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Neither Poverty nor Riches: A Biblical Theology of Possessions (New Studies in Biblical Theology) Paperback – 2000
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Top Customer Reviews
I was very impressed with this book. I like how he started with the Old Testament, and how he pointed out the generosity of the patriarchs (Abraham in particular), and how even Joseph used the possessions he had access to to provide grain for the world and for his starving brothers and family.
He then talks about wealth as God's covenant blessing to the Israelites if they obeyed Him (and how that this principle is not transferable to the New Testament era, as we have our own covenant with God that is NOT tied to the land).
There is also a discussion of wealth and possessions in Proverbs and in the other salient Old Testament books, Blomberg concludes that wealth is a blessing from God and that we should use what we have to be a blessing to others and especially to the poor around us (Proverbs 3:27-28; Deuteronomy 15:11). He notes the texts that promise judgment to those who neglect the poor (Proverbs 11:24-26; 21:13). He concludes that the overall OT understanding of personal possessions is summed up in Proverbs 30:8-9 (Give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me my daily bread). As he says later on page 131, "Ask God to meet your needs, not your greeds.Read more ›
He also gives sobering, up-to-date information on how Americans spend their money and the proportion of it which they give to Christian missions. His account of his own journey on this issue is one of the many helpful features of the book.
I also appreciated his discussion of capitalism versus socialism. This is done with grace, and should be helpful to you, whatever point of view you have.
As a result of reading this book, I have been challenged to develop a plan for my own giving. I highly recommend this book if you are looking for sensible guidance on Christian stewardship.
There is nothing extraordinary here to those who have thought on the issue. But it produces a thorough development of the Biblical teachings on weath, synthesizes thsoe teachings well, and given our general LACK of thinking on this issue, it is needed and welcome.
He surveys hundreds of publications (nearly 700 are listed in the bibliography alone) and also includes relevant discussion of extra/inter/post testament documents from the ancient Levant.
He presents a representitive sample of views and comments on every relevant Biblical passage from Genesis to Revelation in an equitable light.
Not until the final chapter (almost with out exception) does the author "get preachy" and then it is not so much a guilt producing "what you need to do" as it is a humble example of what he has been lead to do with his considerable fortune (by global standards).
If you are at all interested in taking action on this topic your time and money could not be better spent.
The Biblical Theology aspect of the book examines the positives and negatives of wealth in the Scriptures: how it has been used for good by those whom God has blessed with abundance and how it has been a source of contention, covetousness, and even idolatry. Even a casual reading of the historical books and the Prophets will reveal that when the kings (and in turn the people) turned away from the LORD, it led to worshiping false gods, which resulted in great injustices done to the poor, the widows, and the fatherless. A contrast is shown in those who barely had enough to survive, but were called upon to feed the LORD's prophets and thus were blessed as a result (1 Kings 17:7-16; 2 Kings 4:1-7). The Torah called upon the covenant community to provide food for the poor in practical ways such as leaving gleanings in the field (Leviticus 23:22; Ruth 2:8-9).
Among the Christian community there were those who used their resources to house missionaries (Acts 9:43; 17:7; 3 John 5-8) and host "house" churches (Philemon 1:2). Jesus' ministry was also supported by those with means (Luke 8:3; see also Luke 10:38).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
good read to those who are struggling with the concept of money and how it related to ChristianityPublished 13 months ago by Jae Lee
REQUIRED READING FOR CLASSES. POSES INTERESTING CHALLENGES.Published 20 months ago by Amazon Customer
I thoroughly enjoyed this book! It contains a plethora of information concerning wealth and possessions directly from the pages of Scripture. Read morePublished on September 17, 2012 by rpreffer
Craig Blomberg has written a masterful synthesis of the Bible's teachings on wealth. He trusts the Bible and is a trustworthy guide to it. Read morePublished on June 27, 2011 by Glen Davis
This review originally appeared at [...] on 11/20/08.
Special thanks to my friends Clark & Bryn for buying this book for me as a gift. Read more
Neither Poverty nor Riches is a great book on what the Bible teaches about wealth, money, and possessions.Published on September 4, 2009 by Charles F. Taylor
Craig Blomberg, a New Testament scholar of impeccable credentials, surveys the Biblical evidence concerning material possessions. Read morePublished on June 21, 2009 by Brett A. Stroud
Armed with the Bible and over 300 references from other books and articles, Prof. Blomberg presents what he rightly sub-titles "A Biblical Theology of Material Possession" because... Read morePublished on January 7, 2009 by A. Sutono, a.k.a., Birdey The Observer