Monday, April 04, 2016

Christian Worldview 7 - Work

From the very beginning God has also made a provision for work. Even before the fall, God has placed man in the garden to tend and keep it (Gen 2:15). After the fall, the work became much harder but we should not look at work as a punishment for sin but as a blessing. God loves the productivity and creativity which he had created in us and he expects us to use it for his glory.
Psalm 104 shows us how God created everything to work together as a source of beauty and design to demonstrate his glory and to provide for the needs of each of his creatures (see previous article on Psalm 104).
God is creative and skillful and he is interested in our being the same way. For example, in Genesis 4:20-22 we find that people had learned how to tend sheep, ow to play musical instruments and how to work with metals. In Exodus 35:25-27 we read:
Exodus 35:25–27 (NKJV)
25 All the women who were gifted artisans spun yarn with their hands, and brought what they had spun, of blue, purple, and scarlet, and fine linen. 26 And all the women whose hearts stirred with wisdom spun yarn of goats’ hair. 27 The rulers brought onyx stones, and the stones to be set in the ephod and in the breastplate,
In several places the Bible speaks about mining iron and copper, creating works out of bronze and creating beautiful tapestries and other works of art to be used in worship (2 Chron 2:13-14; Deut 8:9). In the building of the temple in Jerusalem they cast pillars out of solid bronze 27 ft tall and weighing over 190 tons!
God has placed an abundance of material in the earth for our discovery and use for the improvement of our lives and for his glory. Little by little we have learned how to make new and improved building material, fibers, plastics and electronics. In every case of new inventions and new materials, these are put to both noble and destructive or sinful uses. When people figured out how to make iron, suddenly those with iron chariots had a military advantage over those that did not. And yet out of iron they also were able to make plows to make agriculture more productive.
Ultimately God wants us to work. He tells us that those who won’t work shouldn’t eat. He also tells us that those who won’t work are walking disorderly and should be admonished (1 Thess 4:11; 2 Thess 3:10-12). He’s not speaking here about those who are unable to work for one reason or another, but everyone who is able should be working. Even the unemployed should be working around their homes, keeping them up, picking up trash, raking leaves, etc. Work is a blessing from God and we should learn to see it that way.
Finally, we can be inventive, creative and hard-working for the wrong reasons. God gives us richly all things to enjoy but wants us to worship the One who gives us richly all these things and not to heap up stuff for ourselves or to boast with pride about our possessions or accomplishments. Look at these biblical examples of people who approached this in the wrong way: Luke 12:18-19; Acts 12:21-23; Dan 4:30
God is a gracious, loving, creative God who is abundant in all he supplies. He loves it when we mirror his image by being loving, creative, and gracious as well. He has richly supplied us with a huge variety of wonderful things to eat and a wonderful bounty of resources with which to create beauty and improve our lives. Let’s always be thankful to him and bless his name for the Lord is good!

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