His master answered, “You wicked and slothful servant!”
— Matthew 25:26
Paul minces no words about loafers: “For when we were with you, we commanded you that if any will not work, neither shall he eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10). You would have to listen a long time before you heard those words today. The Apostle knew that man inclines toward evil and so he inclines toward idleness and laziness. A man will avoid all opportunities to work if he can, but the Apostle makes it clear that if a man will not work, he is not to eat.
This does not refer to a person who is not able to work. The Scripture has a great deal to say about caring for the lame, the blind, the sick, the infirm, the aged, and the young. But if anyone will not work, then neither let him eat.
Because of the prevailing politics of guilt, most people will feel a twinge of guilt when they hear those words, as if they were words without compassion. May I say to you that this is the most compassionate statement on the subject of economics that has ever been made. Were it not to a large degree followed, there would be wholesale famine and starvation plaguing the world. So let it be underscored and proclaimed in bold and capital letters: If any will not work, neither let him eat.