11. Faithful

  1. Being a Christian in work is being faithful. Following Jesus Christ in our work means being faithful because Jesus is the Faithful One. Jesus is faithful to His Father, even in His death. God is faithful:302 He is reliable and can be trusted in everything.303 From the Holy Spirit we receive the heart, wisdom, and strength to work faithfully.
  2. Working faithfully means being faithful to God in our work, which means putting God’s priorities first. God’s fidelity to us helps us not to collapse under time pressure, peer pressure, and competitive pressure. His fidelity enables us to persevere. The motivation or ability to work does not come from ourselves, but from God.
  3. Working faithfully means guarding against work possessing us and determining our self-worth, and against becoming more dependent on our work than on Christ.
  4. Working faithfully means keeping our promises and not breaking them lightly.304 A deal is a deal, and a contract is a contract. After all, to break promises is to be unfaithful. If we do everything in the name of Jesus,305 then breaking the promises we made in His name is a serious matter; so is pressuring or tempting others to break their promises.
  5. Working faithfully means not making promises that we cannot or do not intend to keep.306 By keeping promises, we signal God’s reliability. However, if we fail to keep promises at work, how can our behavior convince people that God will fulfill His promise of eternal life?
  6. Working faithfully means not putting ourselves in a position where others have power over us and could manipulate and corrupt us. We must prevent our dependence on others from getting in the way of our dependence on Jesus.
  7. Working faithfully means being devoted to our work. For how can we be dedicated to our work and yet not be dedicated to God? If we do our work in the awareness of God’s presence, then we can handle everything in our work from that fundamental devotion.
  8. Working faithfully means loyally representing the interests of those for whom we work. We are loyal in carefully and lawfully handling the tasks and responsibilities assigned to us.307 After all, to shirk one’s duties and responsibilities is to pass them off to God. We faithfully respect and manage the property of others.308 This does not include theft, embezzlement, dereliction of duties, fraud, corruption, and criminality.309
  9. Working faithfully means persevering in keeping our promises. Just when the pressure and temptation are strong, our faithfulness is proven when we remain steadfast and keep our promises. Jesus overcame His greatest and last enemy, the devil and death, through His faith in His Father.
  10. Working faithfully means working diligently.310 No one came into the world to be lazy.311 There is so much misery in the world that we need to be conscientious in our work. There is so much reason to be grateful to God for our salvation that we do need to be industrious. As disciples of Jesus, we are disciplined in doing good works. Since everything in work is temporary, we must make the best use of our time.312
  11. Working faithfully means others can confide in us. Just as we can trust Jesus, so should people be able to depend on us, trust us, and entrust us with something. Jesus’ fidelity gives us the confidence to be faithful in our work.
  12. Working faithfully means being obedient to authority. Faithfulness is wholeheartedly obeying superiors with legitimate authority.313 God commands us to respect authority because there is no authority but from God.314 Obedience to authority is limited by obedience to God. We are obedient to God in all things, and within this, we are obedient to those above us. God is the ultimate authority; we are ultimately accountable only to Him. Strikes and work stoppages are only allowed if continued work is sinful and negotiations have failed.
  13. Working faithfully means faithfully following all government laws and regulations. In our work, we are not above the law but under its authority. It is a privilege to be able to comply with the law when the government is established by God.315 The law has authority over us because of our awe of God.316 It is not a matter of blind obedience but of enlightened submission. We do not compulsively comply with the law but obey it freely from our hearts. Paying taxes to the government we do sincerely.317 If we do not comply with the laws in our work, how can we comply with God’s laws?318
  14. Working faithfully means exceeding the requirements of governmental laws. Jesus offered a new perspective on the law: fulfilling the law is not about exactly adhering to rules but about pursuing the purposes for which God created the law. This means that we fulfill the laws of our government exceptionally well319 by exceeding, not ignoring, the letter of the law. If we want to be faithful to the spirit of the law, then we must begin by learning what the relevant laws actually say and be inspired by the Holy Spirit. However, those who seek the edges of the law are seeking the devil.

  1. Genesis 17:7, Deuteronomy 32:4, Philippians 1:6
  2. Proverbs 3:5, 1 Corinthians 1:9, Titus 2:9-10
  3. Matteüs 5:37
  4. Colossians 3:17
  5. Matthew 5:33-37
  6. Matthew 24:45-51, Matthew 25:23
  1. Titus 2:5, Titus 2:10
  2. Exodus 20:15, Ephesians 4:28
  3. 2 Chronicles 15:7, Titus 2:14
  4. Proverbs 24:30-34, Galatians 6:9, 2 Thessalonians 3:13
  5. Romans 12:11, Ephesians 5:16
  6. Romans 13:1-7, Ephesians 6:5-6, Colossians 3:22, 1 Timothy 6:1, Titus 2:9
  1. Romans 13:1
  2. John 19:10-11
  3. Ecclesiastes 12:13-14
  4. Matthew 22:16-22, Mark 12:17, Luke 20:25, Romans 13:1-7
  5. Romans 12:1-2, 1 Peter 2:13-15
  6. 1 Corinthians 12:31

Questions

  1. Which Bible verse about faithfulness do I find particularly appealing and provides guidance for what working faithfully means (to me)?
  2. To what extent do I agree with the above summary of what working faithfully means?
  3. Are there any missing elements in the above list of what working faithfully means? If so, which ones?
  4. How would I personally describe what working faithfully means for Christians?
  5. How would I describe concretely what working faithfully means for me?
  6. To what extent do I subscribe to the idea that faithfulness is an important characteristic/virtue for Christians in their work?
  7. To what extent do I subscribe to the idea that faithfulness is an important guideline/principle for the behavior of Christians in their work?
  8. To what extent is faithfulness an important virtue and principle for me in my work?
  9. How do I experience the importance of faithfulness in my work?
  10. Do I work to bring about faith? Do I do so wholeheartedly?
  11. To what extent can I work faithfully in my work?
  12. How often have I recently brought faith to my work?
  13. How faithfully do I do my work? How does it show?
  14. To what extent do I use faithfulness as a principle for my behavior in my work? Could I illustrate this using the decisions I have recently made in my work?
  15. When I look back at my working life, could I say that I have increasingly become more faithful in my behavior?
  16. To what extent do people I work with think I act faithfully in my work? What have they said to me about this?
  17. To what extent do I think God thinks I act faithfully in my work?
  18. How can I become and act more faithfully in my work? How would I do this concretely?
  19. Which elements of working faithfully am I going to bring more of in my next working day?
  20. What am I going to say in a prayer to God about working faithfully?
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