1. Joined
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    14 Dec '12 02:10
    No economic system is perfect, and capitalism as well as socialism can both be exploited and misused. That said, I believe capitalism is inherently better than socialism. I would even say that capitalism is more Christian than socialism.

    I did not say that capitalism is Christian. The Bible contains no culturally transcendent economic model. For anyone to declare any economic system as biblical would be to engage in a form of idolatry. But I believe capitalism is more consistent with biblical principles, and therefore more Christian than socialism.

    Time and space will not allow me to discuss all the ways that I believe that capitalism is more Christian than socialism, but allow me to advance one idea: the dignity of the individual.

    The Bible makes it clear that every person has incredible worth in God's economy and, as a result, is endowed with great dignity. I believe it is capitalism that affords the individual with the best opportunity to realize his or her worth.

    In capitalism, and the accompanying free enterprise system, every person has the opportunity to become his or her best. Whatever a person inherently has can become more in capitalism. Talent, skill, intelligence and effort can all be parlayed into wealth creation given enough time and persistence.

    In capitalism, a person can earn his or her own way. While capitalism does not promise equal outcomes, it does offer equal opportunity and with opportunity anything is possible.

    With capitalism's emphasis on the individual, a person must rely on self and/or God in order to have his or her needs met. Socialism sees the state as sovereign. Consequently, a person comes to rely on the state to have his or her needs met.

    http://www.religiontoday.com/news/capitalisms-biblical-principles-11602703.html
  2. Donationrwingett
    Ming the Merciless
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    14 Dec '12 02:315 edits
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    No economic system is perfect, and capitalism as well as socialism can both be exploited and misused. That said, I believe capitalism is inherently better than socialism. I would even say that capitalism is more Christian than socialism.

    I did not say that capitalism is Christian. The Bible contains no culturally transcendent economic model. Fo

    http://www.religiontoday.com/news/capitalisms-biblical-principles-11602703.html
    Acts 3:43-47
    And fear came upon every soul; and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common; and they sold their possessions and goods and distributed them to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they partook of food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

    Acts 4:32-37
    Now the company of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things which he possessed was his own, but they had everything in common. And with great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles’ feet; and distribution was made to each as any had need. Thus Joseph who was surnamed by the apostles Barnabas (which means, Son of encouragement), a Levite, a native of Cyprus, sold a field which belonged to him, and brought the money and laid it at the apostles’ feet.

    James 5:1-6
    Come now, you rich, weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon you. Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have rusted, and their rust will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up for treasure for the last days. Behond, the wages of the labourers who mowed your fields, which you have kept back by fraud, cry out; and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. You have lived on the earth in luxury and in pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter

    Luke 1:49-53
    For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name. And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation. He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree. He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away.

    Matthew 19:16-24
    And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And he said unto him, Why do you ask me about what is good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments. He saith unto him, Which? Jesus said, Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Honour thy father and thy mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. The young man saith unto him, All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet? Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me. But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions. Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

    Luke 16:19-31
    “There was a rich man, who was clothed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, full of sores, who desired to be fed with what fell from the rich man’s table; moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried; and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes, and saw Abraham far off and Lazarus in his bosom. And he called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy upon me, and send Lazarus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in anguish in this flame.’ But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, in order that those who would pass from here to you may not be able, and none may cross from there to us.’ And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, to send him to my father’s house, for I have five brothers, so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment.’ But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.’ And he said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if some one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced if some one should rise from the dead.’”
  3. Joined
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    14 Dec '12 02:50
    Originally posted by rwingett
    Acts 3:43-47
    And fear came upon every soul; and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common; and they sold their possessions and goods and distributed them to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they partook of food ...[text shortened]... a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.
    Does any of that hold a candle to the following?:
    "The Bible makes it clear that every person has incredible worth in God's economy and, as a result, is endowed with great dignity...it is capitalism that affords the individual with the best opportunity to realize his or her worth."
  4. Donationrwingett
    Ming the Merciless
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    14 Dec '12 02:56
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Does any of that hold a candle to the following?:
    "The Bible makes it clear that every person has incredible worth in God's economy and, as a result, is endowed with great dignity...it is capitalism that affords the individual with the best opportunity to realize his or her worth."
    That is your opinion, not Jesus'.
  5. SubscriberFMF
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    14 Dec '12 03:10
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    "The Bible makes it clear that every person has incredible worth in God's economy and, as a result, is endowed with great dignity...it is capitalism that affords the individual with the best opportunity to realize his or her worth."
    The word "worth" in terms of interpersonal relationships, children, families, work colleagues, neighbours, community, school etc. means something quite different from the word "worth" in an economy. "Worth" in an economy refers to a monetary value of some kind.

    For people who are unable to invest and can only sell their labour, their "worth" is exactly as little as can possibly be paid to them and, for the most part, with as few benefits as the employer can get away with. I don't see that there's much "dignity" about this economic arrangement in a spiritual sense.

    I don't think that "dignity" and accumulated wealth or income are related all that closely, really. I benefit from being free to earn a living from being self-employed and an entrepreneur of sorts. But I do not measure my "worth" and "dignity" in life according to assets and income. I don't see how anyone would, at least from a spiritual point of view.

    Then when I read rwingett's interesting quotes, I can't really see how the motion "Capitalism is more Christian than Socialism" can win the day.
  6. Standard memberRJHinds
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    14 Dec '12 05:082 edits
    Originally posted by rwingett
    Acts 3:43-47
    And fear came upon every soul; and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common; and they sold their possessions and goods and distributed them to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they partook of food ...[text shortened]... Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced if some one should rise from the dead.’”
    You ignore what Jesus had to say with his parables about capitalism. Being rich does not mean the person is a capitalist.

    In Genesis 1:28, God says we are to subdue the earth and have dominion over it. One aspect of this is that humans can own property in which they can exercise their dominion. Since we have both volition and private property rights, we can assume that we should have the freedom to exchange these private property rights in a free market where goods and services can be exchanged.

    Historically, capitalism has provided the foundation for a great deal of political and economic freedom. Economic justice can best be achieved if each person is accountable for his own productivity. Because people are sinful and selfish, some are going to use the capitalist system to feed their greed. But that is not so much a criticism of capitalism as it is a realization of the human condition. The goal of capitalism is not to change people but to protect us from them. Capitalism is a system in which bad people can do the least harm and good people have the freedom to do good works. We can use our gains from capitalism to help the poor and needy if we remain generous and loving of one another.

    http://www.gotquestions.org/capitalism-Bible.html

    In the parable of the talents is not Jesus demonstrating capitalism?

    http://christianpf.com/the-parable-of-the-talents/
  7. Joined
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    14 Dec '12 08:10
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    While capitalism does not promise equal outcomes, it does offer equal opportunity and with opportunity anything is possible
    Capitalism does not offer equality of opportunity.

    The idea that a person who is born into a wealthy family with connections and who benefits from the best education that money can buy does not have more opportunities open to them than someone born to illiterate parents who have never worked in their lives is fanciful to say the least.
  8. Joined
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    14 Dec '12 09:283 edits
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    No economic system is perfect, and capitalism as well as socialism can both be exploited and misused. That said, I believe capitalism is inherently better than socialism. I would even say that capitalism is more Christian than socialism.

    I did not say that capitalism is Christian. The Bible contains no culturally transcendent economic model. Fo

    http://www.religiontoday.com/news/capitalisms-biblical-principles-11602703.html
    its seems to me that the writer is mistaking socialsim for communism. although the two have similarities a socialist system does not necessarily see the state as sovereign.

    i personally prefer the idea of socialist co-operatives. the workers own the company. the better the company does the more money the workers earn.

    socialism and capitalism remind me of the allegory of the long spoons.

    "I once ascended to the firmaments. I first went to see Hell and the sight was horrifying. Row after row of tables were laden with platters of sumptuous food, yet the people seated around the tables were pale and emaciated, moaning in hunger. As I came closer, I understood their predicament.

    "Every person held a full spoon, but both arms were splinted with wooden slats so he could not bend either elbow to bring the food to his mouth. It broke my heart to hear the tortured groans of these poor people as they held their food so near but could not consume it.

    "Next I went to visit Heaven. I was surprised to see the same setting I had witnessed in Hell – row after row of long tables laden with food. But in contrast to Hell, the people here in Heaven were sitting contentedly talking with each other, obviously sated from their sumptuous meal.

    "As I came closer, I was amazed to discover that here, too, each person had his arms splinted on wooden slats that prevented him from bending his elbows. How, then, did they manage to eat?

    "As I watched, a man picked up his spoon and dug it into the dish before him. Then he stretched across the table and fed the person across from him! The recipient of this kindness thanked him and returned the favor by leaning across the table to feed his benefactor.

    I suddenly understood. Heaven and Hell offer the same circumstances and conditions. The critical difference is in the way the people treat each other
    .
    I ran back to Hell to share this solution with the poor souls trapped there. I whispered in the ear of one starving man, "You do not have to go hungry. Use your spoon to feed your neighbor, and he will surely return the favor and feed you."

    "'You expect me to feed the detestable man sitting across the table?' said the man angrily. 'I would rather starve than give him the pleasure of eating!'

    "I then understood God’s wisdom in choosing who is worthy to go to Heaven and who deserves to go to Hell."
    wikipedia.
  9. Joined
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    14 Dec '12 09:44
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    No economic system is perfect, and capitalism as well as socialism can both be exploited and misused. That said, I believe capitalism is inherently better than socialism. I would even say that capitalism is more Christian than socialism.

    I did not say that capitalism is Christian. The Bible contains no culturally transcendent economic model. Fo ...[text shortened]...

    http://www.religiontoday.com/news/capitalisms-biblical-principles-11602703.html
    Time and space will not allow me to discuss all the ways that I believe that capitalism is more Christian than socialism, but allow me to advance one idea


    Translation: I know that my theory is stupid, so i will only offer one argument, and a flimsy one at that knowing that you gun crazy, right wing christian fundamentalists republican will cling to any excuse to keep your money.
  10. Joined
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    14 Dec '12 09:45
    Originally posted by stellspalfie
    its seems to me that the writer is mistaking socialsim for communism. [...]
    this
  11. Joined
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    14 Dec '12 09:46
    Originally posted by RJHinds
    You ignore what Jesus had to say with his parables about capitalism. Being rich does not mean the person is a capitalist.

    In Genesis 1:28, God says we are to subdue the earth and have dominion over it. One aspect of this is that humans can own property in which they can exercise their dominion. Since we have both volition and private property rights, we ...[text shortened]... nts is not Jesus demonstrating capitalism?

    http://christianpf.com/the-parable-of-the-talents/
    Capitalism is a system in which bad people can do the least harm

    where do you come up with this stuff?
  12. Donationrwingett
    Ming the Merciless
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    14 Dec '12 11:22
    Originally posted by RJHinds
    You ignore what Jesus had to say with his parables about capitalism. Being rich does not mean the person is a capitalist.

    In Genesis 1:28, God says we are to subdue the earth and have dominion over it. One aspect of this is that humans can own property in which they can exercise their dominion. Since we have both volition and private property rights, we ...[text shortened]... nts is not Jesus demonstrating capitalism?

    http://christianpf.com/the-parable-of-the-talents/
    While railing on against the rich may not necessarily be an endorsement of socialism, it most certainly is not an endorsement of capitalism (with its emphasis on avarice and greed). And the two passages from Acts don't mention the rich at all. They mention people "having all things in common" and how "they sold their possessions and goods and distributed them to all, as any had need". If that isn't an endorsement of socialism, then I don't know what is.

    And it isn't your great Stalinist bogeyman either. It's clearly a grass roots, decentralized, communitarian movement.
  13. Standard memberapathist
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    14 Dec '12 11:43
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne...
    The Bible makes it clear that every person has incredible worth in God's economy and, as a result, is endowed with great dignity. ...[/b]
    Trying to connect that thought with the Christian belief in Hell and eternal torment for people who doubt and think free. I totally failed.

    I bet you don't speak for the gods.
  14. Joined
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    14 Dec '12 11:47
    YouTube
    YouTube

    some good old fashioned socialist anthems, makes the hairs on my neck stand up!! key themes of sharing and working together for the good of man, much more in tune with the ethos of jesus id say.
  15. Donationrwingett
    Ming the Merciless
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    14 Dec '12 13:581 edit
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    No economic system is perfect, and capitalism as well as socialism can both be exploited and misused. That said, I believe capitalism is inherently better than socialism. I would even say that capitalism is more Christian than socialism.

    I did not say that capitalism is Christian. The Bible contains no culturally transcendent economic model. Fo

    http://www.religiontoday.com/news/capitalisms-biblical-principles-11602703.html
    It's interesting that the article you selectively quote from derides Karl Marx's quote "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need". Yet Marx himself is practically quoting the bible.

    Acts 2:44 All who believed were together and had all things in common; 45 they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need.

    Acts 4:34 There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold. 35 They laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need.


    It is not "the State" who "is arbiter of the distribution", it is the apostles themselves.

    Furthermore, the site you quote from has the following in their statement of faith: "We believe that the Bible is God's written revelation to man and that it is verbally inspired, authoritative, and without error in the original manuscripts."

    If they accept that the bible is authoritative and without error, then they must accept the passages from Acts as being binding, i.e. that Christianity has far more in common with Karl Marx than it does with Adam Smith. I don't see how you (or they) can possibly reconcile those two passages (along with the numerous other diatribes against the rich) with capitalism.
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