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THEO 303 (Sp '16) T26-27 - Business Ethics

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Hartmut Scherer

on 14 April 2016

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Transcript of THEO 303 (Sp '16) T26-27 - Business Ethics

Luke 18:25, For it is easier for a camel to go through
the eye of a needle than for a rich
person to enter the kingdom of God."

Luke 6:20, And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples,
and said: "Blessed are you who are poor,
for yours is the kingdom of God.
Sources and Image Credit
Adopted key thoughts from Scott Rae,
Moral Choices
, chapter 11.
Business Ethics
Special years in the Bible
- sabbatical year
- Israel: agriculture
- year of Jubilee
Economic life in biblical times and today
- today: information age economy
Zero-Sum Game
("limited good" - Foster)
- pool of economic resources is
relatively fixed (traditional society)
- profit of one = loss of another
- abuse: loaning money to poor people
at terms they could not repay
- contentment vs. envy (not ambition)
Wealth and Possessions in the Bible
- today the size of the economic pie is increasing
- Luke 18:25; 6:20
- 1 Tim 6:6-19: keep wealth in proper perspective
intrinsic value:
Work is valuable to God, because he is a worker and we are made in his image
instrumental value:
God ordained it prior to the fall
through work human beings can fulfill their role of exercising responsible dominion over creation
Biblical Principles for the Economic Life
- the created world is intrinsically
- human beings are
of these resources
- God is the ultimate
of all resources
responsible wealth creation
is part of the dominion
- created with
and a need for
Self-Interest or Greed
- both seek control of resources
- difference: how these resources are acquired
other people exist to serve
uses each other to survive
- 1 Tim 6:10: possession of wealth - love of wealth
- temptation to trust in wealth
"The rich get richer . . ."
- different cause-and-effect relationship
- wrong assumption (zero-sum game)
- compare the use of resources with productivity
- admit difference between creating wealth and
distributing wealth
Outsourcing Jobs
- (-) loss of jobs at home
- (+) companies stay competitive
- work is inherently
- persons
capable of working
are responsible for
supporting themselves and their families
- the community is responsible for taking care of
- human beings are not to exploit the
economic justice
is the provision of access to the
productive resources necessary for self-support
distributive justice
is based on merit and need
Are you wanting to benefit only yourself or help benefit your community as well?
Integrity of Life
(incl. the workplace)
- Ray Kroc's priorities
- lordship of Christ over all components of life
- compartmentalized life
- a life of integrity is something you
to have
- wisdom is seeing and responding from God's
Good Ethics - Good Business
- costly in the short term
- good ethics is always good business
- strong ethics doesn't mean making profit
The Engine of the Market Economic System
- trust, not greed
- company will lose customers
- no trust:
- employees less committed
- costly monitoring systems
Corporate Social Responsibility
- only to
social obligations to employees, suppliers, the community, the environment and the shareholders
- accepted obligation to avoid doing harm to the
- make things that will last the focus of your desire
- other virtues:
- hard work, diligence, thrift,
initiative, creativity, promise
keeping, truthfulness
Ethical Issues in International Business
- exploitation
- worker safety
- bribery
- different environmental standards
- minimum requirements to be protected:
Employment at Will
- hire and fire employees at will
- quid pro quo
Sexual Harassment
- repeated inappropriate touching, comments or
Insider Trading
- can use knowledge to buy the stock prior to its
price increase
Boaz, a Godly Businessman
- a servant
- a God lover
- a generous giver/provider
- a protector
- a respected man
human rights, fair competition, employees (no harm)
- unfair advantage can erode trust of investors
Adopted from Boaz: A Model (Updated); accessed June 22, 2015; https://kimddavidson.wordpress.com/2010/09/16/boaz-wanna-be/.
- a man of integrity
- a kind man
- a helper of the needy
"My priorities are God first, family second, and McDonald's hamburger third. And when I go to work on Monday morning, that order reverses."
Full transcript