Martin Luther was very concerned for the care of the poor and needy. He helped to set up the common chests which was used to help poor people in congregations get by in times of need and difficulty. Most of his biographers comment on the fact that Luther himself was often broke because he gave so much of his own money away to beggars. Wife Katie more frugal than Luther, often complained about his
generosity which sometimes seemed to border on the careless. There was a memorialized conversation between him and one of his friends, in which Luther had to borrow money because he had given everything he had away to beggars. His friend said that he expected to be paid back. Luther supposedly replied to the man that he had been paid back immeasurably more than he would ever know because he had a good God that cared for you him every day. There is no report saying whether Luther actually did pay him back or not.
There is a note in a book I read that Luther was also aware of sharp operators who took advantage of kind people as well. We have all heard the stories of panhandlers fighting over certain corners because investigators found out later these beggars could make a hundred thousand a year in certain areas. Anyway, supposedly, Luther wrote a pamphlet that listed the ways of crooks and grifters and even a had list of the jsrgon they would use in begging. It was kind of an “idiot’s guide to protection from being a victim”. At the same time Luther was willing to be a victim and would give to beggars without reservation because he said God commands the care for the needy not an investigation into their background. At the same time he would reiterate Paul’s injunction that any who would not work should not eat.