Are Christians taking advantage of other Christians in business by expecting a discount? If you are a Christian are you obligated to finding a Christian for products and services? This bold article takes an honest look at Christian business ethics.
I know a good Christian lady who cuts hair for a living. That’s her occupation. That’s how she makes a living. She is very good at it. Why is it that when Christians come to her shop they expect a “discount” just because they go to the same Church that she attends? There are some who refer to this practice as a “believer discount”.
Now I am not opposed to finding discounts and deals, but not at someone else’s expense. If someone decides that they want to give me a haircut at no charge, or half price, out of love, then that’s fine. But to just expect that Christian businesses are supposed to give discounts to all the “brothers and sisters” is not love. It’s actually an indication of a poverty mind set. I’ll explain that later.
For me to think that my Christian brothers and sisters are obligated to give me a cheaper price is selfish and it takes money away from them. Suppose you couldn’t find a Christian for the service or product you needed? What would you do? You would end up paying someone the price they charged.
I know some Christians who are very good at doing car repairs and some of them even do it as a business. And hardly a week or two goes by that another Christian asks them for help in fixing their car, expecting to pay little or nothing for services rendered. That is very selfish and, again, an indication of a poverty mentality.
Here’s a startling thought: pay your Christian brother or sister more than they normally charge! Now that’s a concept that has love written all over it. Why would you do that? First of all it is indeed a blessing to have a Christian provide a service or a product. If they operate their business with integrity and love, that love will have an impact on my life. Secondly, by believing God’s promises of abundance you can go over and beyond and give more to the person who is providing you the service or product. That increases their prosperity. But, if you have a poverty mentality, you are always looking for someone to charge you less for everything and expecting any Christian to give you a discount. Why not believe God’s promises of prosperity, receive His abundance, and then share that abundance with others?
Now I would rather pay a Christian for a product or service, but there is another side to this coin. Just because I am a Christian does that mean I have to find another Christian to provide my products and services? Suppose I know a Christian who could get the job done, but not with the quality I require? Am I obligated to hire a Christian anyway and then have inferior work done? Some say that would be the “Christian thing to do.” I say, “No.”
If I hire you to fix my car I am expecting you to know what you are doing and to do it right the first time. If that doesn’t happen then I have wasted the money God gave me to steward, not to mention the time that I have lost. Perhaps the “Christian thing to do” would be to be honest and tell someone that their work is not the quality that it could be. Instead of feeling obligated to hire them, why not give them some money so that they can get the training they need so they can do quality work? Feeling sorry for someone and then having them do a job that they or someone else will need to re-do it is not helping my brother or sister.
As a final thought, why shouldn’t Christian businesses be the best businesses on the face of the earth? That takes a lot more than just having a Christian sounding name. It means quality work. It means integrity and honesty. It means operating biblical principles of giving more value. Having a Christian business reflects back on our Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ. As a matter of fact, whether we own a business or are simply employed by someone, the “Christian thing to do” is to work heartily, ethically, and honestly with the love of God. Our light should so shine that everybody, Christians and non-Christians alike want our products and services.