So am I a communist?

Justice / Mercy. Those are such powerful words. Yet every fruitful nation has been built upon this word. You see a successful nation that has neither of this is really not successful, I will try explain what i mean.

I often come across comments on communism; comments that greatly discourage communism. Recently someone asked me if my articles are aimed at propagating communism. My very fast reaction was no, more like an auto pilot self-defense.

But then I later asked myself why I was so quick to say no because truth be told I do not know much about communism. The little I know or more like I have taken interest into is what I often hear in the media and perhaps my very vague history classes; of the way it brought Russia on its knees. Near home, communism or is it socialism has been attributed to the poverty one of the neighboring country faces; that the socialist policies they had have made them backwards.

What is communism?

So I decided to take a journey to discover for myself what communism is or is not. Very fast I discovered this is a very confusing path I was taking; you see the world seems to have all sorts of definition of communism. When I add socialism it will be even more confusing.

Communism is apparently a revolutionary socialist movement to create a classless, moneyless, and stateless social order structured upon common ownership of the means of production, as well as a social, political and economic ideology that aims at the establishment of this social order.

I liked this definition – “Communism says, ‘What is yours is mine; I’ll take it.’ Koinonia says, ‘What is mine is yours, I’ll share it.’”

Me got confused

I guess the words communism, socialism and capitalism are just big words for my simple mind. So me will simplify my world and just explain what I believe in.

What I am propagator of is justice; its mercy. It’s a nation that is concerned with the plight of the weak and poor.

I am therefore very much against the apathy; an apathy that can propagate for ignorance of the poor.

Some may call this capitalism; I honestly do not care what it is called. All I know is any sort of governance that creates a people that only bother with their own lives and are not in any way moved by the needy is to me a failure. It does not matter if it succeeds in creating the ‘richest’ nations on earth. As far as I am concerned these nations might as well be poor as the thread that holds them together could not be weaker.

My ideal society

The society I long for; the society I propagate for is the society I read so often on in the Word of God. The Acts 4 34 society “There were no needy persons among them”. Why were there no needy people? Were they such a rich society? No, the answer is this “For from time to time those who owned lands or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone as he had need.”

This was a society that recognized the futility of a few people owning all the lands and expecting to call it a just nation.

I am sometimes amazed at my country. I am amazed at the disparities. I am amazed at how one street of Nairobi can be so different from another. But I am more amazed at how ignorant I am of the other side of Nairobi that is needy. I am amazed at how easily I look away from it. What kind of a society am I? How can I even be a society if I only look at the half I want to see?

The communism fear

In reading some of the communism history, I see a lot of abuse of the ‘giving’ that the book of Acts talks about.

Many of the forefather nations were founded on the principles of giving for a long while until the generosity began to be abused; until it became a complication of governments forcefully taking all the people’s property in the name of ‘distributing it to the poor’. Remember Robinhood, that fancy movie? That was the life of many.

To make things worse, some of the injustices of forcefully taking people’s properties were propagated by the church. As a result there still are some very deep wounds in some nations over what the church represents.

The fear of giving was then born.

I get that fear. Truth be told my initial reaction to whether I propagate for communism still holds, I do not believe in communism. I do not believe in forced anything.

I believe one of the biggest things God gave me is choice. And that no one should mess around with that. In fact the word of God in 1 Timothy 5 3 foresees the potential abuse of giving and Paul’s directions were that the church must discern who the truly needy are (and the church is not some building, it is me, and you).

Infact, Paul later wrote, “if any would not work, neither should he eat,” 2 Thess 3:10; my giving should only be for those who are incapable of working. And this is an important point as this nation has very many who have been handicapped by giving, they got used to the handouts. They will not be seen to attempt to fed for themselves lest the handouts stop coming. I have no mercy for such.

Unscathed…we still have a chance

So I see and feel where the fears are coming from.

But me and my country must learn from this early church mistakes.

However we cannot afford to get entangled in the fears of a world that has already benefitted from giving. Many of these developed nations can now afford to fear giving; they already are many steps ahead due to the giving that was done before the fears set in.

We cannot afford to be a cold society that does not care about the poor and needy. We must allow ourselves to crawl and make our own mistakes but not be paralyzed by the mistakes of others. We must arise and live the Word of God in its purest form.

I must look and see

Whatever name or whatever form your giving takes, we must not stand by and just watch.

I recently went to a very poor village and I was astounded at how many tourists they get to come see their poverty, to see their different ways. We then pay some small monies and walk away having taken photos of places we hope to never live in. I hear it has a good name nowadays ‘slum tourism’, what is that about!

Are we so ignorant a society that we would much rather make the needy a tourist sport rather than work with them to better their lives? What is that about??? I get visiting these place but to be honest if we will not get moved by the poverty there enough to want to act then we have no business being even one mile near this villages.

That is what I mean when I say really really see. I pray I can see one of these days.

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3 comments

  1. Here’s to lower walls (the kind we erect for aesthetic not security purposes) and no ele-fences.That wud speak of a true Jubilee.Justice& mercy,Thanks for this inconvenient truth.

  2. You have a clear passion for justice and I love the idea of giving only those who cannot work.
    I also seek social equality or the availability of opportunities for people to get a good living. There are poor people who lack opportunities and there are others who are just not willing to work. The biggest challenge for a nation needs to be offering work opportunities that uphold dignity.
    I recently stumbled upon the idea of social businesses, where the bottom line is not just profits but also societal gain. With a small group of friends we decided to take up farming in Kuria, Narok county in Kenya as investors and got the farmers from the area to carry out all activities. The project is aimed at providing food to a children’s home, employment to the poor families around the area and the remaining profits are to be reinvested and done all over again. Our plan is to give once and let the farmers multiply our giving so that they sustain themselves; at only 21 thousand shillings per acre in total expenses, they are able to fetch upto 90 thousand shillings.
    The capital cost may not seem much to us but it is a great deal to these farmers, opening up such opportunities may be their breakthrough, I have no doubt that the middle class can get even more creative in their giving/sharing

  3. So enlightening! I especially like the comparison between communism and koinonia. We really do need to learn to share and not take from each other. That’s God’s idea of community….Acts 2:44-47 44All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved

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