Pluto likes human relationships to be primarily about making money. He seeks to create a marketplace mentality between buyer and seller, employer and employee, landlord and tenant, creditor and debtor, and other economic competitors.
1. Everything may be bought and sold
When we have a marketplace mentality, we look at everything in terms of making a profit for ourselves. We even think of people as objects to be bought and sold.
Buying and selling people obviously means slavery. Less obviously it means impoverishment. Being impoverished means suffering an alienation akin to slavery. It involves involuntary subjection to the beliefs, values, norms, and whims of those who are wealthier. This alienation not only afflicts the poor while at work or at the welfare office. It worms its way into their Olympian souls, haunts them in the night, and alters their relationships with family and friends.
2. Other people serve as means of making money
We falsely see people as objects to be used to make a profit. We no longer regard them as the unique, precious, and irreplaceable witnesses to God that God created and redeemed them to be.
3. Making money is more important than being trustworthy
This marketplace mentality leads easily to betrayal. Everyone has their price. It is no accident that Judas received thirty pieces of silver for delivering up Jesus. Satan wanted Jesus dead. He used Pluto as one means of attaining his will for that death.
4. Surviving competition for money means taking control
Our marketplace mentality means destructive, cutthroat, competition. This always involves power or exercising coercive control over others. More power means better control. But exercising coercive control means subordinating people to money and life to death.
(Today’s reflections were guided by Jacques Ellul’s book, Money and Power (trans. LaVonne Neff, Inter-Varsity Press, 1984).
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