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Equipping followers of Christ to engage in their everyday work as the work of God, so workplaces are invigorated, communities flourish and culture is renewed to the honor and glory of the Lord.

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Friday, May 28, 2010

The Missing Curriculum: Part 4

Here is the 4th installment of The Missing Curriculum:

If we embrace the notion that our original job description (The First Commission of Genesis 1:26-28) was rescinded at the Fall, then we will have a very difficult time seeing how one’s shop as well as one’s chapel can be "holy ground."

But what the Puritans seemed to understand so well, is that because “the earth is the Lord’s and all it contains, the world and those who dwell therein” (Ps. 24:1), God is still the owner of every pair of shoes in every shoe store in the world, and He claims rights to every customer who walks through the front door.

Because they saw Jesus as “Lord of all” (including all shoes and the selling thereof), they did not divide the world into “sacred” and “secular” compartments. They did not see some work as “secular,” and other work as “sacred.” For them, there was no “secular” world.

No, in Jonathan Edwards day, the merchant was doing “the Lord’s work” as much as the pastor.

If I could be a school principal over again, I would have my students complete a course on “the art and science of God-centered shoe-selling.” I would call it, “More Than A Paycheck.” As a matter of fact, I recently wrote such a curriculum, and I have called it just that!

I’d like the next generation to know that no matter which career paths they might take, whether it be in business, the arts, or homemaking, they will always be working in the Lord’s turf. This is because there is no other place to work! It is all His! He is “head over all” (I Chronicles 29:11).

Further, I’d impress upon them that no matter where we work, our ultimate authority is Christ. We might work in places that ignore the Lordship of Christ, and in some places that deny it, but we will never work in any place that is exempt from it.

Is there any place that lies outside the realm of God’s affairs? Is there any sphere of life’s activity that exists independently of God, on its own, in a vacuum, somehow separated from His ownership, interest and involvement?

Hardly!

I would teach my students that they will never have a “secular” job, because there truly is no “secular” world!

Next week: the conclusion to The Missing Curriculum.