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OPINION

The Gospel Revised by Caesar

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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Hallelujah!! Hallelujah, hallelujah, hallelujah, halle-eelujaaah!!

For the government omnipotent reigneth!

 

The kingdom of this world;

is become the kingdom of our Enlightened Leaders

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And they shall reign forever and ee-eever

And the angel said unto the shepherds: “Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day a great Leader, who shall establish social justice and virtuous living in the land, including 'free' healthcare, rationed energy and a limited supply of small-caliber ammunition with reduced capacity magazines.”

And the wise Leader taught many things. They asked him whether it was just to pay taxes and he said: “It’s Caesar’s image on the coin. Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's”

And lo, they understood not, so he explained: “You shall rely on Caesar to enforce obedience to God.”

“But,” they said, “we thought you said we owe some things to God and different things to Caesar.”

“Oh, fools!” he said. “Ye must petition Caesar to establish the kingdom here on earth! Ye are commanded to love one another and share one with another. Therefore, ye must ask Caesar to force all people to share of their substance. Only by invoking the command of the Roman legion can ye faithfully love and serve the poor!

“And thus shall ye show obedience to God by enlisting Caesar’s sword and tax collectors.”

And they scratched their heads, wondering: “This is a hard saying.”

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“But this is not all. I also urge you to live righteous, moral lives. Therefore, ye must petition Caesar to require all people to live righteous, moral lives.”

Then, some of the traditionalists and social conservatives were glad in their hearts, and brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and set her in the midst, saying: “Leader, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?”

And he answered: “How do ye mistake? Stoning is kind of harsh. Maybe Caesar could be a little gentler? Yea, we shall tax the kingdom to buy her free contraception and personal services with no co-pays!”

And those traditionalists and social conservatives went away sorrowing, because they did not want to buy the woman’s contraception and cover her co-pays. And they still did hope for Caesar to enforce the moral law and punish her sinful conduct.

“Yea,” they said, “Let us grab Caesar’s sword and swing it for our own agenda, that we may establish the kingdom here on earth.” And they grumbled that she also probably ingests mind-altering drugs. And they took counsel how they might ensnare her, to purify the people.

And the people watched these things and murmured: “All the leaders want to swing Caesar’s sword! Is there none to let us alone to make our choices and answer to our God?” And they scratched their heads and continued wondering.

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And the great Leader taught again: “Come, ye compassionate. Inherit the utopia prepared for you: For when I hungry, thirsty, and a stranger, ye gave me food and drink and took me in.”

And the people answered: “Leader, when saw we thee hungry, thirsty, or alone and we gave thee help?”

And he answered: “Verily, if ye have petitioned Caesar to offer public services, if ye support candidates who proclaim ‘compassion,’ if ye vote for higher taxes and more social spending, ye have trusted Caesar to do those things even unto me.”

And they were glad, for they had thought the commandment to love and serve others was a personal duty. But Caesar occupied their sphere of duty, and sent forth tax collectors in all the land to reach deeply and perpetually into all the people’s purses, because they were commanded to be compassionate.

But some of the people began to mourn and look forward, seeking that truth and liberty that should make them free.

Yea, brave men and women still seek.

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