Big Veda

In Hinduism, a Veda is a knowledge or truth writing. I don't pretend that this stuff is anything more than rumination. But through writing it I find a bit of knowledge or truth. Hope you find some truth too. PAX


Being Good Humanbeings

The September 2005 issue of Christianity Today included an editorial entitled "Neighbor Love Inc.: Christians in business have an honored place in God's plan." The author says:

"Most pastors do not feel equipped to discuss violations of business law at the top levels of major corporations. But the church does need to help its business people develop a fundamental understanding of what it means for Christians to engage in business."

Either this presumes that there are as many fundamental understandings of Christian behavior as there are vocations (or avocations). Or, the writer is saying that there is a different understanding of what it means to be a Christian in business than in medicine, engineering, or social work. In either circumstance, it seems that the author is missing the heart of the Christian message. Jesus did not address the various vocations of his followers whether they be fishermen, tax collectors, or prostitutes. This is precisely because the Christian message is one of communal righteousness. This is why we get broad commands such as:

  • "Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven... For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."
  • "No one can serve two masters... You cannot serve God and wealth."
  • "Do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your body, what you will wear."
  • "Do not judge, so that you may not be judged."
  • "Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road is easy that leads to destruction, and there are many who take it."
  • "For nothing is covered up that will not be uncovered, and nothing secret that will not become known."
The universality of these commands resist being co-opted by any one discipline. Further, these words are stripped of their purpose when applied as a specific business, medical, legal, scientific or social ethic. The point of these instructions, as well as the hundreds more given by Christ, is to make us understand how to be better members of humanity and, by implication, the community of the faithful.

Do pastors need to concern themselves with helping its business people develop a fundamental understanding of what it means for Christians to engage in business? The two-word answer is "Hell no!" The role of pastor is complicated enough without asking him or her to understand all of the specific vocational issues their sheep are facing in their respective workplaces. If anything, the pastor should focus his or her attention toward the exact opposite goal: develop a fundamental understanding of what it means for Christians to engage in humanity. We are business people, carpenters, mechanics, teachers, doctors, etc. for a certain amount of hours a week and for a short period of our lives. We are human beings from the cradle to the grave. Is our energy better spent discipling our sheep to be good business people or to be good human beings?




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