“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” (Ephesians 4:28).
How does the good news of Jesus impact individuals, families, neighborhoods, and cities? Does the gospel make people prideful begets? Does it make people unloving and judgmental?
Ephesians 4:28 gives us a case study of what the impact of the good news of Jesus is supposed to have. It should change individuals. If they steal, it should change them so that they no longer do so. In the same way, the employer who is a jerk and does not treat people well is to change and instead be kind and care for their employees. The employee is also addressed, they are to do honest work and work as unto the Lord Jesus Himself.
So, we see the thief, the employer, the employee, the soldier (Lk. 3:14), and all types of people in all sorts of positions, are exhorted to not take part in wrong and destructive practices. That is the negative command. That is the, “Don’t do…” But there is also a positive command. Something we are told we must do. And that is labor. Whoever we are and whatever we do, there is something we must do. We must engage in labor, we must do the work before us in honesty. So the Christian is to work their best whether someone is watching or no one is watching.
I am a lot of things; saint and sinner. I struggle and I strive. I am a husband and father of three. I have been in pastoral ministry for 10 years. I went to school at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary but most of my schooling has been at the School of Hard Knocks. I have worked various jobs, including pheasant farmer, toilet maker, construction worker, and I served in the military. My wife and I enjoy reading at coffee shops, taking walks, hanging out with friends and family, and watching our three kid's antics. :)