“Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God: And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ. But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons.” Colossians 3:22-25
Though people may joke about being slaves to their work, not many would actually count themselves as servants. Yet, this word of God applies to employees and all who work for others; so this would take in almost every one of us at some time or another.
God would have servants and employees obey their earthly masters in all things — unless, of course, such obedience would cause them to disobey God (cf. Acts 5:29). And such service should not be just when the boss is watching but all the time. The Bible says it should be “in singleness of heart,” which means wholeheartedly and fully devoted to serving those over us. Such obedience should be rendered in respect and honor for the almighty God who has both created and redeemed us.
The Apostle Paul adds the words: “Whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.”
Whatever we do here in this world should be done for the Lord Jesus Christ, who shed His holy and precious blood to redeem us from sin and eternal damnation and make us His own. Though we may work for other people, yet we who believe in the Lord Jesus really live for and work for Him.
And we know that, even if our earthly masters and employers do not justly reward us for our labors, Jesus will. He won for us forgiveness of sins and a place in His eternal kingdom, and He has promised to graciously reward those who trust in Him and live for Him. Earthly masters may give us little credit for our labors and even treat us unfairly for their own selfish ends, but the Lord of the whole earth who died for our sins and rose again to give us eternal life will not treat us so.
On the other hand, those who do not obey and wholeheartedly serve their masters and employers, even if they are not found out and punished here, are known of the Lord and will be punished by Him.
God’s Word says: “But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons.”
God does not show partiality. His judgment is fair and true. Those who rebel against Him and disobey Him — which includes disobedience and dishonesty toward earthly employers and masters — He will punish with everlasting punishment and torment in hell. God will not let some “slide” or get away with disobedience while He punishes others.
But those who repent — acknowledging their disobedience and sinfulness and trusting in the shed blood of Jesus for forgiveness and life — God will pardon and grant life everlasting in His eternal kingdom. And those who sincerely repent will also, with the help and aid of God the Holy Spirit, seek to amend their evil ways and live in obedience to the LORD God who created and redeemed them. And such obedience, of course, includes obedience to earthly masters and employers.
Dear Lord Jesus, forgive me for the many times I have not served my earthly employer wholeheartedly and given an honest day’s work for my wages. Forgive my sin and disobedience toward You for the sake of Your holy and precious blood shed for me upon the cross. And, with the help and aid of Your Holy Spirit, give me the desire and strength to serve and do my best at my job for those whom You have placed over me. Amen.
[Scripture quotations are taken from the King James Version of the Bible.]