There aren't many Christian economics instructors who'd make the argument for a free market system based on man's acquisitive nature. Tom Rose does, and defends his statements with the Bible and reason, demonstrating that fairness is only acheivable when two parties make an exchange free from outside coercive measures. He even goes so far as to redefine the word "greedy" in a positive way that reflects, not man's destructive compulsion for excess, but his desire to improve his circumstances.
Economics: Principles and Policy is an introductory (though not an easy one for beginners)economics text for high school students or college freshmen, providing a biblical foundation for economic policy and the major tenets of microeconomics (the study of private transactions, including those between individuals, families and businesses). All the major topics are covered—supply and demand, business organization, pricing, the distribution of income, etc. The author isn't exactly a wordsmith, but he makes his points clearly and carefully.
Rose doesn't hesitate to take the minority position or to express eyebrow-raising opinions. While this makes for interesting reading, you may want to be careful just handing this book to your high school students and telling them to go read. It would be a good idea to discuss each chapter with them, and to have them read and contemplate the included Scripture references. Instead of having them write out their answers to the end-of-chapter questions, you could talk about them together, evaluating the text and reaching your own conclusions.
The descriptive information (as opposed to Rose's prescriptions for a Bible-based economic structure) is sound, and students will come away with a good basic understanding of the way the market and businesses work, the individual's relationship to each, and the theory behind capitalist business venture. There are some difficult to interpret graphs in the last half of the book, but Rose explains each one, and once the reader understands what all the initials are for they become quite helpful.
If you're trying to make sense of the different economic theories, understand the biblical position concerning the production and exchange of goods, determine whether there is just one biblical position on the matter, or in any other way analyzing what some have called the "dismal science," this would be a good book to read. Rose can seem a little condescending at times, but overall the book is thought-provoking reading even for adults, and a solid introduction to an often abstruse field of study.
Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he is a husband and father, teaches adult Sunday school in his Presbyterian congregation, and likes weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur. Read more of his reviews here.
Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he's a husband and father who loves church, good food, and weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur. Read more of his reviews here
Did you find this review helpful?