Archive for Saturday, May 10, 2008

Faith Forum: Why is sloth considered a deadly sin?

May 10, 2008


Sloth can indicate spiritual laziness

The Rev. Brian List, chaplain, St. Lawrence Catholic Campus Center, 1631 Crescent Road:

We often think of a "couch potato" as being slothful. However, the sin of sloth does not refer to physical tiredness, fatigue or aversion to work, but rather to "spiritual laziness," a carelessness or lack of enthusiasm about the life of my soul, the love of God and the mission he has given me. It is a weariness or boredom of the soul that leads to despair.

Jesus summed up man's duties toward God in this saying: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself." And before he ascended into heaven Jesus commanded the apostles to spread this message - essentially to share the good news that we are infinitely loved by God and he desires to share his divine life with us - his happiness, his goodness.

The Catholic Church teaches that faith in God's love encompasses the call and the obligation to respond with sincere love to divine charity. Sloth is a sin against God's love in that it goes so far as to refuse the joy that comes from God and to be repelled by divine goodness. It is a loss of hope in ever achieving what God wants for us: our eternal happiness. The slothful lack the courage and zeal for the great things that God has prepared for all who love him.

Until our souls dare to believe and have the courage and spiritual energy to comprehend that God is infinite love, who extends his hand to us in order to share his goodness and his happiness, our spiritual lives are stuck lying on the couch bored to death.

- Send e-mail to Brian List at

Proverbs describe undesirable trait

The Rev. Marshall Lackrone, pastor, Calvary Temple Assembly of God, 606 W. 29th St. Terrace:

The words sloth and slothfulness do not appear very much in daily conversation. To answer the question, a few Scriptures can give a very answer. Especially as we read the parable of Jesus about "The Talents" in Matthew 25:26 (King James version): "His lord answered and said unto him, 'Thou wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I have not strawed.'"

Jesus spoke the words to his followers, and yet in three verses before this he said in Matthew 25:23 (King James version): "His lord said unto him, 'Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: Enter thou into the joy of thy lord.'"

The Scriptures have many references to the sloth and slothfulness, and the Bible uses the word "sluggard" in the same vein in Proverbs 6:6-9 (King James version): Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: [7] Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, [8] Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest. [9] How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? when wilt thou arise out of thy sleep?"

The animal known as a sloth is a tree-dwelling mammal noted for its slowness of movement. Jesus used everyday things to illustrate his messages, and the sloth was one such illustration. If slothfulness is not sin, it is at least not very desirable in Ecclesiastes 10:18 (King James version): "By much slothfulness the building decayeth; and through idleness of the hands the house droppeth through."

- Send e-mail to Marshall Lackrone at


just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 9 years, 9 months ago

Actually, "limbo" derives from Latin. (1) "region supposed to exist on the border of Hell" reserved for pre-Christian saints (Limbus patrum) and unbaptized infants (Limbus infantum);" c.1300, from L. (in) limbo "(on) the edge," abl. of limbus "edge, border" (see limb (2)). Figurative sense of "condition of neglect or oblivion" is from 1642.limbo (2) dance in which the dancer bends backward and passes under a bar, 1956, of W.Indian origin, probably an alteration of limber.

yourworstnightmare 9 years, 9 months ago

Typical religious pandering.Tell parishoners that being a "couch potato" is a sin, they stop coming to your church because all of them are couch potatoes.Instead, make it some abstract, spiritual sloth that can't be quantified and that no one recognizes in themselves.Laughable.

Flap Doodle 9 years, 9 months ago

Sloths! Don't get me started. They're as bad as anteaters!

pusscanthropus 9 years, 9 months ago

And all the poor souls sing this night and day while doing the limbo rock and waiting for the end of the world:Every limbo boy and girlAll around the limbo worldGonna do the limbo rockAll around the limbo clockJack be limbo, Jack be quickJack go unda limbo stickAll around the limbo clockHey, let's do the limbo rockLimbo lower nowLimbo lower nowHow low can you goFirst you spread your limbo feetThen you move to limbo beatLimbo ankolimboneee,Bend back like a limbo treeJack be limbo, Jack be quickJack go unda limbo stickAll around the limbo clockHey, let's do the limbo rockla la la etc (instead of instrumental break)Get yourself a limbo girlGive that chic a limbo whirlThere's a limbo moon aboveYou will fall in limbo loveJack be limbo, Jack be quickJack go unda limbo stickAll around the limbo clockHey, let's do the limbo rockDon't move that limbo barYou'll be a limbo starHow low can you go

smarty_pants 9 years, 9 months ago

According to the catholic church, the souls of those who lived prior to Christ must wait until the final judgement at the end of the world to go to heaven or hell. In the meantime, they're in limbo--that's a neutral place, neither good or bad. They were just in the wrong place at the wrong time, poor limbo-bound souls.

Frederic Gutknecht IV 9 years, 9 months ago

It's a little known fact that there was a slang word shared across languages in ancient times. It was a word for the world when things appeared to be unstable and -getting worse-, which seemed to the constant state of things. The word was "Limbo". This is where all -souls-, who don't make it into heaven are born...again and again, along with their slothful progeny.Heaven is the only salvation. Earth is doomed by the overpopulation of sinners.,,,who create their own religions and hence can find no way out of doing the Limbo death...over and over again.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 9 years, 9 months ago

Right you are, orbiter-- and it may come as a surprise to many, but Jesus didn't even speak English (nor did anyone else in the world at the time.) c.1175, "indolence, sluggishness," formed from M.E. slou, slowe (see slow); replacing O.E. slÃ:wð. Sense of "slowness, tardiness" is from c.1380. As one of the deadly sins, it translates L. accidia. The slow-moving mammal first so called 1613, a translation of Port. preguiça, from L. pigritia "laziness" (cf. Sp. perezosa "slothful," also "the sloth").

orbiter 9 years, 9 months ago

"The animal known as a sloth is a tree-dwelling mammal noted for its slowness of movement. Jesus used everyday things to illustrate his messages, and the sloth was one such illustration."Man, when Jesus used the tree sloth as an example he must have really been running out of examples. Because he would have been the only one in the Old World to know what one was since tree sloths live in the forest canopies of Central and South America.

igby 9 years, 9 months ago

All government workers are sinful it seems. Lol.

smarty_pants 9 years, 9 months ago

Wow! Three other limbo posts all while I thought mine would be first! Pretty intriguing place...I guess if it's on the edge of hell, it's not really all that neutral. Hmmm.

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