I continue to be amazed at Stott’s capacity to get straight to the heart of a complex matter. We don’t hear much about Marx these days, but this issue has never been more alive and well, as the state assumes more and more power over our lives–and we submit ourselves willingly. Only God gives human beings any intrinsic value. The State is only interested in what we can contribute, to the collective, and ultimately to its masters.
“The basic question. The nature of man (i.e. what it means to be human) is arguably the basic political issue of the twentieth century [and 21st!]. It is certainly one of the chief points of conflict between Marx and Jesus, and therefore between the East and the West, namely whether human beings have any absolute value because of which they must be respected, or whether their value is only relative to the community, for the sake of which they may be exploited. More simply, are the people the servants of the institution, or is the institution the servant of the people? — John R.W. Stott