Tuesday, April 25, 2000

Godly Materialism

by John Schneider

A few years back, I did some reading on stewardship, the concept of how we Christians are supposed to use the things God has given us. It was truly depressing. All of the books I found either took the monastic point of view that we have to abandon all possessions and live in poverty, or they said to go ahead and live your fat, suburban lifestyle -- just make sure that the church gets their cut. Godly Materialism is closer to the latter, but it doesn't ignore  our responsibility to use God's gifts properly. the basic premise is that God made the world to be enjoyed by humanity. Sin has tainted the good things of this world and our ability to enjoy it, but the basic ability to delight in God's good creation remains. The book goes on to point out that we also have the responsibility to share that delight, broken as it is. Good stewards would not only control their own delight, but work to make sure that those around them can share in as well. (Schneider argues that the individual does not have the responsibility to personally right every injustice in the world. God will undoubtedly show us enough injustice at our doorstep to keep us busy.) This one's going on my shelf, if I can find a cheap copy.

LibraryThing link


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