The Judas Economy
John C. Rankin (April 10, 2014)
The Judas economy involves three elements:
- People are taxed more in the name of the poor.
- Self-aggrandizing elitists are for hire in service to demonic purposes; and
- The suicide of the culture follows.
This is descriptive our our current economic nose dive. What are the parallels?
- In John 12:1-8, Mary pours perfume on Jesus’s feet as an act of devotion, worth about a year’s wages (e.g. today $50,000). Judas objects, complaining that the money could have been given to the poor, but this is a pretense where he does not really care for the poor. Rather, Judas is “a thief” and “keeper of the money bag” who “taking the things carried in it.”
- Mary is other-focused, whereas Judas is self-focused. He is a self-aggrandizing solipsist and embezzler who views the “common purse” as his own. Namely, he thinks the world revolves around him enough so much so that he betrays Jesus to the chief priests for a price, in the name of the “common good,” and as prompted by the devil (John 13:2).
- After Jesus is betrayed, Judas “tossed the pieces of silver into the temple and left. Then, going away he hanged himself.” (Matthew 27:5). As his rotting body slips the noose following his suicide, we read in Acts 1:18: “([Judas] bought a field out of the reward of unrighteousness; there he fell headlong, and burst apart in the middle and all his bowels poured out of him”). The money Judas is paid is 30 pieces of silver (Matthew 26:14-16), worth about four month’s wages (e.g. today $200,000). Since it is blood money unsuitable to return to the treasury, the chief priests use it to buy a field to bury foreigners (Matthew 27:7-10). It is called the “Field of Blood,” and thus, four times the coveted money of Judas’s embezzling purpose ends up serving the poor and dispossessed aliens – redeeming his wicked aims apart from his own intent.
Thus, in the true parable of the betrayer of Jesus, we see the same seeds of economic destruction bearing ugly fruit in the culture today. The root of economic evil lies in self-aggrandizing political elitists who always want more taxes, they justify it in the name of the poor and the children, et al., but for their own fiefdom purposes, but where the poor and the children suffer increasingly as a result, and more and more of the middle class slip into poverty as well. Economic suicide eventually comes to pass, and the question for Christians is how we seek to proactively redeem such evil with biblical economics.
The book jacket from The Judas Economy: And What to Do About It (see johnrankinbooks.com) puts it this way:
Trust is necessary for a healthy social order, and it is first rooted in the biblical order of creation where the defining social institution is man and woman in faithful marriage. And we each first experience trust at our mother’s breast.
The Greek term for “the rule of the household” is oikonomos, the root for our word “economics.” It comes from the oikos, the family unit, and when a husband is faithful to his wife and children, the greatest economic prosperity is possible.
Money is an exchange of trust, and the devil’s original sin includes the breaking of trust in economic relationships. Thus the devil breaks trust between Adam and Eve, and this broken trust equals broken economics.
Broken trust leads to Sodom and Gomorrah, where sexual anarchy leads to social anarchy and the trampling of the poor and needy.
Judas is a disciple of the devil who 1) objects to Mary Magdalene pouring expensive nard on the feet of Jesus; 2) saying the money should be given to the poor instead; 3) but does not care for the poor and is already a thief who steals from the common purse of the disciples of Jesus; 4) betrays Jesus for money; 5) is later remorseful but unrepentant in his deadened spirit, and thus 6) kills himself.
Analogically, in the Judas economy: 1) the disciples of Judas object to the freedom of people to spend their own money as they see fit, especially in devotion to the Gospel; 2) in the stated concern for the poor, the children, the infirm, the dispossessed et al.; 3) instead controlling the public purse that redistributes other people’s money for their own personal power and enrichment; 4) selling out the biblical foundation for unalienable rights given by the Creator; 5) resulting in a darkened human spirit among such elitists, and 6) thus the inevitable descent into political and cultural suicide.