WHY CATHOLICS BROUGHT THEIR WEALTH TO THE CHURCH, BUT THE PROTESTANTS DID NOT.
Europe was set free largely thanks to the Protestant reformation that began to teach that believers don’t have any assurances to salvation through the back doors. According to the teachings of Martin Luther, John Calvin and their colleagues, sacraments do not get you salvation anymore and indulgentia could not get your relatives out of hell fire. You now must live right and straight.
This teaching from the Protestants made the believers to sit up and work out their salvation on daily basis.
“Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to tend and keep it” Genesis 2:15
John Calvin and his teachings in Geneva played a decisive role in spreading this spirit of capitalism or Protestant ethics. The cardinal point of his teaching, his doctrine of control by conscience, led to rigorous honesty in the daily lifestyle of the believers.
John Calvin and his adherents taught that any form of waste must be frowned at, because people gave their lives to earn whatever they possess. This of course led to the view that luxury is a sin. The Calvinist did not believe in bringing all their money or worldly wealth to the church as the Catholics did. They were supposed to use it to do more good to their fellow men and the community.
These Protestants discouraged donation of money to the poor, because according to them, that could rather lead to beggary and laziness. According to them, a man is not supposed to be a burden to his fellow man. Neither should he be a nuisance to God by not working.
“For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat. For we hear that there are some who walk among you in a disorderly manner, not working at all, but are busybodies.” 2Thessalonians 3:10-11
In their teachings, when you fail to work you fail to glorify God. The preachers laid a huge emphasis on savings that could eventually lead to investments. That gave a huge boost to the development of new economy in Europe, banking, industrialization, etc.
This led to mass productivity and production in the economy. Industrialization gave birth to wealth for an average man. Today however, most people are forced to work either for survival or to fulfill their greed for money. Whereas the Protestants wanted to work to please God and to serve man.
“Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.”– Aristotle
It is these values that were later transferred into the United States of America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and other countries and continents where the descendants of these European Protestants were scattered.
To be continued tomorrow…