The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism – Max Weber
Weber disagrees with Marx’s theory that “capitalism was the social counterpart of Calvinist Theology.” (2) He believed that “Calvinism influenced the economic prosperity on Holland.” (6) RH Tawney states that maybe “Calvinism and capitalism both had a different effect on the economics and social structure.” He further adds that Calvin “saw no hindrance to the effectiveness of clergy to their wealth, but a desirable enhancement of their prestige.” (157) Calvinist Theology supports the theory that everyone is predestined. Is the Calvinist Theology the Spirit of Capitalism? We are entwined as one. We, Christians, worship in church and worship things in the world. Whose two worlds in this current atmosphere of our times in American are so entwined that we are unable to separate our belief system? The rich were already predestined for their place in society, and the poor were already predestined for their place in society with no means of reaching the Society of richness. So many believe this, yet years of people born in low-income society have reached the Society of richness. There are church leaders in Houston who strongly believe in capitalism and promote it in their sermons. Weber’s views brought me to the scripture Matthew 20:1-16 where a man kept hiring laborers all during the day to tend to the vineyard and at the end of the day, he paid all them the same. In America, those slotted as the minority are fighting for equal pay for the work they do and equal rights as their white male coworkers. Now our God was making reference to those who have come into the fowl of believers, but even in some churches, you have to serve your time in membership before you can become a leader to teach, choir, etc. Our worlds entwined.
Capitalism is not merely rich and poor, but it’s been utilized as a division among humans. In summary, it is said to be “not the same thing as the pursuit of gain and the greatest possible amount of money but implies the pursuit of forever-renewable profit. It views the balances, the amount of money gained in a business period over the amount of money spent. The point of the economic action is based on the amount of profit made.”  Weber then addressed how the Protestant’s asceticism affects the spirit of capitalism. He included the parable of the ten talents and highlighted the one who was rejected because he did not do anything with his talent to make it grow,” as an example. Weber quoted John Wesley as saying, “I fear when riches increase, the essence of religion decrease in the same proportion…We should not prevent people from being diligent and frugal; we must exhort all Christians to in all they can and to save all they can; what is, in effect, to grow rich.”
Can capitalism and socialism work together? When one increases their wealth, can they also help someone in need? There are many who have wealth and cheerfully share to help those in need. There are some Christians today who are working so hard to retain their increase, they have no intention or helping the least of these. Again, capitalism and socialism exist together?
 SparkNotes Editors. “SparkNote on The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism.” SparkNotes LLC. n.d.. http://www.sparknotes.com/philosophy/protestantethic/ (accessed February 5, 2017).