What Does the Bible Teach about Work?

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Photo Working Like a Dog by KM Photography..’s Photostream

After reading 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15 notice that Paul prides himself in his hard work. Paul was a tent maker (Acts 18:1-3) and spoke frequently how this labor morning and night was a blessing to God’s church (1 Cor. 4:12, 1 Cor. 9:6, 2 Cor. 6:5, 2 Cor. 11:23, 1 Thess. 2:9)

Why should a Christian work? First we must recognize that Mat. 4:4 says man does not live on bread ALONE, but this does not deny the reality that man does live on bread.

The Bible gives at least two reasons why Christians should work:

Reason #1 – Christians work so that our families do not become a burden to the church body.

“If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever” (1 Timothy 5:8, NIV).

There is an undeniable reality that money is a limited resource. For anything that is a limited we become either consumers or contributors. We work so that we do not illegitimately or inappropriately consume the resources of the church.

The church should not be forced to help someone who is not in genuine need because in the future the church might be unable help another who is in genuine need. We work so we will not consume the resources that ought to be directed towards those who are legitimately in need.

Reason #2 – we work so we have something to contribute to the church. Our first goal is to make sure we are not consumers, but our second goal is to become contributors to the church. As such people are encouraged in Acts 20:34-35 to hard work and help the needy. Moreover, Ephesians 4:28 says Christians must work so to have something to give to the needy.