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Morality After CalvinTheodore Beza's Christian Censor and Reformed Ethics$
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Kirk M. Summers

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190280079

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190280079.001.0001

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The Execution of One’s Calling

The Execution of One’s Calling

Chapter:
(p.165) 4 The Execution of One’s Calling
Source:
Morality After Calvin
Author(s):

Kirk M. Summers

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190280079.003.0005

Several poems of Beza’s Cato treating the problem of idleness receive attention in this chapter. Two address the issue of finding a vocation, while two others focus on garrulity and frivolity. The reformers were unanimous in their belief that everyone should be busy about their calling. The Genevan Consistory frequently rebuked its inhabitants for not filling their time with useful pursuits. Beza argued that mankind’s inherent need to work reflects God’s own creative energy and his love of order and purpose. Furthermore, work has a social significance in that it fosters the bonds of mutual support. Garrulity, which can only occur when someone has too much idle time, disrupts communication and social harmony; frivolity wastes time that could be spent on helping others. The reformers often attacked monks for being lazy and had little tolerance for festivals and holidays that, to their mind, only encourage more drinking, gambling, and adultery.

Keywords:   idleness, laziness, calling, vocation, time management, garrulity, frivolity, monks

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