Market Seventy: Reclaiming the marketplace

Bridge Building in the Bible?

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Biblical Precedents

Paul facilitates the sharing of resources between his ministry partners as each is in need. He delivers ministry “free of charge” to some, while being supported by others, expecting they, in turn will support him when he delivers to others in need. (Philippians 4:14; 1 Corinthians 16:1-3, 15-18; 2 Corinthians 8; 11:7-13) Paul relied on personal relationships in many of the above examples, personally teaching and equipping the churches and arranging for visits by members of the supporting churches.

There is also precedent in John urging others to support those who bring the gospel and receive no help from the direct participants (3 John 5-8) Jesus, Himself received support from some wealthy women in Capernaum. (Luke 8:1-3).

Finally, we are all called to unity. Psalm 133 describes living together in unity as “precious oil upon the head,” i.e. an anointing that brings down the blessing of everlasting life. Ephesians 4:11-13 notes that we are gifted for the express purpose of equipping each other and building up the body of Christ “until we all attain to the unity of the faith.” Can there be unity unless we are reaching out to each other throughout the world?

Our belief in the long term nature of the relationship comes from our reading of the activities that took place between King Hiram of Tyre and the kings of Israel. Hiram heartily supports and amply supplies the building of the temple and Solomon’s house in return for both payments and the pledge of 20 cities. But contrast Hiram’s lack of long-range vision and his focus on short-term profit with Solomon. Hiram complains about the cities he gets and apparently does nothing with them. Solomon, on the other hand, when he redeems the cities, rebuilds them, transforming them into strong, model cities. (The results become obvious in later Scripture accounts of Tyre which becomes totally paganistic and hedonistic, involved in the slave trade and repudiating agreements with its neighbors. Within 80 years they went from becoming a major international player to a non-entity. (See Isaiah 23:1-9, Ezekiel 26 to 28, and Amos 1:9-10).

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Tags: Marketplace Transformation, City and nation transformation, Kingdom Building, Bridge Building, Partnerships in Transformation, system change

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A Farmer on World Hunger

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On our most recent trip to Uganda, a board member gave me this book to read. Howard Buffet has traveled the world looking at world hunger through a farmer's eyes.  

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