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Saturday, September 5, 2009

LABOR

 
 
    This weekend is a national holiday called "Labor Day." I'm not really sure what it celebrates, other than the common working man, without which this nation, as well as the Lord's church would be in dire straits.
    In the Bible we learn that God expects His people to "labor."  From the very beginning, God said to His people, "Six days you shall labor and do all your work..." (Ex. 20:9).  He also speaks of "vain labor" in saying, "Except the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it" (Ps. 127:1).  "If any will not "work," neither shall he eat" (2Thess. 3:10).
    When you eat the labor of your hands, you shall be happy and it shall be well with you" (Ps. 128:2).  "The labor of the righteous leads to life" (Prov. 10:16).  "In all labor there is prophet, but idle chatter leads only to poverty" (Prov. 14:23).  There is a "labor of love" (1Thess. 1:3), as well as "labor for the sake of the Gospel" (1Tim. 4:10).
    The apostle Paul urges brethren to "recognize those who labor among you ... and admonish you" (1Thess. 5:12).
    We are to "work with our hands what is good that we may have something to give to him who has need" (Ephesians 4:28).
    The Hebrew writer reminds us, "For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister" (Heb. 6:10).
    The apostle John tells us that "Jesus knows all our labors" (Rev. 2:2). Not only the big things, but ALL things.  In Matthew 10:42, Jesus says, "And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward."
    God's people are to be busy doing honest work to promote and spread the Gospel to "every nation" (Mark 16:15). Jesus did not die on the cross just so people could idly fill church pews.
    The Lord's church has a designated work to do, and we must "be about our Heavenly Father's business."
 
-- Toby Miller                                                                 

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