Rules for Economic Growth – John Boruff

See also: Ronald Reagan on Economic Growth

I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread.  –Psalm 37:25

Bible EconomicsFrom the outset, I want to admit that this article is almost a point-by-point summary of chapter 16: “The Basis for Economic Growth” in David Chilton’s Productive Christians (1981). However, I added my own spin to it, and made it more into a body of “law,” which is in keeping with Chilton’s spirit. Chilton maintains that consistent obedience to the Gospel, to Biblical law, and especially to the economic growth laws borne out in Biblical free market capitalism–will indeed, lead to personal economic growth…no matter how poor you are! I have enumerated over 40 such rules based on Chilton’s chapter–all of which are very powerful. But by no means are these rules exhaustive–they’re just to get my Christian economic philosophy started; a theology of financial progress “on earth as it is in Heaven” (Matthew 6:10).

(1) Increase Productivity – Through Hard Work and Rising Wages
(2) Capital Investment (savings)
(3) Free Enterprise (working for companies and corporations)
(4) 13 RULES FOR ECONOMIC GROWTH (BAUER AND BORUFF) – These are based on my reversal of the anti-development attitudes listed by P. T. Bauer [Dissent on Development, 1971, p. 78; David Chilton’s Productive Christians, 1981, p. 219].
1. Interest in Making More Money and Living in a Better Home, etc
2. Progressive, Forward-Thinking Mindset When Challenged by Poverty
3. Feeling Personal Responsibility to Provide for Your Family
4. Self-Control or Restriction of Leisure and Recreation
5. A Work-Life Balance
6. A Mindset of Achieving a Specific Economic Goal–in Time:–and Calculating When Specifically, and At What Time Exactly Those Economic Goals Can be Met, Realistically.
7. Emphasis on Responsibility-to-Provide Instead of Fate (like poor Hindu castes)
8. Remaining Discontent with Just Performing the Routine Duties of Your Job–and Instead Keeping a Mentality That Says: “This Job Has Low Pay, But I’m Going to Do All I Can to Keep It, Until the Lord Opens Up a New Door for a Higher Paying Job (and/or a Job with Better Working Conditions)”–Same Attitude Towards House, Car, etc
9. Assertive Personality–Boldness About Your Personal Rights–sometimes people in the workplace are jealous of your job position; or they just don’t like you–and they will be mean to you, or attack you because of it (workplace bullying); they may try to come up with various reasons to disqualify you; and make it look like you are not fit for this office job, etc. Stand your ground, politely and professionally; and if you feel attacked by a co-worker, or even by a person in the company’s leadership, tell your direct supervisor in a polite manner, in confidence. But don’t overemphasize it, or use “drama,” or blow things out of proportion. After telling your supervsior, let it roll off your back; and don’t hold anything against anyone (Mark 11:25); go back to work and be productive.
10. Curiosity, Job Experimentation, and Willingness to Change (Flexibility) to Better Jobs, Better Homes, etc–Being Willing to Move As Many Times by Faith in Jesus, As Much As Possible, Until the Desired Job and House Result, etc, is Achieved. According to Richard Bolles’ The Job-Hunter’s Survival Guide (2010), the best job hunting methods, according to his in-depth statistical research are the following:

(1) Do homework on yourself (what, where, how), making an inventory of your “transferrable skills” (this inventory is in the book, p. 85) (86% Success Rate).

(2) Join a job club, using the Yellow Pages to identify fields of work interest (70% Success Rate).

(3) Use the Yellow Pages to call every company you are interested working for (69% Success Rate)—note: from personal experience I’ve found a 50:2 ratio generally applies to cold calling through the Yellow Pages as much as filling out job applications:–that is, for every 50 calls or applications, you will generally get 2 interviews to pop up.

(4) Physically visiting a company and asking if they are hiring (and hand-delivering your resume) (47% Success Rate):–again, the 50:2 ratio applies here:–I have personally found this to be the most effective method in my life.

(5) Ask your friends and family for any job leads (33% Success Rate).

11. A Mentality That Says: “Man-Made Products Are Okay”–Not Everything in God’s World Has to Be All Natural and Eco-Friendly–Manufacturing, Industrialization, Factories, etc–Are All Okay–God Said, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth” (Genesis 1:28). While Christians should have respect for nature, the great outdoors, as God’s creation–we’re not called to be tree hugging New Agers. It’s okay to work for a factory, a warehouse, an assembly line, an office.
12. A Mentality That Says: “I Might Be Poor and Needy Right Now, and I’m Willing to Ask for Charity, and Even Beg for Money–But It’s Not Okay for Me to Continue to Rely on Charity and Handouts–I Need to Economically Grow through Hard Work–So I Can Provide for Myself and Family; and Be Generous and Give to Others in Jesus’ Name.”
13. A Mentality That Says: “Although a Wife’s Biblical Responsibility is Housekeeping and Homeschooling (Titus 2:5; 1 Timothy 5:14; Proverbs 22:6)–If the Wife Can Supplement Her Financially Struggling Husband’s Income–That’s Biblical Too (Proverbs 31:10-31) – see flexjobs.com (but beware of scams); note: it might take you 60-70 job applications until you get 2-3 legitimate job interview opportunities (so, make a list!).
(5) Making It a Goal Not to Rely on Government Aid Programs (Medicare, Medicaid, Obamacare, food stamps/EBT cards, government housing, FAFSA college grants, or even big tax refunds) – While it could be argued that these are forms of charity, provided by God through the human leaders of America, it could be more strongly argued that it is a form of socialism (faith in the government/like Nazi Germany); and that it is stealing from taxpayers! While I won’t say it’s a SIN to receive government aid, I will say it should be a goal for every Christian to be prosperous enough NOT to have to resort to government assistance in any form.
(6) When giving money or anything to the poor, be also willing to give them pointers on how to find a job (otherwise by only giving them something, you are encouraging them to be lazy, and to continue in their poverty).
(7) Biblical Economic Growth Instead of the American Dream. Economic growth should not be pursued from an American Dream viewpoint, but rather from a Biblical faith-based viewpoint (see Deuteronomy 8). The Christian is to live by faith in Christ for His financial provision and increase; a faith that Jesus Christ says this to you for job opportunities: “I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My Word, and have not denied My Name” (Revelation 3:8); which knows that God is Jehovah-Jireh (the Lord our Provider, Genesis 22:14); that “God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19); that says, “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33). This implies (1) the pursuit of God by faith, (2) the pursuit of holy living or growth in Biblical obedience, and (3) the gradual accumulation of wealth and possessions (they are “added to you”), as God blesses your endeavors at job hunting, hard work for your company with a productive mentality, etc. All of this continually makes the choice to remain Christian and faith-based in your work ethic, in your economic growth, in your working, saving, and investing. Giving thanks not only on Thanksgiving Day, but every day of your life, that you have been blessed by God to work in this job, and are trusting Him lead you to even better job opportunities in the future! All of this totally, even forcefully, rejects the idea that you are a self-made man. You don’t “pull yourself up by your own bootstraps,” but by faith and prayer, you ask God to HELP YOU pull up your bootstraps, because it’s hard to pull them up sometimes! Self-reliance only leads to the pride of wealth. 1 Timothy 6:10: “The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” This is to seek economic growth for selfish, non-Christian means; basic GREED and covetousness, which is IDOLATRY (Exodus 20:17; Colossians 3:5). Chilton says, “Autonomous capitalism is a washout. It is an attempt to grab the blessings of God by secularist methods…It is a libertarian lawlessness” (Productive Christians, p. 220). Chilton goes on to mock Robert J. Ringer’s books Restoring the American Dream, Looking Out for #1, and Winning Through Intimidation. He concludes: “This kind of ‘capitalism’ can produce only cultural disintegration. Nothing will change a spiritually enslaved culture apart from freedom in Christ” (p. 220).

Jesus said in Luke 12:15-21:

“Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” And He told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’ Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain.  And I’ll say to myself, ‘You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.’ But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself? This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.”

It’s clear the sin this man committed with his whole life was the sin of autonomous, self-reliant, selfish capitalism. There was no fear of God in his economic decision-making. As he accumulated wealth and possessions through hard work, he did not consult the Holy Spirit about how to be generous and distribute it to the poor. God called him a FOOL because he saved all that money for himself, and God was angry that none of the poor will receive the abundant harvest of his crops: God asked, “Who will get what you have prepared for yourself?” Nobody. That makes God VERY angry. A couple of chapters later, in Luke 16:19-26, we read of another rich man, who had a poor godly beggar outside of his house named Lazarus—but the rich man never gave him anything—he did not generously distribute to the poor in Jesus’ Name. He was a fool too, because the Scriptures say this:

“There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day. But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate, desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom (Paradise). The rich man also died and was buried. And being in TORMENTS in HELL, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I AM TORMENTED IN THIS FLAME!’ But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented. And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.’”

Let that put THE FEAR OF GOD in us, that as we seek Biblical faith-based economic growth, that we always consult the Holy Spirit about how to give money to poor beggars like Lazarus! Jesus asked, “For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?” (Mark 8:36). It’s simply not worth it to spend 40-50 years of our lives accumulating wealth, and spending it on ourselves alone—and then end up being TORMENTED FOR AN ETERNITY IN THE FLAMES OF HELL, simply because we stopped fearing the Lord, and stopped giving to beggars. Therefore, from a Christian viewpoint, pursuing economic growth is FOOLISHNESS if you (1) don’t fear God and (2) don’t give to beggars! So, fear God and give to beggars!

The only kind of capitalism worth living by is a capitalism centered in reliance on God as Jehovah-Jireh, hard work with a productive mentality, faith in God’s protection, provision, and preservation; and a deeply rooted supernatural worldview in light of your job opportunities, and the leading and guiding of the Holy Spirit in your work decisions, and saving, and spending. Otherwise, you’re basically no different than a hard working “winning through intimidation” atheist who is “looking out for number one”! That’s social Darwinism (survival of the fittest and natural selection). God’s got a better plan—survival of the faithful and supernatural guidance…for better job opportunities and better living conditions. That’s God’s way of prosperity! Biblical capitalism has the fear of God in it; and takes heed to the warning of Moses in Deuteronomy 8:10-20:

“When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the Lord your God for the good land He has given you. Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God, failing to observe His commands, His laws and His decrees that I am giving you this day. Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down, and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied, then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. He led you through the vast and dreadful wilderness, that thirsty and waterless land, with its venomous snakes and scorpions. He brought you water out of hard rock. He gave you manna to eat in the wilderness, something your ancestors had never known, to humble and test you so that in the end it might go well with you. You may say to yourself, “My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me” (autonomous, self-reliant capitalism). But remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms His covenant, which He swore to your ancestors, as it is today. If you ever forget the Lord your God and follow other gods and worship and bow down to them, I testify against you today that you will surely be destroyed. Like the nations the Lord destroyed before you, so you will be destroyed for not obeying the Lord your God.”

So, capitalism + the fear of God = Biblical economic growth! What is the American Dream? It is capitalism without the fear of God—it is an atheistic, agnostic capitalism—God will destroy all heads of families, heads of corporations, and heads of state who function this way! Pray for America to repent of this; to turn away from the sin of self-reliant capitalism and towards a God-reliant capitalism!
(8) Never “Give Up” on Economic Progress; Never See Your Job as a “Dead-End,” But as a Means to a Better End; as a Step to a Better Job Situation.
(9) A Mentality That Asks Not: “Do I Have a Future?”—but Instead Asks: “Do I Trust God Enough to Help Me Progress Economically Into the Future?” Jeremiah 29:11: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
(10) Seeking a Stable, Regular Work Schedule in Which You Can Keep a Routine Sabbath-Rest once a Week (Exod. 20:8-11); note: I don’t believe Sabbath-keeping is necessary for salvation from Hell (Colossians 2:16), but I do believe, as Jesus did, that “the Sabbath was made for man” (Mark 2:27)—as a divine blessing for his spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical well-being. It’s easier to maintain a work-life balance this way; and avoid workaholic habits.
(11) Seeking a Better Job; and Higher Pay.
(12) Self-Control About Spending Money on Recreation, Household Appliances, and Expensive “Toys.” (frugality, rationing, thriftiness:—less focus on entertainment-focused spending (less materialism); more focus on earning greater amounts of money for useful practical purposes—a sort of economic asceticism; some call this “the simple life,” or “simplicity,” such as Vernard Eller and Richard J. Foster)
(13) An Attitude of Self-Love and Self-Preservation—one that is the opposite of suicidal; a positive, forward-thinking, economically progressive mentality; one that perseveres through trials and tribulations; a confidence in God for supernatural and natural provisions, and a readiness to give Him thanks and praise and worship; NOT feeling apathetic, depressed, or careless about his poverty—the man who will grow economically cares about and thinks about this subject quite often, and he tests his “economic growth theories” frequently, until he achieves the economic results he is praying for.
(14) Developing a Friendly, Professional Attitude. Friendliness, trustworthiness, and good social skills—these are essential for economic growth, because in any business, or professional, corporate office job—a set of good, professional, friendly social skills are a must, if you plan on being good at customer service, representing a company, supervising a team of employees, getting along with people at work, or interacting with a business manager. The ability to exercise self-control—especially over the tongue—and to avoid being aggressive and argumentative—are all keys to developing a professional attitude. I would add that reading the Bible, and other good intellectually satisfying books for recreation, are a good way to polish your vocabulary; and develop your ability to speak and talk like an educated, well-bred person who works in a professional office environment. Never stop reading books, but don’t use ridiculously large intellectual words around people either—that will make you come off as a know-it-all.
(15) Willingness to Get Married—and Have the Wife Work Until the Husband is in an Economically Desirable Position to Provide for the Family Sufficiently by Himself (Proverbs 31:10-31).
(16) Willingness to Be Plugged into a Godly Church Where Friendships Can Be Developed; and Friends Can Be Resorted to for Economic Help (charity, advice, job leads, etc).
(17) Respect for Civil Rules and Civil Authorities:–the police, employers, landlords, etc—so to avoid unnecessary economic hardship (going to jail, receiving fines, getting fired, being evicted from rental property, etc)
(18) Avoiding a Poverty Mentality. Even though “evangelical poverty” can be used to cultivate a deeper Christian spiritual life (as in the case of St. Francis of Assisi)—generally, a poverty mentality makes no sense for married life or family life—it is counterintuitive, illogical, and unreasonable to “be fruitful and multiply” sexually (Genesis 1:28), if your bank account is not also being fruitful, and multiplying more money. In other words, don’t try to have more kids, or buy more things, unless (1) you are growing financially, and (2) you have received clear dreams, visions, voices, and signs from God in response to prayer.
(19) Avoid Living Near Slums or Ghettos! Not only to avoid associating with people who could influence you or your family with a negative, hopeless poverty mentality; but also to avoid their life-threatening, gang-infested, drug-infested environments with crack houses, etc; to avoid apartments and houses that are usually very ugly, depressing, and unpleasant to live in; in which the landlords may not be honest in their financial dealings according to the law; in which rental properties owned by such slumlords go without maintenance problems being fixed. To live in such a place is not conducive to “being fruitful” or to “multiplying” (Genesis 1:28), because you or your kids can DIE EARLY if you live by such places! Being shot or stabbed by drug dealers or gang members! Being KILLED and dying prematurely, stops all economic growth in your life, because then you are DEAD; if you’re dead, that means you can’t go to work, get better jobs, or grow economically anymore, nor can you have anymore kids:–that is the opposite of being fruitful and multiplying! Living in or near a ghetto is ultimately not God’s will for anyone; and is not conducive to Biblical economic growth. Find somewhere affordable to live, maybe out in the country—it doesn’t matter; just as long as it’s not a ghetto, or something like it. Living in that kind of environment is not only dangerous, but can put you into an economically careless, even hopeless, reckless mindset. It might be a big shock to your system, to step out in faith and just move out of a ghetto, into unknown territory—especially if you have been raised in a ghetto. But why stay in that hell any longer? God will lead you to a promised land if you trust Him! GET OUT OF EGYPT! Escape from the Land of Goshen! That’s a slave mentality! You don’t need Moses to lead you out; you’ve got Jesus! I’m white; and I love blacks, Hispanics, etc. as much as anyone—save yourselves! Save your families! Do what’s best for your kids! You might not see the other end of the tunnel! But if you trust Jesus, He is able to lead you through it! RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!! ESCAPE FROM THE GHETTO NOW!! Man, I feel like a liberation theologian or something (but I’m no Marxist or socialist or Democrat:—remember that personal responsibility before God, fear of God, hard work, and changing to bigger and better jobs is the goal—and breaking free from reliance on government handouts). I think any civil rights leader would agree with that. Proverbs 31:9: “Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.”
(20) Mothers Should Teach Their Kids to Read and Write – see Siegfried Engelmann’s Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons
(21) Maintain the Attitudes, Motivations, and Habits of a Hard-Working Middle Class Man (within a Biblical framework):–a faith-based work ethic; but on the other hand, not the mentality of a “corporate Christian” who glories in or idolizes his career.
(22) Don’t be jealous of others who have more money and possessions than you do—focus on your own relationship with God (Exodus 20:17). In fact, it can be helpful to make friends with Christians more wealthy than you are—so you can glean economic advice from them, and better yourself financially. Envying the wealthy will only distance you further from wealth.
(23) Seeking Better Living Standards. House, car, clothing, etc—should be the primary goals of economic growth. (However, you should not be materialistic or a lover of money:–beware of American Dream mentality, Deuteronomy 8.) Balanced out by generous giving to poor beggars in Jesus’ Name (Luke 16)—which gives out of surplus (and at times even more—by the leading of the Holy Spirit).
(24) The True Gospel of “Lordship Salvation” Must Be Preached to the Poor—By Way of Open Air Preaching; and Evangelism in All Forms. And as they yield to the rules of Scripture, they will develop healthy views of work, life, and economic growth. Tithing and giving to churches and charities must be done freely, “without compulsion,” and “according to their income” (1 Corinthians 16:2; 2 Corinthians 9:7)—to remind the poor that their jobs come from God; and that they are to distribute their earnings exactly as God wills, their “conscience confirming it through the Holy Spirit” (Romans 9:1). And Christians can trust that God will economically bless and prosper the “cheerful giver” to advance the cause of the Gospel of Christ.
(25) Avoidance of Debt: “forgive us our debts” (Matthew 6:12).
(26) Thrifty spending; frugal living; being economical; sparing; rationing; making things last longer; penny-pinching (but never being stingy when it comes to Spirit-led generosity to the poor).
(27) Gradual Accumulation of Savings—and Distribution by your “conscience confirming it through the Holy Spirit” (Romans 9:1); and conviction received through Bible study.
(28) Learning Trades from Community Colleges—Acquiring Certifications for Jobs with Higher Wages (this assumes a high school diploma or GED already).
(29) SUMMARY RULE #1: Future Orientation—The Assumption that Progressive Development and Productivity are Possible and Desirable (Chilton, p. 227).
(30) SUMMARY RULE #2: The Rule of Law—Widespread Obedience to the Commands of the Bible (Chilton, p. 227)

“The only hope for the real elevation of the poor is capital accumulation (saving money) and productivity (creating products; and making more money for your company, by working hard for your company). And the only hope for capital accumulation and productivity in the long run is cultural obedience to God’s law in all human action” (Chilton, p. 228).

WARNINGS ABOUT THE PURSUIT OF WEALTH
AND THE PROSPERITY GOSPEL

The following are summaries of thoughts gathered from D. R. McConnell’s A Different Gospel, chapter 10: “The Doctrine of Prosperity: Success and the Upwardly Mobile Christian.”

1. The Hundredfold Return. Jesus said, “Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the Gospel’s, who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions—and in the age to come, eternal life” (Mark 10:29-30). This teaches that those who live by faith in Christ, and are willing to go through seasons where they sacrifice all they love for the sake of the Gospel–God will see to it, that if they are faithful to the Gospel and the righteous life that it calls Christians to, He will economically bless them 100x as much as they were before the sacrifice was made–even better houses and lands! But be careful of pastors, especially TV preachers from a Pentecostal prosperity viewpoint, who would try to manipulate you to give to their ministries with a verse like this: “Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you” (Luke 3:38). This verse should apply to giving to the sorts of things sanctioned in the Word of God: such as giving to poor beggars, widows, orphans, etc; and godly evangelistic ministries like HeartCry Missionary Society, for example; not to mention, to give tithes and offerings to your local pastor, if you deem him worthy.

2. Seeking Economic Growth Never Justifies Self-Indulgent Materialism (Storing Up Treasures). Matthew 6:24: “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” I can prove that this verse is about materialism or obsessions with possessions, because in a verse preceding it, in which Jesus begins to teach against materialism, He said, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on Earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal” (Matthew 6:19). By this Jesus is definitely condemning hoarding up “treasures”:–physical, touchable things that you can see and feel, that could be put into the category of “treasures” or should we say “luxury items.” Being like a pirate seeking a treasure chest is completely opposite to being a Christian, no matter how sophisticated it looks:–if you’re running after the accumulation of treasures, then in the eyes of Christ, YOU ARE NO DIFFERENT THAN A PIRATE! ARRRGGH!

3. Food, Drink, and Clothing (Basic Needs):–Jesus Promises that God Will Supernaturally Provide These Things for People Who Seek Firstly the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness (Matthew 6:25-31, 33).

4. 3 Indictments Against the Prosperity Gospel: (1) Self-Indulgent Materialism or Storing Up Treasures, (2) Worldly-Mindedness Instead of Spirituality, and (3) Making God Out to Be a Means of Just “Getting Rich.”

“The doctrine of prosperity is, in fact, a carnal accommodation to the crass materialism of American culture…It actually degrades the poor, claiming that their poverty is the result of ‘dishonoring’ God…It is a direct contradiction of the examples of the Lord Jesus, the Apostle Paul, and all the heroes of faith, who were “destitute, afflicted, ill-treated, men of whom the world was not worthy” (Hebrews 11:37-38). The doctrine of prosperity is not worthy of such men” (McConnell, pp. 179, 181).

5. God’s Warnings to the Rich.
(1) Against materialism, luxury items (treasures), selfish material wants and lusts, leisure, comforts, and the love of or attachment to possessions and “toys.” (Luke 6:24; Mark 6:19-21; Matthew 6:24; Mark 4:19; James 5:1-3).

(2) Against unbelief in the Gospel; or faith in money instead of God (Mark 10:25).

(3) Against pride of wealth and faith in money (1 Timothy 6:17).

6. God’s Concern for the Poor.
(1) Give to the poor (Mark 10:21; 14:7; Galatians 2:10; 1 Timothy 6:18-19).

(2) The poor are usually more spiritual, “rich in faith,” and respond easier to the Gospel (Luke 6:20; 4:18; Mark 12:43-44; James 2:5).

(3) Don’t dishonor the poor (1 Corinthians 11:22).

Bibliography

Bauer, P. T. Dissent on Development. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1971. Pts and chs 2a3, 2a5, 2a9, 2a10, 2b13, 2b14, 4.5, 5.6, 5.7, 5.12, 6.2, 6.8, 8.4, 8.6.

Bolles, Richard N. The Job-Hunter’s Survival Guide: How to Find Hope and Rewarding Work, Even When “There Are No Jobs.” Berkeley, CA: Ten Speed Press, 2010. Chapter 4: “The Best and Worst Ways to Look for a Job.”

Burkett, Larry. The Complete Financial Guide for Young Couples. Colorado Springs, CO: David C. Cook, 1989. Part One deals with budgeting; Part Two deals with insurance, inheritance, and retirement; Part Four: “Ten Keys to Successful Investing.” From an evangelical Christian viewpoint.

Carroll, Peter. Puritanism and the Wilderness. New York: Columbia University Press, 1969. Although this book did not contribute to this article, it is related to the subject of Christian economic growth; this charts the intellectual and economic development of the New England Puritans as they built a society from scratch out of the forest. Within are demonstrated Biblical economic growth laws which could be applied to personal Christian economic growth today. See also Gary North, Puritan Economic Experiments (Tyler, TX: Institute for Christian Economics, 1989), pp. 51-54.

Chafuen, Alejandro. Faith and Liberty: The Economic Thought of the Late Scholastics. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2003. Ch. 10: “Profits.”

Chilton, David. Productive Christians in an Age of Guilt Manipulators. Tyler, TX: The Institute for Christian Economics, 1981. Chapter 16: “The Basis for Economic Growth.”

Greenspan, Alan. The Map and the Territory. New York: Penguin Press, 2013. Chapter 7: “Uncertainty Undermines Investment”; Chapter 8: “Productivity: The Ultimate Measure of Economic Success”; book uses the phrase “economic growth” very often; an up-to-date book on economic principles by one of the chief economic advisors to Ronald Reagan during his presidency. Greenspan has a PhD in Economics from New York University.

Gregory, James. American Exodus: The Dust Bowl Migration and Okie Culture in California. New York: Oxford University Press, 1989. Examines the role of economics and holiness-Pentecostal faith among the Okies during the Great Depression. Some insights on economic growth, as they move from total poverty to suburban living. This subculture was illustrated in John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath (1939). See also Dan Morgan’s Rising in the West: The True Story of an “Okie” Family from the Great Depression Through the Reagan Years. New York: Knopf, 1992.

McConnell, D. R. A Different Gospel. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 1995. Chapter 10: “The Doctrine of Prosperity: Success and the Upwardly Mobile Christian.” This is a to-the-point Biblical critique of the Prosperity Gospel, taught by many Pentecostal and Word of Faith preachers, like Kenneth Hagin, Kenneth Copeland, Frederick K. C. Price, and others on the Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN). It provides a needed balance to not only materialism in general, but also exposes the cultic, metaphysical nature of positive confession.

North, Gary. Wealth and Poverty: Four Christian Views of Economics. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1984. Chapter 1: “Free Market Capitalism.” North is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA); he received a PhD in History from the University of California; and has written prolifically on economics from a conservative Christian capitalist viewpoint. He is a long-time friend of congressman Ron Paul; and once served as his research assistant in 1976 during his Republican years.

—–. An Economic Commentary on the Bible. 31 vols. This is extremely profound! Gary North’s life work! See especially Wisdom and Dominion: An Economic Commentary on Proverbs, formerly titled God’s Success Manual.

Oslington, Paul, ed. The Oxford Handbook of Christianity and Economics. New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.

Rostow, W. W. The Stages of Economic Growth: A Non-Communist Manifesto. 3rd ed.  Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990. Chs. 2, 3, 4, 7.

Sproul Jr., R. C. Biblical Economics. Ch. 4: “Prosperity” and Ch. 5: “Profit.”

—–. Economics for Everybody. Ch. 3: “The Path from Work to Wealth”; Ch. 4: “The Route From Scarcity to Plenty.” DVD and Study Guide.

U. S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook: 2014-2015. Indianapolis, IN: JIST Works, 2014. An essential encyclopedic resource on every single job category in the United States. Each job has in-depth statistical information provided by the government. The “Nature of the Work,” “Training, Qualifications, and Advancement,” “Rate of Employment,” “Job Prospects,” “Yearly Earnings,” and “Websites” for Certifications and Further Information are included for each job category. This book is an essential resource for career services in universities and community colleges.

Websites

www.bls.gov/ooh/Occupational Outlook Handbook

www.garynorth.com
– Christian; capitalist; economist; theologian; Bible commentator.

www.glassdoor.com – Great website for evaluating companies based on insider reviews.

www.mises.org – Website on “classical liberalism” / capitalist economics.

—–

From Wikipedia article: “Economic Growth”:

  • Argyrous, G., Forstater, M and Mongiovi, G. (eds.) (2004) Growth, Distribution, And Effective Demand: Essays in Honor of Edward J. Nell. New York: M.E. Sharpe.
  • Barro, Robert J. (1997) Determinants of Economic Growth: A Cross-Country Empirical Study. MIT Press: Cambridge, MA.
  • Galor, O. (2005) From Stagnation to Growth: Unified Growth Theory. Handbook of Economic Growth, Elsevier.
  • Grier, Kevin (2008). Empirics of Economic Growth. The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics (2nd ed.). Library of Economics and Liberty. ISBN 978-0865976658. OCLC 237794267.
  • Halevi, Joseph; Laibman, David and Nell, Edward J. (eds.) (1992) Beyond the Steady State: Essays in the Revival of Growth Theory, edited with, London, UK:
  • Hueting, Roefi (2011) The future of the Environmentally sustainable national income. Ökologisches Wirtschaften, 4/2011, 30-35
  • Jones, Charles I. (2002) Introduction to Economic Growth 2nd ed. W. W. Norton & Company: New York, N.Y.
  • Kirzner, Israel. (1973) Competition and Entrepreneurship
  • Lucas, Robert E., Jr. (2003) The Industrial Revolution: Past and Future, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, Annual Report online edition
  • Mises, Ludwig E. (1949) Human Action 1998 reprint by the Mises Institute
  • Paepke, C. Owen. The Evolution of Progress: The End of Economic Growth and the Beginning of Human Transformation. New York, Toronto: Random House. ISBN 0-679-41582-3.
  • Puthenkalam, John Joseph, “Integrating Freedom, Democracy and Human Rights into Theories of Economic Growth”, Manila, 1998.
  • Romer, Paul M. (2008). Economic Growth. The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics (2nd ed.). Library of Economics and Liberty. ISBN 978-0865976658. OCLC 237794267.
  • Schumpeter, Jospeph A. (1912) The Theory of Economic Development 1982 reprint, Transaction Publishers
  • Vladimir N. Pokrovskii (2011) Econodynamics. The Theory of Social Production, Springer, Berlin.
  • Weil, David N. (2008) Economic Growth 2nd ed. Addison Wesley.

—–

From Wikipedia article: “Development Economics”:

Hollis B. Chenery and T. N. Srinivasan, eds. (1988, 1989). Vol. 1 and 2
Jere Behrman and T.N. Srinivasan, eds. (1995). Vol 3A and 3B
T. Paul Schultz and John Straus, eds. (2008). Vol 4
Dani Rodrik and Mark R. Rosenzweig, eds. (2009). Vol 5
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About John Boruff

John Boruff is the founder of WesleyGospel.com, a husband, father, and sometimes an open air preacher. He graduated from UNC Pembroke in 2008 with a B.A. in Philosophy and Religion and views himself as a Wesleyan Pentecostal. As a Christian, he feels connected with all members of the body of Christ, but can identify the most with churches like the Assemblies of God and the Vineyard. In 2015, he released "The Gospel of Jesus Christ," which is meant to be a Bible study for open air preaching. For his other writings, search articles on this site or see the E-Books section.
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