Summary: This message gives a Biblical view of work. A correct view of work will dispel any myths about work.
Work – Partners with God
-How to find satisfaction in your work-
“We work together as partners who belong to God…” V. 9
On this Labor Day Sunday I have a question: Do you appreciate your work?” Before you complain about your job, listen to the regulations that employees at Mt. Corry Carriage and Iron Works were asked to follow in 1782.
• Employees will daily sweep the floor; dust the furniture, shelves and show cases.
• Each day fill lamps, clean chimneys and trim wicks, wash windows once a week.
• Each clerk will bring a bucket of water and a shovel of coal for the day’s business.
• Make your pens carefully. You may whittle nibs to individual taste.
• The office will be open at 7 am and close at 8 pm daily, except on the Sabbath.
• Men employees will be given an evening off each week for courting purposes, and two evenings if they go regularly to church.
• Any employee who smokes Spanish cigars, uses liquor in any form, gets shaved at a barber’s shop or frequents public halls will give good reason to suspect his worth, intentions, integrity and honesty.
• The employee who has performed his labors faithfully and without fault for a period of five years, who has been thrifty, attentive to his religious duties, and is looked upon by his fellow man as a substantial law-abiding citizen, will be given an increase of 5 cents per day in his pay, providing just returns in profits from the business permit. (From “The Word for You Today” April 8, 2004 daily devotional.
In comparison with the good old days maybe your job isn’t so bad after all.
I Corinthians 3:9 the Apostle Paul gives this comment about work, “We work together as partners who belong to God…” Paul was a tent-maker by trade and made his living by manufacturing tents to pay for his service as a missionary.
Paul is saying that we all are “fellow workers” with God.
We need a clear Biblical view of work. A correct view of work will dispel any myths of work.
Myth: Church work is the only work that has any real spiritual value. Only people paid for Christian service are in work that matters to God.
Fact: The Bible makes no distinction between the “sacred” and the “secular.” All of life is to be lived under Christ’s lordship. All work has essential value to God
Myth: The heroes of the faith are ministers and missionaries. “Lay” workers remain second class citizens. According to this idea all who are not in full time Christian service are out of God’s will.
Fact: God has delegated His work to everybody, not just people in full-time ministry. God sees all people accomplishing His work in the world. In creation God worked six days and rested on the seventh. There was nothing especially sacred about the first days of creation and yet God called it all good.
Myth: The most important day of the week is Friday. TGIF because work is drudgery and weekends are for escaping and catching up. No thought is given for a Sabbath.
Fact: God places a high value on rest. God never intended for people he created to work seven days a week. The Lord invites us to join Him in a day of rest, renewal and celebration. Remembering the Sabbath prepares us to go back to work with a sense of mission and purpose. TGIM is better, “Thank God it’s Monday.”
Myth: God imposed work as a curse to punish Adam and Eve’s sin. Genesis 3:1-19
Fact: Work is not evil. God Himself worked so work is not evil. God created people in His own image to be His coworkers. God gives us ability and authority to manage His creation.
A careful reading of Genesis 3:17-19 shows that God cursed the ground as a result of Adam’s sin, but not work.
The Bible teaches that there is no separation of sacred and secular work in the eyes of God. All work, both sacred and secular matter to God. Jesus is Lord over all creation and therefore, he is Lord over all work. Whatever you do for work, you should do it “in the name of the Lord Jesus.” (Col. 3:17)
The Holy Spirit empowers you to live and work with Christ-likeness. Spirituality has to do with your character and conduct, regardless of where you work. Jesus gives the Holy Spirit to help you live in a way that pleases Him. God promises rewards to people in everyday job, based on their attitude and conduct. (Ephesians 6:7-9) “Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men, because you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does, whether he is slave or free. And masters, treat your slaves in the same way. Do not threaten them, since you know that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no favoritism with him.”