Summary: Christians need to be hard-working people.
BY THE SWEAT OF YOUR BROW
Gen. 3:19 “By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground,
since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return.”
INTRO.- Sweat and dirt. Those don’t sound very inviting or interesting to me. DO THEY TO YOU?
God said to Adam, “By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food.” I think the meaning is this: YOU
WILL GET SOMETHING TO EAT WHEN YOU WORK AND SWEAT FIRST.
Essentially, God was saying to all mankind, “You’re going to have to work and you will have to sweat in
ILL.- The boss said to Jones, “How long have you been working here?” Jones said, “Ever since I heard
you coming down the hall.”
ILL.- A man applied for a job and asked the manager, “How many people work in this plant?” The
manager replied, “About one in fifteen.”
ILL.- A new employee had been caught coming in late for work three times and the fourth morning the
foreman decided to read the riot act to him. “Look here,” snapped the foreman, “don’t you know what
time we start to work around here?” “No, sir,” said the man, “They’re always working when I get here.”
Brethren, we’ve all known people like these. Shirkers instead of workers.
ILL.- When I worked for Safeway in the 1960’s there were about 5 or 6 of us employees who stocked
shelves at night.
We went to work at 10 p.m. and worked until 7 a.m. the next morning. But, of course, not everybody
worked at night. For one thing, there was no boss around to keep an eye on us. And number two, it
was sometimes hard to stay awake at night.
We sold lawn chairs at our Safeway store and I remember one fellow who opened up a lawn chair and
slept most of the night. He didn’t work for Safeway very long.
ILL.- While working in a service station in Bayard, Iowa, the owner, Shorty Rose, told me about the time
when he was in the army, working in the motor pool. He said he knew of guys who would slide
underneath a truck and pretend they were working by tying their hands up to the underneath of the
truck and then they would go to sleep.
ILL.- In a recent survey of workers across the USA, nearly 85% said that they could work harder on
their jobs. And more than half of those surveyed said they could double their effectiveness at their
work if they wanted to.
ILL.- A certain bum said to a man, “Give me a buck.”
The man replied, “If you asked for a quarter I might give it to you, but a buck! You must be crazy!”
The bum said, “You can cough up the buck or not. That’s up to you, but don’t tell me how to run my
ILL.- She was known as “The Welfare Queen.” Linda Taylor was her name.
Taylor bilked the Social Security Administration out of $15,000 on her claim that her daughter was deaf,
retarded, and totally disabled as a result of a school fire in Chicago in 1953. The truth was, however,
her daughter was quite normal and had never attended the school.
According to government investigators, Miss Taylor used as many as 100 aliases to defraud the treasury
of more than $200,000. One time she received food stamps while owning two luxury cars and a station
wagon. Another source said she $154,000 in welfare in a single year, using 14 different aliases.
Another source said she used 127 different aliases in 14 states, passing herself off as a heart surgeon, a
witch doctor, and a widow of 8 husbands. SHE WAS A BUSY WOMAN! This one particular source said
that her welfare fraud may have exceeded a million dollars.
That woman, Linda Taylor, worked very hard at getting out of hard work! And if she had expended
that energy in honest work, no telling how far she could have gone in life.
Brethren, there will always shirkers and slackers in life, but God never meant for it to be that way.
Since this is Labor Day weekend, I want us to think about work.
PROP.- I have two thoughts to share about work.
1- The pain of work
2- The pleasure of work
I. THE PAIN OF WORK
God said to Adam, “By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food.” TEV “You will have to
work hard and sweat to make the soil produce anything.”
I have never farmed and don’t want to, but I do believe that farming is hard work and makes a person
sweat a lot.
I Thess. 4:11-12 “Make your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and