“Washed and fed,
one may fare to the Ting:
Though one’s clothes be the worse for Wear,
None need be ashamed of his shoes or hose,
Nor of the horse he owns,
Although no thoroughbred.
Fire is needed by the newcomer
Whose knees are frozen numb;
Meat and clean linen a man needs
Who has fared across the fells,
Water, too, that he may wash before eating,
Handcloth’s and a hearty welcome,
Courteous words, then courteous silence
That he may tell his tale.
The sitters in the hall seldom know
The kin of the new-comer:
The best man is marred by faults,
The worst is not without worth.
I give you advice Loddfáfnir – heed it well!
You will use it if you learn it,
it will get you good if you understand it.
Do not abuse a guest – or drive him out the door.
Instead do well for the wretched.
Though all Northerners are noted for their hospitality, our Swedes are supreme. To them worse than any infamy is to deny hospitality to travellers, so there is rivalry or competition as to which of them shall have the honour of entertaining a guest. To him they extend all the humane courtesies for as many days as he wants to remain there, and they take him to their friends in their various homes. Good things like this are part of their customs.
They have kings of ancient family. Their power, however, is dependent on the will of the people – what everyone has approved by common agreement the king must confirm…”
– Adam of Bremen on the Swedes, Gesta Hammarburgensis, ca1073AD
But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother have need, and shuts up his heart of compassion from him, how dwells the love of God in him?
– 1 John 3:17
No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.
– Matthew 6:24
What does it profit, my brethren, though a man says he has faith, and has not works? can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be warmed and filled; yet you give them not those things which are needful to the body; what does it profit? Even so faith, if it has not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, You have faith, and I have works: show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.
– James 2:14
For the poor shall never cease out of the land: therefore I command you, saying, you shall open your hand wide unto your brother, to your poor, and to your needy, in your land.
– Deuteronomy 15:11
Sell what you have, and give alms; provide yourselves purses which grow not old, a treasure in the heavens that fails not, where no thief approaches, neither moth corrupts. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
– Luke 12:33
Love you therefore the stranger: for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.
– Deuteronomy 10:19
But the stranger that dwells with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and you shall love him as yourself; for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.
And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that any of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common. And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all. Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.
– Acts 4:32
I was a stranger, and you took me not in: naked, and you clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and you visited me not. Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we you hungry, or thirsty or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto you? Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Since you did it not to one of the least of these, you did it not to me.
– Matthew 25:43
Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
– Ephesians 4:29