Outlooks on Wealth and Poverty by Religion

Outlooks on Wealth and Poverty by Religion

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Wealth and poverty is a key issue in many religions. Wealth is one
someone has money and has the extra privileges of life and poverty is
when someone can't even afford the basics of life. There is a wealthy
side of the world and there is a poverty stricken side of the world.
There is a divide between these two parts of the world. This divide is
commonly known as "the north south divide", which basically means that
the rich countries like Britain and the USA are situated in the west
side of the world and the poverty stricken countries like Sudan and
Bangladesh are situated in the north side of the world.

Thirdly Christians believe that wealth can lead to corruption. They
believe that no one can serve both god and money, they get this view
from the bible from Mathew 6:24 "you cannot serve both money and god.
When someone becomes greedy and corrupt they believe that wealth is
the cause and therefore wealth is wrong. This shows that the issue of
wealth is controversial.

Fourthly, the issue of poverty in Christianity. Christians believe
that people who have money should have a first priority to help and
give to the poor. They believe this because the church leads by
example i.e. "the church should concern itself with …….the poor and
needy……." A statement by the archbishop's commission on church.
Another reason why Christians believe it good to help the poor is
because Jesus encouraged the wealthy to help the poor. A good example
today of Christians helping the poor would be the aid company
Christian Aid. Christian Aid helps poor people all around the world
especially in Africa. Christian aid is obviously a Christian
organization but it is the perfect role model for other Christians and
it's following Jesus' example.

In Islam wealth is something that is thought to be a gift from god;
this is very much like in Christianity. Muslims believe that if
someone is wealthy they should give to the poor, this is known as

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Zakah. Zakah is an Arabic word meaning purification, and the reason
many Muslims give Zakah is because it "purifies" their money.

Firstly Muslims believe that wealth is a good thing when some of it is
given to charity. Muslims adopt this view from the Q'uran which says
"those who in charity……..have their reward with their lord" Surah
2:274. This shows that n Islam wealth is accepted as long as the
person or people don't become greedy and worshipers of their money.

Secondly Muslims don't accept wealth if someone becomes greedy, they
believe that someone who becomes greedy forgets his morals taught to
him in Islam and therefore not a Muslim any more. Muslims also get
this view from the Q'uran, from Hadith which says "he who eats and
drinks whilst his brother goes hungry is not one of us. This shows
that Muslims have a controversial view about wealth, on one hand they
accept it and on the other they don't. This is very much like the
Christians controversial view about wealth.

There are striking similarities between Islam and Christianity when it
comes to the subject of wealth and poverty, for example the both
believe that wealth is a gift from god and they also both believe that
it is their moral responsibility as Christians and Muslims to help
those living in poverty. Overall Muslims and Christians have pretty
much exactly the same attitude towards the subject of wealth and
poverty.

1) B)

Religious agencies are like any normal aid charity except that their
motivation is religious for example the purpose of Christian aid is to
follow Jesus' teachings. Religious agencies are very important because
they help the poor and often forgotten about people like the Rwandan
people, their eighteen year was forgotten about by most of the world
except the religious agencies like Christian and Muslim aid.

Another way in which Christian aid helps poor countries is through
emergency aid. Emergency aid is more preferred to long term because
without it people would die. Christian aid uses it emergency fund to
deal with natural disasters and a sudden influx of refugees. An
example of Christian aid helping a country in a state of emergency
would be when they sent food, antibiotics and shelters to the victims
in Honduras of the 1998 hurricanes. Another example of emergency aid
is when Christian aid sent tents, blankets and food the war stricken
Bosnia. About 13% of Christian aid's annual funds go towards emergency
aid.

A third way in which Christian aid assists poor countries is through
long term aid. Christian aid provides long term aid through financing
local organization which comes up with the ideas for long term
sustainable development. Christian aid has helped farmers in America
and Columbia by financing a farmer's organization which would develop
the land and help them keep their homes. Another place where Christian
aids long term aid has helped is in Bangladesh where it funded a group
of health workers and financed their basic drug making factory.
Christian aid has also helped in Lesotho where it financed a local
agricultural school which aims to increase food production by
minimizing soil erosion. The purpose of long term aid is to help
people help themselves so in the future they won't need foreign aid.

2)

Poverty is a world wide problem and billions of people suffer from
poverty. It's such a large problem that people split the world in to
two large categories known as the "north south divide". Basically what
the "north south divide" means is that the rich and developed
countries like the USA and Briton are in the north side and the less
developed poor countries like Bangladesh and Srilanka are on the south
side. Some people think that there should be no rich people until
there are no poor people and they argue the there are people dieing
from hunger whilst others can afford to feed an army.

Christian view on the matter of wealth and poverty is clear; they
believe that wealth as a gift from god and therefore should be shared
with the poor. They believe that it is okay that there are rich and
people that co-exist as long as the rich help the poor.

The Christian view is very much the same as the Muslim view on the
issue of wealth and poverty. Muslims believe that wealth is something
of a gift from god and MUST be shred with the poor. When Muslims give
money to the poor it's called Zakah and Zakah is one of the five
pillars of Islam so Muslims must do it.

I think that the issue of wealth and poverty can be viewed in
different ways but I think that it is right to have rich while there
is poor because if there weren't poor there wouldn't be rich.
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