Monday, February 16, 2009
By Ho Sui-Jade
Economic life in all its ramifications is of profound ethical significance.
This is so because of scarcity which gives rise to conflict, because of
interdependence which creates mutual obligations, because of the wide
range of values sought through economic activity, and because of the
significance for human life of the economic process itself.
Background on areas of study
One of the greatest scandals in the world is the growing gap between rich and poor, both at the international level and within individual countries. Indeed, this trend has been prevalent since time immemorial. Members of society have commonly been divided according to their wealth status as the “haves” and “have-nots”.
The concern for the poor is at the very heart of God. For it was Jesus himself who deeply empathised with the cause of the poor, when he said “for I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink...I needed clothes and you clothed me….Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me” (Matt 25:35-40).
In Scripture, economic concerns and acts of justice are woven intricately together.
Central in this witness is the call to Jubilee. This call is firstly, an acknowledgement that the world created by God is abundant with enough for everyone, as long as mankind restrains his appetite and lives within limits. Situations of extreme economic insufficiency in pockets of society are not natural but the product of sin with man turning against the biblical mandate of caring for the poor. Hence, the second call to Jubilee is a call to redemption – to rectify serious deprivations in the socio-economic order and to set forth the mandate for spiritual renewal and faithfulness to the Lord.
Read the full article here
Photo courtesy of EPU