The New York Times published an online column arguing that the purpose of work is leisure. (We work for the sake of the weekend; we have a career so we can retire; we try to amass wealth so we can stop working.) That is also the view of Aristotle (we need to leisure to fully exercise our intellects) and of medieval Catholicism (the contemplative life is more spiritual than the active life). Luther’s doctrine of vocation, by contrast, challenged this view, teaching that the purpose of work in all vocations is to love and serve one’s neighbor.
The folks at the Gospel Coalition blog asked me to pen an answer to the New York Times piece, which was by Notre Dame philosopher Gary Gutting. I did. Go here to read my response, which includes a link to Prof. Gutting’s essay: