Have you ever stopped to consider how many decisions you make in a day? We all make thousands of choices every day. Most are such a part of our normal routine that we do not even think about them! You decide what clothes to wear when you wake up in the morning, what to eat for breakfast, and how to budget your time. You may have to decide what kind of bread to buy at the grocery store, or where to fill up your car with gas. Maybe your family is trying to choose where to go on vacation this year. Or if you are a high school student, maybe you are thinking about whether you want to go to college or get a job following your graduation. Some of these decisions are unimportant, some are life changing, but believe it or not, virtually every decision you make relates to economics!
In the world we live in, we all deal with scarcity. This means that we have limited resources and must make choices regarding how to best use those resources. We are all given 24 hours in a day, so our time is limited. Our money is also limited, even though we each have varying amounts. Even the wealthiest among us have limited resources. They too must make choices regarding how they will use their time and money. Economics addresses how we as individuals and as a society utilize our scarce resources. Individuals may ask, "What should we purchase and why?" Businesses may ask, "What and how much should we produce?", or "What price should we charge?"
From a biblical perspective, the choices that we make can be summed up in one word, stewardship. God created all of the world, and He is the owner of it all. However, He has given man the responsibility to care for and manage His creation. Merriam Webster defines stewardship as, "the activity or job of protecting and being responsible for something." A greater understanding of economics helps us to become good stewards of the resources God has entrusted to us. It equips us to better manage our own household and finances, to become more productive in our work, to love and serve our neighbors with greater compassion and understanding, and to seek to elect into office those leaders who will protect and uphold our freedoms and promote greater flourishing for all of society.
To further explore how economics relates to biblical stewardship, check out the Scripture lessons in Economic Systems and Supply and Demand – Consumers and Producers Reach Agreement where this topic is discussed in more detail.