Posted by: Brian Musser | April 26, 2014

Re-Engagement

Work-Ship – Week Three:  The Son At Work – Day Seventeen:  Re-Engagement

The first week we came to the conclusion that our definition of work must be based on God’s work.  If we are going to figure out what work is, how we are supposed to work and the proper place work should have in our lives it must be rooted in the way God works.  So we are in the middle of our three week exploration of the work of God organizing our conversation through the lens of the Trinity.

  • Week Two – The Father at Work
  • Week Three – The Son at Work
  • Week Four – The Spirit at Work

We have established the idea that Jesus Christ, God the Son, works in responsive submission to God the Father, but what type of work does Christ actually do?  There are two major categories that describes Christ’s work.

  1. Christ works as the redeemer
  2. Christ works as the communicator

The next couple of days we are going look at Christ’s work through redemption.  Then later in the week we will explain and explore Christ the communicator.  Christ’s work in redemption is a huge topic.  I am not even trying to look at the topic in depth.  We will only concentrate on a few specific points that applicable to our discussion about work.

Genesis 1:26-31 (NIV)

26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

27 So God created mankind in his own image,
in the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them.
28 God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”

29 Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. 30 And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.” And it was so.

31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day.

When God created humanity, He assigned us tasks.  These assigned tasks can be considered our work, our job assignment.  God created us to work and commanded us to work.  These verse are often referred to as the cultural mandate.  We will look more in depth at this passage in the week five.  I’ve just included these verses today to illustrate the way things should be.  We were created by God to work in these specific ways but sin has changed things.  We find in Genesis chapter three that sin greatly affects our work.

Genesis 3:16-19 (NIV)

16 To the woman he said,

“I will make your pains in childbearing very severe;
with painful labor you will give birth to children.
Your desire will be for your husband,
and he will rule over you.”

17 To Adam he said, “Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat from it,’

“Cursed is the ground because of you;
through painful toil you will eat food from it
all the days of your life.
18 It will produce thorns and thistles for you,
and you will eat the plants of the field.
19 By the sweat of your brow
you will eat your food
until you return to the ground,
since from it you were taken;
for dust you are
and to dust you will return.”

In these verses we see that both the commandment to be fruitful and multiply and the command to rule is affected by our sin and separation from God.  God created the universe to need humanity to take care of it.  God created humanity to need to be connected with God to fulfill our assignment.  When humanity was separated from God by our sin our ability to take care of creation was damaged and the entire creation feels that.

Romans 8:18-25 (NIV)

18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19 For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. 20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.

22 We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.

Paul looks at this topic in Romans.  One of the things that Christ redeems is our ability to take care of creation.  Christ knows that our ability to fulfill our work assignments from God is damaged because our relationship with God is destroyed because of sin.  So therefore as Christ redeems and restores that relationship between God and humanity the entire creation benefits.

If you are a Christian, if you have a restored relationship with God through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, you are redeemed and restored.  This means you are able to reconnect with God in such a way that you can care for God’s creation as He intended.  Christ’s work in redemption returns our ability to work as we should.  How has Christ redemption affected your work?  Do you work differently because of it?

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