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South Africa needs more than an economic solution, it needs a moral transformation.

It has been said: “South Africa needs an economic solution.” The main reason for war is; Economic gain or survival.[1]  Even territorial expansion, and nationalism has economic undertones. The huge price and sacrifice of war is justified by the believed future financial gain.

Helene Lewis Opperman, wrote a terrific book on psycho-History “Apartheid Britain’s Bastard Child”[2] explains in great detail how the power-hungry greed of Rhodes, was the main drive behind the Boer war.

The current discrepancies of inequality, 37% unemployed citizens, white people generally earning more than black people, the impenetrable market monopolies, passive economic gains of capital requiring no real labor, feels unfair and unjust. These wrongs needs to be corrected. Populist political parties propagate a ‘Robin Hood’ short term approach, as the apparent solution.  The Political Sphere constitutes opposing parties competing against the other, resulting in divisions on local Municipal platforms, instead of fighting for all South Africans.  The greatest threat and danger currently in SA is the premise that theft, expropriation without compensation, forceful over-powering, entitlement as a just compensation, retribution for the mistakes and pain of the past.  This is a short-term band-aid solution and does not deal with the source of the pain.

Inequality is as old as civilization.[3] Think about your first spelling test in grade one. There are those who passed, and those who did not. Even children sharing the food, there is inequality, for one’s food is nicer than the other. Traveling and visiting different countries, one is acutely aware of perceived well-being proficiency and comforts in one country, vs another’s abject deprivation, shortages, lack and broken systems.  Before God we are considered equal, but in talent, intellect, physical abilities, we are not. The Biblical theme is to use that what one has received each according to their own ability and multiply it. Multiplying one’s talents, resources, gifts and abilities involves business, and hence an economy or market.

The market is also as old as man-kind. At first, we bartered goods, to get what we need. Later currencies were introduced. But central to market is relationships, which involves communication, ethics, morality, and perceived goodness.

In September 1970 Milton Friedman published an article in The New York Times Magazine, “The Social Responsibility of Business is to Increase its Profits.” Friedman, who has received the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1976, is probably the most influential economist of the second half of the twentieth century. His views have become the mainstream economic thinking. [4] Greed and profit for too long has been the focus of Capitalism, at the cost of moral and ethical right-wiseness. Eventually pure market capitalism implodes on itself, as the inequality increases exponentially culminating in more protests, civil unrest, crime, influx of immigrants, and civil war.

Henry Hazlitt, reveals that economics and ethics: …are, in fact, intimately related. Both are concerned with human action, human conduct, human decision, human choice… There is hardly an ethical problem, in fact, without its economic aspect. Our daily ethical decisions are in the main economic decisions, and nearly all our daily economic decisions have, in turn, an ethical aspect. [5]

The Bible addresses a wide range of economic topics. For example, the parables of the pounds (Luke 19:12-26), of the hired servants (Matthew 20:1-16), and of the talents (Matthew 25:14-30) are essentially economic in nature. They deal with money, interest (usury), profit and loss, wages, entrepreneurship, and contractual relations.  The Bible does not directly expound principles of economics. It does, however, provide the essential framework for the systematic development of economic science.

He who is loose and slack in his work is brother to him who is a destroyer and he who does not use his endeavors to heal himself is brother to him who commits suicide. Proverbs 18:9 AMP

“Confidence in an unfaithful man in time of trouble is like a broken tooth or a foot out of joint.” Proverbs 25:19 AMP

“One sinner destroys much good.” Ecclesiastes 9:18b

YOU WILL BECOME POOR IF:

Neclect discipline and correction – Poverty and shame come to him who neglects discipline (Prov. 13:18)

Not living a life of purpose – he who follows worthless pursuits will have poverty in plenty (Prov. 28:19)

Talking and not doing – mere talk tends only to poverty (Prov. 14:23)

Wickedness – their abundance, wealth and pre-eminence will not remain (Ezek. 7:11)

Pride – the Lord will cast Tyre’s wealth into the sea (Zech. 9:4)

Spending unwisely – she had spent all that she had and was no better but rather worse (Mark 5:26); when he had spent everything (Luke 15:14)

Laziness – do not love sleep lest you come to poverty (Prov. 20:13)

Letting things go – a negligent hand causes poverty (Prov. 10:4)

Wrong priorities – he who loves pleasure will become poor (Prov. 21:17)

Addiction – the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty (Prov. 23:21)

The greatest exclusion is racism: People feel excluded by definition of their race, not their performance. This is a huge problem: For sentiments, perceptions, are very hard to break. Yet leaders like Madiba, Vusi Thembekwayo, Thuli Madomsela, Judge Mogoeng Mogoeng, and others are breaking these perceptions by a Christ-centred ethic, fairness, values of hard work and common good.

“Changing a nation does not start with the president, it starts with the church.”[6]

“Reform the Church to reform the land” [7]

As a recent survey of the history of Christianity in sub-Saharan Africa notes, ‘South Africa is a nation of black Christians’ (Isichei, 1995: 299-322). While South Africa is certainly not an exclusively Christian country, Christian discourse, practices and social formations have come to predominate in public and personal religious life. Notoriously unreliable census data can only hint at the magnitude of Christian affiliation. Although declining from 77 per cent in 1980, Christianity still accounted for the religious affiliation of 66 per cent of the South African population in 1991. By any reckoning, Christianity provides the basic religious frame of reference for the majority of South Africans.[8]

One can only pray for the true Christians, sons and daughters of God, followers of Christ, to arise in South Africa:

For [even the whole] creation (all nature) waits expectantly and longs earnestly for God’s sons to be made known [waits for the revealing, the disclosing of their sonship].Rom 8:19

Evidently, if we say South Africa needs an economic solution, we need to acknowledge that in reality we need a moral solution.

 

 

 

 

[1]https://owlcation.com/social-sciences/The-Main-Reasons-For-War

[2]Helene, Lewis Opperman. Apartheid Britain’s Bastard Child, http://a.co/d/hP5DPMw

[3]Branko Milanovic The Haves and the Have-Nots: A Brief and Idiosyncratic History of Global Inequalityhttp://a.co/d/4qOaYjR

[4]http://evonomics.com/role-of-morality-in-a-capitalist-economy/

[5]http://jpatton.bellevue.edu/biblical_economics/morality-economics.html

[6]New Nation Movement https://www.facebook.com/groups/331893774048946/about/

[7]Dr Andre Pelser

[8]Chidester. David, Tobler. Judy, and Wratten. Darrel, Christianity in South Africa: An Annotated Bibliography, Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1997

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Sermons

10 thoughts that should never enter your mind.

There is a demonic ongoing siege on our minds!

It is therefore important to raise the defence of the knowledge of Christ and bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. 2 Cor 10:4-6 “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God” Rom 8:7.

10 type of thoughts never allowed:

The following are a list of cognitive distortions; thoughts we should never allow to have any occupation in our minds.  These thoughts have no outcome, cannot be accomplish, it occupies your mind and lead to death and destruction.

  1. Blaming: Anna Russell ‘Psychiatric Folksong’ touches on this very human tendency, to always blame others, instead of taking responsibility and own up to our own weaknesses. This sinful tendency was evident at the original sin.  Genesis 3:8–13.

At three I had a feeling of

Ambivalence toward my brothers

And so it follows naturally

That I poisoned all my lovers.

But now I’m happy; I have learned

The lesson this has taught,

That everything I do that’s wrong

Is someone else’s fault.

We believe it is someone else’s fault, instead of seeing and recognising our part.  The reality is: blaming does not change anything. If someone has done you evil: rebuke them Luk 17:3. Or go and make a case at the police, and let the law take its course, to punish the wrong doer.  Blaming, leads to gossip and slander, and murmuring. Faith cannot exist in this atmosphere.

  1. Suspicion: apprehensive, careful, cautious, doubtful, incredulous, jealous, mistrustful, sceptical, watchful, in doubt, questioning, suspect, suspecting, unbelieving, without belief, without faith. Suspicion is the belief that others are deceptive or malevolent without evidence. A suspicious mind is the result of a lack of intimacy or deep meaningful friendships. Trust issues often come from early life experiences and interactions. These experiences often take place in childhood. Some people do not get enough care and acceptance as children. Others are abused, violated, or mistreated. These things may lead to difficulty trusting as an adult. Social rejection in one’s teens may shape their ability to trust. Some teens are bullied or treated as outcasts by peers. This can influence later relationships. Being betrayed or belittled by others impacts self-esteem. Self-esteem also plays a large role in a person’s capacity to trust. People with low self-esteem may be less likely to trust others. Those with higher self-esteem may be more self-assured. Jesus knew people’s thoughts, and what is in them, yet he never became suspicious and cautious, he continued to love, heal, deliver them and do good. John 2:23-25 He knew that Judas will betray Him Mat 26:25, and Peter would deny Him Mat 26:34, yet He kept His course.
  2. Guessing: “Folly is pleasure to him who is without heart and sense, but a man of understanding walks uprightly [making straight his course]. Where there is no counsel, purposes are frustrated, but with many counselors they are accomplished.”Prov 15:21-22. Academic studies forces you into a pattern, of grounding your thoughts on empirical researched facts. This requires hard work, confrontation, and deliberate scrutinization of statements or information. Presumptions not based on factual data, is foolish.  Guessing also leads to the imagination getting out of hand. Guessing has led to people making grave mistakes in their life.
  3. Worry: If worry worked, start a business and employ professional worry-ers, who can grow the business! Therefore I tell you, stop being perpetually uneasy (anxious and worried) about your life.Mat 6:25 “Be anxious for nothing” Phil 4:6 Worry causes you to only see the troubles, not the solutions. You get fixated with what can go wrong, instead of the possibilities. Worry cannot produce anything. If you have reason to worry, act on it. This is good and healthy. If worried about your finances: Reduce your expenses, start saving, give up some luxuries.
  4. Projecting: We usually project our own views, character, values, and views on others, thinking they ought to think like us. The truth is however: most people do not. “This person should have done this or that, because it is what I would have done.” Is totally unproductive.  This is what led Elijah to become so depressed after calling fire from heaven. 1 Kings 19:4. He was expecting that Ahab & Jezebel would turn their hearts to God and repent of their evil. They did not, instead they send messengers to kill him.
  5. Negative faith: Getting bad news, be usually by faith can imagen the worst. This has not yet happened, but we believe it. This is faith, but faith based on your fears, not on God’s spoken word. A good heart is willing to take risks to act against negative expectations and belittling stereotypes when dealing with a person. Paul said, “Love believes all things, hopes all things” (1 Corinthians 13:7). I think he meant that love strives to believe and hope for the best, not the worst.
  6. Regrets: Jeremiah regrets the day he was born. Jer 20:14-18 This is totally counter-productive. Replaying the past in your head, trying to achieve a better outcome, has no effect on reality. It is a total waste of time. “do not cry over spilt milk” Embrace your mistakes and makes them lessons. There is no waste in Nature, everything is recycled to create new life.  Learn to use mistakes, failures, miss-haps, and even bad circumstances to rise, to grow, to produce new life.
  7. Shame, guilt, condemnation: Learn to discern between misplaced-shame, and good healthy shame. Peter explains that Christians who do what is right have no reason to feel ashamed for what is right. Yet when they do wrong, they will stand ashamed.1 Pet 4:16. Therefore there is no condemnation in Christ Rom 8:1. Most people feel guilty all the time, or that they are not good enough. Surely they have not yet been awakened to His righteousness. 1 Cor 15:34 and have not yet received His sonship. John 1:12.
  8. Futile thoughts. Job 15:31; Ps 94:11 “became futile in their thoughts” 2 Kin. 17:15; Jer. 2:5; Eph. 4:17. Not serving God is futility. Sin leads your thought to become dull. You cannot think straight.  There is no outcome. If I have to go and do this:  Will God be glorified? 1 Corinthians 10:31 Will it build, edify or breakdown? 1 Cor 14:26 Can anyone do something about it? James 1:22 (Doers of the Word) What will be the end-result? What will be the fruit or consequences? What will be the outcome? Is it faith? 2 Cor 13:5; Is it scriptural? Heb 4:11; Is it faith? 2 Cor 13:5 Is it scriptural? Heb 4:11 Does it reflect the fruit of the Spirit? Gal 5:21-22
  9. Cause & Effectthinking (The book of Job, his friends was locked into this type of thinking) Some religious people can only think in linear patterns of cause and effect, black and white, dualism. Beware of overthinking, analysing… the thought is perfected in the doing, not the thinking. The friends of Job were convinced that the cause of Job detriment was his sin, if he would only repent, God will favour him again.  In the end none of them knew God, not even Job. God is sovereign. He can do anything.