Calvin: On Laziness and the Usefulness of the Law

The Law acts like a whip to the flesh, urging it on as men do a lazy sluggish ass. Even in the case of a spiritual man, inasmuch as he is still burdened with the weight of the flesh, the Law is a constant stimulus, pricking him forward when he would indulge in sloth. — John Calvin

For Calvin, sloth is a sign of spiritual immaturity. Hence, the Law is useful in prodding the slothful lazy sluggish asses forward (since they remain unmotivated within themselves and require external pressure).

3 thoughts on “Calvin: On Laziness and the Usefulness of the Law

  1. Jona Lendering 30 Oct 2010 at 2:27 am

    Is Calvin referring here to civil law or to the torah?

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    • Jim 30 Oct 2010 at 7:17 am

      Torah. though to be fair to Calvin, he hardly drew a rigid distinction between the two. law was god’s invention whether civil or religious and the lines between them blurred.

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  2. Jona Lendering 31 Oct 2010 at 2:11 pm

    Thanks Jim.

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