Economic Orthodoxy and the Free Market System: A Christian Critique

Andrew Henley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Despite its all‐encompassing title this article aims to offer a number of pointers to a Christian critique of the methodological basis of orthodox (or broadly speaking neoclassical) economics. The contention for which the author aims to offer some justification is that that methodological basis is such that it has historically “loaded” the analytical and predictive “dice” in favour of the capitalist or so‐called free market system. By exploring the way in which economic analysis has evolved into a subject that claims to be “positive” (meaning ethically neutral, or free from subjective valuation), we question both the desirability of such a characteristic, and if indeed orthodox economics has succeeded in achieving it. The nature of this alleged “positivist fallacy” is such that the predictive ability of conventional economic analysis is to be brought severely into doubt and, in the present author's opinion, justifies an approach to economics based on unashamedly normative Biblical principles (as for example attempted by Hay and Kent).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)56-66
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Social Economics
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 01 Oct 1987
Externally publishedYes


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