let us place THE JUST in his nobleness and simplicity—being, not seeming—without name or reward—clothed in his JUSTICE only—the best of men who is thought to be the worst, and let him die as he has lived. I might add (but I would rather put the rest into the mouth of the panegyrists of injustice—they will tell you) that THE JUST MAN WILL BE SCOURGED, RACKED, BOUND, WILL HAVE HIS EYES PUT OUT, and will at last be CRUCIFIED (literally impaled)—and all this because he ought to have preferred seeming to being.

   - Plato ; The Republic


The ultimate source of all evil is found in the will of free agents rather than in God.

   - Greg Boyd ; God of the Possible


We might even go so far as to say, that the theology of Liberation can be understood only by two groupings of persons: the poor, and those who struggle for justice at their side—only by those who hunger for bread, and by those who hunger for justice in solidarity with those hungering for bread. Conversely, liberation theology is not understood, nor can it be understood, by the satiated and satisfied—by those comfortable with the status quo.    - Leonardo and Clodovis Boff ; Liberation Theology


If an enemy were insulting me, I could endure it; if a foe were raising himself against me, I could hide from him. But it is you, a man like myself, my companion, my close friend, with whom I once enjoyed sweet fellowship as we walked with the throng at the house of God.

   - David ; Psalm 55:12-14


That’s how much you mean to me! That’s how much I love you! I’d sell off the whole world to get you back, trade the creation just for you.

   - Isaiah the seer ; Isaiah 43:4 The Message


And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us.    - John ; 1 John 3.23


For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died; and He died for all, so that they who live might no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 2 Corinthians 5:14-15


And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.27-33


This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you.

   - Jesus ; John 15.12


So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets. Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 7.12-14


"I offer my reflections because I believe that the cross placed alongside the lynching tree can help us to see Jesus in America in a new light, and thereby empower people who claim to follow him to take a stand against white supremacy and every kind of injustice."    - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you, and defame you on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, for surely your reward is great in heaven; for that is what their ancestors did to the prophets.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.22,23


Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not OF this world."

   - Jesus ; John 18.36


We need in every community a group of angelic troublemakers.

   - Bayard Rustin ; ORGANIZING MANUAL NO. 2; FINAL PLANS FOR MARCH ON WASHINGTON FOR JOBS AND FREEDOM, AUGUST 28, 1963


“It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”    - Jesus ; Mark 2.7


"The domination system— here described as being of 'the Gentiles,' in which 'rulers lord it over them and their great ones are tyrants over them'— shall not be so among those who follow Jesus.    - Borg, Marcus J.; Crossan, John Dominic ; The Last Week


For Jesus, the kingdom of God is not primarily about the dead, but about the living, not primarily about life after death, but about life in this world.    - Borg, Marcus J.; Crossan, John Dominic ; The Last Week


The first passion of Jesus was the kingdom of God, namely, to incarnate the justice of God by demanding for all a fair share of a world belonging to and ruled by the covenantal God of Israel. It was that first passion for God’s distributive justice that led inevitably to the second passion by Pilate’s punitive justice.    - Borg, Marcus J.; Crossan, John Dominic ; The Last Week


"In first-century Christianity, the cross had a twofold meaning. On the one hand, it represented execution by the empire; only the empire crucified, and then for only one crime: denial of imperial authority. The cross had not yet become a generalized symbol for suffering as it sometimes is today, when one’s illness or other hardship can be spoken of as “the cross I’ve been given to bear.” Rather, it meant risking imperial retribution."    - Borg, Marcus J.; Crossan, John Dominic ; The Last Week


"'Kingdom of God' is a political as well as religious metaphor."    - Borg, Marcus J.; Crossan, John Dominic ; The Last Week


"On the opposite side of the city, from the west, Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of Idumea, Judea, and Samaria, entered Jerusalem at the head of a column of imperial cavalry and soldiers. Jesus’s procession proclaimed the kingdom of God; Pilate’s proclaimed the power of empire. The two processions embody the central conflict of the week that led to Jesus’s crucifixion."    - Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan ; The Last Week


"Pilate’s procession displayed not only imperial power, but also Roman imperial theology. According to this theology, the emperor was not simply the ruler of Rome, but the Son of God."    - Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan ; The Last Week


"The issue is not [the Temple state elites member's] individual virtue or wickedness, but the role they played in the domination system. They shaped it, enforced it, and benefited from it."    - Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan ; The Last Week


But the ancient meaning of the word “believe” has much more to do with trust and commitment. “To believe in the good news,” as Mark puts it, means to trust in the news that the kingdom of God is near and to commit to that kingdom.    - Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan ; The Last Week


Notice, above all, how repeatedly Mark has Jesus insist that Peter, James and John, the Twelve, and all his followers on the way from Caesarea Philippi to Jerusalem must pass with him through death to a resurrected life whose content and style was spelled out relentlessly against their refusals to accept it. For Mark, it is about participation with Jesus and not substitution by Jesus. Mark has those followers recognize enough of that challenge that they change the subject and avoid the issue every time.      - Marcus J.Borg; John Dominic Crossan ; The Last Week


It is extremely important to underline Mark’s theology at this point. For him, Jesus knows in precise detail what is going to happen, but he does not speak of suffering vicariously to atone for the sins of the world. Instead, Peter, the other members of the Twelve, and the “crowd” are all expected to walk with Jesus toward death and resurrection. To follow Jesus means to accept the cross, to walk with him against imperial violence and religious collaboration, and to pass through death to resurrection. Nothing is said about Jesus’s doing it alone to excuse everyone else from having to follow him, and we emphasize that point pending subsequent discussion below.    - Marcus Borg & "Dom" Crossan ; The Last Week


He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.  He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”  They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”    - Gospel of Mark ; Mark 4:39-41


A man with leprosy came to him and begged him on his knees, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.” Jesus was indignant. He reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!” Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cleansed.    - Gospel of Mark ; Mark 1:40-42


Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, take your mat and walk’? But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.”    - Gospel of Mark ; Mark 2:9-11


He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished.    - Gospel of Mark ; Mark 4:41-42


The people were all so amazed that they asked each other, “What is this? A new teaching—and with authority! He even gives orders to impure spirits and they obey him.”    - Gospel of Mark ; Mark 1:27   


May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.

   - Paul the Apostle ; 1Thessalonians 3.12


Because of the very existence of the crucified Christ, a sober decision has to be made – God will either be sought elsewhere, or the cross itself will be the foundation and criterion of all thought about God.

   - Demetrius K. Williams ; The Expositor’s Bible Commentary


Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.

   - Solomon the Wise ; Song of Solomon 8:4 BBE


"How terrible it will be for those who make unfair laws,and those who write laws that make life hard for people."    - Isaiah ; Isaiah 10:1


"God encounters us in the human condition as the liberator of the poor and the weak, empowering them to fight for freedom because they were made for it."    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


Heaven must receive him until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets.    - Peter ; Acts 3.21


"You are not following God when you allow your profit motive to silence your prophet motive."    - The Rev. Dr. Raphael Warnock ; Ebenezer Baptist Church, Atlanta, GA


Life and people are complicated. Compassion should be given and not earned. And everyone has a

'rest of the story.'

   - Dan Merchant ; Lord Save Us From Your Followers; 2006


Build relationships, show love, and invite them into the kingdom of God (which requires repentance). Relationships are much harder than boycotts and protests. It's easy as hell to hold up a sign. It's hard as heaven to get humble and love people you have difficulty understanding or appreciating.

   - Travis ; Lonely Wanderer's blog, 8/27/2010 9:36 p.m.


Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name . . .

   - Paul the Apostle ; Philippians 2:5-11


"If the God of Jesus’ cross is found among the least, the crucified people of the world, then God is also found among those lynched in American history."
   - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


If individuals are naturally inclined to desire what their neighbors possess, or to desire what their neighbors even simply desire, this means that rivalry exists at the very heart of human social relations.

   - Girard, Rene ; I See Satan Fall Like Lightning


Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 4:7


But without your consent I did not want to do anything, so that your goodness would not be, in effect, by compulsion but of your own free will.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Philemon 1:14


Violence brings only temporary victories; violence, by creating many more social problems than it solves, never brings permanent peace.

   - King Jr, Martin Luther ; A Tough Mind and a Tender Heart


There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer "male and female;" for all of you are one in Christ Jesus.

   - Paul ; Galatians 3.28


". . . faith, which by love is mighty in operation."

   - The Apostle Paul ; Galatians 5:6, Tyndale's NT


Violence brings only temporary victories; violence, by creating many more social problems than it solves, never brings permanent peace.    - King Jr, Martin Luther ; A Tough Mind and a Tender Heart


Then the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground . . . And out of the ground the Lord God formed every [wild] beast and living creature of the field and every bird of the air . . . [But] the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam; and while he slept, He took one of his ribs or a part of his side and closed up the [place with] flesh. And the rib or part of his side which the Lord God had taken from the man He built up and made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.

   - Moses, God's friend ; Genesis 2:7,19-22, The Amplified Bible


"The opposite of fear is not courage; it is compassion."    - Peter J. Gomes ; The Scandalous Gospel of Jesus


By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.

   - John the Beloved ; John 13:35


It is enough for the disciple to be like the teacher, and the slave like the master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household!    - Jesus ; Matthew 10.25


"The resurrection-event means that God’s liberating work is not only for the house of Israel but for all who are enslaved by principalities and powers."    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


"To suggest that [Jesus] was speaking of a 'spiritual' liberation fails to take seriously Jesus’ thoroughly Hebrew view of human nature."    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


"The rise of Old Testament prophecy is due primarily to the lack of justice within that community. The prophets of Israel are prophets of social justice, reminding the people that Yahweh is the author of justice. It is important to note in this connection that the righteousness of God is not an abstract quality in the being of God, as with Greek philosophy. It is rather God’s active involvement in history, making right what human beings have made wrong."    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


"When profits are more important than persons, disastrous results follow for the poor of all colors. It does not matter whether blacks or whites do it. This madness must be opposed."    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


"Anyone who claims to be fighting against the problem of oppression and does not analyze the exploitive role of capitalism is either naive or an agent of the enemies of freedom."      - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


"I am convinced that no one should claim to be doing Christian theology today without making the liberation of the Third World from the exploitation of the First World and the Second World a central aspect of its purpose. There is an interconnectedness of all humanity that makes the freedom of one people dependent upon the liberation of all. No one can be free until all are set free. Martin Luther King, Jr., expressed this point persuasively: 'We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied to a single garment of destiny. What affects one directly, affects all indirectly. As long as there is poverty in this world, [no one] can be totally healthy…. Strangely enough, I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. You can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be.'"    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


"The dominated classes need to transform their suffering, not submit to it. Submission to suffering is a form of annihilation, but transformation of suffering rekindles a faith that gives life."    - James H. Cone ; A Black Theology of Liberation


Any message that is not related to the liberation of the poor in a society is not Christ’s message.    - James H. Cone ; A Black Liberation of Theology


If we think the ideas of Jesus about peace are irrelevant in the age of genocide and nuclear weapons, we have invented an utterly irrelevant Christianity!

   - Brian Zahnd ; Personal Blog Entry


"Thy Kingdom come, on earth as in heaven. That remains one of the most powerful and revolutionary sentences we can ever say."

   - N.T. Wright ; Surprised by Hope, p. 29


The sinners in Zion are afraid; Fearfulness has seized the hypocrites: "Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? Who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?" He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly, He who despises the gain of oppressions, Who gestures with his hands, refusing bribes, Who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed, And shuts his eyes from seeing evil.

   - Isaiah the Prophet ; Isaiah 33:14-15


Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5:6


Not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.    - Author of Hebrews ; Hebrews 10.25


"The dogma that all the governments of the world are approvingly ordained of God, and that the powers that be in the United States, in Russia, in Turkey, are in accordance with his will, is no less absurd than impious."    - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


"For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to everyone."    - Paul the Apostle ; Titus 2.11


I do believe that one day our strength to love shall bring the Dream to fruition and the Beloved Community to earth.    - Coretta Scott King ; A Gift of Love: Sermons from Strength to Love and Other Preachings


Satan can never be driven out by Satan. Error can never be corrected by error, and evil cannot be vanquished by evil.    - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


Is very strange. I have been in the revenge business so long, now that it's over, I don't know what to do with the rest of my life.    - Inigo Montoya ; Princess Bride


Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works.

   - Jesus ; John 14:10


As I passed by again, I saw that the time had come for you to fall in love. I promised to love you. Yes, I made a marriage covenant with you, and you became mine." This is what the Sovereign Lord says.

   - Ezekiel the Prophet ; Ezekiel 16:8, TEV


No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment. If they do, the new piece will pull away from the old, making the tear worse. And people do not pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins.    - Jesus ; Mark 2.21,22


Righteousness/Justice from God [is] the instrument of putting the world to rights—what we might call cosmic restorative justice.

   - N.T. Wright ; Letter to the Romans


Our great honor lies in being just what Jesus was and is. To be accepted by those who accept Him, rejected by all who reject Him, loved by those who love Him and hated by everyone who hates Him. What greater glory could come to any man?

   - A.W. Tozee ; Born After Midnight


Be good friends who love deeply; practice playing second fiddle. Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. Help needy Christians; be inventive in hospitality. Bless your enemies; no cursing under your breath. Laugh with your happy friends when they’re happy; share tears when they’re down. Get along with each other; don’t be stuck-up. Make friends with nobodies; don’t be the great somebody.    - Paul the apostle ; Romans 12:10-19, The Message


Love endures long and is patient.

   - Paul the apostle ; 1 Corinthians 13:4


As you are going with your adversary to the magistrate, try hard to be reconciled on the way, or your adversary may drag you off to the judge, and the judge turn you over to the officer, and the officer throw you into prison. I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny."

   - Jesus ; Luke 12.58,59


Wherefore also he drove him out of paradise and removed him far from the tree of life, not because He envied him the tree of life, as some dare assert, but because He pitied him and desired that he should not be immortal and the evil interminable and irremediable.    - Iraneaus of Lyons (182 A.D.) ; Against Heresies


You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5:13


Roughly two hundred years separate the two greatest apologetic works of early Christianity against the classical world: Origen's Contra Celsum and St. Augustine's City of God. During these two hundred years a crucially important change has taken place in the Christian attitude to war. Origen took for granted that the Christian is a pacifist. Augustine, on the contrary, pleads with the soldier Boniface not to retire to the monastery but to remain in the army and do his duty, defending the North African cities menaced by barbarian tribes . . . When Augustine developed his theories of the "just war," barbarians were at the gates of the city of Hippo, where he was bishop . . . St. Augustine is, for better or for worse, the Father of all modern Christian thought on war.

   - Thomas Merton ; Peace in the Post-Christian Era, p.39-41


The Father loves the Son and has placed everything in his hands.

   - John the baptist ; John 3:35


"Under the power of the vow, the daughter [of Jephthah] has breathed her last. My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken her?"
   - Phyllis Trible ; Texts of Terror


"Her [Unnamed Concubine from Bethlehem] body has been broken and given to many. Lesser power has no woman than this, that her life is laid down by a man."
   - Phyllis Trible ; Texts of Terror


"Raped, despised, and rejected by a man, Tamar is a woman of sorrows rows and acquainted with grief. She is cut off from the land of the living, stricken for the sins of her brother; yet she herself has done no violence and there is no deceit in her mouth."
   - Phyllis Trible ; Texts of Terror


"This Egyptian slave woman is stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted for the transgressions of Israel. She is bruised for the iniquities of Sarah and Abraham; upon her is the chastisement that makes them whole."
   - Phyllis Trible ; Texts of Terror


We love, because He first loved us.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 4:19


Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.

   - Paul the Apostle ; Colossians 3.16


Life in Christ is not meant to mirror life in a Greco-Roman culture. An ancient Middle Eastern culture is not our standard. We are not meant to adopt the world of Luther’s Reformation or the culture of the eighteenth-century Great Awakening or even 1950s America as our standard for righteousness. The culture, past or present, isn’t the point: Jesus and his Kingdom come , his will done, right now—that is the point.

   - Bessey, Sarah ; Jesus Feminist: An Invitation to Revisit the Bible’s View of Women


Brethren, join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us. For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ, whose end is destruction, whose god is their appetite, and whose glory is in their shame, who set their minds on earthly things. For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; who will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself.

   - Paul the Apostle ; Philippians 3:17-21


When the practice of nonviolence [as Jesus taught it in the Sermon on the Mount] becomes universal, God will reign on earth as God does in heaven.

   - Gandhi ; Essential Writings


A truth's initial commotion is directly proportional to how deeply the lie was believed. It wasn't the world being round that agitated people, but that the world wasn't flat. When a well-packaged web of lies has been sold gradually to the masses over generations, the truth will seem utterly preposterous and its speaker a raving lunatic.    - Dresden James ; Unknown


For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

   - Paul an apostle ; Ephesians 6.12


Social justice cannot be attained by violence. Violence kills what it intends to create.    - Pope John Paul II ; July 3, 1980


But the fruit of the Spirit is Love.

   - Paul the apostle ; Galatians 5:22-23


We are scattered all over the world with the bloody horror of camps (military outposts). The whole world is wet with mutual blood. And murder - which is admitted to be a crime in the case of an individual - is called virtue when it is committed wholesale. Impunity is claimed for the (military's) wicked deeds, not because they are guiltless - but because the cruelty is perpetuated on a grand scale!"    - Cyprian (c.250) ; Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. 5 pp. 277


The disciples also saw that the spirit that had worked within Jesus continued to work in and through them. In their preaching they extended his critique of domination. They continued his life by advancing his mission. They persisted in proclaiming the domination-free order of God inaugurated by Jesus.    - Walter Wink ;


The greatest victories of the church were all won before Constantine, in the days when there was no Christian army and when the true Christian soldier was the martyr, whose witness for Christ was nonviolent.

   - Thomas Merton ; Peace in the Post Christian Era


"An enemy did this," he replied.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 13.28


And a sword will pierce even your own soul-- to the end that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.

   - Simeon the Prophet ; Luke 2:35


You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor  and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.43-44


You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not retaliate against an evil person.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.38-39


You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder,  and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister  will be subject to judgment.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.21-22


For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.20


I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more.    - Luke ; Luke 12.4


You are God’s children.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


It ill behooves the man who is not forced to live in a ghetto to tell those who must how to transcend its limitations. The awareness that a man is a child of the God of religion, who is at one and the same time the God of life, creates a profound faith in life that nothing can destroy.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


So do not be afraid of them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs. Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul . . . Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.    - Matthew ; Matthew 10:26-31


“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”    - Luke ; Luke 4:18-19


Wherever [Jesus'] spirit appears, the oppressed gather fresh courage; for he announced the good news that fear, hypocrisy, and hatred, the three hounds of hell that track the trail of the disinherited, need have no dominion over them.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


The opposition to those who work for social change does not come only from those who are the guarantors of the status quo. Again and again it has been demonstrated that the lines are held by those whose hold on security is sure only as long as the status quo remains intact.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


To some extent this was also the attitude of the Sadducees. They represented the “upper” class. From their number came the high priests, and most of the economic security derived from contemporary worship in the temple was their monopoly. They did not represent the masses of the people. Any disturbance of the established order meant upsetting their position. They loved Israel, but they seem to have loved security more. They made their public peace with Rome and went on about the business of living. They were astute enough to see that their own position could be perpetuated if they stood firmly against all revolutionaries and radicals. Such persons would only stir the people to resist the inevitable, and in the end everything would be lost. Their tragedy was in the fact that they idealized the position of the Roman in the world and suffered the moral fate of the Romans by becoming like them. They saw only two roads open before them— become like the Romans or be destroyed by the Romans. They chose the former.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


He who does not love abides in death.

   - John the beloved ; 1 John 3:14


It is necessary to examine the religion of Jesus against the background of his own age and people, and to inquire into the content of his teaching with reference to the disinherited and the underprivileged.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


There are few things more devastating than to have it burned into you that you do not count and that no provisions are made for the literal protection of your person.

   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


Wherever his spirit appears, the oppressed gather fresh courage; for he announced the good news that fear, hypocrisy, and hatred, the three hounds of hell that track the trail of the disinherited, need have no dominion over them.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


The basic fact is that Christianity as it was born in the mind of this Jewish teacher and thinker appears as a technique of survival for the oppressed.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


[Jesus] recognized with authentic realism that anyone who permits another to determine the quality of his inner life gives into the hands of the other the keys to his destiny.
   - Howard Thurman ; Jesus and the Disinherited


The amazing grace of the Master, Jesus Christ, the extravagant love of God, the intimate friendship of the Holy Spirit, be with all of you.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 2 Corinthians 13:14, The Message


It has always been a mystery to me how men can feel themselves honoured by the humiliation of their fellow-beings.    - Gandhi, Mohandas K ; An Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments With Truth


"These three views of life are as follows: First, embracing the individual, or the animal view of life; second, embracing the society, or the pagan view of life; third, embracing the whole world, or the divine view of life."    - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


"Helchitsky's fundamental idea is that Christianity, by allying itself with temporal power in the days of Constantine, and by continuing to develop in such conditions, has become completely distorted, and has ceased to be Christian altogether."    - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him.    - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


I again saw under the sun that the race is not to the swift and the battle is not to the warriors, and neither is bread to the wise nor wealth to the discerning nor favor to men of ability; for time and chance happens to everyone.

   - Solomon the Wise ; Ecclesiastes 9:11


If only one man acted thus, and all the rest agreed to crucify him, would it not be nobler for him to die in the glory of non-resisting love, praying for his enemies, than to live to wear the crown of Caesar stained with the blood of the slain?    - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


One man may not kill. If he kills a fellow-creature, he is a murderer. If two, ten, a hundred men do so, they, too, are murderers. But a government or a nation may kill as many men as it chooses, and that will not be murder, but a great and noble action.      - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.      - Mahatma Gandhi ;


No theodicy that does not take the Devil fully into consideration is likely to be persuasive.

   - Jeffrey B. Russell ; Mephistopheles


I knew nothing about who he was—only this: that my task has been to get Israel ready to recognize him as the God-Revealer.

   - John the baptist ; John 1:31, The Message


If You, LORD, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with You, That You may be feared.

   - David the Psalmist ; Psalm 130:3


"It is ironic that America, with its history of injustice to the poor, especially the black man and the Indian, prides itself on being a Christian nation."    - James H. Cone ;


The problem of evil is the most powerful objection to traditional theism.

   - Richard Swinburne ; Oxford Companion to Philosophy


Judgement is the forbidden objectivization of the other person which destroys single-minded love.    - Dietrich Bonhoeffer ; The Cost of Discipleship


You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not retaliate against an evil person.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.38,39


“But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,    - Luke ; Luke 6.27


The God who filled the skies with . . . Moon and stars as guardians of the night, His love never quits.

   - David the Psalmist ; Psalms 136:7-9 The Message


Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 6:26-29


"Keep my sayings, and ye shall know of my sayings whether they be true." No proofs of this doctrine were offered except its truth . . .    - Leo Tolstoy ; The Kingdom of God Is Within You


"No problem can be solved with the same level of conciousness that created it."    - Albert Einstein ; The World As I See It


"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. The mediocre mind is incapable of understanding the man who refuses to bow blindly to conventional prejudices and chooses instead to express his opinions courageously and honestly."    - Albert Einstein ; The World As I See It


"A protest against injustice and violence is incomparably more valuable if it comes entirely from people who have been prompted to it purely by sentiments of humanity and a love of justice."    - Albert Einstein ; The World As I See It


"No longer will a man teach his neighbor, or a man his brother, saying, 'Know the LORD,' because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest," declares the LORD. "For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more."

   - Jeremiah the prophet ; Jeremiah 31:34


And Philip said, "If you believe with all your heart, you may."

   - Luke the Physician ; Acts 8:37


In the same way, as the Father gives life to the dead [His Son], even so the Son gives life to those to whom he is pleased to give it.    - Jesus ; John 5.21; BBE


Rarely do we find men who willingly engage in hard, solid thinking. There is an almost universal quest for easy answers and half-baked solutions. Nothing pains some people more than having to think.    - King Jr, Martin Luther ; A Tough Mind and a Tender Heart


"You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot."

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.13


Therefore, brethren, since we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus, . . . let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience . . . and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Hebrews 10:19-24


"A bruised reed he will not break, and a dimly burning wick he will not quench; He will faithfully bring forth justice. He will not grow faint or be crushed until he has established justice in the earth; and the coastlands wait for his teaching."    - Isaiah ; Isaiah 42:3-4


Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 1 Corinthians 13:7


To engage in His service merely from hope of reward or fear of punishment would avail nothing. Open apostasy would not be more offensive to God than hypocrisy and mere formal worship.

   - Ellen G. Whtie ; Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 523


Do not be too quick to assume your enemy is a savage just because he is your enemy. Perhaps he is your enemy because he thinks you are savage. Or perhaps he is afraid of you because he feels that you are afraid of him. And perhaps if he believed you were capable of loving him he would no longer be your enemy.    - Thomas Merton ; Seeds


The prophets have dirty hands (and mouths too sometimes), because you’ll find them wading without apology through the mess of life. Their target audience begins with the church and its religious leaders but extends to nations and heads of state and to corporations with their economic power brokers. They have unabashed social agendas and are not afraid of being perceived as political. Their concern is for the oppressed, the poor, the widow, the orphan, and the enslaved. The mature prophets call for both personal righteousness and social justice. They retreat inward in contemplation then explode onto the public scene as spokespersons for God’s heart and as advocates for the downtrodden.    - Brad Jersak ; Can You Hear Me? Tuning in to the God who Speaks.


And now, dear lady, I am not writing you a new command but one we have had from the beginning. I ask that we love one another.    - John ; 2 John 1.5


This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us . . .

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 3:16


May the Lamb who was slain receive the reward of His sufferings.

   - Moravian Jesus Followers ; When 17th century Moravians were told that they would not be allowed to teach the gospel to slaves, Dober and Nitschmann sold themselves to a slave owner in order to subversively share Jesus with the slave population a slaves themselves. They boarded the slave ship bound for the West Indies, and as the ship pulled away from the docks, it is said that they called out these words to their loved ones on shore.


Namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 2 Corinthians 5:19


“The Sabbath was made for the Son of Man, not the Son of Man for the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.”    - Jesus ; Mark 2.27-28 (Aramaic)


"The Nicene Fathers showed little interest in the christological significance of Jesus' deeds for the humiliated, because most of the discussion took place in the social context of the Church's position as the favored religion of the Roman State."      - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed.


No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment. If they do, the new piece will pull away from the old, making the tear worse. And people do not pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins.    - Jesus ; Mark 2.21-22


Christ beside me, Christ before me, Christ behind me, Christ within me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me.    - St. Patrick ;


It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.    - Jesus ; Mark 2.17


"Our American Christians are too busy saving the souls of white Christians from burning in hellfire to save the lives of black ones from present burning in fires kindled by white Christians."    - Ida B. Wells ; Crusade for Justice


"The nation cannot profess Christianity, which makes the golden rule its foundation stone, and continue to deny equal opportunity for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness to the black race."      - Ida B. Wells ; Our Country’s Lynching Record


"There was no place for the proud and the mighty, for people who think that God called them to rule over others."    - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


"The cross helped me to deal with the brutal legacy of the lynching tree, and the lynching tree helped me to understand the tragic meaning of the cross."    - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


"They put him to death by hanging him on a tree."    - Peter ; Acts 10.39


We tell you the good news: What God promised our ancestors he has fulfilledfor us, their children, by raising up Jesus.    - Paul ; Acts 13.32-33 (Emphasis added.)


How the faithful city has become a harlot, she who was full of justice! Righteousness once lodged in her, but now murderers . . . Your rulers are rebels and companions of thieves; everyone loves a bribe and chases after rewards. They do not defend the orphan, nor does the widow’s plea come before them.

   - Isaiah the seer ; Isaiah 1:21-23


"The major problem with this culture, it's not the gay issue, it's not the abortion issue, as important as those are, the thing that is going to destroy Evangelical Christianity in the next 25 years, and it will, is it's willingness to be at home with the commercialism and with the consumerism of our society."

   - Tony Campolo ; Lord Save Us From Your Followers; 2006


And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

   - Paul ; Colossians 3:14


Most of the New Testament was written by a former terrorist who helped to murder numerous Christians.    - Keith Giles ;


The truth may set you free, but first it will shatter the safe, sweet way you live.    - Sue Monk Kidd ; The Dance of the Dissident Daughter


Do you think that is the way I want you to fast? Is it only a time for people to make themselves suffer? Is it only for people to bow their heads like tall grass bent by the wind?Is it only for people to lie down in ashes and clothes of mourning? Is that what you call a fast? Do you think I can accept that? Here is the way I want you to fast. Set free those who are held by chains of injustice. Untie the ropes that hold people in subordination. Set free those who are oppressed. Break every evil chain. Give away your privilege to the disadvantaged. Provide the marginalized with a world that is safe. When you see someone denied what is right, give what you have to them, that there may be equality. Do not turn away from others who are in all actuality "your own flesh" for they too are "the image of God." Then light will break forth like the dawn, and YOUR healing will spring up quickly.

 
   - Herb Montgomery ; (Adapted from Isaiah 58)


"Violence can beget fear, stalemate, annihilation, dominance, or more violence, but it cannot beget love, justice, abundant life, community, or peace."    - Rita Nakashima Brock & Rev. Dr. Rebecca Parker ; Saving Paradise


O righteous Father, although the world has not known You, yet I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me; and I have made Your name known to them, and will make it known, so that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.

   - Jesus ; John 17:25-26


But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.    - Luke ; Luke 6.35


While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.”  Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep.    - Luke ; Acts 7.59-60  


Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.    - Paul ; Romans 12.21


Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth.  It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.    - Paul ; 1 Corinthians 13.4-8, NRSV


I would far rather that Hinduism died than untouchability lived.    - Gandhi ; Unsourced Quote


"When the fear of jail disappears, repression puts heart into the people."    - Gandhi ; The Onion Thief


"For it doesn’t go into your heart but into your stomach, and then out of your body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.)    - Mark ; Mark 7.19


Some of the Pharisees said, “This man is not from God, for he does not keep the Sabbath.”    - John ; John 9.16


"Jesus did not advocate non-violence merely as a technique for outwitting the enemy, but as a just means of opposing the enemy in such a way as to hold open the possibility of the enemy's becoming just as well."    - Walter Wink ;


The point is not that Jesus was a good guy who accepted everybody, and thus we should do the same (though that would be good). Rather, his teachings and behavior reflect an alternative social vision. Jesus was not talking about how to be good and how to behave within the framework of a domination system. He was a critic of the domination system itself.    - Marcus J. Borg ;


Dear friends, I urge you, as FOREIGNERS and ALIENS, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul.

   - Peter ; 1 Peter 2.11


"When you're silent, your silence condones it. Thus, whatever you believe in goes down the drain."    - Jennifer Tindugan-Adoviso ;


He did it out of sheer love.

   - Moses, God's friend ; Deuteronomy 7:8, The Message


So that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other.

   - Paul ; 1 Corinthians 12.25


Saying, “The Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.”    - Jesus ; Luke 9.22


Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 7:15-20


People who bear crosses are working with the grain of the universe.

   - John Howard Yoder ; Armaments and Eschatology; Studies in Christian Ethics


"I consider western Christianity in its practical working a negation of Christ's Christianity."    - Mahatma Gandhi ; Unsourced Quotations


I do not believe in the doctrine of the greatest good of the greatest number. The only real, dignified, human doctrine is the greatest good of all.    - Mahatma Gandhi ; Unsourced Quotation


All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them.

   - Paul the apostle ; 2 Corinthians 5:18-19


Hatred ever kills, love never dies - such is the vast difference between the two. What is obtained by love is retained for all time. What is obtained by hatred proves a burden in reality for it increases hatred.    - Mahatma Gandhi ; Unsourced Quotations


"Friendship that insists upon agreement on all matters is not worth the name. Friendship to be real must ever sustain the weight of honest differences, however sharp they may be."    - Mahatma Gandhi ; Young India


For this cause I too am prepared to die, but for no cause, my friend, will I be prepared to kill.    - Mahatma Gandhi ; Unsourced Quotations


Even If I am a minority of one, truth is still the truth.    - Mahatma Gandhi ; Unsourced Quotations


"A religion that takes no account of practical affairs and does not help to solve them is no religion."    - Mahatma Gandhi ; Unsourced Quotations


And the crux of the matter lies here: we do need to be blind. Unlike physical blindness that is usually inflicted upon individuals as a result of natural forces beyond their control, intellectual and moral blindness is a dilemma which man inflicts upon himself by his tragic misuse of freedom and his failure to use his mind to its fullest capacity... I know many people of limited formal training who have amazing intelligence and foresight. The call for intelligence is a call for openmindedness, sound judgment, and love for truth. It is a call for men to rise above the stagnation of closedmindedness and the paralysis of gullibility. One does not need to be a profound scholar to be openminded, nor a keen academician to engage in an assiduous pursuit for truth. Light has come into the world. A voice crying through the vista of time calls men to walk in the light. Man’s earthly life will become a tragic cosmic elegy if he fails to heed this call.    - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; Love In Action


Liberation theology invites people to respond to the gospel in profoundly concrete ways, to establish relationships of solidarity and community. Faith suddenly makes sense. Christian interaction with the world is richer, more meaningful.    - Professor Michael Lee ; Fordham University


But he said to them, "The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those in authority over them are called benefactors. But not so with you; rather the greatest among you must become like the youngest, and the leader like one who serves."    - Luke ; Luke 22:25-26


He will not break a bruised reed or quench a smoldering wick until he brings justice to victory.    - Matthew ; Matthew 12:20 


That evening after sunset the people brought to Jesus all the sick and demon-possessed.    - Gospel of Mark ; Mark 1:32


"But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an everflowing stream."    - Amos ; Amos 5:24 


And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.”    - Mark ; Mark 1.10-11


"Theology is subjective speech about God, a speech that tells us far more about the hopes and dreams of certain God-talkers than about the Maker and Creator of heaven and earth."
   - James Cone  ; The God of the Oppressed


"Much of what passes for the propagation of the gospel actually equates to acts of oppression. When the saving of souls is of ultimate value, it can become easy for other values to be pushed aside. This evangelistic impulse turns every mystical experience into an altar call and every person into a soul to be saved. And historically Christians have shown an ability to care for people’s souls while dismissing their bodies, their land or their dignity."
   - Mark Van Steenwyk ;  The UnKingdom of God


"There are some upon this earth of ours,” returned the Spirit, “who lay claim to know us, and who do their deeds of passion, pride, ill-will, hatred, envy, bigotry, and selfishness in our name, who are as strange to us and all our kith and kin, as if they had never lived. Remember that, and charge their doings on themselves, not us.”    - The Ghost of Christmas Present ; A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens


"So the last will be first, and the first will be last."    - Jesus ; Matthew 20:16   


"Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end."    - Isaiah ; Isaiah 9:7


"The truth about injustice always sounds outrageous."
   - James H. Cone ;


"The Christian community, therefore, is that community that freely becomes oppressed, because they know that Jesus himself has defined humanity's liberation in the context of what happens to the little ones. Christians join the cause of the oppressed in the fight for justice not because of some philosophical principle of "the Good" or because of a religious feeling of sympathy for people in prison. Sympathy does not change the structures of injustice. The authentic identity of Christians with the poor is found in the claim which the Jesus-encounter lays upon their own life-style, a claim that connects the word "Christian" with the liberation of the poor. Christians fight not for humanity in general but for themselves and out of their love for concrete human beings."    - James H. Cone ; The God of the Oppressed


"The cross places God in the midst of crucified people, in the midst of people who are hung, shot, burned, and tortured."
   - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


"Both the cross and the lynching tree represented the worst in human beings and at the same time 'an unquenchable ontological thirst' for life that refuses to let the worst determine our final meaning."    - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


"The cross was God’s critique of power—white power—with powerless love, snatching victory out of defeat."    - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


The cross is a paradoxical religious symbol because it inverts the world’s value system with the news that hope comes by way of defeat, that suffering and death do not have the last word, that the last shall be first and the first last.    - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


"Until we can see the cross and the lynching tree together, until we can identify Christ with a 'recrucified' black body hanging from a lynching tree, there can be no genuine understanding of Christian identity in America, and no deliverance from the brutal legacy of slavery and white supremacy."    - James H. Cone ; The Cross and the Lynching Tree


Any view of the gospel that fails to understand the Church as that community whose work and consciousness are defined by the community of the oppressed is not Christian and is thus heretical.    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


What has the gospel to do with the oppressed of the land and their struggle for liberation? Any theologian who fails to place that question at the center of his or her work has ignored the essence of the gospel.    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


The theologian is before all else an exegete, simultaneously of Scripture and of existence. To be an exegete of Scripture means that the theologian recognizes the Bible, the witness to God's Word, as a primary source of theological discourse. To be an exegete of existence means that Scripture is not an abstract word, not merely a rational idea. It is God's Word to those who are oppressed and humiliated in this world.    - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


"Christian theology is language about the liberating character of God's presence in Jesus Christ as he calls his people into being for freedom in the world."

   - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


The great problem with dominant white theologians, especially white men, is their tendency to speak as if they and they alone can set the rules for thinking about God.

   - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


The only meaningful Christian response is to resist unjust suffering and to accept the painful consequence of that resistance.

   - James H. Cone ; God of the Oppressed


And for this reason did the Lord, instead of that [commandment], 'You shall not commit adultery,' forbid even concupiscence; and instead of that which runs thus, 'You shall not kill, ' He prohibited anger; and instead of the law enjoining the giving of tithes, to share all our possessions with the poor; and not to love our neighbors only, but even our enemies; and not merely to be liberal givers and bestowers, but even that we should present a gratuitous gift to those who take away our goods.

   - Irenaeus, c. 150-200 ; Against Heresies, book 4, chap. 13, para. 3


It makes no difference whether you put a man to death by word, or rather by the sword, since it is the act of putting to death itself which is prohibited. Therefore, with regard to this precept of God, there ought to be no exception at all; but that it is always unlawful to put to death a man, whom God willed to be a sacred animal.

   - Lactantius of Bithynia (aprox 240-317 AD) ; Divine Institutes


Bear one another's burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.

   - Paul the aposle ; Galatians 6:2


"As we gather at tables, grieving the state of our nation, may we gain spiritual strength for the journey ahead, drawing on the deepest wells of wisdom from those on whose shoulders we stand and the various faith traditions that have fueled their freedom march and continue to energize ours. In the spirit of Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel and Dr. King, may the pioneers of the civil rights movement collaborate with the young leaders in Ferguson, New York City and other cities, and may they impart their knowledge and understanding of nonviolent resistance that is not passive, but is spiritually active with an abiding faith that the universe is on the side of justice, and that, in the end, love will triumph over evil. May this spiritual strength, fueled by prophetic fire and love, reveal to us our neighbors’ humanity, our own complicity in their suffering and liberate us once and for all from the history that continues to enslave us."    - Peter Heltzel and Cornel West ; A Thanksgiving Prayer


"If Jesus came to earth again, he would disown many things that are being done in the name of Christianity. It is not he who says ‘Lord, Lord’ that is a Christian, but “He that doeth the will of the Lord’ that is a true Christian. And cannot he, who has not heard the name of Jesus Christ, do the will of the Lord?"    - Gandhi ; Harijan: May 11, 1935


"Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief. Do justly, now. Love mercy, now. Walk humbly, now. You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it.”    - Rabbi Tarfon ; The Talmud


But Jesus insists that he is not coming to destroy the law, but to fulfill it. This word in Greek can mean both fulfilling in the sense of meeting all the law’s requirements, and it can also mean fulfillment in the sense of perfecting or completing something. Looking at what Jesus then immediately proceeds to do, it becomes abundantly clear that he is referring to this sense of perfecting the law, lovingly bringing it into its full intended purpose...that perfecting entailed a complete shift from the system of retributive justice to the system of restorative justice. That is the new law. God’s justice is restorative.    - Derek Flood ; Healing the Gospel: A Radical Vision for Grace, Justice, and the Cross


The hallmark of [Jesus'] moral teaching—love of enemies—likewise acts to overturn the way of retributive justice with restorative justice.

   - Derek Flood ; Healing the Gospel: A Radical Vision for Grace, Justice, and the Cross


Before his conversion, Paul had read his Bible and concluded that he should commit violence in God’s name. He was convinced that justice comes through punishment, and saw himself as an agent of that. After his encounter with Christ on the road to Damascus, Paul completely reassessed how to understand scripture, leading him to a radically different understanding focused on God’s way of restorative justice in Christ.

   - Derek Flood ; Healing the Gospel: A Radical Vision for Grace, Justice, and the Cross


In other words, Paul’s great sin, as he came to see it, had been participation in what he understood as religiously justified acts of violence motivated by religious zeal. His conversion was a conversion away from the religiously justified violence he had formally embraced. It was not a rejection of his Jewish faith (Paul continued to regard himself as a faithful Jew), rather it was a recognition that his former embrace of violence in God’s name was not in fact an act of faithfulness, but a grave sin.

   - Derek Flood ; Healing the Gospel: A Radical Vision for Grace, Justice, and the Cross


Justice does not come through punishment and violence, but through restoration.

   - Derek Flood ; Healing the Gospel: A Radical Vision for Grace, Justice, and the Cross


When women are restricted from the service of God in any capacity, the Church is mistakenly allowing an imperfect male-dominated ancient culture to drive our understanding and practice of Christ’s redeeming work, instead of Jesus Christ and the whole of the Scriptures.

   - Bessey, Sarah ; Jesus Feminist: An Invitation to Revisit the Bible’s View of Women


The Good News is proclaimed when we love each other.

   - Bessey, Sarah ; Jesus Feminist: An Invitation to Revisit the Bible’s View of Women


I want to be outside with the misfits, with the rebels, the dreamers, second-chance givers, the radical grace lavishers, the ones with arms wide open, the courageously vulnerable, and among even—or maybe especially— the ones rejected by the Table as not worthy enough or right enough.

   - Bessey, Sarah ; Jesus Feminist: An Invitation to Revisit the Bible’s View of Women


Forgiveness does not mean ignoring what has been done or putting a false label on an evil act. It means, rather, that the evil act no longer remains as a barrier to the relationship.

   - King Jr, Martin Luther ; Loving Your Enemies


Forgiveness means refusing to make them pay for what they did. However to refrain from lashing out at someone, when you want to do so with all your being, is agony. It is a form of suffering, You are absorbing the debt, taking the cost of it, completely on yourself instead of taking it out on the other person. It hurts terribly. Many people would say it feels like a kind of death. Yes, but it is a death that leads to resurrection, instead of the life long bitterness and cynicism.

   - Tim Keller ; Reason for God


"And I, when I am lifted up  from the earth, will draw all people to myself."    - Jesus ; John 12.32


Surely, this commandment that I am commanding you today is not too hard for you, nor is it too far away. It is not in heaven, that you should say, "Who will go up to heaven for us, and get it for us so that we may hear it and observe it?" Neither is it beyond the sea, that you should say, "Who will cross to the other side of the sea for us, and get it for us so that we may hear it and observe it?" No, the word is very NEAR TO YOU; it is in your mouth and in your heart for you to observe.

   - Moses ; Deuteronomy 30.11-14


"Happy are those who are concerned for the poor; the Lord will help them when they are in trouble."    - David ; Psalms 41:1


"God judges in favor of the oppressed..."    - David ; Psalms 146:6-7


"When you gather your crops and fail to bring in some of the grain that you have cut, do not go back for it; it is to be left for the foreigners, orphans, and widows. . . . When you have gathered your grapes once, do not go back over the vines a second time; the grapes that are left are for the foreigners, orphans and widows. Never forget that you were slaves in Egypt; that is why I have given you this command."    - Moses ; Deuteronomy 24:19-22


"Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of injustice, to undo the thongs of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke?"    - Isaiah ; Isaiah 58:6


"Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all the unfortunate. Open your mouth, judge righteously, And defend the rights of the afflicted and needy."    - Author of Proverbs ; Proverbs 31:8-9


You saw no form of any kind the day the LORD spoke to you at Horeb out of the fire. Therefore watch yourselves very carefully, so that you do not become corrupt and make for yourselves an idol, an image of any shape, whether formed like a man or a woman . . .

   - Moses ; Deuteronomy 4.15-16


Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Doesn’t she light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it?

   - Jesus ; Luke 15.8


You may be 38 years old, as I happen to be, and one day, some great opportunity stands before you and calls upon you to stand for some great principle, some great issue, some great cause. And you refuse to do it because you are afraid. You refuse to do it because you want to live longer. You’re afraid that you will lose your job, or you are afraid that you will be criticized or that you will lose your popularity, or you’re afraid that somebody will stab or shoot or bomb your house. So you refuse to take a stand. Well, you may go on and live until you are ninety, but you are just as dead at 38 as you would be at ninety. And the cessation of breathing in your life is but the belated announcement of an earlier death of the spirit. You died when you refused to stand up for right. You died when you refused to stand up for truth. You died when you refused to stand up for justice.    - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; Ebenezer Baptist Church; 11/5/67; Atlanta, Ga


"Is it necessary to refuse this mimetic anthropology in the name of a given theology? Is it necessary to see in the gathering against Jesus the work of God the Father, who like the divinities of the Iliad would move humankind to act against his Son in order to exact from him the ransom that they themselves could not provide? To me this interpretation appears contrary to both the spirit and the letter of the Gospels. There is nothing in the Gospels to suggest that God causes the mob to come together against Jesus. Violent contagion is enough. Those responsible for the Passion are the human participants themselves, incapable of resisting the violent contagion that affects them all when a mimetic snowballing . . ."    - Rene Girard ; I See Satan Fall Like Lightning


There is a line that separates discrimination from affirmation. We can talk and progress while on the discrimination side until the cows come home. We can nudge up as close as possible to that line, but we will still be on the side of injustice. Justice doesn’t begin until that line is crossed. Period.

   - David Hayward ; NakedPastor.com


The peoples of the world do not invent their gods. They deify their victims.    - Rene Girard ; I See Satan Fall Like Lightning


Is this not why the murder of a citizen of your own nation is a crime , but the murder of the citizens of another nation in war is an act of heroic virtue?    - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; On Being a Good Neighbor


The more one is crucified, the more one burns to participate in the crucifixion of someone more crucified than oneself.    - Rene Girard ; I See Satan Fall Like Lightning


By this time you ought to be teachers yourselves, yet here I find you need someone to sit down with you and go over the basics on God again, starting from square one—baby's milk, when you should have been on solid food long ago! Milk is for beginners, inexperienced in God's ways; solid food is for the mature, who have some practice in telling right from wrong. So come on, let's leave the preschool fingerpainting exercises on Christ and get on with the grand work of art. Grow up in Christ. The basic foundational truths are in place: turning your back on "salvation by self-help" and turning in trust toward God; baptismal instructions; laying on of hands; resurrection of the dead; eternal judgment. God helping us, we'll stay true to all that. But there's so much more. Let's get on with it!

   - Paul the Apostle ; Hebrews 5:11-6:3, The Message


Pilate deserves our sympathies, not because he was a good though tragically mistaken man, but because we are not much better. We may believe in Jesus, but we do not believe in his ideas, at least not his ideas about violence, truth, and justice.    - Miroslav Volf ; Exclusion and Embrace


You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.14


We are called to be people of conviction, not conformity; of moral nobility, not social respectability. We are commanded to live differently and according to a higher loyalty.

   - King Jr, Martin Luther ; Transformed Nonconformist


You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.13


When days grow dark and nights grow dreary, we can be thankful that our God combines in his nature a creative synthesis of love and justice which will lead us through life’s dark valleys and into sunlit pathways of hope and fulfillment.

   - King Jr, Martin Luther ; A Tough Mind and a Tender Heart


Blessed are those who are persecuted for justice’s sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.10


Through nonviolent resistance we shall be able to oppose the unjust system and at the same time love the perpetrators of the system .

   - King Jr, Martin Luther ; A Tough Mind and a Tender Heart


Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.9s


A Voice, echoing through the corridors of time, says to every intemperate Peter, “Put up thy sword .” History is cluttered with the wreckage of nations that failed to follow Christ’s command.   

   - King Jr, Martin Luther ; A Tough Mind and a Tender Heart


Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.3


Let us behold Him in our mind, and let us look with the eyes of our soul unto His long-suffering will. Let us note how free from anger He is towards all His creatures.    - Clement of Rome (1st Century) ; 1 Clement 19.3


For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself.

   - Paul the aposle ; Galatians 6:3


Now, little children, abide in Him, so that when He appears, we may have confidence and not shrink away from Him in shame at His coming.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 2:28


Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

   - Paul the apostle ; Romans 12:9


Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

   - Paul the apostle ; Ephesians 5:1, 2


Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5:7


"If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them."

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:32


Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you; not as the world gives, give I to you. Don’t let your heart be troubled, neither let it be fearful.

   - Jesus ; John 14:27


But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.

   - Jesus ; Luke 6.27-31


God, in prohibiting killing, discountenances not only brigandage, which is contrary to human law, but also that which men regard as legal. Thus participation in war will not be legitimate to a just man; his "military service" is justice itself. … What are the interests of our country, but the inconveniences of another state or nation? that is, to extend the boundaries which are violently taken from others, to increase the power of the state, to improve the revenues all which things are not virtues, but the overthrowing of virtues: for, in the first place, the union of human society is taken away, innocence is taken away, the abstaining from the property of another is taken away; lastly, justice itself is taken away, which is unable to bear the tearing asunder of the human race, and wherever arms have glittered, must be banished and exterminated from thence. … How can a man be just who injures, hates, despoils and puts to death? Yet they who strive to be serviceable to their country do all these things.

   - Lactantius ; [tutor of Crispus, the son of St. Constantine the Great]


Welcome with open arms fellow believers who don't see things the way you do. And don't jump all over them every time they do or say something you don't agree with—even when it seems that they are strong on opinions but weak in the faith department. Remember, they have their own history to deal with. Treat them gently.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Romans 14.1, The Message


"Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both."

   - Jesus ; Luke 7:41,42


God is not the author of evil. He was, however, the author of his creatures’ capacity to choose between good and evil. Freedom to do good, which brings good consequences, cannot exist without the corresponding freedom to do evil, which brings suffering. If loving God really means something, then the choice to follow him must be real and meaningful.

   - Randy Alcorn ; If God is Good


God chose to make himself known, finally and ultimately, in a real, historical man.

   - D.A. Carson ; The Gospel According to John


"For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive."    - Paul the apostle ; 1 Corinthians 15.22


"The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it."    - John ; Revelation 21.24


"There is no them.... Only us."    - Bono ; Invisible


"Since you have given him authority over all people, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him."    - Jesus ; John 17.2


The Greek word for punishment is kolasis, which was not originally an ethical word at all. It originally meant the pruning of trees to make them grow better. I think it is true to say that in all Greek secular literature kolasis is never used of anything but remedial punishment. The word for eternal is aionios. It means more than everlasting, for Plato - who may have invented the word - plainly says that a thing may be everlasting and still not be aionios. The simplest way to out it is thataionios cannot be used properly of anyone but God; it is the word uniquely, as Plato saw it, of God. Eternal punishment is then literally that kind of remedial punishment which it befits God to give and which only God can give.    - William Barclay ; Professor of Divinity and Biblical Criticism at Glasgow University and the author of many Biblical commentaries and books, including a translation of the New Testament, "Barclay New Testament," and "The Daily Study Bible Series."


"He  made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ."    - Paul ; Ephesians 1.9-10


"Who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and human beings, Christ Jesus, himself human, who gave himself as a ransom for all people. This has now been witnessed to at the proper time."    - Paul ; 1 Timothy 2.4-6


"When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all."    - Paul ; 1 Corinthians 15.28


"For God has bound everyone over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all."    - Paul ; Romans 11.32


Moreover, we must learn that passively to accept an unjust system is to cooperate with that system, and thereby to become a participant in its evil.    - King Jr, Martin Luther ; A Tough Mind and a Tender Heart


At the center of nonviolence stands the principle of love. The nonviolent resister would contend that in the struggle for human dignity, the oppressed people of the world must not succumb to the temptation of becoming bitter or indulging in hate campaigns. To retaliate in kind would do nothing but intensify the existence of hate in the universe. Along the way of life, someone must have sense enough and morality enough to cut off the chain of hate. This can only be done by projecting the ethic of love to the center of our lives.    - King Jr, Martin Luther ; A Gift of Love: Sermons from Strength to Love and Other Preachings


“The end is redemption and reconciliation, the aftermath of nonviolence is the creation of the Beloved Community, while the aftermath of violence is tragic bitterness.”    - King Jr, Martin Luther ; A Gift of Love: Sermons from Strength to Love and Other Preachings


All men [and women] are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly . I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be, and you can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be.    - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; The Man Who Was a Fool


Right after 9/11, I asked a kid in my neighborhood what we should do in response. His answer: "Those people did something very wrong..." He thought pensively and continued, "But two wrongs don’t make a right." As Martin Luther King taught us, you cannot fight fire with fire, you only get a bigger fire. You fight fire with water. You fight violence with nonviolence. You fight hatred with love. As a Christian, a follower of Jesus the Prince of Peace, I am deeply troubled about the possibility of a military response to the violence in Syria. Jesus consistently teaches us another way to respond to evil, a third way – neither fight nor flight. He teaches that evil can be opposed without being mirrored, oppressors resisted without being emulated, enemies neutralized without being destroyed. I am praying that the nonviolent imagination of Jesus and MLK would move the leaders of our country and our world to find another way forward than violence. When I heard US military leaders calculating the collateral damage of an attack on Syria ("classified" information), something feels terribly wrong. Christ once scolded his own disciple who tried to use the sword to protect him. After healing the wounded persecutor, he said to Peter, "If you pick up the sword you will die by the sword. Put your sword back." Over and over we have tried to use the sword – in Iraq, in Afghanistan, now possibly in Syria… and the sword has failed. The cure becomes as bad as the disease. When we fight fire with fire, we only get a bigger fire, and a bigger mess. Two wrongs do not make a right.

   - Shane Claiborne ; Public Facebook Page Post


[Christ's Resurrection] has a very this-wordly, present-age meaning: Jesus is raised, so God's new creation has begun—and we, as his followers, have a job to do! Jesus is raised, so we must act as his heralds, announcing his lordship to the entire world, making his kingdom come on earth as in heaven!

   - N. T. Wright ; Surprised by Hope, p. 56


In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. . . . The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth . . . . No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.

   - John the Beloved ; John 1:1-5:14-18


For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

   - Paul ; Ephesians 6.12


The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus. You handed him over to be killed, and you disowned him before Pilate, though he had decided to let him go. You disowned the Holy and Righteous One and asked that a murderer be released to you. You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead. We are witnesses of this.

   - Peter ; Acts 3.13-15


"I searched for a man among them who would build up the wall and stand in the gap before Me for the land, so that I would not destroy it; but I found no one. "

   - Ezekiel the prophet ; Ezekiel 22:30


"Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life."

   - John, the Beloved ; John 8:12, KJV


How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!

   - The Apostle Paul ; Hebrews 9:14


If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man’s religion is worthless. Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.

   - James the brother of Jesus ; James 1:26,27


And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.

   - John the Beloved ; John 1:14


. . . exactly as Christ did for the church—a love marked by giving, not getting.

   - Paul the apostle ; Ephesians 5:25 The Message


Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

   - Paul the Apostle ; 1Thessalonians 5.11


Keep yourselves in God's love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life.

   - Jude the brother of Jesus ; Jude 21


God has allotted to each a measure of faith.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Romans 12:3


Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.

   - Paul ; Romans 13.8


Slander no one, be peaceable and considerate, and show true humility toward all men.

   - Paul the apostle ; Titus 3:2


"That's just the opposite of what Jesus said. Jesus never said love the sinner and hate the sin. Here's what Jesus said, love the sinner, and hate your own sin, and after you have taken care of that sin, you can talk about the sin in your brother."

   - Tony Campolo ; Keynote Speech; Christian Gay Conference 2009


For as all die in Adam, so all will be made alive in Christ.    - Paul ; 1 Corinthians 15.22


Those who say, “I love God,” and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen.    - John ; 1 John 4.20


The drops of rain make a hole in the stone, not by violence, but by oft falling.    - Lucretius ; Roman poet and philosopher from the first century B.C.


In a gentle way, you can shake the world.    - Gandhi ; Quit India Speech, (1942)


Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.    - Paul ; Romans 12.14


Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.    - Peter ; 1 Peter 1.3 (Emphasis added.)


Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 4:11


And while all the people were listening, He said to the disciples, 'Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and love respectful greetings in the market places, and chief seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets, who devour widows' houses, and for appearance's sake offer long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation.'

   - Jesus ; Luke 20:45-47


Give thanks to the God of heaven, for His lovingkindness is everlasting.

   - David the psalmist ; Psalms 136.26


But the righteousness that comes from faith says, "Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’ (that is, to bring Christ down) or ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’ (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead)." But what does it say? "The word is NEAR YOU, on your lips and in your heart" (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim);

   - Paul ; Romans 10.6-8


Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.

   - Peter the Apostle ; 1 Peter 4:12, 13


In the same way, as the Father gives life to the dead [His Son], even so the Son gives life to those to whom he is pleased to give it.    - Jesus ; John 5.21; BBE


For he has set a day when he will [put the world to right] with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead.    - Paul ; Acts 17.31 (Emphasis added.)


Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with deeds of power, wonders, and signs that God did through him among you, as you yourselves know—this man, given to you according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of those outside the law. But God raised him up, having freed him from death, because it was impossible for him to be held in its power . . . God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of the fact . . . Therefore let the entire house of Israel know with certainty that God has made him both Lord and Messiah, this Jesus whom you crucified.”    - Peter ; Acts 2.22-36 (Emphasis added.)


We tell you the good news: What God promised our ancestors he has fulfilled for us, their children, by raising up Jesus.      - Paul ; Acts 13.32-33 (Emphasis added.)


Then war broke out in heaven; Michael and his angels fought against the dragon. The dragon with his angels fought back, 8 but he was too weak, and they lost their place in heaven.The great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent who led the whole world astray, whose name is the Devil, or Satan; he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels with him.

   - John ; Revelation 12.7-9 (REB)


It [baptism] saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.    - Peter ; 1 Peter 3.21


What is history? Wars, victories, and wars. So many dead. So many tears. So little regret. So many fears… The world is drenched in blood, and the guilt is endless. Should not all hope be abandoned? What saved the prophets from despair was their messianic vision and the idea of man’s capacity for repentance… History is not a blind alley, and guilt is not an abyss. There is always a way that leads out of guilt . . . The prophet is a person who, living in dismay, has the power to transcend his dismay. Over all the darkness of experience hovers the vision of a different day.    - Abraham Heschel ; The Prophets


And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.    - Paul ; 1 Corinthians 15.14


This text [Sermon on the Mount] represents the distillation of the entire Jewish prophetic vision and supplies the ethical core and centre for all Christianity. We must not ignore, domesticate, sanitize, or censure this Magna Carta of our faith.    - Ron Dart ; Spirituality and Justice: the Vision of the Beatitudes


There was much grumbling among the crowds concerning Him; some were saying, 'He is a good man'; others were saying, 'No, on the contrary, He leads the people astray.' Yet no one was speaking openly of Him for fear of the Jews.

   - John the beloved ; John 7.12-13


He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification [putting things to right].    - Paul ; Romans 4.25


O foolish men and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken!

   - Jesus ; Luke 24:25


Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with deeds of power, wonders, and signs that God did through him among you, as you yourselves know—this man, given to you according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of those outside the law. But God raised him up, having freed him from death, because it was impossible for him to be held in its power . . . God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of the fact . . . Therefore let the entire house of Israel know with certainty that God has made him both Lord and Messiah, this Jesus whom you crucified.”    - Peter ; Acts 2.22-36


From that time on, Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and undergo great suffering at the hands of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.    - Jesus ; Matthew 16.21


"But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you."

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:27-28


The Gospels not only disclose the hidden scapegoat mechanism of human cultures, but witness to the God, the Spirit-Paraclete, who stands with the Innocent Victim and is revealed through him.    - Rene Girard ; The Girard Reader


If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.

   - Jesus ; John 13.14


The scandal of Easter was not simply that a supernatural event occurred. Minds in the ancient world weren't divided by the rigid natural-supernatural dualism that forms modern minds. In those days miracles were notable not for defying the laws of nature (a concept that was unknown until recent centuries), but for conveying an unexpected meaning or message through an unusual or unexplainable medium. What was the scandalous meaning conveyed by the resurrection of Jesus?  It was not simply that a dead man was raised. It was who the raised man was. Someone rejected, mocked, condemned, and executed by both the political and religious establishments was raised. A convicted outlaw, troublemaker, and rabble rouser was raised. A condemned blasphemer and lawbreaker was raised. A nonviolent nonconformist who included the outcasts - and therefore became an outcast - was raised. What does that mean about the authoritative institutions that condemned him? What does that mean about his nonconformist message and nonviolent ways?    - Brian McLaren ; Why did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha, and Mohammed Cross the Road?


Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.

   - Jesus ; John 15.13


The God of our ancestors raised Jesus from the dead—whom you killed by hanging him on a cross. God exalted him to his own right hand as Prince and Savior . . .    - Peter and the apostles ; Acts 5.30-31


"With regard to 'Satisfaction', we will not allow the use of this word in our schools or on the lips of our preachers, but would rather send it back to the judges, advocates, and hangmen, from whom the Pope stole it."    - Martin Luther ; Luther's Works, 34, p.301


In the end and consummation of the Universe all are to be restored into their original harmonious state, and we all shall be made one body and be united once more into a perfect man and the prayer of our Savior shall be fulfilled that all may be one.    - St. Jerome, (331-420) ; To Avitus


Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name,  so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,  and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.    - Paul ; Philippians 2.9-11


For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. But in this order: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him. Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For he “has put everything under his feet.”  Now when it says that “everything” has been put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself, who put everything under Christ. When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all.    - Paul ; 1 Corinthians 15.22-28


The Anabaptists are beginning to make more and more sense to a world that is increasingly aware of the emptiness of materialism and the ugliness of militarism. Anabaptist logic is rooted in the wisdom of the cross of Jesus, which Scripture says confounds the wisdom of this world. It seems the world is poised for a new Anabaptist movement.

   - Shane Claiborne ; Brethren In Christ author


And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,   “See, the home of God is among mortals.   He will dwell with them as their God;   they will be his peoples,   and God himself will be with them;    - John ; Revelation 21.3


The most important of these we find in the Gospel of Luke, the famous prayer of Jesus during the Crucifixion: "Father, forgive them because they don't know what they are doing" (23:34). Here, as with all the sayings of Jesus, it is crucial to avoid emptying what he says of its basic sense by reducing it to a rhetorical formula, to a kind of sentimental exaggeration, for example. We should always take Jesus at his word. He expresses the powerlessness of those caught up in the mimetic snowballing process to see what moves and compels them. Persecutors think they are doing good, the right thing; they believe they are working for justice and truth; they believe they are saving their community.    - Rene Girard ; I See Satan Fall Like Lightning


You have made them to be a kingdom and priests serving our God, and they will reign on earth.    - John ; Revelation 21.3


Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.5


A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.

   - Jesus ; John 13.34, 35


For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to heal the world through him.    - Jesus ; John 3.17


Do not be too quick to assume that your enemy is an enemy of God just because he is your enemy. Perhaps he is your enemy precisely because he can find nothing in you that gives glory to God. Perhaps he fears you because he can find nothing in you of God's love and God's kindness and God's patience and mercy and understanding of the weaknesses of men.    - Thomas Merton ; Seeds


As for those who hear my words but do not keep them, I do not condemn them. For I did not come to condemn the world, but to heal the world.    - Jesus ; John 12.47


For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Hebrews 4:15-16


Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion, make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.

   - Paul the Apostle ; Philippians 2:1-2


To be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.    - Paul ; Ephesians 1.10


We will have to repent in this generation not merely for the vitriolic and actions of the bad people but for the appalling silence of the good people.    - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963


We shall match your capacity to inflict suffering by our capacity to endure suffering. We will meet your physical force with soul force. Do to us what you will and we will still love you. We cannot in all good conscience obey your unjust laws and abide by the unjust system, because non-cooperation with evil is as much a moral obligation as is cooperation with good, and so throw us in jail and we will still love you. Bomb our homes and threaten our children, and, as difficult as it is, we will still love you. Send your hooded perpetrators of violence into our communities at the midnight hour and drag us out on some wayside road and leave us half-dead as you beat us, and we will still love you. Send your propaganda agents around the country, and make it appear that we are not fit, culturally and otherwise, for integration, and we'll still love you. But be assured that we'll wear you down by our capacity to suffer, and one day we will win our freedom. We will not only win freedom for ourselves; we will so appeal to your heart and conscience that we will win you in the process, and our victory will be a double victory.

   - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. ; 1967 Christmas Sermon on Peace


I cannot enlist for I am a Christian. I cannot serve, I cannot do evil.    - Maximilian, the son of a Roman soldier in present-day Algeria, was required to join the army at the age of twenty-one. ; Spoken before the court of the Roman proconsul. Because of his refusal he was beheaded. He was a follower of Jesus which meant he could not fight the wars of men. He insisted that we can die for Christ, but we cannot kill for him.


Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.    - John ; 1 John 4.7


Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.    - John ; 1 John 4.7


If might is right, then love has no place in the world. It may be so, it may be so. But I don't have the strength to live in a world like that, Rodrigo.    - Father Gabriel ; The Mission


For this is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another.    - John ; 1 John 3.11


Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace to all of you who are in Christ.    - Peter ; 1 Peter 5.14


No Bishop, No King.    - King James VI of Scotland ; Responsible for an English translation of the New Testament that endorses the hierarchical structure of the Empire.


All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble and oppressed.”    - Peter ; 1 Peter 5.14


Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God, serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received.    - Peter ; 1 Peter 4.10


Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.    - Peter ; 1 Peter 4.9


Christ's followers would become known as the Way. Their community was more than just a group of people who shared religious beliefs.  They were a group of people that embodied a new way of living. The credibility of the gospel would rest on the integrity of their lives. For they were now to be the body of Christ. Jesus would live through them.    - Shane Claiborne ; Jesus For President


Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.    - Peter ; 1 Peter 4.8


Tell me, how can a Christian defend scripturally retaliation, rebellion, war, striking, slaying, torturing, stealing, robbing and plundering and burning cities, and conquering countries?    - Menno Simons ; Anabaptist leader and writer in the Netherlands from 1536


Finally, all of you, be like–minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble.    - Peter ; 1 Peter 3.8


It should be obvious by now that violence, and not Christianity, is the real religion of America. This is why it cannot be stressed too much: love of enemies has, for our time, become a litmus test of authentic Christian faith.    - Walter Wink ; Jesus and Nonviolence


Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.    - James ; James 5.16


"Beware you are not a fiery, persecuting enthusiast. Do not imagine that God has called you (just contrary to the spirit of Him you style your Master) to destroy men’s lives, and not to save them. Never dream of forcing men into the ways of God. Think yourself, and let think. Use no constraint in matters of religion. Even those who are farthest out of the way never compel to come in by any other means than reason, truth, and love."    - John Wesley ; The Sermons of John Wesley; Sermon 37


You are not making a gift of your possession to the poor person. You are handing over to him what is his.    - Ambrose Of Milan ; Ambrose of Milan, 340-397


Brothers and sisters, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against a brother or sister or judges them speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it.    - James ; James 4.11


And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds,    - Unknown ; Hebrews 10.24


But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.    - Unknown ; Hebrews 10.24


When you realize the value of all life, you dwell less on what is past and concentrate more on the preservation of the future.    - Dian Fossey ; Last Journal Entry


I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.    - Jesus ; Luke 16.9


On some positions, Cowardice asks the question, "Is it safe?" Expediency asks the question, "Is it politic?" And Vanity comes along and asks the question, "Is it popular?" But Conscience asks the question "Is it right?" And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must do it because Conscience tells him it is right. I believe today that there is a need for all people of good will to come together with a massive act of conscience and say in the words of the old Negro spiritual, "We ain't goin' study war no more." This is the challenge facing modern man.    - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. ; Remaining Awake Through a Great Revolution (March 31, 1968)


If we all derive our origin from one man, whom God created, we are plainly all of one family. Therefore it must be considered an abomination to hate another human, no matter how guilty he may be. For this reason God has decreed that we should hate no one, but that we should eliminate hatred. So we can comfort our enemies by reminding them of our mutual relationship. For if we have all been given life by the same God then what else are we but brothers? . . . Because we are all brothers God teaches us never to do evil to one another but only good - giving aid to those who are oppressed, and experiencing hardship, and giving food to the hungry.    - Lactantius ; Divine Institutes, Book 6 Ch 10


We used to hate and destroy one another, and refused to associate with people of another race or country. Now, because of Christ we live together with such people, and pray for our enemies.    - Justin Martyr ; Justin's First Apology Ch 11


Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.    - Jesus ; Matthew 6.19-22


In the early centuries of the church, Christians who suffered wrong without resistance at the hands of their enemies and persecutors were called 'confessors' and 'martyrs'. Martyr in Greek means 'witness'. Martyrs were persons who had given the ultimate witness. They were willing to suffer death rather than use violence to defend or avenge themselves. Martyrdom, therefore, meant much more than simply resisting pressures to deny faith. When these Christians refused to resort to the violence of revolution or self-defense, they're being faithful to their missionary call. They sought to make disciples of all nations.    - John Driver ; How Christians Made Peace With War


And there was considerable complaining about him among the crowds. While some were saying, “He is a good man,” others were saying, “No, he is deceiving the crowd.”    - John ; John 7.12


Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.21


Blessed are you who are hungry now, for you will be filled.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.21


Blessed are you who are poor [now], for yours is the kingdom of God.    - Jesus ; Luke 6.20


Give to everyone who asks you.    - Jesus ; Luke 6:30


The great drama will end, not with "saved souls" being snatched up into heaven, away from the wicked earth and the mortal bodies which have dragged them down into sin, but with the New Jerusalem coming down from heaven to earth, so that "the dwelling of God is with humans" (Revelation 21:3).

   - N.T. Wright ; Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense


"God's plan is not to abandon this world, the world which he said was "very good." Rather, he intends to remake it. And when he does he will raise all his people to new bodily life to live in it. That is the promise of the Christian gospel."

   - N.T. Wright ; Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense


You also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

   - Peter ; 1 Peter 2.5


But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.

   - Peter ; 1 Peter 2.9


But our CITIZENSHIP is in heaven, and FROM it we await a Savior, the LORD Jesus Christ,

   - Paul ; Philippians 3.20


For which I am an AMBASSADOR in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

   - Paul ; Ephesians 6.20


The assumption is that our reaction should be one that identifies a "we" that combines both the American and the Christian. Yet "we" Christians are called to respond to this terrorizing event in a way that is different from that shaped by American presuppositions. I want to be very clear. Nothing that the United States has done in its foreign policy—and it’s done some very wicked things—can justify what was done at the World Trade Center. We have to step back and ask what we Christians have done that we find ourselves so implicated in the world that we cannot differentiate our response as God’s people from the American people’s response.

   - Stanley Hauerwas ; The Tonto Principle, Sojourners Magazine, January-February 2002


By faith he made his HOME in a land promised to him like a STRANGER in a FOREIGN COUNTRY . . .

   - Author of Hebrews ; Hebrews 11.9


Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 6.10


When your country and mine shall get together on the teachings laid down by Christ in this Sermon on the Mount, we shall have solved the problems not only of our countries but those of the whole world.

   - Gandhi ; (Lord Irwin asked Gandhi what he thought would solve the problems between Great Britain and India. Gandhi picked up a Bible and opened it to the fifth chapter of Matthew and said these words.)


Once Jesus was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God was coming, and he answered, "The kingdom of God is not coming with 'Signs' that can be observed; nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or ‘There it is!’ For, in fact, the kingdom of God is within you."

   - Jesus ; Luke 17.20,21


The God of Peace is never glorified by human violence.

   - Thomas Merton ; No Man Is An Island


You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that?    - Jesus ; Matthew 5.43-48


How does one live at the end of the world? By starting a new one.

   - Kevin C. Patz, United States vs. Kevin C. Patz; Seattle, Washington; September 12, 1977 (one of many such trials of people who went onto the Trident submarine base to stop nuclear war.) ; Jame's Douglass' Lightning East to West; Jesus, Gandhi and the Nuclear Age. p. 75


"You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.38-42


As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it and said, "If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes. The days will come on you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side. They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you."

   - Jesus ; Luke 19.41-44 (emphasis added)


No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 6.24


Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 6.25-34


And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 6.7-8


Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed.

   - Mahatma Gandhi (quoted by Pyarelal) ; Part II of Mahatma Gandhi, The Last Phase


May we be an anticipation of the age to come, may we be an embodiment of the reign of Christ here and now.

   - Brian Zahnd ; Facebook Post; October 16, 2013


Equity must be combined with restoration and healing lest it quickly deteriorate into punitive retribution.

   - Herb Montgomery ; Facebook Post; October 17, 2013


For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 24.27


Dear sisters and brothers, I am not against anyone. Neither am I here to speak in terms of personal revenge against the Taliban or any other terrorists group. I am here to speak up for the right of education of every child. I want education for the sons and the daughters of all the extremists especially the Taliban.

I do not even hate the Talib who shot me. Even if there is a gun in my hand and he stands in front of me. I would not shoot him. This is the compassion that I have learnt from Muhammad-the prophet of mercy, Jesus christ and Lord Buddha. This is the legacy of change that I have inherited from Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela and Muhammad Ali Jinnah. This is the philosophy of non-violence that I have learnt from Gandhi Jee, Bacha Khan and Mother Teresa. And this is the forgiveness that I have learnt from my mother and father. This is what my soul is telling me, be peaceful and love everyone.

Dear sisters and brothers, we realise the importance of light when we see darkness. We realise the importance of our voice when we are silenced.

   - Malala Yousafzai ; Speech at United Nations; July 15, 2013


We are to imitate Christ's enemy embracing, nonviolent love in the same way Christ was simply imitating his Father. (see John 5.19)

   - Herb Montgomery ; Facebook Post


Quit your worship charades. I can’t stand your trivial religious games: Monthly conferences, weekly Sabbaths, special meetings—meetings, meetings, meetings—I can’t stand one more! Meetings for this, meetings for that. I hate them! You’ve worn me out! I’m sick of your religion, religion, religion, while you go right on sinning. When you put on your next prayer-performance, I’ll be looking the other way. No matter how long or loud or often you pray, I’ll not be listening. And do you know why? Because you’ve been tearing people to pieces, and your hands are bloody. Go home and wash up. Clean up your act. Sweep your lives clean of your evildoings so I don’t have to look at them any longer. Say no to wrong. Learn to do good. Work for justice. Help the down-and-out. Stand up for the homeless. Go to bat for the defenseless.

   - Isaiah ; Isaiah 1.13-17, The Message


Kenotic power may seem feeble because it is patient and humble, but in the end, God-as-love—the truly Christlike God—is the overcoming force more powerful because He does what no tyrant can ever do: He wins hearts, restores lives and transforms societies.

   - Brad Jersak ; Facebook Post


But it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.

   - Paul ; 2Timothy 1.10


Who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To him be honor and might forever. Amen.

   - Paul ; 1Timothy 6.16


"In the Bible 'new' can be understood in two ways (1) total replacement; (2) renovation of the old. Usually for the idea of replacement, the word neos 'brand new' is used. The word kainos connotes a sense of massive change in essence and quality. It comes closer to the idea of renovation."    - Allan J. McNicol ; The Conversion of the Nations, p. 71


"And the one who was seated on the throne said, 'See, I am making all things new.'"    - John ; Revelation 21.5


For this perishable body must put on imperishability, and this mortal body must put on immortality. When this perishable body puts on imperishability, and this mortal body puts on immortality, then the saying that is written will be fulfilled: "Death has been swallowed up in victory."

   - Paul ; 1 Corinthians 15.53-54


There is no future without forgiveness.

   - Desmond Tutu ; No Future Without Forgiveness


Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.9


Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison. Truly I tell you, you will not get out until you have paid the last penny.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.25, 26


"I’ve seen too much hate to want to hate, myself, and every time I see it, I say to myself, hate is too great a burden to bear. Somehow we must be able to stand up against our most bitter opponents and say: ‘We shall match your capacity to inflict suffering by our capacity to endure suffering. We will meet your physical force with soul force. Do to us what you will and we will still love you. We cannot in all good conscience obey your unjust laws and abide by the unjust system, because non-cooperation with evil is as much a moral obligation as is cooperation with good, so throw us in jail and we will still love you. Bomb our homes and threaten our children, and, as difficult as it is, we will still love you. Send your hooded perpetrators of violence into our communities at the midnight hour and drag us out on some wayside road and leave us half-dead as you beat us, and we will still love you. Send your propaganda agents around the country and make it appear that we are not fit, culturally and otherwise, for integration, but we’ll still love you. But be assured that we’ll wear you down by our capacity to suffer, and one day we will win our freedom. We will not only win freedom for ourselves; we will appeal to your heart and conscience that we will win you in the process, and our victory will be a double victory."

   - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ; Christmas Sermon, 1967


Very truly I tell you, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go." Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, "Follow me!"

   - Jesus ; John 21.18,19


The politics of nonviolent Calvary-love don't wait to be voted in, they wait for us to live them out.

   - Jarrod Mckenna ; Facebook Page Post


All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need.

   - Luke ; Acts 2.44,45


As stewards of money and possessions, we are to live simply, practice mutual aid within the church, uphold economic justice and give generously and cheerfully.

   - Mennonite Church ; Confession of Faith - Article 21


Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.

   - Unknown ; Hebrews 2.14-15


We preach Christ, warning people not to add to the Message. We teach in a spirit of profound common sense so that we can bring each person to maturity. To be mature is to be basic. Christ! No more, no less.

   - Paul ; Colossians 1.28, The Message


How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him. We are witnesses of everything he did in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They killed him by hanging him on a cross, but God raised him from the dead on the third day and caused him to be seen.

   - Peter ; Acts 10.38-40


The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.

   - Paul and apostle ; 2 Corinthians 10.4


Jesus said to them, "The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors. But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves.

   - Jesus ; Luke 22.25-17


But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one Master and you are all brothers. And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. Nor are you to be called ‘teacher,’ for you have one Teacher, the Messiah. The greatest among you will be your servant. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 23.8-12


Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.

   - Ezekiel ; Ezekiel 16.49, TNIV


Go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life, marking them by baptism in the threefold name: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 28.19 (The Message)


Just to be free from the Nazi’s, that did not remove the pain they had inflicted upon on me. There must be another way for survivors to heal themselves. I have found another way, forgive your worst enemy. Getting even has never healed as single person. This forgiveness must have no preconditions, no prerequisites that must first be met on the part of the perpetrators. This would make the victims victims for the rest of their lives.

   - Eva Mozes Kor ; Forgiving Dr. Mengele


If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

   - Jesus ; Luke 6.32-36 (emphasis added)


Every man brings some modest coin once a month or whenever he wishes, and only if he is willing and able; it is a freewill offering. You might call them the trust-funds of piety; they are spent on the support and burial of the poor.

   - Tertullian, c. 150-220 ; Apology, XXXIX, 1-18


My claim, which I’m told is audacious by some and naïve by others is simply this: Jesus Christ and his peaceable kingdom are the hope of the world.

   - Brian Zahnd ; Word of Life Church weekly sermon.


"Western Christianity has equated Christianity with ‘respectability’ for so long that the Church has often missed out on people on the fringes – such as the shepherds."    - Jenny Robertson ; (unspecified)


"Among the occupations of first-century Israel, shepherding had a lowly place. Shepherds were considered untrustworthy and their work made them ceremonially unclean. Thus the most obvious implication is that the gospel first came to the social outcasts of Jesus day."    - Walter L. Liefeld ; The Expositor's Bible Commentary


To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings who also will share in the glory to be revealed: Be shepherds [pastors] of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve; NOT LORDING IT OVER [ See Luke 22.25-27] those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd [Pastor],appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.

   - Peter an apostle ; 1 Peter 5.1-4


Now God can create free creatures, but He can’t cause or determine them to do only what is right. For if He does so, then they aren’t significantly free after all.

   - Alvin Plantinga ; God, Freedom, and Evil


God is not the author of evil. He was, however, the author of his creatures’ capacity to choose between good and evil. Freedom to do good, which brings good consequences, cannot exist without the corresponding freedom to do evil, which brings suffering. If loving God really means something, then the choice to follow him must be real and meaningful.

   - Randy Alcorn ; If God is Good


The answer to the problem of evil and suffering is not a philosophy, but a Person; not words, but the Word.

   - Randy Alcorn ; If God is Good: Faith in the Midst of Suffering and Evil


Unless we wrestle with this question of pain and suffering, we not only cut ourselves off from understanding the central Christian mystery; we trivialize the gospel which meets the world at its point of deepest need.

   - N.T Wright ; Mark for Everyone


If a good God made the world, why has it gone wrong?

   - C.S. Lewis ; Mere Christianity


To this day, people struggle to know who God is and what He’s like. We can point to Jesus Christ and say, "Get to know Him, and you will know God."

   - Charles R. Swindoll ; Insights on John


The Word became the human being we know as Jesus. That’s the theme of this gospel: if you want to know who the true God is, look long and hard at Jesus.

   - N.T. Wright ; John for Everyone


Now about your love for one another we do not need to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love each other.

   - Paul the Apostle ; 1Thessalonians 4.9


The glory of the Son was that He was God walking among men. Here was a man acting like God in the midst of sinful men, and this was the wonder of it all.

   - A.W. Tozer ; And He Dwelt Among Us


Very truly I tell you, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go." Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God. Then he said to him, "Follow me!"

   - Jesus ; John 21.18, 19


He told them another parable: "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his field. 32 Though it is the smallest of all seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds come and perch in its branches." He told them still another parable: "The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into about sixty pounds of flour until it worked all through the dough."

   - Jesus ; Matthew 13.31-33


A reporter asked Mother Teresa, "When a baby dies alone in a Calcutta alley, where is God?" Her response? "God is there, suffering with that baby. The question really is where are you?"

   - John G. Stackhouse Jr. ; Can God Be Trusted?


I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings . . .

   - Paul ; Philippians 3.10


Those who follow Christ will likewise have to "bear the cross" on behalf of others.

   - Gordon D. Fee ; Commentary on Philippians


To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.

   - Peter ; 1 Peter 2.21


It's one of the oldest tricks in the book. The enemy comes and screws things up and then influences people to blame God for it . . . "Look what God is doing. What kind of sick God, what kind of Machiavellian tyrant would cause your child to die at such a young age? What kind of God would be causing all these disasters?" . . . There is an Accuser and the main one he accuses is God. His primary goal is character assassination.

   - Dr. Gregory Boyd ; An Enemy Has Done This


For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.

   - Jesus ; Luke 9.24


The overwhelming evidence suggests that the followers of Jesus were pacifists for the first three centuries. Many early church leaders and documents underscore the unwavering commitment to nonviolence.

   - Charles Kimball ; When Religion Becomes Evil


Then he said to them all: "Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me."

   - Jesus ; Luke 9.23


With that, one of Jesus’ companions reached for his sword, drew it out and struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his ear. "Put your sword back in its place," Jesus said to him, "for all who draw the sword will die by the sword.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 26.51,52


My feelings as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter [Warrior].

   - Adolf Hitler ; Speech from April 12, 1922 and published in My New Order


It makes no difference whether you put a man to death by word, or rather by sword, since it is the act of putting to death itself which is prohibited.

   - Arnobius ; Against the Heathen


It is better to suffer wrong than to inflict it.

   - Arnobius ; Adversus Gentes


You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you. You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5.38-48


And to those who inquire of us whence we come, or who is our founder we reply that we are come, agreeably to the counsels of Jesus, to cut down our hostile and insolent wordy swords into ploughshares, and to convert into pruning-hooks the spears formerly employed in war. For we no longer take up sword against nation, nor do we learn war any more, having become children of peace, for the sake of Jesus, who is our leader.

   - Origen of Alexandria (185-254 AD) ; Against Celsus


And shall the son of peace take part in the battle when it does not become him even to sue at law? And shall he apply the chain, and the prison, and the torture, and the punishment, who is not the avenger even of his own wrongs?

   - Tertullian (160-225 AD) ; The Chaplet


For we no longer take up sword against nation, nor do we learn war any more, having become children of peace, for the sake of Jesus, who is our leader.

   - Origen of Alexandria (185-254 AD) ; Against Celsus


No one . . . who has not heard what is related of him who is called "devil," and his "angels," and what he was before he became a devil, and how he became such, and what was the cause of the simultaneous apostasy of those who are termed his angels, will be able to ascertain the origin of evils.

   - Origen ; First Principles


"I freely admit that real Christianity . . . goes much nearer to Dualism than people think . . . The difference is that Christianity thinks this Dark Power was created by God, and was good when he was created, and went wrong. Christianity agrees with Dualism that this universe is at war. But it does not think this is a war between independent powers. It thinks it is a civil war, a rebellion, and that we are living in a part of the universe occupied by the rebel."

   - C.S. Lewis ; Mere Christianity


Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.

   - Paul ; Philippians 2.3


Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

   - Paul ; Ephesians 5.21


Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

   - Paul ; Ephesians 4.32


Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.

   - Paul ; Ephesians 4.2


Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.

   - Paul ; Galatians 6.2


Now Thomas (also known as Didymus ), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord!" But he said to them, "Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe." A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!" Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe." Thomas said to him, "My Lord and my God!" Then Jesus told him, "Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed." Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

   - John ; John 20.24-31


Serve one another humbly in love.

   - Paul ; Galatians 5.13


"A society’s moral progress is best judged by its treatment of animals."    - Gandhi ; The Moral Basis of Vegetarianism


Mercy triumphs over judgment.

   - James ; James 2.13


"The righteous care for the needs of their animals . . ."    - Solomon ; Proverbs 12.10


Amos delivered a devastating diatribe against the nation's distorted panacea of the cult—the opium of the masses. For him, as for many of the other classical prophets, cultic zeal could neither engender public wealth nor atone for infringements upon moral law. Ritual can never be a surrogate for ethics. God desires devotion, not devotions, right more than rite. When the cult became a substitute for moral behavior, it was severely denounced and condemned.

   - Shalom M. Paul ; Amos


Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.

   - Paul ; Romans 15.7


Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister.

   - Paul ; Romans 14.13


I want my spirituality to rid me of hate, not give me reason for it.

   - Donald Miller ; Blue Like Jazz


Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not think you are superior.

   - Paul ; Romans 12.16


Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.

   - Paul ; Romans 12.10


Love first, ask questions later.

   - Jeremy Courtney ; Preemptive Love


This I command you, that you love one another.

   - Jesus ; John 15.17


A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.

   - Jesus ; John 13.34


You don't have to legitimize somebody's lifestyle to love that person, to be brother or sister to that person, and to stand up for that person.

   - Tony Campolo ; Lord Save Us From Your Followers; 2006


Salt is good; but if the salt becomes unsalty, with what will you make it salty again? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with one another.

   - Jesus ; Mark 9.50


Jesus died the loneliest death ever witnessed on the planet. His death was not the result of physical torture, extreme as it was, but emotional heart break or dark depression. It was not a mechanical execution like a lamb being sacrificed, but the total destruction of an emotional being by insecure sinners who were threatened by His love for them.

   - Ian Hartley ; The Systematic Rejection of Jesus Christ


Just to be free from the Nazi's, that did not remove the pain they had inflicted upon on me. There must be another way for survivors to heal themselves. I have found another way, forgive your worst enemy. Getting even has never healed as single person. This forgiveness must have no preconditions, no prerequisites that must first be met on the part of the perpetrators. This would make the victims victims for the rest of their lives.

   - Eva Mozes Kor (Holocaust Survivor / One of Mengele's Twins) ; Forgiving Dr. Mengele


For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.

   - Paul ; 1Thessalonians 5.9


It is appalling that the most segregated hour of Christian America is eleven o'clock on Sunday morning, the same hour when many are standing to sing: 'In Christ There Is No East Nor West.'

   - Martin Luther King, Jr. ; Stride Toward Freedom: The Montgomery Story


Everyone who forgives someone bears the other’s sins. On the Cross we see God doing visibly and cosmically what every human being must do to forgive someone, though on an infinitely greater scale.

   - Tim Keller ; Reason For God


God created things which had free will. That means creatures which can go either wrong or right. Some people think they can imagine a creature which was free but had no possibility of going wrong; I cannot. If a thing is free to be good it is also free to be bad. And free will is what has made evil possible. Why, then, did God give them free will? Because free will, though it makes evil possible, is also the only thing that makes possible any love or goodness or joy worth having.

   - C.S. Lewis ; Mere Christianity


Do not judge, and you will not be judged.

   - Jesus ; Luke 6.37


"But the one thing we can all agree on, all faiths, all ideologies, is that God is with the vulnerable and the poor. God is in the slums, in the cardboard boxes where the poor play house. God is in the silence of a mother who has infected her child with a virus that will end both their lives. God is in the cries heard under the rubble of war. God is in the debris of wasted opportunity and lives. And God is with us if we are with them."

   - Bono ; Keynote Address at the 54th National Prayer Breakfast; February 2, 2006


"Stop asking God to bless what you are doing and get involved in what God is already doing, because it's already blessed."

   - Bono ; Keynote Address at the 54th National Prayer Breakfast; February 2, 2006


"If they would call themselves Christ-likes instead of Christians, maybe it would remind them to act like Jesus."

   - Bill Maher ; Fox News, The O'Reilly Factor, September 26,2006


"For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven."

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5:20


"It's not a coincidence that in in the Scriptures poverty is mentioned over 2100 times. It's not an accident. That's a lot of air time."

   - Bono ; Keynote Address at the 54th National Prayer Breakfast; February 2, 2006


For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this.

   - Isaiah the seer ; Isaiah 9:6-7


And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased! Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!

   - Luke the physician ; Luke 2:13-14


Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted.

   - Isaiah the seer ; Isaiah 53:4


But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.

   - Isaiah the seer ; Isaiah 53:5


But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace.

   - Paul the Apostle ; Romans 11.6


Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; Remove the evil of your deeds from My sight. Cease to do evil, learn to do good; seek justice, reprove the ruthless, defend the orphan, plead for the widow.

   - Isaiah the seer ; Isaiah 1:16,17


I will heal their apostasy, I will love them freely, for My anger has turned away from them.

   - Hosea the prophet ; Hosea 14:4


Therefore, return to your God, Observe kindness and justice, And wait for your God continually.

   - Hosea the prophet ; Hosea 12:6


How can I give you up, O Ephraim? How can I surrender you, O Israel? How can I make you like Admah? How can I treat you like Zeboiim? My heart is turned over within Me, all My compassions are kindled. I will not execute My fierce anger; I will not destroy Ephraim again. For I am God and not man, the Holy One in your midst, and I will not come in wrath.

   - Hosea the prophet ; Hosea 11:8-9


I will betroth you to Me forever; Yes, I will betroth you to Me in righteousness and in justice, in lovingkindness and in compassion, and I will betroth you to Me in faithfulness. Then you will know the LORD.

   - Hosea the prophet ; Hosea 2:19,20


Long before he laid down earth’s foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love. Long, long ago he decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure he took in planning this!)

   - Paul the Apostle ; Ephesians 1:4-5, The Message


Do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.

   - Paul the Apostle ; Philippians 2:4


For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,

   - Paul the Apostle ; Philippians 1:29


Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ . . .

   - Paul the Apostle ; Philippians 1:27


And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment . . .

   - Paul the Apostle ; Philippians 1:9


For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

   - Paul the aposle ; Galatians 5:13


There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

   - Paul the aposle ; Galatians 3:26-29


A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another

   - Jesus ; John 13:34,35


On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.

   - Jesus ; John 14:20


In Him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.

   - Paul the apostle ; Ephesians 1:7-8 (emphasis added)


You did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, "Abba, Father."

   - Paul the apostle ; Romans 8:15


Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom

   - Luke the physician ; Luke 12:32


Go and learn what this means: "I desire mercy, not sacrifice." For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.

   - Matthew the apostle ; Matthew 9:13


The Lord your God is with you . . . He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.

   - Zephaniah the prophet ; Zephaniah 3:17


I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you

   - John the beloved ; John 15:15


How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are.

   - John the beloved ; 1 John 3:1


Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me . . . I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.

   - Jesus ; John 14:1-4


If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over.    - Jesus ; Matthew 18:15


God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope offered to us may be greatly encouraged.

   - Paul the apostle ; Hebrews 6:18


Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

   - Paul the apostle ; Philippians 4:6-7


We live by faith, not by sight.

   - Paul the Apostle ; 2 Corinthians 5:7


Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen!

   - Luke the physician ; Luke 24:5,6


Now before the Feast of the Passover, Jesus knowing that His hour had come that He would depart out of this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end [showing them the full extent of His love].

   - John the beloved ; John 13:1, NASB & NIV.


But the fruit of the Spirit is Goodness [i.e. Agathosune-the act of generous giving.]

   - Paul the apostle ; Galatians 5:22-23


Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God.

   - Jesus ; John 14:1


But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.

   - Paul the apostle ; Romans 8:23


When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

   - Jesus ; John 8:12


Jesus answered, "The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent."

   - Jesus ; John 6:29


We ought always to thank God for you, brothers, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more, and the love every one of you has for each other is increasing.

   - Paul the apostle ; 2 Thessalonians 1:3


For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you?

   - Paul the apostle ; 1 Thessalonians 2:19


"For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him."    - Jesus ; John 3:17


When tempted, no one should say, "God is tempting me." For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone.

   - James the servant ; James 1:13


Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.

   - Paul the apostle ; Philippians 2.4


My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak.

   - James the servant ; James 1:19


The one who knows much says little.

   - Solomon the wise ; Proverbs 17.27


"For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel." The child's father and mother marveled at what was said about him. Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: "This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too."

   - Luke the physician ; Luke 2:30-35


And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.

   - Luke the physician ; Luke 1:76-79


Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

   - Paul the apostle ; 1 Thessalonians 4.17


The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel—which means, God with us.

   - Mathew the apostle ; Matthew 1:23


Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love.

   - Jesus ; John 15:9


Jesus said to them, "If God were your Father, you would love . . .

   - Jesus ; John 8:42


Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.

   - Paul the apostle ; 1 Timothy 6:17-19


Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."

   - John the Beloved ; John 14:6


Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teachings. It is good for our hearts to be strengthened by grace, not by ceremonial foods, which are of no value to those who eat them.

   - Paul the Apostle ; Hebrews 13:9


God so loved the world that he gave . . .

   - John the beloved ; John 3:16


But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ.

   - Paul the apostle ; Ephesians 2:4,5


And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.

   - John the beloved ; 1 John 4:16


No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made manifest in us.

   - John the beloved ; I John 4:12


Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: "Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down."

   - John the Beloved ; Revelation 12:10


Then the LORD raised up judges, who saved them out of the hands of these raiders . . . 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.

   - Samuel the prophet ; Joshua 2:16,18


But earnestly desire the greater gifts. And I show you a still more excellent way.

   - Paul the Apostle ; 1 Corinthians 12:31


For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

   - Paul the Apostle ; Galatians 5:13


"This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth."    - Paul the Apostle ; 1 Timothy 2:3-4


Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. The LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.

   - Moses the friend of God ; Genesis 6:5


"And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem and men of Judah, Judge between Me and My vineyard. What more was there to do for My vineyard that I have not done in it? Why, when I expected it to produce good grapes did it produce worthless ones? So now let Me tell you what I am going to do to My vineyard..."

   - God ; Isaiah 5:3-5


So He told them this parable, saying, "What man among you, if he has a hundred sheep and has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open pasture and go after the one which is lost until he finds it?"

   - Jesus ; Luke 15:3-4


"Treat others the same way you want them to treat you. "

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:31


"Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not

whither he goeth...I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness."

   - John the Beloved ; John 12:35, 46, KJV


"As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world."

   - Jesus ; John 9:5, KJV


"In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world."

   - John, the Beloved ; John 1:4-9, KJV


"If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same."

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:33


"Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Do not judge… do not condemn… pardon… give…"

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:36-38


"But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men."

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:35


"If you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners in order to receive back the same amount."

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:34


"Whoever hits you on the cheek, offer him the other also; and whoever takes away your coat, do not withhold your shirt from him either."

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:29


"Bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you."

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:28


"But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you."

   - Jesus ; Luke 6:27


If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.

   - Paul the Apostle ; 1 Corinthians 13:1-3


Jesus said to them, "If God were your Father, you would love . . ."

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 8:42


Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another . . .

   - Peter the Apostle ; 1 Peter 4:8


But the needy will not always be forgotten, nor the hope of the afflicted ever perish.    - David the psalmist ; Psalm 9:18


There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear has punishment. He who fears is not made perfect in love.

   - John the beloved ; I John 4:18


So that with good courage we say, "The Lord is my helper. I will not fear. What can man do to me?"

   - Paul the apostle ; Hebrews 13:6


For you didn’t receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption, by whom we cry, "Abba! Father!"

   - Paul the apostle ; Romans 8:15


Don’t you be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you. Yes, I will help you. Yes, I will uphold you with the right hand of my righteousness.

   - Isaiah the seer ; Isaiah 41:10


Don’t be afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it comes: for Yahweh will be your confidence, and will keep your foot from being taken.

   - David the psalmist ; Proverbs 3:25-26


He will cover you with his feathers. Under his wings you will take refuge. His faithfulness is your shield and rampart. You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, nor of the arrow that flies by day; nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, nor of the destruction that wastes at noonday. A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it will not come near you.

   - David the psalmist ; Psalms 91:4-7


Yahweh is my light and my salvation. Whom shall I fear? Yahweh is the strength of my life. Of whom shall I be afraid? When evildoers came at me to eat up my flesh, even my adversaries and my foes, they stumbled and fell. Though an army should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear. Though war should rise against me, even then I will be confident.

   - David the psalmist ; Psalms 27:1-3


Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me. Your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil. My cup runs over.

   - David the psalmist ; Psalms 23:4-5


"So if they don't trust you and aren't convinced by the first sign, the second sign should do it. But if it doesn't, if even after these two signs they don't trust you and listen to your message, take some water out of the Nile and pour it out on the dry land; the Nile water that you pour out will turn to blood when it hits the ground."

   - God ; Exodus 4.8, The Message


Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.

   - Paul the Apostle ; Hebrews 10:22-23


Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.

   - Peter the Apostle ; 1 Peter 1:3


"And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, 'Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.'"    - John the beloved ; Revelation 21:3-4


"For he has not despised or disdained the suffering of the afflicted one; he has not hidden his face from him but has listened to his cry for help."    - David, the psalmist ; Psalm 22:24


Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

   - Peter the Apostle ; 1 Peter 5:6, 7


Fear thou not; for I am with thee; be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.

   - Isaiah the seer ; Isaiah 41:10


"He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds."    - David the psalmist ; Psalm 147:3


Because of the tender mercy of our God, With which the Sunrise from on high will visit us, TO SHINE UPON THOSE WHO SIT IN DARKNESS AND THE SHADOW OF DEATH, To guide our feet into the way of peace.

   - Luke the physician ; Luke 1:78,79


For my eyes have seen Your salvation, Which You have prepared in the presence of all peoples, A LIGHT OF REVELATION TO THE GENTILES, And the glory of Your people Israel.

   - Luke the physician ; Luke 2:30-32


You didn’t choose me, remember; I chose you, and put you in the world to bear fruit, fruit that won’t spoil. As fruit bearers, whatever you ask the Father in relation to me, he gives you. But remember the root command: Love one another.

   - John the beloved ; John 15.16-17, The Message


This is the very best way to love. Put your life on the line for your friends.

   - John the beloved ; John 15.13, The Message


"Then I will make up to you for the years that the swarming locust has eaten . . ."    - Joel the prophet ; Joel 2.25


Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God [and His Other-centered love] leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life.

   - Paul the apostle ; Romans 8:6, The Message


BEHOLD, THE VIRGIN SHALL BE WITH CHILD AND SHALL BEAR A SON, AND THEY SHALL CALL HIS NAME IMMANUEL, which translated means, GOD WITH US.

   - Matthew the disciple ; Matthew 1.23


And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.

   - Paul the apostle ; Hebrews 2.15


For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

   - Paul the apostle ; 2 Timothy 1.7


Let all that you do be done in love.

   - Paul the apostle ; 1 Corinthians 16.14


I have made Your name [character] known to them, and will make it known, so that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.

   - Jesus ; John 17.26


Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love.

   - Jesus ; John 15.9


Who is a God like You, who pardons iniquity and passes over the rebellious act of the remnant of His possession? He does not retain His anger forever, because He delights in unchanging love.

   - Micah the prophet ; Micah 7.18, REB


By this time you ought to be teachers, but instead you need someone to teach you the ABC’s of God’s oracles over again. It comes to this: you need milk instead of solid food. Anyone who lives on milk is still an infant, with no experience of what is right. Solid food is for adults, whose perceptions have been trained by long use to discriminate between good and evil. Let us stop discussing the rudiments of Christianity. We ought not to be laying the foundation all over again: repentance from the deadness of our former ways and faith in God, by means of instruction about cleansing rites and the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgement. Instead, let us advance towards maturity.

   - Paul the apostle ; Hebrews 5:12-6:1, REB


He won’t walk over anyone’s feelings, won’t push you into a corner. Before you know it, his justice will triumph; the mere sound of his name will signal hope, even among far-off unbelievers.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 12.20-21, The Message


PRAISE THE Lord! (Hallelujah!) O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever!

   - The Psalmist ; Psalms 106.1, AMP


Still, when God saw the trouble they were in and heard their cries for help, He remembered his Covenant with them, and, immense with love, took them by the hand. He poured out his mercy on them while their captors looked on, amazed.

   - The Psalmist ; Psalms 106.44-46, The Message


Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast for me; and neither eat nor drink for three days, night or day. I also and my maids will fast as you do. Then I will go to the king, though it is against the law; and if I perish, I perish.

   - Esther the Queen ; Esther 4:16


Formerly you yourselves were alienated from God, his enemies in heart and mind, as your evil deeds showed. But now by Christ’s death in his body of flesh and blood God has reconciled you to himself, so that he may bring you into his own presence, holy and without blame or blemish.

   - Paul the apostle ; Colossians 1:21, REB


Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. If a man would offer all the goods of his house for love, he would be utterly scorned and despised.

   - Solomon the lover ; Song of Songs 8:7, AMP


And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself.

   - Daniel the seer ; Daniel 9:26


He died without a thought for his own welfare.

   - Isaiah the seer ; Isaiah 53:8, The Message


Instead of claiming to know what GOD says, ask questions of one another, such as ‘How do we understand GOD in this?’ But don’t go around pretending to know it all, saying ‘God told me this . . . God told me that. . . .’ I don’t want to hear it anymore. Only the person I authorize speaks for me. Otherwise, my Message gets twisted, the Message of the living GOD . . .

   - Jeremiah the Prophet ; Jeremiah 23:35-36, The Message


When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions, having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Colossians 2:13-14


And the Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to tend and guard and keep it.

   - Moses, God's friend ; Genesis 2:15, The Amplified Bible


I live my life by believing in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Galatians 2:20


Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails . . . now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known. But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love. Pursue love.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 1 Corinthians 13:4-14:1


My response is to get down on my knees before the Father, this magnificent Father who parcels out all heaven and earth. I ask him to strengthen you by his Spirit—not a brute strength but a glorious inner strength—that Christ will live in you as you open the door and invite him in. And I ask him that with both feet planted firmly on love, you'll be able to take in with all followers of Jesus the extravagant dimensions of Christ's love. Reach out and experience the breadth! Test its length! Plumb the depths! Rise to the heights! Live full lives, full in the fullness of God.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Ephesians 3:14-19 (The Message)


Love does not take into account a wrong suffered.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 1 Corinthians 13:5


Love is patient and is still kind, love is not jealous.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 1 Corinthians 13:4


Love . . . does not seek its own.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 1 Corinthians 13:5


So Jacob served seven years for Rachel and they seemed to him but a few days because of his love for her.; Beloved, with the Lord . . . a thousand years is like one day.

   - Moses & Peter ; Genesis 29:20;2 Peter 3:8


We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 4:16


Christ died for the ungodly.

   - Jesus ; Romans 5:6


Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5:11-12


Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5:10


Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5:4


Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 5:8


No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 4:12


Beloved, I am not writing a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard. On the other hand, I am writing a new commandment to you, which is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true Light is already shining. The one who says he is in the Light and yet hates his brother is in the darkness until now. The one who loves his brother abides in the Light . . .

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 2:7-10


This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all . . . if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 1:5-7


And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much better than the angels, as He has inherited a more excellent name than they.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Hebrews 1:3-4


The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: 'God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.' But the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, 'God, be merciful to me, the sinner!' I tell you, this man went to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.

   - Jesus ; Luke 18:11-14


And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Philippians 1:9-10


Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Ephesians 5:1-2


Let no one keep defrauding you of your prize by delighting in self-abasement and the worship of the angels, taking his stand on visions he has seen, inflated without cause by his fleshly mind, and not holding fast to the head, from whom the entire body, being supplied and held together by the joints and ligaments, grows with a growth which is from God. If you have died with Christ to the elementary principles of the world, why, as if you were living in the world, do you submit yourself to decrees, such as, 'Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch!' (which all refer to things destined to perish with use)-- in accordance with the commandments and teachings of men? These are matters which have, to be sure, the appearance of wisdom in self-made religion and self-abasement and severe treatment of the body, but are of no value against fleshly indulgence.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Colossians 2:18-23


So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Colossians 3:12-13


Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Ephesians 4:32


Listen, O heavens, and hear, O earth; For the LORD speaks, 'Sons I have reared and brought up, But they have revolted against Me. An ox knows its owner, And a donkey its master's manger, But Israel does not know [me], My people do not understand [me].'

   - Isaiah the Prophet ; Isaiah 1:2-3


For, I think, God has exhibited us apostles last of all, as men condemned to death; because we have become a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 1 Corinthians 4:9


Let me sing now for my well-beloved A song of my beloved concerning His vineyard. My well-beloved had a vineyard on a fertile hill. He dug it all around, removed its stones, And planted it with the choicest vine. And He built a tower in the middle of it And also hewed out a wine vat in it; Then He expected it to produce good grapes, But it produced only worthless ones. And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem and men of Judah, Judge between Me and My vineyard. What more was there to do for My vineyard that I have not done in it? Why, when I expected it to produce good grapes did it produce worthless ones?

   - Isaiah the Prophet ; Isaiah 5:1-4


They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, 'Know the LORD,' for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, declares the LORD, for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.

   - Jeremiah the Prophet ; Jeremiah 31:34


BLESSED ARE THOSE WHOSE LAWLESS DEEDS HAVE BEEN FORGIVEN, AND WHOSE SINS HAVE BEEN COVERED. BLESSED IS THE MAN WHOSE SIN THE LORD WILL NOT TAKE INTO ACCOUNT.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Romans 4:7,8


Put me like a seal over your heart, Like a seal on your arm. For love is as strong as death, Jealousy is as severe as Sheol; Its flashes are flashes of fire, The very flame of the LORD. Many waters cannot quench love, Nor will rivers overflow it;

   - Solomon the Wise ; Song of Solomon 8:6-7


If someone says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 4:20


So that, as sin reigned . . . even so grace would reign . . . .

   - The Apostle Paul ; Romans 5:21


No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 4:12


The LORD appeared to him from afar, saying, "I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness."

   - Jeremiah the Prophet ; Jeremiah 31:3


And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, "AND ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS RECKONED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS," and he was called the friend of God.

   - James the Apostle ; James 2:23


But you, Israel, My servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, descendant of Abraham My friend.

   - Isaiah the Prophet ; Isaiah 41:8


The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

   - John the Beloved ; 1 John 4:8


Because lawlessness is increased, most people's love will grow cold. But the one [whose love] endures to the end, he will be saved.

   - The Apostle Matthew ; Matthew 24:12-13


Pray, then, in this way: Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven.

   - Jesus ; Matthew 6:9-10


The heavens are the heavens of the LORD, But the earth He has given to the sons of men.

   - King David ; Psalm 115:16


Again I saw that under the sun the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor bread to the wise, nor riches to the intelligent, nor favor to those with knowledge, but time and chance happen to them all.

   - Solomon the Wise ; Ecclesiastes 9:11


The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,

   - The Apostle Paul ; Romans 5:20


Nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him . . .

   - Jesus ; Matthew 11:27


If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 2 Timothy 2:13


But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved).

   - The Apostle Paul ; Ephesians 2:4-5


For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Romans 5:6-8


I am under obligation both to Greeks and to barbarians, both to the wise and to the foolish. So, for my part, I am eager to preach the gospel to you also who are in Rome. For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, 'BUT THE RIGHTEOUS man SHALL LIVE BY FAITH.'

   - The Apostle Paul ; Romans 1:14-17


For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 1 Corinthians 2:2


When His disciples James and John saw this, they said, 'Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them?' But He turned and rebuked them, and said, 'You do not know what kind of spirit you are of; for the Son of Man did not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them.'

   - Luke the Physician ; Luke 9:54-56


Put me like a seal over your heart, Like a seal on your arm. For love is as strong as death, Jealousy is as severe as Sheol; Its flashes are flashes of fire, The very flame of the LORD. Many waters cannot quench love, Nor will rivers overflow it.

   - Solomon the Wise ; Song of Solomon 8:6-7


The LORD appeared to him from afar, saying, 'I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness.

   - Jeremiah the Prophet ; Jeremiah 31:3


For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything, but faith which works by love.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Galatians 5:6


You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.

   - The Apostle James ; James 2:19


Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Ephesians 4:32.


For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Romans 5:10


Jesus said to him, ‘Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to know Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father.

   - Jesus ; John 14:9


"For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of believers."    - The Apostle Paul ; 1 Timothy 4:10


For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things.

   - The Apostle John ; 1 John 3:20


But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, Hope unswervingly, Love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 1 Corinthians 13:13, The Message


". . . For he who touches you, touches the apple of His eye."    - Zechariah the Prophet ; Zechariah 2:8


Put me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm. For love is as strong as death, jealousy is as severe as Sheol; Its flashes are flashes of fire, the very flame of the LORD. Many waters cannot quench love, nor will rivers overflow it; if a man were to give all the riches of his house for love, it would be utterly despised.

   - Solomon the Wise ; Song of Solomon 8:6-7


So that the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known through the church to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly places.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Ephesians 3:10


In him we have redemption by his blood, the forgiveness of transgressions, in accord with the riches of his grace that he lavished upon us.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Ephesians 1:7-8


When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions.

   - The Apostle Paul ; Colossians 2:13


He died for all that those who live should no longer live for themselves.

   - The Apostle Paul ; 2 Corinthians 5:15


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