Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness:
A Christian Perspective on Capitalistic Society
According to Adam Smith, one of the founding fathers of capitalism, the wealth of nations comes inextricably through the free competition among individuals and among nations. This manifesto is a product of the enlightenment and played and integral part in the development of our nation’s current economy. Moreover, it is our duty as Christians to compare these capitalistic ideals, which prevail in our own nation, to the foundational beliefs of a Christian worldview.
As a believer I believe in the equality of human beings. As a human being it is our God given right to pursue life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Furthermore, it is a biblical call to be gracious stewards of the earth and all its inhabitants. In the opening chapter of Business Through the Eyes of Faith there are 11 criterion offered for how an economy can fit the demands of God. The fifth principal was especially congruent with my overall worldview as a Christian. It says, “The system should provide meaningful work for all people and provide opportunities for them to contribute to the welfare of society.” Furthermore, the eighth principal also expresses themes of equality and freedom. It says, “Power and access to power should be spread equitably throughout the system.” All in all, I believe it is only through a free market economy that all men and women can be offered equal rights to perform business and successful trade with our nation and other nations around the world.
On the contrary, there are many intellectual thinkers and other historical economies which are incongruent with the ideas of Adam Smith and other capitalists. Traditionally, they argue that the eradication of social classes and the equal distribution of wealth is the road to a refined social order of peace, health, and overall equality. This perspective is intriguing to me yet at the same time I believe it is...