What Would It Cost to Solve the World’s Problems?

It’s easy to look at the problems in the world today and despair. How could we possibly hope to solve them? The surprising reality, though, is that we already have everything we need.

The Cost

Let’s start by looking at what it would cost to solve the world’s most pressing needs:

  • $6 billion would be enough to strike a death blow to major health issues like polio1 and malaria2 when combined with what’s already being given by other government and private sources.
  • $4 billion would end hunger.4
  • $112.5 billion would deliver universal safe water and sanitation, even if no one else gave anything at all.4
  • $87.5 billion would end poverty in all forms if the rest of the world combined gave the same amount.5
  • $39 billion would deliver universal pre-primary, primary, and secondary education of good quality in low- and lower-middle-income countries, even if no one else gave anything at all.6
  • $53.6 billion would provide comprehensive maternal and newborn support in developing countries, even if no one else gave anything at all.7

That’s a total of $300.1 billion — a massive number when you consider that the entire U.S. foreign aid budget is only $50 billion.

How does it compare to the resources of the American church, though?

The Power of 8%

American churchgoers make about $6 trillion per year — that’s $6 thousand billion — and we give 2% of it away.8

What would happen if we took that number to 10%? What could we do with the extra 8%?

Just 5% would be enough to cover the $300.1B to solve the world’s most pressing needs, and we’d still have $179.9 Billion left — every year. How many Bible translations could be completed for the 1.5 billion people who still don’t have one? How many people could be reached with the Gospel? How many places could remain unreached if we were spending more than the entire U.S. foreign aid budget to reach them?

All because we decided that we could live on 90% of our income!

Don’t Believe the Numbers?

We don’t blame you. Putting a dollar figure on most of these issues is challenging, to say the least.

The point, though, is that the cost — whatever numbers you believe — is dwarfed by our ability to meet it. It’s not close. These problems are solvable, and God has blessed us with abundant resources to do it.

What do you think his expectation is?

Feature Photo by Dmitry Demidko