Intro

This blog gains its name from the book Steele's Answers published in 1912. It began as an effort to blog through that book, posting each of the Questions and Answers in the book in the order in which they appeared. I began the project on Dec. 10, 2011. I completed it on July 11, 2015. Along the way, I began to also post snippets from Dr. Steele's other writings — and from some other holiness writers of his times. I still do that every once in a while.

Friday, December 5, 2014

About Labor Unions

QUESTION: Is it not right for a Christian to belong to a labor union in order to get employment? We are not yoked together, but have religious liberty. Does not Peter say, "Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man?"

ANSWER: There are labor unions which respect the rights of non-union men and work with them. To these a Christian can belong. But some unions prevent outsiders and call a strike to get rid of them if they are found working on the same job. This contradicts not only the golden rule, but also natural justice. As a Christian man I could not share in such iniquity by membership in such a union. The Scripture quoted is not relevant to this case, as you will see if you finish the quotation — "For the Lord's sake; whether to the King as supreme, or unto governors," i. e., to civil government, not to an irresponsible, voluntary association. From the fact that you can get employment only by joining the union I infer that it is a labor monopoly produced by crushing out every independent workman of the same craft whose conscience or self-respect will not let him become a monopolist. The Question Box has spoken the truth in love, and yet in sympathy with the Christian mechanic.

"Workmen of God! oh, lose not heart,
But learn what God is like;
And in the darkest battlefield
Thou shalt know where to strike."
— Faber.

Always strike at wrong, at whatever cost or loss of self, not at another workman because he doesn't wear your tag.

Steele's Answers pp. 204, 205.