3. We are. Thirdly, to gain all we can without hurting our neighbour. But this we may not, cannot do, if we love our neighbour as ourselves. We cannot, if we love everyone as ourselves, hurt anyone in his substance. We cannot devour the increase of his lands, and perhaps the lands and houses themselves, by gaming, by overgrown bills (whether on account of physic, or law, or anything else,) or by requiring or taking such interest as even the laws of our country forbid. Hereby all pawn-broking is excluded: Seeing, whatever good we might do thereby, all unprejudiced men see with grief to be abundantly overbalanced by the evil. And if it were otherwise, yet we are not allowed to "do evil that good may come." We cannot, consistent with brotherly love, sell our goods below the market price; we cannot study to ruin our neighbour's trade, in order to advance our own; much less can we entice away or receive any of his servants or workmen whom he has need of. None can gain by swallowing up his neighbour's substance, without gaining the damnation of hell!Taken from John Wesley's 'On the Use of Money' (Sermon 50) What amazes me about this particular sermon is it is, in the main, still true and just as cutting a critique on the materialistic 21st century as it was on the world around him when he first delivered the sermon. If you would like a more modern view on the economic crisis then I would heavily recommend This fine analysis from the Guardian which looks at cause, effect and future political moves and Methodism's very own Methodist Preacher has delivered a very fine series of Blog posts on the economic collapse including: i) A call not to rush towards de-nationalisation b) A (bearded) flashback to the 1970s and then forwards to today c) A challenge that 'Thatcherism has failed' d) A reflection as a 'reluctant capitalist' - mainly looking at demutalisation OUtside of all this the remarkable Richard Hall manages to find time to visit a favourite haunt of mine, now called 'Now Tea Vicar' and which does a remarkably good baguette....anyway take a good run and read his thoughts here Take Care Y'All John
Friday, October 10, 2008
Wesleys Words on Credit Crunch
The crunch of the credit crunch has pre-occupied a wide variety of media outlets. Everyone from the Archbishops of Canterbury and York to the Secretary of External Relations for the Methodist Church have had a say... but I thought rather than comment on any of that I would highlight some wise words from Wesley.