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Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism Is the Solution and Not the Problem
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Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism Is the Solution and Not the Problem

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  324 ratings  ·  72 reviews
Does capitalism promote greed? Can a person follow Jesus's call to love others and also support capitalism? Was our recent economic crisis caused by flaws inherent to our free market system? Jay Richards presents a new approach to capitalism, revealing how it's fully consistent with Jesus's teachings and the Christian tradition, while also showing why this system is our be ...more
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published May 5th 2009 by HarperOne (first published 2009)
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W. Littlejohn
This book is laced with ironies. And not good ones, either. (By the way, I will admit up front that I did not finish this book. I made it to the halfway point, and then determined that to continue, with no promise that I would ever be offered a coherent argument, was merely an act of self-flagellation. If you think that the second half would disprove anything I say in here, do let me know). The author repeatedly adopts the stance, so attractive to American audiences, as the champion of common-se ...more
Douglas Wilson
One of the best books I have read in some time. What a good business. A detailed review to follow.
Though many things this book says are true, if you step out of its well-worn grooves of debate and take a broader look, it stands out as very secular, even pagan, for a professedly Christian book. This is fairly common for political conservatism. Though Christian political conservatives trumpet a biblical antithesis in many other areas of life, when it comes to politics they just give up and bow to the Enlightenment way, especially the American way (I did the same thing for several decades).

This is a book written to enable Christians to turn their back on the poor and sick without feeling any guilt. If I would list every instance in which the author gets something wrong, misrepresents a concept, or just plain out right misleads the reader, I would have to write a document that would be longer than the book itself.
There are a number of instances in which the author makes outrageous claims without any substantiation. For example on page 23, he refers to the communal living of the ear
Mike Kolsky
A Christian defense of capitalism.

I enjoy a lot of the philosophy of Ayn Rand, but could never wrap my head around her insistence that selfishness and greed are virtues. They are not. Richards is very clear: selfishness and greed are NOT virtues, but capitalism is the only economic philosphy that succeeds and treats people justly in spite of greed. The only way a greedy businessman can succeed is to provide quality products at decent prices that customers choose.
Jeff Irwin
This book has remarkable insights into the nature of wealth creation. Each chapter debunks a myth associated with capitalism and shows why it really is the best system in a fallen world and should be better understood by Christians.
Very good factual rebuttal to common objections to Capitalism from the "religious" Left.
Jason Isaacs
In “Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism is the solution and not the problem” Jay Richards details and refutes eight common myths about capitalism. Richards is responding to the mounting arguments that the values of Christianity and capitalism are incongruous: a person cannot be a Christian and accept an economic system based on a profit incentive. He rebuts these claims through a combination of philosophic inquiry and personal experience.

Richards tackles some of the most common issues involved
A good book, and perhaps much needed, but for some reason not all that I had hoped it would be. The book begins well and even reminds me a lot of one of my favorite books of all time: Free to Choose by Milt and Rose Friedman. But somewhere it falls far short of that and in a way that I just can't quite put my finger on. Perhaps I expected the book to be the kind of thing I could loan to a Christian friend of different political perspective and hope that it could change his mind. When I finished ...more
The title is a bit misleading. It's roughly 90% a defense of capitalism, and 10% a discussion of how capitalism is not inconsistent with Christianity. I found that to be a good thing, that a Christian could discuss the merits of capitalism without playing the "God card."

Richards structures his book around objections that a believer might have to capitalism--he calls them "myths." So, Chapter 1 deals with the myth that socialism or communism is more "fair," or that early Christians were socialist
Josiah DeGraaf
On the one hand, this book does a good job in defending capitalism and the free market with regards to the responsibilities of the government, and Richards raises a lot of good points. I appreciated a lot of his thoughts in many of the different myths that he debunked. However, like other economic thinkers, Richards also falls into the trap of valuing economic efficiency above all else in the private/individual realm as well. I agree that when we give to charity, we want to avoid hurting people ...more
What a great book! Everyone should read this, because it is a sensible, careful, thoughtful, Christian account of what capitalism is, and what is possible with it. It answers the common objections with clarity, and makes a great case for free-market capitalism, as well as showing that it is consistent with Christianity and the proceeding worldview. In fact, it shows how capitalism just fits with a faith in Christ.
Michael A.
I read a section and it was typical neoliberal/conservative garbage. You can pretty much guess the arguments he makes for each section if you've ever been into a political debate before.
Jul 28, 2014 Andrew rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: econ
Richards has helped me so much by clearly debunking many of the myths I have wrestled with regarding Economics and Capitalism.

Richards has inspired me to study International Business. I've always been set on being a missionary in Africa, but now I'm planning to be an international businessman/missionary there.

Mad thanks to Jay Richards for his hard work. Him producing this book has benefited me as it has benefited him by me buying it--a win/win relationship. I hope to do excellent business in
felt like I got a good crash course in economics and made me think twice about a lot of things that I believe and why I believe them . . .
Joe Haack
I studied economics during my undergraduate days. Since then, I have struggled in two distinct ways: 1) Getting behind the formulas and symbolic maths to what is really at stake with economics, and 2) connecting my faith to what seemed to be wise and prudent economic principles. This book does a fine job of addressing both issues. To the first, Richards has a teacher's gift - regardless of whether you agree with Richards in the end you will learn a lot about economics if you read this. To the se ...more
Just what you want it to be: the basics done right. Easily readable, clear, and wise.

Also read Summer 2010.
Very much enjoyed this. One of the shortest, easily read books on economics ever, I would guess.
Brendan Walsh
Picked it up because it was the reading chosen by the leader of a discussion group I have attended on occasion. In short, its a pile of total bullshit. Demagoguery posing as economics. Totally disingenuous. Specious arguments abound. Basically tries to argue that because communism was a total failure, capitalism must be good and critics of capitalism and advocates of social welfare programs are--uniformly--fantasists, or, worse, enablers. Really made me desperate at the level of our public disco ...more
Donovan Richards
The Complicated Relationship between Money and the Church

The church holds a complicated relationship with capitalism. On one side, it praises business for its instrumental purpose within its walls. Business creates wealth which, in turn, funnels into Church programs through the donations of the congregation.

At the same time, business operates under self-interest, a seemingly anti-Christian position asserting “Greed is good”. What is the church to do? Free market wealth creation funds its project
John Gardner
Can a Christian be a capitalist?

This is an important question, and it is how Jay Richards opens his book. Many Christians would, of course, answer “yes”, but how many are able to logically defend that answer from Scripture in the face of so many challengers who argue that free market capitalism is inconsistent with Christian charity? Don’t passages such as Acts 2:42-47 depict a form of Christian socialism in the early church?

Even many of the free market’s biggest supporters seem to confirm this
This was actually a very good book. Richards writes smoothly and conversationally. The book is polemical, but not nasty. Witty, but not condescending. Richards successfully refutes many of the more popular criticisms of Capitalism that you might hear on a college campus, or from those in the church (especially emergent-types). Richards does this by discussing eight myths about capitalism. He does this towards the end of eight chapters, the topics of which lead into the myth.

I was pleased to see
Jay Richards provides an excellent case for free enterprise and capitalism and the compatibility with the Christian mind in this easy to read, yet enlightening examination of capitalisms greatest criticisms. Jay demonstrates that contrary to the proclamations of evangilists such as Jim Wallis, Tony Campolo and Ron Snider, capitalism is not only under the control of God, but promotes the values of Christianity better than other economic systems. The initial premise is that economics like biology, ...more
Richards takes a critical look at Capitalism, and finds that in a fallen world, that Captitalism is a system that is most likely to foster the creativity and productivity that is the hallmark of a creature created in God's image. It is human creativity that makes us unique and is our input into this world. Materials have already been created by God, but it is the spark of human creativity that bridges the gap between the material and the spiritual.

Captitalism is of course not perfect, and capti
Michael Smith
Our current culture "believes" that Capitalism is bad. This belief is propagated by leftist professors and politicians looking to "do good" for others. The problem is that Capitalistic societies have done so much for the societies that actually practice it. The complaints seem to be coming from people who don't like capitalism but don't have a good alternative. In other words, I've never met a socialist or leftist who advocates for same, they only say how bad capitalism is. Only children make ar ...more
Wade Stotts
Does a great job refuting common economic myths that typically disguise themselves as simple Christian piety, while also giving a positive Christian case for the morality of capitalism.

No matter your thoughts on capitalism, this book is worth a read.

Also contains a helpful critique of Ayn Rand's defense of selfishness.

If you have ever found yourself both enamored of and repulsed by the works of Ayn Rand, check this book out.
This has been one of the most enlightening economics books that I've ever read. Particularly since it was written with the Christian perspective in mind, I found this economic apologetic in defense of capitalism to be tremendously refreshing. In my experience, most people are completely illiterate as far as economics is concerned. Many people prefer the 'sound bytes' that they hear on the media, from Marxist professors, or from the most popular celebrity without caring to challenge their Leftist ...more
Melissa Henderson
I highly recommend this book, as it dissolves the mainstream media's invented conflict between capitalist and Catholic values. This book takes all the things I believe to be true about being a good Christian and patriot (YES they go together!!!) and puts it together so beautifully... in such a way to promote a meaningful, thoughtful defense to free market capitalism and the limited role of government.
This book is a must read for everyone, a very concise guide to thinking correctly about capitalism, money, greed and how all of this works for the believer. The analogies he uses are top notch. The explanations he gives for economic principles are simple and understandable unlike some of the more scholarly approaches to economics. Though he sites many different schools of thought.

He commits to the idea that Christians can enjoy the fruits of capitalism without feeling guilty. He believes that

Kind of a waste of time. He (maybe, sorta) shows half his subtitle, that Capitalism isn't the problem, but he makes no effort at all to even approach the other half that Capitalism is, therefore, the solution. Really all he does is Mythbust a list of straw men people accuse against capitalism. If those are really the only objections, then he has proved his side. I remain unconvinced.

His definition of the problem/cause of poverty as the lack of the creation of wealth is probably accurate, bu
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Jay W. Richards has served in leadership positions at the Discovery Institute and the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion & Liberty, and is currently a Visiting Fellow at the Heritage Foundation.

He has written many academic articles, books, and popular essays on a wide variety of subjects, from culture, economics, and public policy, to natural science, technology, and the environment. Hi
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