Torch, Fall/Winter 2010

24 TORCH | Fall–Winter 2010 ILLUSTRATION: CHAD JACKSON | CEDARVILLE UNIVERSITY; PHOTO: DON BAYLEY | ISTOCKPHOTO Free-Market Generosity by Bert Wheeler, Ph.D. Capitalism relies on God-given ingenuity to create wealth and on God-ordained generosity to give it away. es back to Genesis 3. se to eat from the tree and evil, one of the oken relationship with onomic arena. Not d from fellowship with His direct provision en the ground was mankind was le to g” from the earth us helpless. We are en. 1:27), imbued to take resources we to something more hands of the powerful. Evidence of trade and markets dates to several thousand years B.C.; however, it was not until market economies fully developed on the European continent in the last millennium that large segments of people were consistently able to enjoy the fruits and responsibilities of relative economic success. Capitalism has become a p litically charged concept with fri nds and foes choosing sides based on an extreme point of view. It is o en oversimpli ed as a “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” philosophy that leaves impoverished people to fend for themselves. Capitalism is more accurately understood as an