The Pope Is NOT On Sound Scriptural Grounds In His Attack Against Capitalism
I understand this will be a contentious post, so I want to make a few things known. I was raised Catholic. As soon as I was old enough to make my own choices, I left the Catholic Church – much for the very reason I am now writing. That said, I am not trying to attack the Pope or Catholics. I believe there are many good, faithful and saved people in the Catholic Church. However, I have grave concerns with the leadership of the Church. To me, the leadership of the Catholic Church is little different in spirit than the Pharisees and Sadducees were when Christ was ministering to Israel. So it is from this perspective that I now offer a strong word of caution to my Catholic friends over this story:
Pope Francis has taken aim at capitalism as “a new tyranny” and is urging world leaders to step up their efforts against poverty and inequality, saying “thou shall not kill” the economy. Francis calls on rich people to share their wealth.
The existing financial system that fuels the unequal distribution of wealth and violence must be changed, the Pope warned.
I pray I am missing something, or that something in the Pope’s message has been gabled in translation, but I know this is not the case. The Catholic Church was infiltrated by the Spirit of ‘social justice’ a long time ago, and it is that voice that we here now in the Pope’s words. Social justice is just another form of the collective, and the spirit of the collective is an anti-Christ spirit (I have written more on this issue here, and again here). What’s more, though I am far from being worthy of teaching Scripture, I have read and I believe I understand enough of it to know the Pope is not standing on Biblical ground here.
First, Spirits may use a system, but they are not found in a system. Thus, Capitalism, itself, is neither good nor evil. The free market merely reflects the hearts of those who employ it. This means that ‘Capitalism’ is not tyrannical; the people who are manipulating and abusing it are evil. And even here, the Pope does not make it clear what he means by Capitalism. From the tone of what he said in this message, I think he is using the term to describe State Capitalism. If so, we need to understand that State Capitalism is not the free market. State Capitalism is an entirely different thing. Most of us know it by another name – Fascism! So I wish the Pope had made his definition of Capitalism more clear because, as it stands now, I can only assume he is using the term in connection to State-run markets. This understanding is made all the more certain by the Pope’s call to change poverty and work toward equality of outcome. My friends, that is the voice of Satan speaking.
Look to Scripture. Christ tells us we will always have the poor, so why is the Pope be calling for us to try and change that which God has ordained? Does the Pope not realize that poverty can be a blessing for many people? It is for me. Many people would fall into spiritual ruin if they were wealthy. Scripture also teaches us that what we owe each other is not what this world is claiming we owe. In Timothy, the Apostle Paul tells us that if we have food and we are clothed, we are to be content. In fact, you will be hard pressed to find Christ telling us we owe anything more to each other than to feed and clothe each other and to tend to those who are sick (and possibly those in prison). Well, to me, the Pope seems to be advocating a standard of ‘charity’ far in excess of this. If all we do is feed and clothe people, they will still be considered poor, and the Pope is saying we need to eliminate wealth inequality, so I see a disconnect between what the Pope is calling for and what Scripture actually teaches.
But there is more. If we look to the Temple Tax, we see that God called for an equal tax on both the rich and the poor. At the time, the Temple was the government of Israel, so – to my understanding – God seems to support equality of burden when it comes to matters of government. Since the government is supposed to serve each member of society equally, every member of society has an equal burden to support government.
Then we look to Acts, where so many think they find Communism in the early Church. But those who think Acts describes Communism have not read Acts closely enough. If we look, we find the members of the Church willingly shared what they had, and that there was no need. Now remember, need is defined by Scripture as food and clothing. Everything else is want. Acts also tells us that the members of the early Church were not equal in their possessions. Some were still wealthy while others were poor. Finally, when we look to what happened to Ananias and Sapphira, we learn that they were allowed to do with their property as they wished. They were under no obligation to give it to the Church or the poor. Scripture tells us their lives were not taken for being greedy, but for lying to the Holy Spirit.
In truth, Scripture teaches us that the free market is closest to God’s economic model for man. If we go back to the books of Moses, we will find many laws dealing with free but fair trade. This is key to understanding where and why the Pope has gone astray. God has nothing against wealth. Study Job or Solomon and you will discover that God often blesses His faithful with great wealth. However, you will also find that He blesses those He knows will be responsible with it. At the same time, God also uses wealth as a stumbling block through which the character of our heart is tested.
I could go on, but those who have read Scripture as a complete work instead of looking for passages they can twist to their purposes should already know that Scripture is very clear on this matter. Yes, we are commanded to care for the poor and the widows (i.e. those who truly cannot care for themselves). But the command is meant to teach us to love each other. It is difficult to hate someone to whom you are giving help because you are actually giving a piece of yourself. By learning this, we learn that giving is a blessing in itself. But this means it has to be done willingly and freely. Otherwise, it is not charity and there is not blessing connected to our giving. By looking to government to ‘make things right,’ the Pope is advocating a negation of Christ’s Gospel, and Scripture clearly teaches this is an anti-Christ spirit.
So, to my Catholic friends, and to all Christians, I offer a word of caution regarding the Pope’s call for ‘social justice.’ Please be careful because, as it appears to have been presented, and as best I can understand Scripture, the Pope’s message is not in line with sound Scripture, but it is in line with the spirit of Satan.