NACFC: Faith-Based Investing Started Long Before the Internet
December 7, 2020
ORLANDO, Fla. — Though only recently gaining media attention and widespread public awareness in our modern Christian society, faith-based investing is nothing new, according to the National Association of Christian Financial Consultants (NACFC), (www.nacfc.org). The foundations of investing with biblical integrity have been evident and proclaimed in the principles and values illustrated throughout the Bible.
“Many would consider the application directly to stocks, bonds and other investments a new phenomenon — starting as recently as the early 1990s, with the explosive development of packaged investment products, mammoth increase in distribution channels and massive marketing,” said Mark Minnella, NACFC co-founder, and author of “The Wall Street Awakening.”
“It is also no coincidence that the internet is now widely accessible and information previously available only through painstaking and expensive research by private firms and educational institutes is now offered to the masses. This previously unparalleled access to information and communication allowed the rich and the poor alike the ability to, with a click of the mouse, break through the fog and barriers to information that kept them in the dark for so long, realizing in minutes what was nearly impossible to know previously. It is easy to see why faith-based investing grew in exponential leaps at that time.”
Yet long before technology that could illuminate issues of moral concern for investors was available or even conceived, the issues themselves and the desire to avoid being a participant thereof, was alive and well. There is evidence that the concept of Faith-Based Investing started long before the internet. To support this theory, Minnella points to the following writings of three reformist theologians:
- 18th Century: John Wesley’s The Use of Money. “But this it is certain we ought not to do; we ought not to gain money at the expense of life… [Those] who have anything to do with taverns, [brothels]… If they are either sinful in themselves, or natural outlets to sin of various kinds, then, it is to be feared, you have a sad account to make.”
- Early-mid 16th Century: John Calvin’s The Life of a Christian. “In regard to everything that God has bestowed upon us, and by which we can aid our neighbor, we are his stewards, and are bound to give an account of our stewardship: moreover, that the only right mode of administration is that which is regulated by love.”
- Early 16th Century: Martin Luther’s 1524. “Among themselves the merchants have a common rule which is their chief maxim… I care nothing about my neighbor; so long as I have my profit and satisfy my greed, of what concern is it to me if it injures my neighbor in 10 ways at once? There you see how shamelessly this flies squarely in the face not only of Christian love but also of natural law.”
“It is evident that Martin Luther, John Calvin and John Wesley as well as many other Biblical scholars of old, had no problem realizing the Biblical directives of money and investments. Their writings help clarify and cement the understanding that Faith-Based Investing precepts are and have been common throughout the history of the church. It is not a new revelation to today’s generation of Christians.”
The mission of the National Association of Christian Financial Consultants is to teach, train and encourage financial professionals to learn, share and instruct biblical stewardship to individuals and families believing that “it profits a man nothing to gain the whole world and lose his soul” (Matthew 16:26). Members will glorify God by impacting their world for Jesus Christ through teaching and practicing biblical stewardship.
To interview leadership for the National Association of Christian Financial Consultants or for information about the 2020 conference, contact Media@HamiltonStrategies.com, Nick DiFazio, 610.584.1096, ext. 104, or Deborah Hamilton, ext. 102.