The Goodness Of Work
September 5, 2011
Read: Genesis 1:26-31
God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness.” —Genesis 1:26
Some Christians grow up believing work is bad—that it’s a curse brought about by Adam and Eve’s sin. Left uncorrected, this mistaken belief can cause people to feel that what they do in their jobs every day isn’t important to God—or at the very least, isn’t as important as the work of missionaries and pastors. This is not true, as Genesis 1:26-31 teaches us.
First, we learn that God Himself works, as evidenced by the labor involved in creation and by the fact that He rested on the seventh day. Then we discover that we were made in His image (v.26) and that we were granted dominion over creation. This implies that we are to work to tend creation. Clearly, the tending of God’s creation is work—noble work, for God looked upon His labors and declared them “very good” (v.31).
It mustn’t escape our notice either that work was declared good before sin entered the picture. In other words, work didn’t result from the fall and therefore is not a curse. We see this idea again in Genesis 2, when God “took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it” (v.15).
Let’s approach each day’s labor—whether at a job or doing another activity to help our family—with an awareness of the dignity and nobility God granted it in creation.
Our daily work is used by God
To help us care for daily needs;
And work that’s done as to the Lord
Gives witness to our words and deeds. —D. De Haan
God, give me work till my life shall end—
and life till my work is done.