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Working for Each Other (Ephesians 4:17-32)

Dennis R. Wiles, September 29, 2013
Part of the Fruit of Our Labor - Theology of Work series, preached at a Sunday Morning service

Dennis R. Wiles
FBC Arlington
September 29, 2013

Fruit of Our Labor
Theology of Work
Working for Each Other
Ephesians 4:17-32

Text: Ephesians 4:17-32

Redemption – God has accomplished the impossible in our lives!

Transformation – God makes the impossible possible for you!

Influence – God has placed you in the midst of impossible situations and among impossible people!

People in your world have lost their minds!

Get dressed for life and work!

Reject what diminishes dignity in other people!

Reject what grieves God!

Get to work!

Your job is not just a means for provision of your own needs.

Theology of Work: Work enables us to meet the real needs of others.

We are not to choose jobs and conduct our work to fulfill ourselves and accrue power, for being called by God to do something is empowering enough. We are to see work as a way of service to God and our neighbor, and so we should both choose and conduct our work in accordance with that purpose. The question regarding our choice of work is no longer “What will make me the most money and give me the most status?” The question must now be “How, with my existing abilities and opportunities, can I be of greatest service to other people, knowing what I do of God’s will and of human need?”
-Timothy Keller with Katherine Leary Alsdorf, Every Good Endeavor: Connecting Your Work to God’s Work, Penguin Group, 2012, p. 67

Your workplace needs the glory of God to be on display!

Ephesians 4:17-32

17 Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. 18 They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. 19 They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. 20 But that is not the way you learned Christ!— 21 assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, 22 to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, 23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24 and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.

25 Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another. 26 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and give no opportunity to the devil. 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. 29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. (ESV)