Craftsmanship is a characteristic of the people of God.
Since the time of Moses it has been noted that God’s people do good work. In the days of the Old Testament, God used slavery in Egypt to transform His people from herdsmen to craftsmen. Under our blessed New Covenant, God’s people are still commanded to do good work because our craftsmanship is both worship and witness. Using the most inclusive of all terms, “whatsoever,” Paul declares that our work can and should be done as worship to the Lord. Jesus said that our good deeds (our work ethic) would be a constant witness to our Father in heaven.

The Image of God in Us
A biblical term for work is craftsmanship. It is part of imago dei, the image of God in us. God is The Maker and he has made each of us with a deep desire to make something out of our lives. Just about anything we do can be described in terms of “making:” homemaking, making repairs, making scholars, making musicians, making disciples, making sales, making deals, making an organization, etc.

Each kind of work has its own set of basic skills that must be mastered if one is to become a true craftsman. Each craft also has its own language and laws, principles and processes that must be learned. This process establishes an intergenerational structure of teaching, mentoring, and apprenticeship. The training time is as important as the lifetime we will spend making things.

Today, work has often been severed from worship and witness.
We tend to see our jobs as just a means to a paycheck or a career. In truth each of us has a calling, a life’s work that God has chosen us to do. We may make a living at it, or it may be a service to God and Mankind done after hours, but we have something God expects us to do.

Not for salvation, but for praise.
It is clear that we do not enter into this craft to earn our salvation. Judgment day will not being a balancing of our good works against our sins to gain entrance through Peter’s heavenly gate. That balance was done at a place call Calvary. If we have repented of our sins and confessed the Lordship of Christ, His perfect record has been applied to our name in heaven’s books.

We have holy work to do for better reasons than getting into heaven:

  • We want to please the Lord every day.
  • We want to obey Him in every way.
  • We want to advance His Kingdom.
  • We want to see His mercy, grace, and healing flow like a healing stream through this hurting world.

Today, whether you are in the training stage or you are a productive craftsman, do your work well. It is an act of worship and the work of your life is a shining witness to the love of the Father.

Exodus 31:1-7; 35:35
Then the LORD said to Moses, “See, I have chosen Bezalel… and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with skill, ability and knowledge in all kinds of crafts–to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of craftsmanship. Moreover, I have appointed Oholiab… to help him. Also I have given skill to all the craftsmen to make everything I have commanded you… filled them with skill to do all kinds of work as craftsmen, designers, embroiderers in blue, purple and scarlet yarn and fine linen, and weavers–all of them master craftsmen and designers.
Romans 12:6-8
We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.
Colossians 3:17; 23-25
And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
Ephesians 2:10
For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Lord Jesus, the Psalmist prayed the words of his mouth and the meditation of his heart would be acceptable in Your sight. I echo that timeless petition and I add this: let the work of my hands be pleasing to You and speak well of You to others. Give me such an integrity deep in my spirit, that it would be seen in my work. If there are problems, the Holy Spirit knows the solutions and He lives in me. Show me the answers so that I might be a problem solver in my work and not a problem causer. Guard my heart from pride in my work, for I would be misguided and mistaken to think that I am more than I am. I am Your servant, sent among men to do a work for You. I am awed by this privilege. In the Holiest Name, Amen.

In the Service of the King
Words: Alfred Ackley; Music: Bentley Ackley

1. I am happy in the service of the King. I am happy, Oh so happy;
I have peace and joy that nothing else can bring, In the service of the King.

In the service of the King, Every talent I will bring;
I have peace and joy and blessing in the service of the King.

2. I am happy in the service of the King. I am happy, Oh so happy;
Through the sunshine and the shadow I can sing, in the service of the King.


3. I am happy in the service of the King. I am happy, Oh so happy;
To His guiding hand forever I will cling, in the service of the King.


4. I am happy in the service of the King. I am happy, Oh so happy;
All that I possess to Him I gladly bring, in the service of the King.

Semper Reformanda!
Stephen Phifer

© 2017 Stephen R. Phifer All Rights Reserved

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