The New Testament affirms the fundamental principles of capitalism found in the Old Testament, but it also offers cautions concerning the zealous pursuit of wealth. Matt. 25:34-36 describes a coming judgment day when every person will give an account for what they have done; a central basis for that judgment will be how we cared for the poor, the stranger, the sick and the imprisoned. We should also note that Jesus warned of the deceitfulness of riches and the futility of hoarding great wealth.
Some have asked me if there is a balance between financial prosperity and poverty. This is an issue I have thought about at length, as the principle of divine balance is found through out the Bible. As I meditated on this question, the Lord showed me the balance to financial prosperity is giving…not poverty. Meaning as long as we give generously it will balance out the prosperity we see Biblically as the Lord’s will. To be specific…balance is not a little bit of prosperity and a little bit of poverty. No poverty is part of the curse and undesirable for all. That stated, capitalism is still God’s first plan to bring people out of poverty.
Consider the other option. Karl Marx regarded socialism as an economic necessity that would emerge out of the ashes of capitalism precisely because capitalism would fail to sustain wealth creation. Marx did not consider permanent economic growth in a capitalist system to be possible. He was wrong. He claimed the rich and powerful would never share power voluntarily with others, or create social safety nets. In fact the opposite has happened.
Not only has socialist theory been wrong about the economic and political fruits of capitalism, it failed to see the problems that arise in socialist governments. Socialism’s record has been pain, not gain, especially for the poor. Socialism produced mass starvation in eastern Europe and China, as it undermined the ability of farmers to grow and market their crops.
In most cases, socialism’s monopoly on economic control also let to corruption by government officials, as was especially apparent in Latin American and African socialist regimes. The adverse economic consequences of socialism led the Scandinavian countries to dial back their versions of socialism in the past decades.
Socialism has been abandoned in virtually the entire developing world. Countries today do not seek to emulate the disasters of North Korea, Cuba, or Venezuela. Now developing countries such as Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Chile, India, China, South Africa, Vietnam, Thailand, and Indonesia are known as “emerging economies,” a description that recognizes their need to emerge from state control of their economies through privatization, free trade, and the creation of accessible private financial resources to promote growth and poverty alleviation. All around the developing world, socialism is understood as a false promise, a convenient theory that controlling elites use to retain and expand power.
Capitalism, in contrast, is seen as the force that has lifted over a billion people out of poverty worldwide since 1990.
Compassionate Capitalism – A Judeo-Christian Valueby Harold Eberle, 2010, Worldcast Publishing. Pg. 131
Capitalism: Still Working – Karl Marx’s economic forecasts were even worse than Paul Krugman’s. By James Freeman. Nov. 15, 2018. Wall Street Journal