Our Sunday school teachers were right all along. Biblical economics beats Baal from any angle!
With the finance crisis now affecting us globally, it is becoming apparent that fantastic economic surpluses achieved out of greed more likely leads to the crisis of overproduction, which, in turn, brings about the plunder of nations and of peoples. This can be seen in the recession, stagflation, and the debt crisis that we see today.
The Old Testament tells us that when the people who were liberated from Egypt found themselves hungry and thirsty in the desert, God sent manna and quail and pointed them to water. But some took for themselves more than needed for the day, and the unused food spoiled and benefited no one.
In the New Testament, we read about Jesus teaching his disciples to pray and ask, “. . . give us this day our daily bread. . .”, but not for an entire year’s supply. God is sufficient for us and we need not want.
Our regard for capital, while ignoring human and social contributions, color our relationships, and determine the way we treat the weak and powerless in the community of persons and of nations, and the environment, even the way we regard our God.
The constitution of a nation is the authentic reflection of the hopes and dreams of a people. The Philippine constitution thus includes social justice and equal protection provisions in response to painful experiences in its history as a people. The way we interpret the application of the equality and social justice provisions, however, betrays our dependence on the way others interpret the same, according to former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Renato Puno. And, for as long as we have this same regard, he adds, our courts will not do justice to the intent of the framers of the Philippine constitution.
Former Chief Justice Puno adds that the courts of the United States of America regard social justice and equal protection provisions as not applying to certain sectors in society instead of possessing universal scope. This has led to the view of the Empire and, at present, to capitalist globalization that impoverishes and pauperizes, while enriching a few nations, with its Trinitarian attributes of privatization, deregulation, and liberalization.
The government of President Benigno Aquino III’s actions and pronouncements so far has shown no signs of fundamental policy shifts and still subscribes to the same policy prescriptions of globalization as his predecessors did. As the US and other developed countries are reeling from the current economic stagflation and debt crisis, the economic plunder of developing countries like the Philippines shall intensify and will further push to the margins a vast majority of people already mired in grinding poverty.
This statement was unanimously approved by the delegates of the National Council of Churches in the Philippines 23rd Convention held at Philippine Rice Research Institute in Batac, Ilocos Norte on November 24, 2011.