Our Main Work

dbr1“And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, that you may approve the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ, being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.” (Philippians 1:9–11)

Our reading this month is filled with verses on the subject of work. In Proverbs, we are told to work (12:11), and are warned against laziness (6:6–11). We are told in Galatians to focus on our own works and not to compare ourselves, and what we do, with others (6:4). However, the one theme I see all throughout Scripture is that of working for salvation.

In Exodus and especially Leviticus, there are many chapters dedicated to offerings. The Israelites were given specific instructions on how and what to offer to God for forgiveness of sin, in times of distress, and as thanksgiving. It was a lot of work! The details are so specific that I’m sure it was overwhelming––not to mention how often they had to perform these sacrifices. They were constantly working.

And then things changed. Someone came Who did all the work for us, in advance. He came and gave us freedom from the constant work for our forgiveness. Christ came and died for our sin and became the ultimate, final sacrifice for us. This doesn’t mean that we can or should just sit idly by and do nothing with our lives (Luke 9:23), but it does mean that the constant work for our salvation has been done for us. In this way, no one can take credit for the work that has been done except God Himself. “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:8–10, emphasis mine). And once we’re saved, it’s still not us doing the work for His kingdom! He is working in us! “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us” (Ephesians 3:20, emphasis mine). “For it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose” (Philippians 2:13).

dbr2God reminds us in Galatians that we are no longer slaves, but sons (4:7). Slaves have to work for their master’s approval. But we are sons and daughters. Children do not work for their Father; He has an inheritance for them. Once we are saved, we are free in Christ. “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery” (Galatians 5:1). However, this freedom does not excuse us to do whatever we want. If we are children of God, His Spirit lives in us (1 Corinthians 3:16); if His Spirit lives in us, then our lives should be reflecting that (Romans 8:9). This freedom He gives allows us to rest in the assurance of our salvation (Hebrews 10:22).

This month, as we’re focusing our theme on careers and work, let’s not forget our main work, which is brought about in us by the Holy Spirit, and is to be for God’s glory.

By Lisa Grimenstein

Suggested Reading for June

JUNE 1 Ex 33-36
JUNE 2 1 Kings 1-4
JUNE 3 Ps 63-65
JUNE 4 Prov 1
JUNE 5 Jer 47-52
JUNE 6 Luke 7-8
extra2JUNE 7 Gal 4-6
JUNE 8 Ex 37-40
JUNE 9 1 Kings 5-9
JUNE 10 Ps 66-68
JUNE 11 Prov 2-3
JUNE 12 Lamentations
JUNE 13 Luke 9-10
JUNE 14 Eph 1-3
JUNE 15 Lev 1-3
JUNE 16 1 Kings 10-13
JUNE 17 Ps 69-71
JUNE 18 Prov 4
JUNE 19 Ezek 1-6
JUNE 20 Luke 11-12
JUNE 21 Eph 4-6
JUNE 22 Lev 4-6
JUNE 23 1 Kings 14-18
JUNE 24 Ps 72-74
JUNE 25 Prov 5-6
JUNE 26 Ezek 7-12
JUNE 27 Luke 13-14
JUNE 28 Phil 1-2
JUNE 29 Lev 7-9
JUNE 30 1 Kings 19-22

This year’s Bible reading plan was borrowed from BibleReading.com.  (To correspond with the 2009 year, we have included actual dates for your referral. You may choose to use the above site, instead.)

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