Charles Mizrahi was on my radio program recently to talk about his article, “Prosperity and Generosity: The Biblical Roots of Capitalism.” Although we often talk about the Bible and capitalism, this interview was a bit different because he is Jewish and used Old Testament passages to promote the idea of free enterprise.
He wrote his article because he was so disturbed by politicians and young people bemoaning our economic system. Instead, they were calling for more government programs in a march toward socialism. He argued that history has not provided an example of more government programs and bailouts creating wealth for its citizens or resulting in more freedom.
He reminds us that often wealth and prosperity were signs of blessings from God. Deuteronomy 8:18 says, “Remember that it is the LORD your God who gives you the power to get wealth, in fulfillment of the covenant that He made on oath with your fathers, as is still the case.”
He also reminds us that wealth is not to be hoarded or to be used for self-gratification. God calls for us to be generous with the resources God has placed in our hands.
He also points to passages that call for us to be generous to the poor. We read in Deuteronomy 15:11, “There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded towards your fellow Israelites who are poor and needy in your land.”
God intended that we use our wealth and prosperity to provide for others in need. He describes the guidance given to the Israelites in order to help those who couldn’t help themselves: the resident alien, the widow, and the orphan.
We need to hear more messages like his. He calls for us to work hard, invest, and help our neighbors based on biblical principles.