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An Economist’s Guide to Heaven

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  • Muller, Nick
  • Gray, Jo Anna
  • Stone, Joe

Abstract

This paper is the first to offer an economic model of God and humanity as optimizing agents in the context of concrete belief archetypes (religious ‘contracts’) in Judeo-Christian theology. Data support the model’s unique predictions, despite their otherwise counterintuitive, unlikely nature. For example, the model requires that in one belief archetype, ‘good works’ not increase with strength of faith, as one might otherwise expect, and that what appears may be God’s dominant contract precisely balances divine penalties for reneging on promises with incentives to seek divine ‘gifts’—an equivalence supported in the data.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 22539.

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Date of creation: Mar 2010
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:22539

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Keywords: economics; religion;

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References

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  1. Lehrer, Evelyn L., 2004. "Religion as a Determinant of Economic and Demographic Behavior in the United States," IZA Discussion Papers 1390, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Lipford, Jody W. & Tollison, Robert D., 2003. "Religious participation and income," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 249-260, June.
  3. Esa Mangeloja, 2003. "Application of Economic Concepts on Religious Behavior," Others 0310003, EconWPA.
  4. Long, Stephen H & Settle, Russell F, 1977. "Household Allocation of Time and Church Attendance: Some Additional Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(2), pages 409-13, April.
  5. Iannaccone, Laurence R & Finke, Roger & Stark, Rodney, 1997. "Deregulating Religion: The Economics of Church and State," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 35(2), pages 350-64, April.
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Blog mentions

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  1. An economic model of God
    by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2010-06-08 14:17:00

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  1. Economic Logic blog

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