New Power Christians?
The cover story of this week's New Statesman makes for interesting reading. It's not yet on their website so here's the gist of it:
“During the testosterone-fuelled boom years, Christian faith was about surviving in the City, but since 2008 and the revelation that it was all built on sand, Christians have been saying unequivocally that the gospel is non-negotiable, that working in commerce isn’t about surviving as a Christian but about transforming the way we do business, that Christianity is disruptive of systematic greed and corruption: that, in short, their work serves their faith and not the other way round. They are converting markets, not just people. These are the new Power Christians.”
The writer seems a bit ambivalent about the whole thing, seeming to be a Christian himself but not wanting to be as earnest at the people he's writing about. He interviews several of this new order, as well as those from the previous generation who tried to be as good as possible within a bad (or misunderstood) system. One of the new breed articulates how Christians can aim to do more than just be good at their job (ethics and excellence) but do good through it too:
“A whole new generation of people are coming up who want to use business as a means of advancing the Kingdom of God... In the past, a lot of Christians have thought that what makes a Kingdom business is if it’s run ethically. But it’s more than being ethical. It’s about having a spiritual impact, encouraging Christians to think about what impact their business is going to have. Everyone in the workplace has to explore how they can have spiritual impact.”
The new Archbishop of Canterbury, with his backgrounds in evangelicalism and business is offered the opportunity to lead this unapologetic prophetic movement. Hopefully he and many others will do so.