Money Matters: Faith, Life, and Wealth

Paul R. Stevens and Clive Lim. Eerdmans, $19.99 trade paper (192p) ISBN 978-0-8028-7751-2
In this robust study, Lim (Chinese Entrepreneurship in Singapore) and Stevens (Work Matters), both professors of marketplace theology at Regent College, draw on Christian scripture, the history of money’s use throughout world history, and their own financial and spiritual backgrounds to offer suggestions for Christians wondering about the role of money in their faith lives. With remarkable clarity, the authors summarize economists’ and anthropologists’ theories on how money emerged in human society and assert that the use of currency in ancient temples provides money a “canopy of sacredness” and an “insidious tendency to pull on our heart strings for security and power” that needs to be overcome. The authors suggest that the way to keep money in perspective is to have an “integration of faith and life” so that all one’s activities are done with a focus on serving God—and money becomes one of many gifts from God that one has responsibility to use. To that end, Lim and Stevens recommend financially supporting developing countries and underserved populations through direct mutual aid and microeconomic development projects. The authors overreach at times with claims to the universality of their perspective, and a perfunctory attempt to examine how money functions in Korean churches falls flat. Overall, though, this is a strong introduction to the social history of money from a Christian perspective. (Jan.)
Reviewed on : 11/11/2020
Release date: 01/01/2021
Genre: Religion
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