Summer Reading List

Summer Reading: 7 Books on Faith and Economics from David W. Jones

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Want to learn more about how faith intersects with everyday topics like money, wealth, poverty and economics?

You can check out my new book Every Good Thing. In addition, you should add these seven books to your summer reading list.

1. When Helping Hurts: Alleviating Poverty without Hurting the Poor and Yourself
By Brian Fikkert and Steve Corbett (Chicago: Moody, 2009)

Widely recognized as one of the best books on a developmental model of poverty relief. Contains both foundational teachings from Scripture and practical application. Topics addressed range from models of poverty relief to missions work.

2. Common Sense Economics: What Everyone Should Know about Wealth and Prosperity
By James Gwartney, Richard L. Stroup and Dwight R. Lee (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2005)

A basic primer on the fundamental elements, concepts, and components of economic systems. Written in a winsome tone for those without a background in economics regardless of religious beliefs or economic convictions.

3. Health, Wealth & Happiness: Has the Prosperity Gospel Overshadowed the Gospel of Christ?
By David W. Jones and Russell S. Woodbridge (Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2011)

A biblical and theological critique of the prosperity gospel, written for the church. In the second half of this volume the authors present constructive chapters and biblical teaching on suffering, wealth, poverty and giving.

4. Ministries of Mercy: The Call of the Jericho Road
By Timothy J. Keller (Phillipsburg, NJ: P & R, 1997)

A biblical theology of the Christian duty to care for the poor. Half of the book consists of steps that could be taken by a church or other Christian organization to establish an effective ministry of mercy on the local level.

Add these seven books on #FaithandEconomics to your summer reading list.

5. Work Matters: Connecting Sunday Worship to Monday Work
By Tom Nelson (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2011)

A winsome theology of work and production written for the church. One of the most accessible volumes currently in print that addresses topic such as labor, vocation and related subjects.

6. The Tragedy of American Compassion
By Marvin Olasky. (New York: Regnery, 2004)

A classic volume that presents a historical study showing how the burden of poverty relief was shifted from the church to the government within American society. Implicitly argues for a return to local, church-based poverty alleviation.

7. Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism Is the Solution and Not the Problem
By Jay W. Richards (New York: HarperOne, 2009)

Written from a Christian perspective to a secular audience, this volume seeks to debunk a number of myths related to free-market capitalism and presents a Judeo-Christian perspective on the economy and material goods.

Which books would you suggest?

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David W. Jones

Dr. Jones is a Professor of Christian Ethics and serves as the Associate Dean of Theological Studies and Director of the Th.M. Program at Southeastern Seminary. He is the author of many books, including Every Good Thing, An Introduction to Biblical Ethics and is the co-author of Health, Wealth, and Happiness. He comments on the Bible over at

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