Did Jesus put his seal of approval on capitalism, or did he mean something quite different?Did Jesus put his seal of approval on capitalism, or did he mean something quite different?
This is largely a matter of opinion -- people have argued both sides of this question.
On the one hand, you have Jesus's admonitions to feed the hungry and clothe the naked. You have his saying that it is harder for a rich man to enter heaven than for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle. You have him telling the rich young ruler to give away his possessions.
On the other hand, you have parables like that of the talents, where a master is outraged at one of his servants who takes money given to him and does not invest it like the other servants do. You also have stories like the story of the landowner who hires people to work for him throughout the day. Some say these are metaphors, but others say that the eye of the needle thing is a metaphor as well.
Jesus was not living in our times and in our economic system. He was not mostly concerned with economics. Therefore, I do not think he had a specific teaching that can be clearly applied to our situation today.