Resources

Books and Articles

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Marketplace Theology Resources
Title & Author Language Links Tags
Reading the Bible in the Global Marketplace by R. Paul Stevens
Sample
Reading the Bible in the Global Marketplace
R. Paul Stevens
Professor Emeritus, Marketplace Theology,
Regent College

“What do you teach at Regent College?” This seemingly innocent question was broached by the guest master of an Orthodox monastery. I had undertaken a four-day pilgrimage on Mount Athos, the monastic peninsula of the Eastern church. In the course of praying my way from monastery to monastery I struck up a soul friendship with one of the guestmasters. “Marketplace theology is what I teach.” “What’s that?” - his inquisitiveness now aroused by something foreign, he thought, to the spiritual life. “It is the integration of Christian faith with work in the world.” “It’s not possible,” he retorted.  “That’s why I am a monk.” I can understand how he came to that erroneous view. It has to do with how we read the Bible, how we regard the spiritual life and whether the God-coming of Jesus was really into the work-a-day world that we inhabit.

English
Money in Christian History by John G. Stackhouse, Jr.
Sample

Money in Christian History

by John G. Stackhouse, Jr.

Many medieval manuscripts blossom with splendid decorations: fabulous animals frolic within huge capital letters; lush vegetation curls through margins; and intricate abstract patterns form dazzling frames. By the year 1300, however, gothic manuscripts began to present more distasteful sights. In one of these drawings, a worried-looking ape crouches and defecates three coins into a golden bowl. In another, a monster-head vomits gold coins into a golden bowl. The subject of money—the subject Jesus is said to have addressed more often in the Gospels than any other—now shows up graphically in Christian reflection.

It shows up, furthermore, in all of the strong ambivalence that has characterized Christian views of money through the ages. Money is shiny and beautiful, but also somehow related to filth, waste, and evil. Sigmund Freud drew modern attention to the linkage between money and excrement. Our own colloquial speech makes plain our ambivalence and even antagonism toward money: that man over there getting out of the limousine is "filthy rich" or "stinking rich," while the poor fellow leaving the casino penniless has been, ironically, "cleaned out."

English
Profit by Don Flow
Sample

Profit, as defined by the accounting profession, is the excess of a business’s total revenues over total costs. Economists define pure profit as the amount of money remaining after making all payments for productive services and raw materials after the going rate of payments for the capital invested has been deducted. Profit is the estimated claim on wealth that can be used as capital for new efforts to create wealth. A Christian perspective on profit requires a correct understanding of what profit actually is, how it is created, who has a just claim on it and what role it plays in a business, all in the context of a biblical understanding of human nature, stewardship, justice and community.

English
Organizational Culture and Change by R. Paul Stevens
Sample

Culture is a dimension not only in the life of countries and ethnic groups but also in organizations. Every organization has a corporate “feeling” or environment that communicates to new and old members what is important and what is permitted. This is true of businesses, small groups, clubs, churches, nonprofit and parachurch organizations. The minute a person walks into the meeting room, the store, the office or the sanctuary, he or she picks up a nonverbal message that is more powerful than such mottoes as “The customer is number one”; “We exist to give extraordinary service”; “This is a friendly, family church.” Culture turns out to be profoundly influential in determining behavior, expressing values and enabling or preventing change.

English
Loyalty in a Short-Term World by Peter Curran
Sample
Loyalty in a short-term world
Peter Curran
In a bygone era of stable work structures, when the public sector held many jobs and industries looked invulnerable, loyalty was a two-way street. Many large organizations offered the deal of job security in exchange for loyalty and hard work. If you were loyal to the company by doing your job consistently and conscientiously, doing as you were asked, going the extra mile when necessary, then the company would reciprocate loyalty through security -- continued employment, career progression, and the benefits of lengthening service.
English
Business Ethics by David Gill
Sample
Business Ethics
by David W. Gill
 Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics (New York:Macmillan, 2005)
1. Introduction
“Business ethics” names both a phenomenon (“the ethics espoused and practiced in business”) and the field of study of that phenomenon (“the serious study of business ethics”). As a branch of ethics (or moral philosophy), business ethics is interested in how judgments of right and wrong, good and bad, moral obligation and responsibility, rights and duties, and the like, are made and justified. As a branch of applied ethics it explores how these judgments are carried out in a specific domain, in this case, that of work, commerce, and economic activity.
English
Day at Work: Love-Recovering the Christian Amateur by R. Paul Stevens
Sample

LOVE: 

RECOVERING THE AMATEUR STATUS OF THE CHRISTIAN

"To discover God in the smallest and most ordinary things,   as well as in the greatest, is to possess a rare and sublime faith.  To find contentment in the present moment is to relish and adore the divine will in the succession of all the things to be done and suffered which make up the duty to the present moment."
Jean-Pierre De Caussaude[i]
 
"What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God."
Luther[ii]

"Does God work?" Willie MacMichael asks his father in George Macdonald's book for children. His father answered biblically:

"Yes, Willie, it seems to me that God works more than anybody - for He works all night and all day and, if I remember rightly, Jesus tells us somewhere that He works all Sunday too. If He were to stop working, everything would stop being. The sun would stop shining, and the moon and stars; the corn would stop growing; there would be no apples and gooseberries; your eyes would stop seeing; your ears would stop hearing; your fingers couldn't move an inch; and, worst of all your little heart would stop loving."


[i]. Jean-Pierre De Caussaude, The Sacrament of the Present Moment Kitty Muggeridge, trans.(Glasgow: Collins, l981), 84.

[ii]. Martin Luther, quoted in Roland Bainton, Here I Stand......

English
Accurate Weights and Measures by Peter McCaroll
Sample
Introduction
In Larry Burkett’s Business By The Book1, he opens his chapter on “Discounting Decisions” with a case study of a car salesman. Burkett concludes the case study by quoting Proverbs 11:1 (“The LORD abhors dishonest scales, but accurate weights are his delight.”2) and submitting that the car salesman “has a different weight in his bag for different customers.”3
In this paper I will discuss the Biblical concept of “weights and measures,” and specifically the issue of unfair or differing weights and measures, and try to answer the question “what does it mean to use accurate weights and measures?” To do this I will identify and discuss biblical and background information in order to identify and reflect on essential principles that are contained within the biblical material.
English
Day at Work: Hope-Making Our Mark in Heaven by R. Paul Stevens
Sample
HOPE:
MAKING OUR MARK ON HEAVEN
            "How can Christianity call itself catholic if the universe itself is left out?"
                                        Simone Weil[i]
"I cannot think of a greater tragedy than to think that I am at home on earth...."
                                        Malcolm Muggeridge[ii]
"Only the heavenly-minded are of any earthly use."
                                        C.S. Lewis[iii]

 

            Years ago Leslie Newbigin said that "mankind is without any worthwhile end to which the travail of history might lead."[iv] A few believe we are heading into a new world order and paradise on earth but most people nurse a deep foreboding about the future, or refuse to think about it more than they must.  The seeming resultlessness of history erodes the nerve of modern persons including, I must add, Christians who have more reason to embrace the future wholeheartedly than anyone.  Whether world-weariness and future fright comes from the terrifying prospect of ecological doomsday, or, as is often the case with Christians like the Thessalonians, from the conviction that Jesus will probably come tomorrow, the result is the same for Christians: all work in this world except the so-called "ministry" is viewed as not very significant or enduring. 


[i]. Quoted in Matthew Fox, A Spirituality Named Compassion and the Healing of the Global Village, Humpty Dumpty and Us (Minneapolis, Mn.: Winston Press, l979), iv.  Check for original reference - footnote 3 in Fox preface.

[ii]. Malcolm Muggeridge, Jesus Rediscovered....p.

[iii]. C.S. Lewis, .....p.

[iv]. Leslie Newbigin, Honest Religion for Secular Man...p.

English
Day at Work: Faith-Discovering the Soul of Work by R. Paul Stevens
Sample
"And now these three remain: faith, hope and love.  But the   greatest of these is love." 
1 Corinthians 13:13
 
"We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ."    
1 Thessalonians 1:3

FAITH: DISCOVERING THE SOUL OF WORK

LOVE: RECOVERING THE AMATEUR STATUS OF THE CHRISTIAN

HOPE: MAKING OUR MARK ON HEAVEN

FAITH:

DISCOVERING THE SOUL OF WORK

            "There is no work better than another to please God; to pour water, to wash dishes, to be a souter (cobbler), or an apostle, all are one, as touching the deed, to please God."

William Tyndale[i]

            "Do you like your new job?" It was a foolish question, a very Western question to ask a Kenyan.  But Esther had been my student in a rural theological college in East Africa for three years.  She had hoped, like the others, upon graduation to be placed as a pastor of a church.  Instead she was given the enormously demanding task of being matron for three hundred girls in a boarding school.  It was a twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week job with little recognition and limited remuneration.  So I had reason to ask.  But her answer revealed a deep spirituality, one which I covet for Christians in my home country and myself.  She said, "I like it in Jesus."

 


[i]. William Tyndale, "A Parable of the Wicked Mammon," (l527) in Treatises and Portions of Holy Scripture (Cambridge: Parker Society, l848), 98, 104.

English

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