I don’t think Jesus would be blue or red. He probably would not even be in OWS (Occupy Wall Street). That does not mean he couldn’t spin a tale about OWS to describe what the kingdom of God is like. The unjust steward, wasn’t commended because he was just, but because he was wise enough to return money that he extorted as a middle man between absentee landlords and peasants, Jesus’ own program of Jubilee also required disciples to share their money too; this unjust steward who knew nothing of the kingdom of God, was shrewd enough to practice economic justice, in that sense, the children of darkness are wiser than the children of light. It is in that way, I can see comparing the kingdom to OWS, without commending the entire experiment. Jesus’s was subversive and often scandalous, he even compared himself to a thief who is breaking into the house of Satan and taking his goods! He wasn’t oppose to shocking people.

Jesus challenged his government–and they WERE a government set in charge by the larger Roman empire. He didn’t change policy by going to the ruling class and asking them to change (a democratic assumption).  He subverted their system, through speech-act, stories, healing, and preaching. He would purposely do things deemed taboo on the Sabbath day, instead of doing it on Friday or Monday. He constantly told stories that painted the “good guys” as the “bad guys” and the bad guys as the good guys. Why? For similar reasons to why David needed a parable to hear the truth. The rich and powerful have an innocent complex, they don’t like being challenged–especially from those beneath them; they don’t have ears to hear or eyes to see. Parables were ways of inviting them into the world, and compelling them, not only to listen but to enter a new world, and see their power for what it really was and to repent.

On one occasion he sent demons into pigs and that ran them off a cliff (Mark 5)(Jews weren’t suppose to have a farm of pigs). Mark, I believe puts a politic spin on that account, “my name is legion for we are many” would have been obviously, to a Mediterranean Jew (assuming he is writing to a community there; or Romans if he were in Rome), a reference to a Roman legion. Josephus mentions a Roman massacre of a Jewish resistance group in the sea of Galilee, perhaps Mark is casting into the teeth the irony that Jesus is sovereign over the oppressive Roman military, and will drive away military oppression (imagine, if Jesus was in Palestine today and asked the demon possessed man what his name was, and he responded “Army of One”–that would highly offend us and it should–Jesus isn’t pro the troops). So, the action with the swine and the unbinding of a man, were also reread with prophetic undertones for Mark’s readers.

His’ movement would have looked suspiciously like the zealot movement, or the sicarii, or some anti-Roman group, at first glance, would be Messiah’s were a dime a dozen, and were often crucified for their political views. Jesus’s movement was similar (he was among insurrectionists when put in prison–doing everything the legal avenue won’t end you up in prison), but he was bringing about the reign of God, through NOT killing Romans, but loving all men, and by calling Israel herself to repent of her nationalistic violence, in favor of his program, of justice for the poor, and care for those in the outer fringes, challenging others and retelling their stories in ways unimaginable to them. This is how God became king as in heaven even so on earth. That is the Jesus I believe the gospel shows us, and one that I think wouldn’t be “received by his own” either.