By What Standard?
We have to ask ourselves this question: "By what standard?" By what standard do we evaluate the claims of the socialists and interventionists? By what standard do we evaluate the claims of .the secular free market economists who reject socialism? By what standard are we to construct intellectual alternatives to the humanism of our day? And by what standard do we criticize the social institutions of our era?
If we say that the standard is "reason," we have a problem: Whose reason? If the economists cannot agree with each other, how do we decide who is correct? Why hasn't reason produced agreement after centuries of debate? We need an alternative.
It is the Bible. The ICE is dedicated to the defense of the
Bible's reliability. But don't we face the same problem? Why don't Christians agree about what the Bible says concerning economics?
One of the main reasons why they do not agree is that the question of biblical economics has not been taken seriously. Christian scholars have ignored economic theory for generations. This is why the ICE devotes so much time, money, and effort to studying what the Bible teaches about economic affairs.
There will always be some disagreements, since men are not perfect, and their minds are imperfect. But when men agree about the basic issue of the starting point of the debate, they have a far better opportunity to discuss and learn than if they offer only "reason, rightly understood" as their standard.
The ICE exists in order to serve Christians and other people who are vitally interested in finding moral solutions to the economic crisis of our day. The organization is a support ministry to other Christian ministries. It is non-sectarian, non-denominational, and dedicated to the proposition that a moral economy is a truly practical, productive economy.
The ICE produces several newsletters. These are aimed at intelligent laymen, church officers, and pastors. The reports are non-technical in nature. Included in our publication schedule are these monthly and hi-monthly publications:
Biblical Economics Today (6 times a year) Christian Reconstruction (6 times a year) Dispensationalism in Transition (12 times a year) Biblical Chronology (12 times a year)
Biblical Economics Today is a four-page report that covers economic theory from a specifically Christian point of view. It also deals with questions of economic policy. Christian Reconstruction is more action-oriented, but it also covers various aspects of Christian social theory. Dispensationalism in Transition is a critique of the various theological and historical errors in dispensationalism and reports on the massive revisions of contemporary dispensational theology. Biblical Chronology deals with studies in the chronology of the Bible as they relate to the reconstruction of ancient history.
The purpose of the ICE is to relate biblical ethics to Christian activities in the field of economics. To cite the title of Francis Schaeffer's book, "How should we then live?" How should we apply biblical wisdom in the field of economics to our lives, our culture, our civil government, and our businesses and callings?
If God calls men to responsible decision-making, then He must have standards of righteousness that guide men in their decision-making. It is the work of the ICE to discover, illuminate, explain, and suggest applications of these guidelines in the field of economics. We publish the results of our findings in the newsletters.
The ICE sends out the newsletters free of charge. Anyone can sign up for six months to receive them. This gives the reader the opportunity of seeing "what we're up to." At the end of six months, he or she can renew for another six months.
Donors receive a one-year subscription. This reduces the extra trouble associated with sending out renewal notices, and it also means less trouble for the subscriber.
There are also donors who pledge to pay $15 a month. They are members of the ICE's "Reconstruction Committee." They help to provide a predictable stream of income which finances the day-to-day operations of the ICE. Then the donations from others can finance special projects, such as the publication of a new book.
The basic service that ICE offers is education. We are presenting ideas and approaches to Christian ethical behavior that few other organizations even suspect are major problem areas. The Christian world has for too long acted as though we were not responsible citizens on earth, as well as citizens of heaven. ("For our conversation [citizenship] is in heaven" [Philippians 3 :20a].) We must be godly stewards of all our assets, which includes our lives, minds, and skills.
Because economics affects every sphere of life, the ICE's reports and surveys are relevant to all areas of life. Because scarcity affects every area, the whole world needs to be governed by biblical requirements for honest stewardship of the earth's resources. The various publications are wide-ranging, since the effects of the curse of the ground (Genesis 3: 17'-19) are wideranging.
What the ICE offers the readers and supporters is an introduction to a world of responsibility that few Christians have recognized. This limits our audience, since most people think they have too many responsibilities already. But if more people understood the Bible's solutions to economic problems, they would have more capital available to take greater responsibility - and prosper from it.
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Preparing for Armageddon, Natural Disasters, Nuclear Strikes, the Zombie Apocalypse, and Every Other Threat to Human Life on Earth. Most of us have thought about how we would handle various types of scenarios that could signal the end of the world. There are plenty of movies on the subject, psychological papers, and even survivalists that are part of reality TV shows. Perhaps you have had dreams about being one of the few left and what you would do in order to survive.