Saturday, 21 June 2014

God-given Dominion over the Earth does not justify Capitalism

Some Christians argue that, unlike socialism and communism, capitalism teaches people to exercise what God has given to all people to use to serve God. God gives all people  natural resources and land, which is common property or land to use, whether they believe in Him or not. 

Then God said, 'Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground (Genesis 1:26).

They argue that capitalism, because people have to work to gain, teaches people to work hard and contribute to society, and discourages people from being slothful. However, the basis upon which capitalism is justified in this case can be used to justify communism, on the grounds that it can also be used to make people work together as a commune for the good of society. 

Another argument made by Christians who support capitalism is that the gain is proportional to the amount of work, as opposed to communism in which everyone including the slothful, earn money from being lazy. It follows from this premise that people are entitled to what they make for themselves, and therefore implies that people own what they have rather than God. The Bible makes it clear that God owns everything in the earth including humans, both in the Old and New Testament. 

Psalms 24:1: The earth is the Lord's, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.
Leviticus 25:23: The land is mine and you are but aliens and my tenants.
Haggai 2:8: 'The silver is mine and the gold is mine,' declares the Lord Almighty.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20: You are not your own; you were bought at a price.

Capitalism is not a school master to teach people how to use God-given resources. Rather the Bible is the school master. The cornerstone of capitalism is the idea of private property, which is human-owned property, as opposed to God-owned property. The issue is whether property is God-owned or human-owned. Both capitalism and communism embrace property to be owned by humans, rather than God. Thus, the dichotomy between capitalism and communism is false.