Acton Institute Powerblog Archives

Christian Social Thought

C. S. Lewis on selfishness vs. self-interest

C.S. Lewis wrote much about the tension between self-interest and selfishness, offering renewed clarity on these topics, says Art Lindsley. To Lewis, there is a huge difference between self-interest and selfishness, and there is a proper place for self-interest in our lives: When Lewis first came to faith, he did not think about eternal life, but focused on enjoying God in this life. Continue Reading...

Mars needs religion!

These Russian Orthodox cosmonauts get it. Click photo for source. … Or does religion need Mars? So argues social commentator James Poulos at Foreign Affairs: What’s clear is that Earth no longer invites us to contemplate, much less renew, our deepest spiritual needs. Continue Reading...

Christianity and Liberalism

Over at the Gospel Coalition last week I reviewed Larry Siedentop’s Inventing the Individual: The Origins of Western Liberalism. As I conclude, “The story he tells is true, but at some points only half-true. Continue Reading...

The fruit of toil

In an Acton Commentary two years ago, I wrote about the significance of toil: In the midst of the now-common Christian affirmation of all forms of work as God-given vocations, the image of Sisyphus, vainly pushing his boulder up a hill in Hades, only to watch it roll back down again, might serve to remind us of the reality of toil, the other side of the coin. Continue Reading...

‘Riches do not bring freedom’

The contrast between the treatments by David Bentley Hart and Dylan Pahman of the question of the intrinsic evil of “great personal wealth” this week pretty well established, I think, that in itself wealth is among the things neither forbidden nor absolutely required. Continue Reading...

Does the New Testament say wealth is intrinsically evil?

In a recent article in Commonweal, the Orthodox theologian David Bentley Hart responds to a rebuttal article written last year by Acton research director Samuel Gregg. Hart say that “on at least one point Gregg did have me dead to rights: I did indeed say that the New Testament, alarmingly enough, condemns great personal wealth not merely as a moral danger, but as an intrinsic evil.” What is Hart’s basis for the claim? Continue Reading...