- 1 All who are under the yoke of slavery should consider their masters worthy of full respect, so that God’s name and our teaching may not be slandered. 2 Those who have believing masters should not show them disrespect just because they are fellow believers. Instead, they should serve them even better because their masters are dear to them as fellow believers and are devoted to the welfare of their slaves.
In our culture today many look at their work as evil but necessary. There is not a high value place on work. Most Americans do not like their jobs, for them the dreaded Monday mornings come way too quickly. We see work as a means to an end - it provides me with the money to finance my real life - the pursuit of comfort, pleasure and material possessions. "Thank God it's Friday" and "I owe, I owe, so off to work I go" are the sad slogans of our lives.
Paul is having none of this attitude as he speaks to Timothy on how Tim should be teaching the Christ-followers under his care. Work needs to be worship. Work is to be done unto the Lord in a way that brings honor and glory to Him. From the beginning God was the One who created work - instructing Adam to take care of the garden. Work is not a curse...it is part of God's plan and purpose for mankind.
Whether our bosses are the best in the world or the biggest jerks, our responsibility as children of God is to worship while we work and in so doing honor our Father in heaven. It provides a living testimony to everyone around us. We become a light in the darkness. As Christ-followers we should be showing those at our jobs what a life transformed by Christ looks like. Paul is not condoning slavery here but he insists that even slaves are to do their best to glorify God by faithfully fulfilling their duties.
How is your work ethic? Does it glorify God?
What is your theology of work? Do you recognize that it is worship?