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What Are Christian Business Ethics?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: Kristen Osborne
  • Last Modified Date: 25 October 2014
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Christian business ethics are an approach to business practices rooted in Christian beliefs. Christian texts like the Bible are used as the foundation for establishing an ethical business and most people who are interested in this approach to running a business are Christian. Generally, these business ethics include charity, compassion, and adherence to Christian morality in terms of what the business does and who it does business with.

One aspect of Christian business ethics addresses reminders in the Bible to avoid accumulating wealth and profiting from other members of the faithful. Christian businesses may engage in charity to redistribute their profits, avoid charging high prices, and charge little to no interest if they allow people to buy things on credit. A Christian business may feel morally obligated to be active in the community, supporting community endeavors, as well as making donations to the church.

Other areas of business ethics related to Christianity can include concerns about caring for the environment and for humanity. A Christian business may be committed to using ecologically friendly business practices, as well as ethical sources of labor, and may provide benefits to workers to ensure they are well cared for.

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Christian businesses are also concerned with the morality of their products and the people they do business with. A Christian business will generally refrain from selling products that appear to contradict Christian values, such as pornography, and it will seek out fellow Christian businesses to use as suppliers and business partners. Christian businesses may also decline to serve people making requests that run contrary to Christian moral values, with some businesses providing referrals for customers they refuse.

A business can base its ethics directly on the Bible, and religious officiants may also be consulted if a business owner has ethical questions about particular issues. There are also guides to Christian business ethics available, for people who wish to apply them to their businesses. Books and websites dedicated to topics of interest to members of the Christian community may provide information about the latest developments in Christian business ethics and consultants can help businesses develop their ethical codes in line which Christian values.

Most guides to Christian business ethics do not discourage businesses from working with non-Christians, recognizing that people who are not members of the Christian faith may also have strong ethical and moral beliefs, making them acceptable business partners. A Christian business may work with businesses run by people of other faiths, as well as atheists, as long as these businesses have a clearly demonstrated interest in conducting their affairs ethically.

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jonrss
Post 3

You know, the other two posters make some good points but ultimately, wouldn't you rather go to a business that claimed to operate according to Christian ethics rather than one that operated under no system of ethics at all? l know that there is a strange relationship between business and faith, but in general Christian businesses try to be fair, honest, fast and forthcoming. The fact that they are Christian makes them less sneaky business people. I think they are worth patronizing.

tigers88
Post 2
According to my reading of the Bible Jesus was at the very least a Socialist and very likely a Communist. In a Christian paradise everyone is equal and has common access to all the fruits and opportunities of life. That does not sound very capitalistic to me.

For that reason I have always been suspicious of the very idea of Christian business practices. Isn't that like claiming to be a Christian prison guard? I am not saying that Christians cannot go into business, I am just not sure that they can honestly claim that their faith informs their work. When you are in the office you are far away from the church.

truman12
Post 1

Do you think it is ethical for a Christian business to feature a Jesus fish in their ads to promote the fact that they are a Christian business? I am a Christian myself and I have always found this practice deplorable. Unfortunately, it seems to be becoming more and more common.

Have these people ever read the Bible? Do they really believe that Jesus and God intended for us to use our faith as a sales pitch? And what a hollow pitch it is. Your faith has nothing to do with your ability to fix my roof. I am not so insulated that I only want to patronize Christian and people exactly like me. I want the best one for the job. The fact that they claim to have been endorsed by Jesus is irrelevant and offensive.

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