When Jesus was asked by the wealthy disciple ‘what must I do to be saved ?’, Jesus replied, ‘sell all you have, give the money to the poor, and follow Me’
Incorrect, and the misrepresentation of Jesus’ words to follow a prejudice is all too common. Such misrepresentation is precisely why there is so little progress in the world towards the good and the true.
In Mt 19:16-22, the rich young man asked “What must I do to have eternal life?”
Jesus’ answer was to “Keep the Commandments” which were listed, plus “love your neighbour as yourself,” and then the positive commands that admit of degrees of perfection. Then he asked what he lacks, to which Jesus replied “if you want to be perfect, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”
The young man who might have become an Apostle was dismayed. Jesus then speaks of the difficulties when rich, not of impossibilities.
There is never condemnation of riches but of the misuse – that is the key to understanding our freedom and our “right to freedom of economic initiative.” (Bl John Paul II). That is why Bl JPII condemns the Welfare State and emphatically supports the free market in a society of wise laws.