[Opinion] How to run and start a business when you are a Christian?

Christians have a sometimes heated relationship with the business world. Being an entrepreneur myself, I can easily attest to this, I regularly have people writing to me: “You have received for free, give for free”.

Che verse of the Gospel according to Matthew, chapter 10, verse 8, is sometimes used again in all sauces, without discernment on what it means.

Another verse is regularly invoked: “The love of money is the root of all evil. (1 Timothy 6:10). Or “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. "(Mark 10:25)

And because of this, the Church, sects, all kinds of less well-trained teachers, have drawn the conclusion that money is evil and that the faithful should let go of it or even seek poverty.

The consequence: Christians have often maintained a relationship of "I love you, neither do I" with money and business. Because most of them feel that money is a necessity in their daily life, which can make their life easier in many ways, which can lead them to accomplish greater things, which can also help them in their mission as Christians .

And at the same time, they experience a kind of culpable relationship with money: it should almost be considered a necessary evil.

This thought has many perverse effects.

It restricts entrepreneurial initiatives, prevents talents from emerging and, ultimately, is a brake on the development of States, thereby increasing their poverty. Poverty that Christians have for mission to reduce.

When Jesus says “You have received freely, give freely” (Matthew 10: 9), it is appropriate to go back a line earlier in the verse: “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received for free, give for free. "

The day when someone, healing in the name of Jesus, comes "to invoice his service", this one can validly be sent back in his nets. The day when a person praying for another who is possessed of a demon, comes to claim remuneration, the delivered person can legitimately retort that he does not have to ask for money for it. You have received freely, give freely: you have not healed nor cast out demons by the "laws of physics" but by the action of the Holy Spirit. It is a gift that has been offered to you, a grace that the Lord has granted you: it does not have to be cashed.

But tomorrow, if you want to start your own business, you will have charges to pay, suppliers, and taxes. You will need to get back the money your customers owe you and pay your creditors. Money is part of the normal life cycle of a business, and Jesus himself asks that Caesar be given back what is Caesar's. A business is destined to prosper and bear fruit. God does not warn us against money, but against the love of money which has led many men down hazardous and dangerous paths.

Christians should therefore be encouraged to embark wisely on the adventure of entrepreneurship. Not to be afraid of business or of money.

Because if Christians are absent from the business sphere, it should not be surprised that the business world is sinking into a logic increasingly distant from that of the Kingdom of God.

To live a relationship with business in a healthy, balanced way that promotes the values ​​of the Gospel, we offer you an excerpt from the book of the President France of the International Christian Chamber of Commerce, Jean-Pierre Cauhapé: “Reconciliations and Business”. You can download it here.

Pascal Portoukalian
Director of eXcaléo and author of “The Thought of Pascal”

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