Reaction To Biblical Themes Used In Contemporary Business Situations Critical Thinking Example
Decisions of whether to relay or not upon an adherence to biblical themes in business and economics, sustains a basic and fundamental paradox. Some people are afraid if they adhere to the ideas of biblical applications in business, that they might go broke or encourage financial failure. The purpose of this critical-thinking paper designs to stimulate engagement of discussing thoughts about the ‘pros’ and ‘cons’ of the biblical themes as applied to contemporary business situations within a free-market economy. While it may be popular to assume the worse-case scenario when applying biblical themes to business practice, in the end this approach to decision making and management strategy may prove to be the best way to develop a successful formula for profitable outcomes in pursuit of greater revenues within a market economy.
One negative assumption for not utilizing biblical principles in business is that you will not be able to make much economic progress due to the fact that most businesses need to borrow capital, as a factor of life in order to grow their enterprises. This argument might quote the Bible verse that reads “The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender” (King James Version, Prov. 22:7). Taking this single scripture out of context does not mean the Bible makes wholesale prohibitions upon borrowing, but “there are firm guidelines,” and Scriptural principles clearly dictate “that the money borrowed must be paid back” (“Ten Most Asked about Borrowing”). For example, if an individual has an extremely low-income situation and is not in a realistic position to borrow, in order to finance a business, perhaps he or she needs to consider other ways of raising capital or changing the timeframe for launching a project. So the argument of not using biblical themes if a person borrows to start (or expand) the business, is not very sound.
The main principles driving biblical themes in business operations centers around ethical perspectives, such as not being greedy, acknowledging Creator God as the source of all blessing, developing fair practices such as have influenced Western civilization. For example, utilizing biblical themes does not need to conflict with economic principles that suggest controlling “the production, distribution, and consumption of the material means of satisfying human desires” (“Biblical Principles of Economics”). Joseph in the biblical portrayal of rising to only second in power compared to the Egyptian Pharaoh, wisely prepared for lean times while allowing for prosperity to evenly be established – even in the face of financial and doomsday-economic predictions. When Joseph put God first and sought higher wisdom, he was able to receive and assess the biblical answer to solving the problem.
It is not only a matter of necessarily following some kind of formulaic principles, although these concepts are part of following biblical themes when applied to business and economics, but the heart of the intention forms the core of what it means to follow godly-driven themes of management practices. In the story of Joseph, those familiar with the saga recall how he denied himself the wicked temptation of entering into a sexual relationship with Potiphar’s wife who threw herself at him. Obviously, given the reality of a man’s response mechanisms, it must have been difficult for Joseph to forego physical pleasure – as well as primarily strongly commit to his obedience to God no matter what the cost. As the story progresses, we know that Joseph paid dearly for his actions to deny his superior’s wife of engaging in a sexual affair, and was nearly executed by the Egyptian State for his so-called ‘raping’ of her, since she lied to her husband and the authorities when Joseph refused her. Therefore, a deep-seated covenant with God actually drives a person to act in concert with biblical themes in business and in life. According to the course handout by Michael Cafferky the tri-fold scriptural basis for the biblical themes rest upon: God’s character, the believer’s conduct, and the finished work of Christ Jesus. You cannot separate one from the other. While it is true that one may be able to give lip-service to the application of biblical themes in business, the outcome of its success or failure must embody the tri-fold depth of each aspect. In dependence upon, and recognition of God’s character coupled with a respect for Jesus’s redemptive work, a person can take hold of courage and commit to unwavering obedience to biblical themes and principles in business. Certain business owners who have been successful strive to be ethical, and use concepts of ‘morality’ however specifically utilizing biblical themes is different. Perhaps best reflective of this assessment is the admonition as follows: “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them” (Heb. 10:16). So under the true auspices of a commitment to biblical themes involves the whole heart and mind, and not just intending to be ‘ethical’ in business practices per se.
The naysayer towards exercising biblical themes in business applications might object to their use because he or she feels that people in business (employees, customers, or the competition) might take advantage of godly kindness and not being viciously greedy to succeed monetarily. While it is true that Joseph suffered in an imprisoned state of misery, it is equally true and perhaps more triumphantly – that the faithfulness, goodness, and mercy of the Living God delivered him and exalted Joseph to a high and prosperous state on the earth. Should others merely dismiss this example as an ancient one, the need to review a more contemporary case of how someone used godly principles to live his life and conduct business in this modern age of so many digital deceptions and unprincipled themes in advertising and business practices.
The name is Truett Cathy. Applying biblical themes, as a strategy to advancing success in contemporary business situations, may be the best way to pursue successful business outcomes as well as mitigate problems down the line. In the foregoing example, an ancient setting reminds readers that Joseph was able to wisely apply biblical principles to solve an impending economic lack of food in the land. A contemporary example is reflected in the case of one gentleman who understood the duty to resist demonic forces in the marketplace, while adhering to godly principles of diligence of sticking to values of excellence in the first place. The temptation to exploit others can be crushed by recognizing that all the environment is ‘God’s handiwork’ in the first place, as the class handout suggests. The founder of Chick-fil-A, Truett Cathy, seems so relaxed and happy that he has followed God’s principles in business stating that one Scripture stuck with him ever since childhood found in Proverbs, as Lightsey reports “reminder that ‘A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches’ ‘It is sort of my trademark,’ he says” (20). In a loving way towards his neighbors (all people) Cathy experimented to find the best breaded-batter for his chicken product for years, through trial and error, thus exercising great patience. Eventually, states Lightsey, the fast-food pioneer’s business grew to “over a $5-billion-a-year corporation” built upon simple godly principles about serving a simple boneless-chicken patty that would make his customers happy, and also instructed employees to say “It’s my pleasure,” while always “being kind to each other,” because Cathy believes the biblical theme of being kind and patient actually “pays great dividends” (20). Also, you never hear of Cathy engaging in any acts of corporate greed, abuse of employees, or philandering with sexual immorality – in the world today, his case proves that business success can be built upon an unwavering dedication to Christian themes from the Bible.
Elwart, Steve. “Biblical Principles of Economics.” Koinonia House, n.d. Web. 10 Feb. 2015.
The Holy Bible King James Version. Large Print Compact Edition. Nashville: Holman Bible
Publishers, 2005. Print.
Lightsey, Ed. “Simple Beginnings, Huge Successes.” Georgia Trend 28.6 (2013): 18.
MasterFILE Premier. Web. 10 Feb. 2015.
“Ten Most Asked Questions about Borrowing.” Cbn, Christian Broadcasting Network, n.d.
Web. 10 Feb. 2015.
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