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Bible Verses About Working – What Does the Bible Say About Work?

Every day we might encounter different responsibilities, tasks or endeavors to deal with: work, family, church or even academic affairs.

Sometimes the length, difficulty or number of the tasks we deal with can hinder our willingness to work, and dealing with these on a daily basis can bring exhaustion, rampant procrastination or laziness.

But when it comes to all these matters, the Bible gives many exhortations regarding the quality and quantity of our hard work. The Christian work ethic should be characterized by a commitment to diligence, perseverance, excellence, patience and hard work.

God encourages our productivity and gives us an amazing work ethic to follow, and we can learn so in the following Bible verses.

So, Let’s Discover These Amazing Bible Verses About Work To Combat Procrastination, Maintain A Work Ethic, And Increase Our Diligence:

  1. Genesis 3:19: Sweating To Earn The Food We Eat

Bible verses about working

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.”

2. Colossians 3:23-24: Excellence At Work

23 “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.”

This Bible verse sets the tone for our entire work lives. Remembering that all our endeavors are primarily for the Lord, and not for man, is a never-ending source of motivation that should trigger the utmost productivity in us.

If any of the endeavors we currently pursue, whether menial or not, are primarily for our God who loves us beautifully, and not for man, it will inspire us to be excellent.

3. 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12: Winning The Respect of Outsiders

11 “And to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, 12 so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.”

It is powerful how the apostle Paul conveys that our work lives should win the respect of outsiders or non-believers, which will glorify God, and give us one more reason to work hard.

4. 2 Thessalonians 3:10-13: The Christian Work Ethic

Bible verses about working

10 “For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.” 11 We hear that some among you are idle and disruptive. They are not busy; they are busybodies. 12 Such people we command and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and earn the food they eat. 13 And as for you, brothers and sisters, never tire of doing what is good.”

Paul reiterates his teaching in 1 Thessalonians, and gives a beautiful exhortation for those who were already productive in the church to continue to do so, and to “never tire of doing what is good.”

With the previous Bible verse and this one, the Bible establishes an immaculate work ethic for us to follow. It leaves no doubt for what the Christian work ethic should be, one that labors and toils, and is never idle.

5. Titus 3:14: Not Living An Unproductive Life

14 “Our people must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good, in order to provide for urgent needs and not live unproductive lives.”

In the powerful exhortation to not “live unproductive lives,” the Biblical encouragement towards productivity here could not be clearer.

Learning that God considers productivity to be a good thing and that it’s his wish for us to be productive members of our society, we should strive at all times to persevere in hard work.

6. Proverbs 21:17: Avoiding Excessive Leisure Time And Hedonism

Bible verses about working

17 “Whoever loves pleasure will become poor; whoever loves wine and olive oil will never be rich.”

The Hebrew term for “pleasure” here refers to feasting, and in several other Proverbs there are warnings against indulging in too many pleasures.

Ancient Israel had a prevalent wine culture, and the Bible does not prohibit the consumption of wine, but it is amazing how the Bible advises against loving pleasures too much to the degree that it curtails the products of our work.

By loving procrastination, self-indulgence or leisure time too much, many of us sometimes risk becoming quasi-hedonists, and we are encouraged not to become individuals who love self-indulgence and leisure, instead of hard work.

7. James 5:7: Patience in Hard Work

Bible verses about working

7 “Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains.”

8. Hebrews 6:10-12: Diligence, Faith and Patience

10 “God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. 11 We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, so that what you hope for may be fully realized. 12 We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised.”

9. Ecclesiastes 2:24: Finding Satisfaction In Our Toil

24 “A person can do nothing better than to eat and drink and find satisfaction in their own toil. This too, I see, is from the hand of God.”

Contrary to nonsensical communist ideas from Karl Marx, Christianity is not a religion where we are taught to “sit down and only think about heaven.” We think about heaven but while also working hard on Earth.

10. Proverbs 21:5: Diligence

5 “The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.”

11. 1 Corinthians 4:12: Hard Work

12 ” We work hard with our own hands. When we are cursed, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure it.”

Paul’s example of working hard is in several of his letters, and he didn’t just teach us to work for a living, but to work hard as well.

12. Proverbs 6:6-8: Diligence

Bible verses about working

6 “Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, 8 yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.”

Since everything we do is primarily for God and not for men, let us definitely be hard workers, whose work is characterized by diligence, perseverance, excellence, patience the Bible teaches us. As we have seen indeed, there is no doubt that idleness, unproductiveness, laziness and hedonism should not be in any part of our lives.

Following the immaculate work ethic we learn in Scripture will be a blessing in our lives, and I encourage you to follow it. God bless!

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Joseph Monroe

Joseph is a writer, videographer and founder of RedeemerSavior.com. He holds a B.A. from the University of Louisville and his biggest passion in life is loving Jesus above everything else.

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