Thursday, February 17, 2022

Contract or Covenant? It matters

Contract is the fundamental basis of the neoliberal economy (and of a liberal economy more generally). A contract is a punctual agreement enacted between two parties, for a set period, and under specified conditions. Contracts, and contracting parties, are calculating and careful. Their trust and fidelity, such as they are, intend to serve the immediate interests of the contracting parties—and do not extend beyond the terms of the contract. In other words, the relationships they establish are limited and completely conditional.

Though Christians certainly participate in this contractual economy, it is not their ultimate economy. The church as first family is the oikos grounded in God’s encompassing economy. It works most fundamentally by way of covenant rather than contract. It is about establishing and maintaining deep, full, thoroughly faithful, long-term, and open-ended relationships.— Naming Neoliberalism: Exposing the Spirit of Our Age, 100–101

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