This Day With God


Work a Blessing, July 13

For ye remember, brethren, our labour and travail: for labouring night and day, because we would not be chargeable unto any of you, we preached unto you the gospel of God. 1 Thessalonians 2:9. TDG 203.1

Though Paul sat, a diligent student, at the feet of Gamaliel, he also learned a trade. He was an educated tentmaker. It was the custom among the Jews, the wealthy as well as the poorer classes, to train their sons and daughters to some useful employment, so that should adverse circumstances come, they would not be dependent on others, but would have educated ability to provide for their own necessities. They might be instructed in literary lines, but they must also be trained to some craft. This was deemed an indispensable part of their education. TDG 203.2

The testimony of Paul and Aquila is that by their occupation they were tentmakers. While they preached the gospel, Paul and his companion wrought at their trade as tentmakers, and in doing this they could give a more thorough knowledge of Christ to those who heard them. They labored that they might obtain means for support.... TDG 203.3

In Corinth he [Paul] had lived and labored with Aquila and Priscilla, instructing them more perfectly in the truth. The great apostle was not ashamed or afraid of work, and he did not treat this subject as in any way lowering to his work in the ministry.... TDG 203.4

The custom of supporting men and women in idleness by private gifts or church money encourages them in sinful habits, and this course should be conscientiously avoided. Every man, woman, and child should be educated to do practical, useful work. All should learn some trade. It may be tentmaking, or it may be business in other lines; but all should be educated to use the members of their body to some purpose, and God is ready and willing to increase the adaptability of all who will educate themselves to industrious habits. TDG 203.5

If a man in good physical health has property, and has no need of entering into employment for his own support, he should labor to acquire means that he may advance the cause and work of God. He is to be “not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord” (Romans 12:11). God will bless all who will guard their influence in regard to others in this respect.—Manuscript 93, July 13, 1899,. TDG 203.6