If you’ve read Brian McLaren’s books, Everything Must Change, The Secret Message of Jesus and A New Kind of Christianity, then you know that Brian McLaren is advocating a new global economy that is a ‘synthesis’ between the current Capitalist free market and Marxism. To the American ear this sounds just like Marxism. This has to do with the fact that when Americans hear about collectivist, centrally controlled economies where wealth is forcibly redistributed the ONLY thing that comes to the American mind is Red Bolshevik Marxism. In the American mind those Western European nations that are slipping deeper and deeper into collectivist redistributive economies are turning deeper and deeper shades of Red.
In the American Mind: Capitalism + Marxism = A Milder form of Red Communism
Why do Americans think this way? Well, because we fought the Cold War against the Red Soviet Union. We fought the Red North Koreans and the Red Chinese. We fought the Red Vietcong and the Red Santinistas. In the American mind there is only one existing color of socialist ideology that remains on planet Earth and that color is Red.
Those who think Brian McLaren is a Red Bolshevik Marxist are missing a VERY important yet somewhat subtle nuance in McLaren’s rhetoric and the ideology that he is promoting. I am challenging all of you to open your eyes and educate yourselves on this matter because correctly understanding what color of Socialist McLaren is will make all the difference in the world in your being able to correctly understand what he is promoting and what needs to be done to refute him and those he is working with.
Some Insight Regarding This Other Color of Socialism
The other color of Socialism is VERY difficult to define and scholars have only recently been able to pin down most of the common ideological themes in this other form of Socialism. One of the reasons why it has been difficult to pin these themes down is because this other color of Socialism is more than a political theory. In fact, it is truly a “Political Religion” and therefore must be studied theologically in order to correctly understand and analyze it. This “Political Religion” is overtly utopian and envisions a global state that will usher in the “Kingdom of God” on earth by achieving its social, political and economic objectives.
What are the social, political and economic objectives that McLaren is promoting in his understanding of the “Kingdom of God”? He doesn’t hide them. They can easily be summarized as:
security - an end to all war and religious violence
economic justice - a third way between capitalism and marxism (a Hegelian synthesis of the two)
social justice - an end to victimization by deconstructing individualism and the 'us vs. them' mentality found in many groups that 'exclude'. These will be replaced by 'inclusive communities', through a realized unity of plurality.
ecologically sustainable global prosperity - a completely "Green Global Economy" with an emphasis not only on limiting or eliminating fossil fuels but also strict regulation of human diets and health.
I’ve gleened these four objectives from McLaren’s books. In A New Kind of Christianity, McLaren chides all the world’s religions for not effectively handling these crises. Which means that in McLaren’s mind solving these crises is the job of religion. YET, all four of these objectives really are political objectives and not religious objectives. (and they certainly are not the objectives that Jesus laid out in the Great Commission)
So...ask yourself this question: Why does Brian McLaren believe these ‘political objectives’ are supposed to be solved by religion? (1)
The answer is shockingly simple. Brian McLaren is a follower of a heretical political utopian religion that has hijacked the Biblical term “Kingdom of God”. McLaren is an ideologue NOT a theologian and if you do your homework you will discover that what he is really promoting is the “other color of Socialism”.
Definitions of the Other Color of Socialism
One author defines this other color of Socialism as:
________ is religion of the state.
________ assumes the organic unity of the body politic and longs for a natural leader who is attuned to the will of the people.
________ is holistic in that it views everything as political and holds that any action by the state is justified in order to “achieve the common good.”
________ takes responsibility for all aspects of life, including our health and well-being and seeks to impose uniformity of thought and action through regulation and social pressure.
Everything including the economy and religion, must be aligned with its objectives. Any rival identity is part of the “problem” and therefore defined as the enemy.
Rousseau’s political philosophy beats in the heart of this other color of Socialism. He envisioned a ‘divinized community’ that wasn’t defined by ethnicity or geography or custom. Rather, would be bound together by the “collective will” which in turn would be enforced by an all powerful “God-State”.
Another author, back in 1993 defined the ideological heart of this other color of socialism as:
“the practical and violent resistance to transcendence. _______ spirituality is one of immanence. A mysticism of nature and community.... that would heal the alienation of modern life”
Violent resistance to transcendence??? That sounds EXACTLY like the Emergents and their Progressive cousins and their incessant attacks against God’s transcendent word and God’s transcendent moral laws and Christ’s return in glory to judge the living and the dead.
A mysticism of nature and community??? That sounds like it could have been written yesterday as a description of the general mystique of the Emergent milieu. But it was written 17 years ago as part of a definition of the other color of Socialism.
Why is McLaren waging war against the historic Christian faith? Answer: because he is a follower of a rival religion. His religion IS the other color of Socialism.
It’s time for you to wake up and understand what that other color of Socialism is and what it believes because its back and it has been waging war against historic Christianity for many years now and its currently winning because Christians haven't correctly understood what they are really fighting against.
1. See pages 252-259 in A New Kind of Christianity