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Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol VII:
The Teaching of the Twelve Apostles: Chapter XII.—Reception of Christians

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter XII. 2480 —Reception of Christians.

1. But let every one that cometh in the name of the Lord be received, 2481 and afterward ye shall prove and know him; for ye shall have understanding right and left. 2. If he who cometh is a wayfarer, assist him as far as ye are able; but he shall not remain with you, except for two or three days, if need be. 3. But if he willeth to abide with you, being an artisan, let him work and eat; 2482 but if he hath no trade, 4. according to your understanding see to it that, as a Christian, 2483 he shall not live with you idle. 5. But if he willeth not to do, he is a Christ-monger. 2484 Watch that ye keep aloof from such.  



Verse 1 is almost identical with the beginning of Apostolic Constitutions, vii. 28; the remaining verses have no parallel.  


All professed Christians are meant.  


Comp. 2 Thess. iii. 10.  


The term occurs only here in the Teaching.  


“Christ-trafficker.” The abuse of Christian fellowship and hospitality naturally followed the remarkable extension of Christianity. This expressive term was coined to designate the class of idlers who would make gain out of their professed Christianity. It occurs in the longer form of the Ignatian Epistles (Trallians, vi.) and in literature of the fourth century.  

Next: Chapter XIII.—Support of Prophets

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