After I attended Bitcoin Day 2022 in Sioux Falls a few months ago, I’ve been learning more about money and the moral reasoning around Bitcoin.
I believe that the Bible is sufficient to help us to form a world view about all things in the world that God has created and given humans the ability to create.
"3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures," 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 ESV
First of all, Bitcoin can do nothing of eternal importance, unless you first repent and believe in the name Jesus.
"for all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God" Romans 3:23 "37 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, "Brothers, what shall we do?" 38 And Peter said to them, "Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. " ~ Acts 2:37-38 "5 Keep your life free from love of money, and bbe content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” 6 So we can confidently say, “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?” ~ Hebrews 13:5-6
Learn more about the Good News (Gospel) from The Story.
The Bitcoin and the Bible Podcast has in depth discussions of Bible passages and how it applies to money, economy, justice, equity and much more. I’m half way through season 2 and have appreciated their insights. I’m seeing that many of the aspects of Bitcoin are related to God’s law and constrain sinful human desires. There is much more for me to learn and consider. I’ve only shared a small amount here, but you can find much more from their website and podcast.
Bitcoin definitely leads to a rabbit hole. Money is intertwined with most of our life, so there is much to learn about.
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 6:19-21
“How much better to get wisdom than gold! To get understanding is to be chosen rather than silver.” - Proverbs 16:16
I read Thank God for Bitcoin after I was told the Sioux Falls Bitcoin group was having a weekly book study. I didn’t make it to the discussions (I’m sure they would have been helpful), but did ask two of my brothers in Christ at our church to read it from a critical/new to Bitcoin viewpoint.
I thought the book was well done, informative, worth recommending and short introduction to the history of money, the current problems with fiat, inflation, greed, theft and how it hurts our modern societies. I’m thankful that this book was available for me to learn from. There were many Bible references, but a lot of them were used out of context and are more connected to our spiritual life and standing through Jesus than money. However, reading how money affects so many parts of our lives was helpful.
I would have liked to see a deeper dive into God’s Word, but I’ve balanced that with Bitcoin and the Bible. Maybe they should put their materials together to create a more in depth book.
“Hey I just about finished the audio book and I thought I’d give my impressions. The authors in my opinion are coming from a moralistic worldview. They make some interesting points about the various monetary systems, but their conclusions about whether one system is more “moral” than another seemed stretched. Maybe they are just in a hurry to prove a point, but I have a lot of trouble following them from a stated fact to their assumed cause or remedy. I think they assume too much without really making the connections needed to prove their conclusions. Their worldview was especially clear near the end when they started making statements such as the “redemptive” properties of bitcoin. It seems like they are putting too much emphasis on creating a redeemed moralistic society through the adoption of certain systems, especially bitcoin. Somewhere in the middle of the book they quoted from the beatitudes and stated something close to gospel truth that the change that we need is a change of our hearts but their arguments throughout the rest of the book are contradictory claiming that our society can be changed through these external compulsory factors.
It’s clear that they like bitcoin and that’s ok but I think they should have made that point and stopped with that!” ~ Patrick
In June, 2023, they started a podcast
This is my attempt at connecting thoughts through two different world views.
This is my interpretation as the main point of “Thank God for the Bible”.
Since our current money is fiat and fiat is theft/bad and tied to most everything we do
then / this leads to
corruption + power + the Cantillon Effect + theft + love of money + greed + reliance on debt and government
if / since Bitcoin constraints these behaviors through the principles, code and network
then / this could/should lead to
a more moral, equitable, just society
that will make people and their lives better and easier have life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Start with the Good News Gospel. All have sinned (Romans 3:23), God so loved the world, that he sent his Son that whoever believes in Him, should not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16).
God created man. Man rebelled (the fall, sin entered the world)
then / this leads to
corruption + power + the Cantillon Effect + theft + love of money + greed
then / this leads to
fiat, inflation, theft, reliance on debt and government, bad society
Only Jesus’s life, death and resurrection (Grace!) can save and redeem us from eternal death but also the effects of sin in this world (Sanctification)
and gives eternal life, a new man (Sanctification), and so much more. The new man in Christ still sins, but is becoming more like Christ (loving God, others, growing in generosity). If all were re-born, then Bitcoin would be unnecessary.
However, since sin remains (until Christ returns) and not all believe then Bitcoin has constraints of behaviors through the principles, code and network could be very beneficial globally for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, offering hope for the future. However, Bitcoin cannot solve all the problems of humanity on its own.
There’s a lot of trails to follow in learning more about God, the Bible, money, economy, society, helping others, etc that are connected with Bitcoin. I am definitely lacking in knowledge and wisdom on all these topics. I’m open to learning more and adjusting my thinking as long as it stays consistent with the Bible.
I first heard of Gary North in Teach All The Nations and appreciated his Biblical and economic knowledge. He has many books, of which I would like to read at least one (we’ll see how long it takes. There are always other things that need time and I need to keep my priorities straight). I read a few pages of Honest Money from 1986 and it already matches with what I’ve read about from Bitcoin sources. He studied economics and the Bible for 61 years with Austrian economics. His books are available for free
Here’s another review of Thank God for Bitcoin of many out there.
I read the Free Honest Money book in October, 2022. This book was written in 1986 by Gary North. It was interesting how closely I was able to follow it after my Bitcoin learning over the last few months.
Here are some highlights (in the quicker bullet proof fashion I use often)
I got to the end of Honest Money and wondered what Mr. North would think about Bitcoin. I was surprised he thought Bitcoin was a Ponzi scheme and no good. All you have to do is Search his site with bitcoin as the keyword.
Others disagreed and responded directly to his claims: https://libertarianstandard.com/2013/12/01/ponzi-logic-debunking-gary-north/ and https://www.caseyresearch.com/daily-dispatch/gary-north-bitcoin/.
In August, 2022 I started listening to The Mission Bitcoin Podcast. In October, I listened to A discussion with GIGI! We talk Bitcoin, Christianity, and trees! and was struck by how Gigi connected Bitcoin to religious themes. Patrick Melder does a great job listening and keeping open supportive communication while sharing that God is the creator and Jesus is “the Way, the Truth and the Life”. Bitcoin is pointing towards the ultimate love and truth, which is God and the Word of God.
Can Bitcoin be a part of the Great Awakening? A fascinating discussion with Lance Hancock.. He has a solid grasp on the history of the Church. It was interesting to hear the idea that the prophecies all took place in AD 70 with the destruction of the temple. I have much to learn and think about that topic. I am hoping that Bitcoin will be a venue for sharing the Gospel and that all parts of my life (including this blog) are as well.
I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in Bitcoin and Christianity. Patrick Melder uses truth and logic to show the Bitcoin does point to the “Truth, the Way and the Life” (Jesus). Without Jesus, Bitcoin may improve life on earth, but still all is lost for eternity.
The Bible and Bitcoin: A Theological Exploration of Human Time, Energy and Bitcoin is new in 2023 and a very good introduction to inflation, Bitcoin and how “the Bible calls for a just and equal monetary system, free of fraud and deception”.
A main idea/rubric Pastor Armstrong raises is, Which category/verse would you put fiat in? Which category/verse would you put Bitcoin in?
“A just balance and scales are the LORD’s; all the weights in the bag are his work.” - Proverbs 16:11
“Unequal weights are an abomination to the LORD, and false scales are not good.” - Proverbs 20:23
To get started with Bitcoin, I have an Introduction to Bitcoin article, read from Bitcoin and the Bible (and listen to their podcasts), I recommend buying over time with Swan Bitcoin (which has low fees and was easy to setup ACH) then moving it to cold storage you control).
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