“Paul was set apart and dedicated to evangelism, like the offerings which the Law says were set apart for God and for the priests.” (cf. Exodus 29:24-28).
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God–this is your spiritual act of worship. Romans 12:1
Apollinaris of Laodicea (c.310-392) in Pauline Commentary from the Greek Church, NTA 15:57.
Use your hands for good, hard work, and then give generously to those who are in need. Ephesians 4:28b
“What makes one praiseworthy is to give of one’s own to the needy.”
Ambrosiaster (commentary dated 366-384) in Epistle to the Ephesians 4.28.
“By burdens he means the needs of the body. So to the extent that anyone is richer in resources, he is called to bear the poor person’s burden and relieve poverty by his abundance.”
Origen of Alexandria (c. 185-254) in Commentary on Romans 10.6.
“I fear, wherever riches have increased, essence of religion, the mind that was in Christ, has decreased in the same proportion. Therefore do I not see how it is possible, in the nature of things, for any revival of true religion to continue long. For religion must necessarily produce both industry and frugality; and these cannot but produce riches. But as riches increase, so will pride, anger, and love of the world in all its branches.”
John Wesley in The Works of Rev. John Wesley, A.M., vol. 13 (London: Wesleyan Conference Office, 1872) Thoughts on Methodism 9.
“It was therefore within His purpose that He gave to us the gift of trusting in Him. This is an incomparable gift. It is only by faith that we are blessed with so great a reward. We are to believe in such a way to be ready to suffer for Him.”
Marius Victorinus (c. 280-363) in Epistle to the Philippians 1.29
“The Lord says, “No servant can serve two masters.” If we want to serve both God and money will will do us no good. “What good does it do a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his life?” This world and the world to come are enemies! This one means adultery, corruption, greed and deceit, while the other gives them up. We cannot be friends of both. To get the one, we must give the other up. We think that it is better to hate what is here, for it is trivial, temporary and perishable and to value what is there: things good and imperishable. Yes, if we do the will of Christ, we will find rest, but if not, nothing will save us from eternal punishment if we fail to heed his commands.”
Clement of Rome (fl. c. 92-101) in 2 Clement 6.1-7
“If you want to be the Lord’s disciple, you must take up your cross and follow the Lord. Are you hesitating about crafts, businesses and professions for the sake of children or parents?
The proof that family as well as crafts and business are to be left for the Lord’s sake was given us when James and John were called by the Lord and left both father and ship.” (cf. Luke 5:1-11)
Tertullian of Carthage (c. 155-225) from On Idolatry 12.
“The Christian soul understands how far removed he should be from theft of another’s goods when he realizes that failure to share his surplus with the needy is like to theft. The Lord says, “Give and it shall be given to you. Forgive, and you shall be forgiven.” Let us graciously and fervently perform these two types of almsgiving, that is, giving and forgiving, for we in turn pray the Lord to give us good things and not to repay our evil deeds.”
St. Augustine of Hippo (c. 354-430) in Sermon 206.2.
“The Lord warns us of this in his gospel lest we return to the devil again and to the world, which we have renounced and from which we have escaped. He says, “No one, having put his hand to the plow and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:57-62) Again he says, “And let him who is in the field not turn back. Remember Lot’s wife. (Luke 17:31-32). Lest anyone, either because of some desire for wealth or by his own charm be persuaded from following Christ, he added, “He that does not renounce all that he possesses, cannot be my disciple.”
Cyprian of Carthage (c. 200-258) in Exhortation to Martyrdom 5.13.7.
“Alms and faith must not leave you. Remember that every day death is near and act as if the tomb already enclosed you. Do not care for this world, since anxiety for the world and the desire for riches are thorns that choke the good seed.”
Paschasius of Dumium (c. 515-580) in Questions and Answers of the Greek Fathers 43.2