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The Uses of Business
The kingdom of the heavens is like a man, a merchant, seeking beautiful pearls —Matthew 13
Loving the common good (part 1)
Genesis 41:47-48. And the land made a gathering by handfuls in the seven years of plenty. And [Joseph] brought together all the food of the seven years that were in the land of Egypt, and put the food in cities; the food of the field of the city, that which was all around her, he put in her midst.
Charity 127. (I.) The common good exists from the goods of use which individuals perform; and the goods of use that individuals perform subsist from the common good….
Charity 128. It is known that every man is born to be of use, and that he may perform uses to others; and he who does not is called a useless member, and is cast off….
Charity 129. Little children and older children, so long as they are under caretakers and teachers, do not indeed perform goods of use. But still they learn to perform them, and must have them for an end; thus the good of use is in the end. That a house may be built, the materials must first be provided, and the foundation laid, and the walls erected; and so finally it is inhabited. The good of a house is the dwelling in it.
Charity 130. The common good consists in these things: That in the society or kingdom there shall be, I. What is Divine with them. II. That there shall be justice with them. III. That there shall be morality with them. IV. That there shall be industry, knowledge, and uprightness with them. V. That there shall be the necessaries of life. VI. That there shall be the things necessary to their occupations. VII. That there shall be the things necessary for protection. VIII. That there shall be a sufficiency of wealth; because from this come the three former necessities.
Charity 131. From these arises the common good; and yet it does not come of these themselves, but from the individuals there, and through the goods of use which individuals perform. As that what is Divine is there through ministers; and justice through magistrates and judges; so morality exists by means of the Divine and of justice; and necessities by means of industrial occupations and commerce; and so on.
Charity 133. That the goods of use which individuals perform subsist from the common good is known; for each one derives his particular good of use from the common. All things necessary for life, and also for occupations, and the wealth by which these necessities are procured are from this source. For by the common is meant not only the city and its society, but the country, and also the government. But as these are subjects of wide extent, they will be more clearly set forth in what follows; for there are many varieties, which yet are in agreement with this law.
Charity 134. (II.) The goods of use which individuals perform, from which the common good exists, are ministries, functions, offices, and various employments. By ministries are meant priestly offices and the duties pertaining to them; by functions, various offices of a civil nature; by employments are meant such vocations as those of craftsmen [and trades], which are numerous; and by offices, various pursuits, businesses, and services. Of these four the commonwealth or society consists.
Charity 135. They who are in ministerial offices provide that the Divine shall be there; the various civil functionaries, that there shall be justice there, and also morality, as well as industry, knowledge, and uprightness; the various workmen that there shall be the necessaries of life; and merchants, that there shall be the things necessary for the various occupations; soldiers, that there shall be protection; and these last especially, and also agriculturists, that there shall be a sufficiency of wealth.
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