Jesus did not deal with sociology political economy, organic chemistry, or American geography—these subjects were out of his range. Instead, he addressed the evil in humanity and the people’s sufferings from a moral perspective, not from an economic or historical point of view.
When someone’s economic needs have been dealt with that he is finally living a comfortable life, is he already free from being haunted by the emptiness of life and the meaninglessness of his existence? When the question of the distribution of wealth is already addressed for all society, hence making everyone live in comfort (with no sense of urgent anxiety), the question of peace and contentment in the human soul remains. That people will experience enduring joy and contentment is not certain. The universal equality of wealth does not guarantee universal joy.
If we want to distinguish Jesus’ true intentions, we must study his life in his relation to his own times. The context in which he lived can tell us what Jesus was intentional about. Jesus was not a timeless religious teacher. His intention was not about having vague conversations about the philosophy of human generalities. He spoke about concrete conditions. He responded to the real-life issues that his generation was facing.
As Christ’s disciples, we must follow his example in the way he coped with the tendencies of his time, his relationship with others, and his repulsion of others. Jesus was compassionate for the lost and the sinners, yet the hypocrisy of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law repulsed him. Nevertheless, Jesus stood for the oppressed and the weak.