Today we continue to explore what John Templeton listed as the five economic virtues by looking at his thoughts on charity. Again this is from his  thought to Buena Vista College entitled “The Religious Foundation of Liberty and Enterprise.”

The third economic virtue is charity. Profit and exchange alone are not enough to sustain the good in society. We need to care for those in society who cannot care for themselves. At a minimum, that means giving attention to children and the aged who cannot care for themselves. God has obligated us to be charitable first to them.


We cannot help but be encouraged by the extraordinary generosity that leads American people to contribute $120 billion to charitable cause every year.

The most generous societies that have ever existed are also the freest. Why? A free economy fosters the wealth and the sense of responsibility that leads to charity. The Bible says, “Give and it shall be given unto you.”


The virtue of charity recognized that none of us are the ultimate owners of private property, for God is the ultimate owner and master of all our resources. We are merely stewards of it. It is by being obedient stewards that we can best practice the economic virtue of charity.