Us vs Them or We?
THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
WE the people of the United States, in order to form a more
perfect UNION, establish JUSTICE, insure domestic tranquility,
provide for the COMMON defense, promote the GENERAL welfare, and
secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity,
do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States
WE (Merriam-Webster) : I and the rest of a group that includes me: you and I: you and I and another or others: I and another or others not including you
UNION From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia – Union is the state of being united or joined.
Unity: the state of being united or joined as a whole. Unity is not “sameness” but “being complementary”.
JUSTICE From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia – Justice is the legal or philosophical theory by which fairness is administered.
COMMON (Merriam-Webster): of or relating to a community at large: public work for the common good
GENERAL (Merriam-Webster): involving, applicable to, or affecting the whole: not confined by specialization or careful limitation
Was our country founded as Us vs Them or We?
I originally came from a Christian background, so bear with me.
The Parable of the Good Samaritan (Analytical-Literal Translation)
Luk 10:25-37 And look! A certain lawyer stood up, testing Him and saying, “Teacher, [by] having done what, will I inherit eternal life?”
But He said to him, “What has been written in the Law? How do you read [it]?”
Then answering, he said, “‘You will love the LORD your God with your whole heart [fig., your entire inner self] and with your whole soul and with your whole strength and with your whole understanding,’ and ‘your neighbor as yourself.'” [Deut 6:5; Lev 19:18] See Below
Then He said to him, “You answered correctly. Do this and you will live.”
But that one wanting to be justifying himself [or, to be declaring himself righteous], said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
Then Jesus having taken up [the word] [fig., Jesus replying], said, “A certain man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho and encountered robbers, who having both stripped him and having inflicted wounds, they went away, having left [him] as it turned out half dead.
“Now by a coincidence, a certain priest was going down on that road, and having seen him, he passed by on the opposite side [of the road].
“Then likewise also a Levite having been at the place, having come and seen, passed by on the opposite side.
“But a certain Samaritan, being on a journey, came by him, and having seen him, he was moved with compassion.
“And having approached, he bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then having placed him on his own beast [of burden], he brought him to an inn and took care of him.
“And on the next day, when he departed, having taken out two denarii [i.e., two days’ wages], he gave [them] to the innkeeper and said to him, ‘Take care of him, and whatever you spend besides, in my coming again, _I_ will pay back to you.’
“So which of these three do you suppose to have become a neighbor of the one having fallen among the robbers?”
Then he said, “The one having done the mercy with him [fig., having shown him mercy].” Then Jesus said to him, “Be going, and _you_ be doing likewise.”
Did Jesus teach Us vs Them or We?
The relationship between Jews and Samaritans helps us understand the parable, so bear with me.
Jacob then demanded a blessing, and the being declared in Genesis 32:28 that, from then on, Jacob would be called יִשְׂרָאֵל, Israel (Yisra`el, meaning “one that struggled with the divine angel” (Josephus), “one who has prevailed with God” (Rashi), “a man seeing God” (Whiston), “he will rule as God” (Strong), or “a prince with God” (Morris), from Hebrew: שרה, “prevail”, “have power as a prince”). – Strong’s Concordance 3478, 8280.
In the Hebrew Bible, the term Israelites, also known as the Hebrews and the Twelve Tribes of Israel, refers to the direct descendants of any of the sons of the patriarch Jacob, or to the descendants of the people who are called Israel, and to a worshiper of the God of Israel, Yahweh. In the period of the divided monarchy it was only used to refer to the inhabitants of the northern Kingdom of Israel, and it is only extended to cover the people of the southern Kingdom of Judah in post-exilic usage. – Robert L.Cate, ‘Israelite’, in Watson E. Mills, Roger Aubrey Bullard, Mercer Dictionary of the Bible, Mercer University Press, 1990 p. 420.
Jewish – southern Kingdom of Judah Samaritan – northern Kingdom of Israel Both – Israelites
Both Jewish and Samaritan religious leaders taught that it was wrong to have any contact with the opposite group, and neither was to enter each other’s territories or even to speak to one another. During the New Testament period, the tensions were exploited by Roman authorities as they likewise had done between rival tribal factions elsewhere, and Josephus reports numerous violent confrontations between Jews and Samaritans throughout the first half of the first century. – Mark A. Powell, “Introducing the New Testament: A Historical, Literary, and Theological Survey” ‘Ch.01 The People of Palestine at the Time of Jesus’, Baker Academic, 2009.
From Above [Deut 6:5; Lev 19:18]
Deu 6:4-5 (The World English Bible) Hear, Israel: Yahweh is our God; Yahweh is ONE: and you shall love Yahweh your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might.
Lev 19:18 (The World English Bible) You shall not take vengeance, nor bear any grudge against the children of your people; but you shall love your neighbor as yourself. I am Yahweh.
Lev 19:33-34 (The World English Bible) If a stranger lives as a foreigner with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. The stranger who lives as a foreigner with you shall be to you as the native-born among you, and you shall love him as yourself; for you lived as foreigners in the land of Egypt. I am Yahweh your God.
Did Jewish Law teach Us vs Them or We?
Us vs Them leaves someone right and someone wrong; someone wins or someone loses. We tries for win-win.
Are you really happy when you beat someone or help someone?
Would you rather be right or would you rather be happy?
So I ask again; Us vs Them or We?