What does the good news of Jesus mean for economics? Too often, Christian teaching and ministry have focused only on the gospel's spiritual significance and ignored its physical, real-world ramifications. But loving our neighbor well has direct economic implications, and in our diverse and stratified society we need to grapple with them now more than ever. In The Economics of Neighborly Love pastor Tom Nelson sets out to address this problem. Marrying biblical study, economic theory, and practical advice, he presents a vision for church ministry that works toward the flourishing of the local community, beginning with its poorest and most marginalized members. Nelson resists oversimplification and pushes us toward more complex and nuanced understandings of wealth and poverty. If we confess the gospel of Jesus, he insists, we must contend anew with its implications for the well-being of our local communities. Together we can grow in both compassion and capacity.
Introduction 1. Neighborly Love 2. Made to Flourish 3. Human Fruitfulness and Material Wealth 4. The Fruitfulness of Faithfulness 5. Love the Neighborhood 6. Economic Wisdom 7. Wisdom and the Modern Economy 8. Wise Generosity 9. The Poor Among Us 10. Economic Injustice 11. Rebuilding the Ruins 12. Getting to Work 13. Hope for the World Notes
"With characteristic winsomeness and clarity, Nelson covers a wide range of topics from poverty to jobs and justice to entrepreneurship, providing a highly readable overview of biblically informed economic life. This pastor has taken the time to learn about the capacity that makes genuine compassion possible. Implicit in the book is a much-needed correction to the church: we've far too long avoided the work of thinking well about economics, as though somehow that sphere is detached from our spiritual life. Nelson shows us the Bible talks about economics through and through—it's just that too many pastors haven't been paying sufficient attention. Nelson has given us an accessible introductory textbook for understanding what makes for flourishing people and communities."
"For several years I have watched this book being born, growing out of Tom Nelson's remarkable work as a pastor in Kansas City, and increasingly as a teacher to the wider world. The Economics of Neighborly Love makes this simple argument: the everyday world is an economic world, and there are implications for who we are and how we live. Drawing on years of pastoral experience with people at work in the world, social analysis from across the political spectrum, relationships with good people doing good work in cities all over America, and most profoundly a commitment to biblical and theological reflection, this is a book for everyone who cares about the moral meaning of the marketplace."