(CCU Student) Outside of the encapsulated paradise, Adam and Eve fled once man chose the path of sin. Regardless of interpretation, personal exegetical views, or interpretation, reasonably prudent readers of the Bible (Christian or non) can agree that when sin was first experienced—reality immensely shifted. Further extensioning, the presence of sin insured economic systems would ALL be fallible in some regard.
Two modern paradigms I would like to bring up are North and South Korea. Interestingly, one being the least free economic system in the world, the other being amongst the top three least government controlled economies.
Radically opposite but not quite, people in the North live in an ubiquitous society where deification, animalistic-dehumanizing, incarceration, and public execution are nationwide tools used to instill obedience, fear, and extend loyalty. People in the South are economically free to act as Adam Smith, Ayn Rand, and self-deterministic thinkers would advocate.
Although the two radically oppose each other on many levels—they still have two things in common: (1) sin and (2) levels of economic fallibility.
What does this mean and why should we care? It means hoity-toity critics proposing liberation theology need to take a step back and examine the root cause of tyranny by undertaking the opposite root (or route): selecting donation to charities, aiding the poor, funding operations for those who cannot afford them, but by no means should we trust a state to dictate whether I do so and to what extent. It means Christians need to acknowledge that free-systems of government propagate extenuating social freedom to evangelize; while further understanding that there WILL be places to point fingers towards ‘unholy’ scenarios.
An example would be the exploitation and biblically unethical forms of business practice that can be exerted in a non-command-economy; however, while that system may allow such actions of free will, it never puts one’s life in grave danger; unlike the 97% controlled economy in North Korea, the blanketed poverty of Equatorial Guinea, the subjugation of women in the Middle East and North Africa, the pompous corruption in Venezuela, and the list goes on.
Face it, there are trillions of ways countries can operate, but only a handful of directions the economy can shift: more control———–less control. Economically, the examples of econometric statistics from centuries of data prove people live better when this paradigm shifts right (directionally). Fallibility? Indeed, but what an easier environment to share the gospel and teach your children wholesome values. How do you feel about somebody telling you how to raise your children, pay for operations, or whom to send papers to? Think about what less restriction could do to advance the Christian faith!
Do not be ashamed of what you believe. For if the chips are thrown on the table, your personal convictions need not be tested, shifted, or torn. Remember results of free debate between non-believers and Christians. Such a debate would never be had without risk of fatality on the other end of the spectrum. Furthermore, let us acknowledge the fallibility of economic systems, and use our contextualization skills to fight for what works best on a macro level, so we can begin sharing the gospel on a micro level.
These are merely thoughts, provocations, and questions—but keep remembrance of what the wise, C.S. Lewis said, “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”