Flourishing Faith: A Baptist Primer on Work, Economics, and Civic Stewardship



Why Has The Modern Baptist Movement Flourished While Older Denominations Have Declined Liberal Theology And Slow Grinding State Church Machinery Are Two Reasons, But An Even Greater Reason Is Ecclesiastical Entrepreneurship For Than Two Hundred Years The Free Church With Its Baptist Ecclesiology And Evangelical Ministry Practice In Spreading The Gospel And Starting New Churches Has Mirrored The Free Market Spirit That Has Made America Great As The Nation Flourished, So Did The BaptistsYet Most Pastors, Professors, And Parishioners Simply Don T Connect Work, Economics, And God S Plan For Making Us Into Mature Disciples Evangelicals Need A Big Picture Perspective On The Fact That God Made Us, In Part, To Work Plus, All Legitimate Work Glorifies God And Through Its Fruitfulness Blesses Countless Others So How Do Politics, Economics, And Citizenship Responsibilities Fit Into A Broader Discipleship Model Of Life Stewardship In Flourishing Faith, Dr Chad Brand Shows How By Examining Key Issues Of The History And Theology Of Political Economy Work, Wealth, Government, And Taxation With Its Various Implications Brand Then Explores The Philosophy Of How Government Relates To Political Economy And Highlights How Baptists Have Contributed Insightful, Provocative, And GenerousFlourishing Faith: A Baptist Primer on Work, Economics, and Civic Stewardship

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[Epub] ↠ Flourishing Faith: A Baptist Primer on Work, Economics, and Civic Stewardship Author Chad Brand – E17streets4all.co.uk
  • Paperback
  • 152 pages
  • Flourishing Faith: A Baptist Primer on Work, Economics, and Civic Stewardship
  • Chad Brand
  • English
  • 09 September 2019
  • 1938948157

10 thoughts on “Flourishing Faith: A Baptist Primer on Work, Economics, and Civic Stewardship

  1. says:

    As it emerged after the Reformation in the sixteenth century, the Baptist Church or the Free Church rejected any direct ties to a government In Flourishing Faith A Baptist Primer on Work, Economics, and Civic Stewardship, Chad Brand, a professor of Christian theology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, examines work, wealth, government, taxation, and political economy through the lens of a Biblical Baptist Worldview Scripture tells us that work, which existed before the fall of ma As it emerged after the Reformation in the sixteenth century, the Baptist Church or the Free Church rejected any direct ties to a government In Flourishing Faith A Baptist Primer on Work, Economics, and Civic Stewardship, Chad Brand, a professor of Christian theology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, examines work, wealth, government, taxation, and political economy through the lens of a Biblical Baptist Worldview Scripture tells us that work, which existed before the fall of man, is valuable When cultures deviate from this original intention, flourishing is stifled The Greco Roman economies relied on slavery where work was not valued and manual labor was not something the educated populace participated in This led to a halt in entrepreneurship and innovation Societies cannot thrive when work is not valued on par with intellectual activity, pleasant discourse, and leisure.Wealth itself is neither inherently good nor inherently bad, but how it is procured and used Work can create wealth for individuals This wealth, stewarded properly, can create a wealthy society However, wealth procured by theft or government extraction is not valuable and leads to moral decay Scripture teaches that serving the Lord, not money, ought to be man s priority Augustine, one of the early Christian thinkers to promote the value of commerce, established a theology of possessions distinction between material things and the possession of those things, distinction between using and enjoying material possessions, and claim that the best thing one can do with possessions is give them away This theology gave legitimacy to non secular callings and the eventual involvement of the church in the birth of capitalism Wealth should be used to honor God In his book, City of God, Augustine argues that man is not naturally political, but was forced to become so when sin entered the world He depicts the City of God as the rule of God in the hearts of those who love him and the City of Man as the company of men and women who are dominated by self love rather than by love for God p 45 Brand cites Solomon as an example of a man who resided in the City of Man He argues that Solomon did not create or produce his great wealth, he extracted it His practice of confiscation of glory for his own kingdom was passed to his son, Rehoboam A Christian s primary commitment is to God, even if it brings them into conflict with the state.Brand continues to refer to Solomon and Rehoboam in his discussion on the use of taxation to expand the administrative state He draws a direct correlation between Solomon s extraction of wealth and the moral weakness and corruption that followed him and his family Wealth is not a sin, but the confiscation of property is The growth of bureaucracy and the redistribution of wealth is often a quest for political power masked by a fa ade of philanthropy Brand argues that crony capitalism is not an independent venture, but a corrupt enterprise funded by other people s money through guaranteed loans and artificial price inflation.After examining work, wealth, government, and taxation, Brand concludes with the relationship between government and political economy In order for businesses to flourish, there needs to be a general commitment to moral business transactions The Socialist model Marx and the governmental management model Keynes are inconsistent with Christian principles The free market model Smith is the only model that makes sense in the framework of a Biblical worldview This model does not begin with the individual and his selfish concerns, but with a general concern for his community A market entrepreneur succeeds by providing goods or services that are affordable and cutting edge without the assistance of government subsidies A political entrepreneur succeeds by influencing legislation or petitioning for money to aid in the success of his business In its infancy, the United States was an environment where market entrepreneurship thrived Brand argues that the environment of the United States has evolved into one that facilitates political entrepreneurship Pastors and Christian leaders ought to be concerned with economic issues because the Bible is concerned with economic issues An understanding of these issues will help pastors to better understand what is going on around them and communicate the state of the political and economic climate to their congregations Pastors who understand economics can promote acomprehensive model of Christian discipleship Pastors need to communicate the importance of a theology of work and economics Finally, and arguably most importantly, pastors and Christian leaders need to help people understand the theological implications of politics The Baptist church and many other denominations have spread the gospel and planted churches in a model of ecclesiastical entrepreneurship that reflects free market values A commitment to limited government and religious liberty will allow people to flourish both economically and spiritually

  2. says:

    Chad Brand, Flourishing Faith A Baptist Primer on Work, Economics, and Civic Stewardship Grand Rapids, MI Christian s Library Press, 2012 Paperback Kindle Flourishing Faith by Chad Brand is a primer on political economy from a Baptist perspective It was commissioned by the Acton Institute and was the first of four similar volumes to appear, the others being written from Pentecostal, Wesleyan, and Reformed perspectives I have reviewed the Pentecostal primer and will review the Wesleyan on Chad Brand, Flourishing Faith A Baptist Primer on Work, Economics, and Civic Stewardship Grand Rapids, MI Christian s Library Press, 2012 Paperback Kindle Flourishing Faith by Chad Brand is a primer on political economy from a Baptist perspective It was commissioned by the Acton Institute and was the first of four similar volumes to appear, the others being written from Pentecostal, Wesleyan, and Reformed perspectives I have reviewed the Pentecostal primer and will review the Wesleyan one soon The Reformed primer has not been published yet.Brand s book has several strengths First, it is clearly and succinctly written, as should be expected in such an introductory work Second, it does an admirable job of summarizing biblical teaching and historical developments as they relate to work, wealth,and the political economy Third, it recognizes that a Baptist political economy teaches many things that are commonly held by Christians, especially Protestant Christians Fourth, it highlights those areas in which Baptists better, baptistic Christians have a unique perspective on political economy.Historically, baptistic strands of Christianity trace their roots to 16th century Radical Reformers e.g., the Anabaptists or to 17th century English separatists e.g., Baptists Both strands separated the institutions of church and state to a degree unprecedented before Constantine s conversion to Christianity in A.D 312 Post Constantinian Christianity generally and the Magisterial Reformation specifically saw church rites i.e., infant baptism, confirmation, communion as the gateway to civic participation They viewed the church as the state s moral tutor and the state as the church s legal protector and occasional enforcer Because everyone was a Christian, if only nominally, the church understood itself to be composed of both sinners the visible church and saints the invisible church By contrast, baptistic Christianity required professed faith as the condition of baptism, viewed the church as a community of visible saints, and took a dim view of state supported faith as a violation of the individual s religious freedom.In the American experiment, Baptists often took an outsized role in pushing for independence and religious freedom Although well known 20th century American Baptists Walter Rauschenbusch and Harry Emerson Fosdick among Social Gospellers, Ron Sider and Craig Blomberg among evangelicals have been critical of capitalism, Brand draws a logical connection between religious freedom, political freedom, and free markets that is plausible, to my mind anyway.But that connection raises my two reservations about the book First, the Anabaptists as opposed to the Baptists typically have not concluded that their theological and ecclesiological commitments align with Brand s conservative, GOP friendly political economy Not even Brand s fellow Baptists have drawn these conclusions see the four Baptists mentioned above This suggests that Brand s brand of Baptist political economy is a plausible, though not necessary, outcome of baptistic theological and ecclesiological commitments.Second, while I m sympathetic to Brand s political economy, I m concerned that some readers will dismiss his interpretation of the baptistic tradition because of several pointed critiques of the Obama administration While I think that Brand s critiques score several palpable hits, I m unconvinced that he needed to make them in an introductory text such as this Primers should draw a picture in broad strokes rather than in fine lines, sticking to the general rather than the particular, and the long term rather than the right now As it is, Brand s critiques seem unnecessarily partisan One year after the book s publication, they re already losing their freshness, quickly approaching their sell by date, if they have not already passed it.In sum, Flourishing Well outlines a plausible Baptist political economy composed of a visible church, a limited state, and a free market but it should ve avoided critiquing the Obama administration.P.S If you found my review helpful, please vote Yes on my .com review page

  3. says:

    Read my review here Read my review here

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