But I say to you that listen, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. If anyone strikes you on the check, offer the other also, and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. Give to everyone who asks of you, and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again. Do to others as you would have them do to you. Luke 6:27-31
In short, whenever one would expect an exercise of power from a classical hero, Jesus displays the stunning powerlessness of nonviolence, nonresistance, forgiveness, mercy, compassion, generosity. The divinity that shows through Jesus consists not in a demonstration of might but in a complete reversal of our expectations culminating in the most stunning reversal of all. It is the centerpiece of all this madness, the one that makes as little sense as possible from the point of view of worldly common sense, the most divine madness of all: love your enemies. The key to the kingdom is to love those who do not love you, who hate you, and whom you, by worldly standards, should also hate. That is exactly the madness that a deconstruction analysis of love would predict. Loving the lovable is entirely possible, but loving the unlovable, those who are impossible to love, that is when the kingdom reigns. Loving the unlovable, the possibility of the impossible, that is the central symmetry that leads me to treat deconstruction as the hermeneutics of the kingdom of God.
Main Entry: her·me·neu·tic
Pronunciation: \ˌhər-mə-ˈnü-tik, -ˈnyü-\
1) the study of the methodological principles of interpretation (as of the Bible)
What would a political order look like if the last were first, if everything turned on lifting up the lowliest instead of letting relief trickle down from the top? What would it look like if there were a politics of loving one's enemies, not of war, let alone, God forbid, of preemptive war?
Would it not be in almost every respect the opposite of the politics that presently passes itself off under the name of Jesus? Would it not mean to make everything turn on peace not war, forgiveness not retribution, on loving one's enemies not preemptive war, on all the paradoxes and reversals that can be summarized under the name of "kingdom"? Are not the figures who publicly parade their love of power and their fear of the other under the name of Jesus singled out in advance by Jesus under the name of the whitened sepulchers and long robes whose fathers killed the prophets?
A politics of the kingdom would be marked by madness of forgiveness, generosity, mercy, and hospitality. The dangerous memory of the crucified body of Jesus poses a threat to a world organized around the disastrous concept of power, something that is reflected today in the widespread critique of the concept of "sovereignty" - of the sovereignty of autonomous subjects and the sovereignty of nations powerful enough to get away with acting unilaterally and in their own self interests. The crucified body of Jesus proposes not that we keep theology out of politics but that we think theology otherwise, by way of another paradigm, another theology, requiring us to think of God otherwise, as a power of powerlessness, as opposed to the theology of omnipotence that underlies sovereignty. The call that issues from the crucified body of Jesus solicits our response, for it is we who have mountains to move by our faith and we who have enemies to move by our love. It is we who have to make the weakness of God stronger than the power of the world.