Kingdom Business???

Kingdom Business, another multi-layered topic. Having run our own business in the past and currently maintaining multiple streams of income and investments, we are aiming to maximize the talents Our Creator has given us.

Matthew 25:14-18 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB) “For it will be like a man about to leave home for a while, who entrusted his possessions to his servants. 15 To one he gave five talents [equivalent to a hundred years’ wages]; to another, two talents; and to another, one talent — to each according to his ability. Then he left. 16 The one who had received five talents immediately went out, invested it and earned another five. 17 Similarly, the one given two earned another two. 18 But the one given one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.

The parable of the talents uses business terms as a major theme in its allegory. This means at least some of the audience who would have heard this firsthand, would indeed be able to relate. The significance of this parable for us, is that it is about the Kingdom. So, on a basic level the “We”, The Kingdom, should have at least a basic understanding of business. The definition of business can be defined asa person's regular occupation, profession, or trade”. Now we are far removed from the first century as well as the ancient world of the Torah and thus, need to learn a few things about the origin of “Kingdom Business” in order to even begin to compare and contrast it with today.

So, what can we learn from the Ancient World to help with Modern Business?

Ancient Near Eastern research shows that documents that have been discovered have a lot to do with business. Most of the ancient world, including Israel, operated within an agro-pastoral economic system. Families grew their own food and raised their own livestock. This is far from our service driven, supply and demand, I need it now market style economy, today.

So, the question is, what can we learn from the ancient world to help with modern business? Well, a few things stand out. First, principles. Today, business can be shrewd and cut-throat, to say the least. Having good business ethics or principles doesn’t often seem to pay off, take my word for it. Once upon a time I operated a business in a strip mall, paying high dollar rent for a space that needed big dollar repairs. My landlord didn’t give me much assistance, but I tolerated it because it was my little slice of the pie. The kicker was that the landlord wasn’t making major repairs because he was in foreclosure and didn’t plan on telling any of his multiple tenants including yours truly.

 Nope, business today isn’t always fair. However, in the Ancient near East, the biblical world where the Kingdom was established, fair business practices helped to maintain justice, which was a priority throughout their society. This is evidenced by concepts such as the shmitta, and the yovel.

 The shmitta, was the 7th year of release or agricultural rest for the land. This was done in order to not deplete the soil of the land, which in an agropastoral economic system would have been paramount. The yovel, better known as a jubilee, took place at the end of 7 cycles of shmitta, where debts would be forgiven, slaves freed, and land was returned to its original owners.

What about the concept of Faith in Business?

Alongside practicing fair business principles in your field, the modern idea of faith, as it relates to business, doesn’t line up with scripture. Abraham is known as the Father of faith but is said to have been a traveling nomad as well.

This is typically known as the call of Abraham, where Father tells Abram to “lech lecha” in Hebrew, which can be translated as “go forth” or “get ta steppin” in the modern-day comedic words of Martin Lawrence. This picture of Abram that some may paint, is that of a nomadic drifter traveling across the desert. Was Abram a homeless wanderer going from place to place looking for handouts?

  Abram was told to leave his earthly father’s house and thus their family business, giving up his inheritance for the unknown. This is deemed today as “walking or stepping out on faith”. However, Abram wasn’t broke!

Abram’s age possibly alludes to a certain stage and or maturity in life. He was married and had influence over his nephew who had accumulated possessions of his own. Together they both had possessions and an allegiance. They also had hired workers, to help them operate what they had established. If they had workers, they had some sort of business.

In other words, Abram wasn’t just a drifting vagabond, he was prepared, equipped and established before he began his journey of faith. Abram indeed “walked out on faith”, but he didn’t do it blindly or unprepared as some may suggest. The faith or way he supported The Most High’s plan for his life was shown from his state of being prepared. In business terms he had a solid business plan and had tested it out before our Father blessed him and made it prosper.  

Genesis 13:2 Avram became wealthy, with much cattle, silver and gold.

Kingdom Principles?

The Father's ancient economic system may not have been the “ideal” economic system according to some, but it was the system that The Kingdom was a part of. What we can take from this is, that by planning, and being prepared, accompanied by practicing fair business principles in our field, we too can strive toward success and promote equity in the Kingdom.

Are YOU about your Father’s Business?

Interested in some practical business tips? Click here. Where we share some tips that may help all of us Kingdom minded business folk.