Labor Day

Happy Labor Day

“In all labor there is profit… ” (Prov 14:23)

“Give her of the fruit of her hands, And let her own works praise her in the gates.” (Prov 31:31)

“…let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.” (Eph 4:28)

“And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle…” (1 Thess 5:14)

“For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat.” (2 Thess 3:10)

“…aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you, so that you may walk properly before outsiders and be dependent on no one.” (1 Th 4:11–12)

“The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.” (Gen 2:15)

Photo by Siora Photography.

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Five Reasons to Preach a Series on Work

In my five decades of attending Bible-preaching churches I’ve heard precisely one sermon series on work. It was my own, and was pretty weak.

It’s possible that the topic has been receiving systematic attention all over the place all these years, and I’ve just managed to miss nearly all of it. But I think not.

For whatever reason, work is a neglected subject, not only in topical preaching and teaching, but, in my experience, also in the applicational portions of expositional sermons. Often, when the workplace is referenced at all, the focus is solely on “being a witness” or “having a good testimony,” as though work couldn’t possibly have any other important purposes in a believer’s life.

So the topic seems not only to be underrepresented in pulpit work, but also to be poorly understood.

For several reasons, our ministries should include systematic teaching on work. Some of these reasons also point to the bigger picture of why work is important in the lives of Christians.

1. It’s OK to do topical work sometimes.

For the benefit of those who highly value paragraph-by-paragraph expositional preaching (as they should) and are hesitant to include any topical work in the mix, a few observations:

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