[Linux4christians] The Moral Foundation of Free Software
mem0tech at cableone.net
Sat Jan 1 00:16:33 EST 2005
Don Parris wrote:
> I believe strongly that the Church - the whole Church -
> needs to wrestle with this issue...
> God bless,
Thank You for this good, lucid post to the email list. I would like to
respond, but before I do can I ask you a question? If we don't agree,
can we still be friends? :)
I understand the premise of the Open Source development model. I've been
in technology for a long time and love it! The Open Source model is
excellent for many reasons. However, it seems to me that the best of
both the "open" and "closed" models are necessary in order to have any
enterprise in the technology world.
You've spoken of the "moral foundation" of free software. But the
ordinance of "labor" and the Biblical injunction of "industry" are just
as necessary and fundamental to a well orbed Christian worldview. The
Bible is replete with admonitions to good honest labor and the just
rewards that come from it.
So just as we are called to "give cheerfully" and "love thy neighbor as
thyself," we are also called to "provide for his own and his own house"
(1 Tim 5:8). I've said all of that to say this: To create, research,
develop, manufacture, and thus produce for profit is not only moral, but
it is even Biblical (Luke 10:7). Read many of the Proverbs and you will
see the reproach that idleness brings and the blessing industry brings.
In the end, there is absolutely NO reason why one could not, in
Christian love, provide freely to others things that God has blessed him
with, while also using said gifts and resources for one's own success
and even profit. By exercising good stewardship the well spring of
generosity could in reality, never end! This isn't some Pollyanna or
"pie in the sky" viewpoint based upon simplistic dogma. I've lived it as
many others that I know. I have personally reaped vast amount of wealth
from technology. God has blessed me and my family in ways I do not
deserve. I understand that it isn't really mine. None of it is. It all
belongs to Him: The Creator!
So freely as I've been given, I attempt to freely give (open source).
But freely as I've been given, I attempt to use it for personal gain and
personal profit so that I can expand my abilities to be a better steward
of God's resources (closed source).
This makes sense to me. Work is good. Profit from work is even better.
Giving freely of your overflow is GODLY! GLORY!
Just my $.02 in the form of a sermon. Please forgive!!!!
In Christian Hope,
-Pastor Mike Martin
Pastor Mike Martin
mem0tech <<at>> cableone.net
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