Sec. VIII.—On the Duty of Working for a Livelihood.
That a Christian Who Will Not Work Must Not Eat, as Peter and the Rest of the Apostles Were Fishermen, But Paul and Aquila Tentmakers, Jude the Son of James an Husbandman.
LXIII. Let the young persons of the Church endeavour to minister diligently in all necessaries: mind your business with all becoming
seriousness, that so you may always have sufficient to support yourselves and those that are needy, and not burden the Church
of God. For we ourselves, besides our attention to the word of the Gospel, do not neglect our inferior employments. For some
of us are fishermen, some tentmakers, some husbandmen, that so we may never be idle. So says Solomon somewhere: “Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways diligently, and become wiser than she. For she, having neither
field, overseer, nor ruler, prepareth her food in the summer, and layeth up a great store in the harvest. Or else go to the
bee, and learn how laborious she is, and her work how valuable it is, whose labours both kings and mean men make use of for
their health. She is desirable and glorious, though she be weak in strength, yet by honouring wisdom she is improved, etc.
How long wilt thou lie on thy bed, O sluggard? When wilt thou wake out of thy sleep? Thou sleepest awhile thou liest down awhile, thou slumberest awhile, thou foldest thy hands on thy
breast to sleep awhile. Then poverty comes on thee like an evil traveller, and want as a swift racer. But if thou beest diligent,
thy harvest shall come as a fountain, and want shall fly from thee as an evil runagate.”28592859
And again: “He that manageth his own land shall be filled with bread.”28602860
And elsewhere he says: “The slothful has folded his own hands together, and has eaten his own flesh.”28612861
And afterwards: “The sluggard hides his hand; he will not be able to bring it to his mouth.”28622862
And again: “By slothfulness of the hands a floor will be brought low.”28632863
Labour therefore continually; for the blot of the slothful is not to be healed. But “if any one does not work, let not such
a one eat”28642864
among you. For the Lord our God hates the slothful. For no one of those who are dedicated to God ought to be idle.