When you saw, “Why Work?”, you had a response. Your response might have been, “Because I have bills to pay.” Or maybe, “Because I want to eat.” Even, “Because I have an ex-spouse that gets alimony.” “Because I like to work.” You get the picture.
However, did you notice something each of these responses have in common? No? Well, each one of them is “me centered”. Each one starts with, “Because I…” not anything else, “Because I”. These responses are of this world. They do not reflect a Biblical response. Yes, I know these are valid. However, look at what the Apostle Paul says in Ephesians 4:28:
“Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.”
You might argue that this doesn’t apply to you. Paul after all, you might say is referring to a thief. Okay, you are not a thief or are you? In Malachi 3:8 God calls some of us thieves in Malachi 3:8:
“Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.”
Tithes and offerings are not because God needs our tithes and offerings. Everything belongs to Him anyway. These are for us. We are to take care of those in need. Look at the last part of Ephesians 4:28,
“…so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.”
This is why we work. This is why God provides His blessings to us. To some He provides much and to others less. Remember the Parable of the Five Talents Jesus taught? Here it is in case you have forgotten or maybe you’ve never heard of it:
The Parable of the Talents
14For it is just like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted them with his possessions. 15To one he gave five talents, b to another two talents, and to another one talent—each according to his own ability. And he went on his journey.
16The servant who had received the five talents went at once and put them to work c and gained five more. 17Likewise, the one with the two talents gained two more. 18But the servant who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground, and hid his master’s money.
19After a long time the master of those servants returned to settle accounts with them. 20The servant who had received the five talents came and presented five more. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.’
21His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Enter into the joy of your master!’
22The servant who had received the two talents also came and said, ‘Master, you entrusted me with two talents. See, I have gained two more.’
23His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Enter into the joy of your master!’
24Finally, the servant who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Master, I knew that you are a hard man, reaping where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, you have what belongs to you.’
26‘You wicked, lazy servant!’ replied his master. ‘You knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed. 27Then you should have deposited my money with the bankers, and on my return I would have received it back with interest.
28Therefore take the talent from him and give it to the one who has ten talents. 29For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. But the one who does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him. 30And throw that worthless servant into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
What had the last servant done? He returned the money to his Master. Why was he not rewarded? He did not work. He did not put the talent to work. The Master told him that he could at least have deposited in the bank where it would have gained interest. But no, the lazy servant buried the talent. He did nothing.
Being a Christian does not mean that you cannot have wealth. It means that if you have wealth it is because God has blessed you, so that you can bless others. Work so you can give.