In his letter to the Philippians, Paul prayed that the Philippians’ love would abound “with knowledge and all discernment” (Phil 1:9) so that they would be able to “approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God” (Phil 1:10). Paul’s ultimate concern was the purity and fruitfulness of Christ’s people, and love that was characterized by knowledge and discernment was a central aspect of this concern. Continue reading “Does Fair Trade Coffee Really Help the Poor?”
In this article I want to interact with several misconceptions that people often have about wealth, poverty, and what the Bible says about both. Some of these mistaken ideas can be found in print, others are of a more urban-legend variety. All of them are false and unhelpful.
Myth #1: Money is the root of all evil
This phrase still gets thrown around in different contexts to this day, but it is not what Paul actually says in his letter to Timothy. Actually, Paul tells his young protege that the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. In the context of 1 Tim 6, Paul is warning of the temptations that attend the desire to be rich. Yet, given this warning, it must be acknowledged that it is by God’s design that societies function through the exchange of goods and services and flourish when this exchange is conducted with honesty and integrity. When people love money (instead of God and people) they will act unlawfully to get more money, exploit and defraud other people (James 5:4), break laws, hoard their possessions (Luke 12:13-21), and act selfishly. But the love of money is the problem, not the money itself. Continue reading “16 Myths About Wealth, Poverty, and the Bible”