On Beggars and beneficial Work

While reading on the Christian theology of vocation I ran across this quote on those without a vocation, or what might be called free-loading, or welfare culture today. It is worth considering well.

“Hence we may learn sundry points of instruction; first of all that it is a foul disorder in any Commonwealth, that there should be suffered rogues, beggars, vagabonds; for such kind of persons commonly are of no civil society or corporation, nor of any particular Church: and are as rotten legs, and arms, that drop from the body. Again, to wander up and down from year to year to this end, to seek and procure bodily maintenance, is no calling, but the life of a beast; and consequently a condition or state of life flat against the rule: That every one must have a particular calling. And therefore the statute made the last Parliament for the restraining of beggars and rogues is an excellent statute, and being in substance the very law of God, is never to be repealed."

A Treatise of the Vocations, William Perkins, 1605, p.910

http://books.google.com/books?pg=PT10&id=RLyOAAAAMAAJ#v=onepage&q&f=false

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About Scott Roberts

pastor of Hope in Christ Church, Bellingham, WA
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