In our society, corruption is one of the scourges. Corruption is one of the scourges of our society, but it is not new. There are many references to it written thousands of years ago.
Examples of bribery and corruption are in the Bible, quotes and verses.
The phenomenon of corruption does not understand either region or political acronyms. Scandals have occurred in all communities and all parties.
Wherever there has been power there has been corruption.
Now, the impact of the latest and most serious scandals on citizens has been greater than ever and has placed corruption as the second concern of Spaniards, only behind unemployment, according to the latest CIS barometer.
It is a subject so topical and, at the same time, so old
But corruption, despite the enormous scale of the cases that make the headlines, is almost as old as life itself. There have been such cases for thousands of years and even then the perpetrators were reprimanded, although not always easily.
The Bible shows this and, above all, condemns these practices, which are widespread throughout history and the world.
The Bible shows, both in the Old and New Testaments, how the “righteous” had to fight against bribery, fraud and theft of what was collected from those who had to pay their taxes.
All as if time had not passed…
To corrupt oneself for Christianity is a grave sin because it is an aggression against one’s neighbor and also against the common good. Two of the Ten Commandments, although of a more general nature, include this type of action.
We are speaking specifically of the one that says: “thou shalt not covet the goods of others” and the one that affirms that “thou shalt not steal”.
Next to them, the Bible abounds in very explicit allusions to corruption very similar to the one destroying Spain and in which the path to be followed by the “righteous” is marked.
Old Testament Corruption Quotes
In the eighth century B.C., Isaiah asserted:
“Those who walk righteously and speak what is right, who reject gain from extortion and keep their hands from accepting bribes, who stop their ears against plots of murder and shut their eyes against contemplating evil they are the ones who will dwell on the heights, whose refuge will be the mountain fortress. Their bread will be supplied and water will not fail them.” (Is. 33:15-16).
Book of Leviticus
For its part, the Book of Leviticus, which is part of the books that make up the Pentateuch and was written some 1,500 years before Christ, also quotes:
“Do not steal. Do not lie. Do not deceive one another.” (Lev 19:11).
It also states:
“Do not use dishonest standards when measuring length, weight or quantity” (Lev 19:35).
Also, Deuteronomy, included in another of the great books of the Old Testament, presents clear references:
“Do not pervert justice or show partiality. Do not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and twists the words of the innocent” (Dt, 16:19).
Elsewhere, he writes that:
“Cursed is anyone who accepts a bribe to kill an innocent person” (Dt 27:25).
The book of Psalms contains several references to this plague.
“No one who practices deceit will dwell in my house; no one who speaks falsely will stand in my presence.” (Ps 101:7).
“in whose hands are wicked schemes, whose right hands are full of bribes.” (Ps 26:10).
Book of Samuel
Likewise, gifts are cited in the Book of Samuel as a bribe for obtaining favors:
“But his sons did not follow his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice.” (I Sam 8:3).
Faced with a questioned collective, the prophet Daniel sends a message.
“pronouncing unjust judgments, condemning the innocent and acquitting the guilty, though the Lord said, ‘You shall not put an innocent and righteous person to death.’” (Dc 13:53).
There are many other references among the books and prophets of the Old Testament that touch on these themes.
Corruption quotes New Testament
In the Gospels and among the apostles in their later letters, especially in St. Paul, references to bribery, extortion and fraud in general also occupy a prominent place. Possibly the clearest example is Zacchaeus, a tax collector who had benefited by defrauding his people even more and who sees Jesus passing through Jericho.
The conversion was immediate and the Gospel of Luke tells us that, being aware of what he had done until then, he was moved and said:
“I will give, Lord, to the poor half of my goods; and if in anything I have defrauded anyone, I will repay him four times over”.
Gospel of Luke
In Luke’s Gospel, there is also a passage about John the Baptist, to whom many came to be baptized and in the midst of whom, there were people who did not act according to the norms. The fragment reads:
“Some soldiers also asked him, “What should we do?” He answered them, “Do not extort money from any person, do not bring false accusations and be content with your wages.”
Gospel of Matthew
Similarly, it is recounted in Matthew that the chief priests “bribed” the sentries who guarded the tomb while Jesus was rising from the dead so that they would not tell the truth. In his letter to the Romans, St. Paul speaks of the importance of not evading taxes, a widespread practice at that time.
The apostle of the Gentiles points out to this community: “That is precisely why you pay taxes, for you are God’s officials, assiduously dedicated to that office. Owe no one anything except mutual love. For he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.”