Paul had just told the Ephesians how to walk through life in a loving way, in the light, and in wisdom. Now he prescribes how God wants things to work in the work place.
Read Ephesians 6:5-9.
Back in the days of Paul, there were slaves throughout the Roman empire. We are not told why they were slaves, but we are told what attitude a Christian slave should have toward his master. A Christian slave should obey his master with fear, trembling, and sincerity of heart just as he would obey Christ. Why would Paul talk about fear and trembling? Back then, a slave could be beaten severely if he displeased his master. So, the slaves had to remember what would happen if they chose to disobey their masters. But any slave can be afraid of his masters anger. What else should a Christian slave do? Christian slaves were to obey their masters just as they would obey the Lord Jesus Christ. That means not just working when the master is around, but also when he is not there. These principles also apply to workers today. If you do your work as if the Lord himself was your master, it will not matter if anyone is watching or not. You will always do your best. And when you do your best for the Lord, he will reward your diligence.
Paul also addressed Christian masters. Masters are also to treat their slaves as the Lord would want. Instead of threatening them (“If you don’t do this, I’m going to beat you until you are are black and blue!”), they were to treat their slaves kindly. Masters had to remember that both he and the slaves were under the leadership of a heavenly Master — the Lord Jesus. And Jesus treats all Christians the same way, without partiality. Whether you are a boss or a worker, do your work as if the Lord himself was standing next to you. It will make a big difference.
- Why would a slave have fear and trembling before his master?
- How should a Christian slave do his work?
- True or False: A Christian worker should only work hard when his boss is watching him.
- If you do your work as if it was for the Lord, who will reward your diligence?
- What should a Christian master remember?
a. not to threaten his workers
b. that Jesus is his Master
c. not to show partiality
d. all of the above