Economics is the science of production, consumption, and distribution of wealth.
In Biblical terms, economics means stewardship. The word itself cannot be found in the Bible but its literal Greek Word is Oikonomia which means Household Management. Economics is a modern word but its idea is as ancient and old as the earth. Its very foundations are found from the very beginning (Genesis 1:28) and unfolds up until the last pages of Revelation.
Should Christians view economics under the dominion of the Bible? Or should they view it as a purely non-Biblical entity? Is it a subject under isolation or under redemption? Should arts and sciences, agriculture, politics, technology, business and other fields be left to the hands of the Fallen Kingdom?
God designed man not just for a relationship to Himself and to other fellowmen, but also to creation itself. God is concerned with man’s relationship to the created order. Redemption is not just for man’s soul, it’s for the whole universe.
“For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.” Romans 8:22
How we view God affects how we deal with economics and other fields of life. The condition of our hearts shape our view of earthly riches. Since earthly riches were created, and all things were made by Him and through Him and for Him (Col 1:16), then the realm of economics exists to serve the purpose for which they were made. How man understands God affects how he handles his economic resources. His economic point of view changes when the condition of his heart changes.
There is an urgent need for every generation to submit economics under God’s revealed will and Christ’s mind. Not just economics but also the rest of the fields that remain highly unsalted because to the lack or poor engagement of the church. The earth suffers rottenness without the Salt of the Earth- Christians and their Worldview. Christians need to be the Sodium Chloride as they were designed to be.
It’s important to know the two extreme views leading to error:
1. Worshiping Material Things- this is materialism or pantheism. It’s the subconscious belief that acquisition and possession of material things leads to eternal happiness. There is a big difference between “Filthy-lucre” and “Lucre.” The former is the corrupted behavior.
2. Abstaining from Material Things- this is Gnosticism or Ascetism. This is the extreme end of combating materialism. Platonism/Gnosticism is the belief that material things are evil, and only the spiritual is good. This mindset still exists in the minds of people today, even in the church. They see that secular things such as politics, business, money and other “worldly” things are evil. This leads to a divided worldview called dichotomy. This mindset is commonly found within religious circles or religiously-influenced cultures, which without careful analysis of Biblical thought, leads to incorrect behavior.
Biblical Economics or Dominion Theology has its challenges. It can be viewed as prosperity gospel or materialism by many people leading to its opposition.
Since all of these are based on man’s pursuit of satisfaction, it’s needful to say that happiness is not based on material wealth. Money cannot buy happiness. Money is not the ultimate goal. You cannot serve both God and money, but you can serve God with your money. Happiness is a priceless commodity. Its value is beyond measure. Happiness is man’s pursuit. Happiness has price. God’s Glory is the Goal. Man’s ultimate happiness and satisfaction is the same end to that Goal. Therefore money’s redeemed purpose is both the happiness of man and the glory of God- just like any other aspect creation and God’s Divine plan.
Economics is fallen and in desperate need for redemption. The work of salvation is not only in positional terms. It is comprehensive and progressive, extending beyond the salvation of the sinner from the power and penalty of his sin, but the rescue all of creation from the abyss of darkness.