Thursday, August 23, 2012

J. Reuben Clark on Idleness

From the foundation of the Church until now, idleness has been condemned as unworthy of Church members, as destructive of character, as violative of the true Christian life, as contrary to the command given to Adam as the law of this world 'In the sweat of thy brow, thou shalt eat thy bread."

-Conference Report, October 1936

I always thought of the Lord's admonition to Adam as informative; in my mind, He was telling Adam that he would have to work because he would starve otherwise. But this can also be read in the imperative--thou shalt eat thy bread in the sweat of thy brow. In other words, it's a commandment to work for what we need. This makes the wording in D&C 42:42 intriguing as well:  "...he that is idle shall not eat the bread nor wear the garments of the laborer." An underlying principle of the Church welfare program is that people are enabled to work, and they are expected to be doing some work in return for the aid that they receive. It makes sense under this commandment, that they shall not partake of what other people have earned if they are idle.

And of course after this I am reminded that, as usual, I have some repenting to do. The hours on Pinterest are totally justified because I am trying to figure out what to make for dinner and what to wear and what do with our house, right?

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