Recently, one of our Advisory Council members and CG2017 speakers, Pastor Chris Brooks spoke on the topic, “The Church and the Moral Mandate of Economics.” In his talk, Brooks lays out some lessons learned while working to usher in flourishing to an economically distressed community in Detroit, Michigan. Brooks further develops these lessons learned in this talk but they can be summed up this way:
1. Poverty does not have to be permanent.
Poverty is not an incurable disease or condition. One remedy to poverty is encouraging and supporting the entrepreneurial spirit in others made in God’s image.
2. Diagnosis determines treatment.
In Brooks’ view, the church has misdiagnosed the source of poverty; and this has led to mistreatment. Poverty is chiefly not about a lack of money or material possessions; rather, poverty stems from the lack of positive relationships.
3. Communities need Christian economic development.
The aim of Christian led economic development will hopefully lead unbelievers to the ultimate positive relationship with Jesus Christ. Good deeds breeds good will; all of which can lead to the sharing of the good news.
4. Hyper-libertarianism and hyper-liberalism are insufficient solutions.
Rugged individualism which espouses government is inherently evil (hyper-libertarianism); and rugged collectivism (hyper-liberalism) which espouses government is the only solution are not suitable answers. Rather, government, business, and church must work together for the flourishing of the individual and family.
Brooks offers a path forward by concluding his talk with three keys to flourishing. We encourage you to listen to his talk in its entirety. Please find Brooks’ talk here.
Pastor Brooks is the Senior Pastor of Evangel Ministries, a thriving 1600 member church in the heart of Detroit. In 2009, Christopher published his first book, Kingdom Dreaming and finished his second book, Urban Apologetics in 2014. He is also the daily host of “Equipped for Life”, airing daily on the Salem Network, 1500 AM and a national live show “Equipped with Chris Brooks”, airing daily on Moody Radio. He was appointed the Campus Dean of Moody Theological Seminary’s Michigan Campus in September, 2013.