Little Light Of Mine
To be successful in your everyday life keep a good, steady productivity in your daily work.
Alright thank you very much, and hello again radio friends. How in the world are you? Doing all right? I trust so, bless your heart. Glad to be back with you. This your friend, Dr. Cook, and we’re just about winding up our study in the book of Titus. Paul has been giving some directions regarding people, you know people were important to Paul and they are also to you and to me. No person succeeds or fails by himself and when you succeed it’s because of the help others of given you and when you fail you drag other people down with you. Always be aware of the effect your life is having on others. Bob Pierce said one day at a Youth for Christ convention meeting, “You’ve begun to grow up a little when you ask before you do anything, ‘How is this going to affect my usefulness for Jesus Christ’”?
Well he goes on and said, “Let our people also learn to maintain good works for necessary uses, that they be not unfruitful”. All the way through the book of Titus, you have this emphasis on good works, “Zealous of good works”, Titus 2:14, all away through the book you have reference to good works. What is the point of all this?“Be careful to maintain good works”, said he, and then in verse 14, 3:14, that’s what we’re looking at now, “Let our people also learn to maintain good works”.
Go back with me a little and realize that work was part of God’s provision in the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve were placed there to care for the garden and to keep it that means to maintain it. Now, anybody who ever had a garden knows that there is work involved, even before the curse came and weeds grew faster than good plants, but even in those beautiful, healthy days in the beginning of the creation, before sin had entered into the world, there was work to do and it was beautiful work, and it was enjoyable work, and it was dignified work, and it was God glorifying work, and in the midst of it, it said, “God walked and talked with them”. Work originally was a blessed partnership with the Creator. Then of course, a person came in, the tempter came in and he said, “You can better yourself by disobeying God”. That’s the essence of what we today call, godless humanism, but it’s not a new doctrine. You have to realize that. Satan doesn’t have new tricks. He doesn’t have to. He simply uses the old stuff over and over and over again and his original ploy there in the Garden of Eden, was to tell Adam and Eve, listen you can do better for yourself by disobeying God. Well, the Lord said, “Because thou hast done this after sin came in, cursed, thou art cursed”, He said to the serpent, “Thou art cursed above all cattle”, and so on, and to the woman He said, “I’ll greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conceptions thou shall bring forth children”, and so on. To Adam He said, “Because thou hast hearken unto the voice of thy wife and hast eaten of the tree of which I commanded thee saying, ‘Thou shalt not eat of it’, cursed is the ground for thy sake and sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life. Thorns also thistles shall it bring forth to thee and thou shalt eat the herb of the field and the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread till thou return unto the ground, for out of it was thou taken in for dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return”, and God graciously, mercifully clothed both of them with coats of skins and after that, drove them out of the Garden and they began their sorrow, their sad life outside of that beautiful environment in which they had been placed.
Part of the curse is that work is hard, and often times frustrating, and often times as the text said there, “In sorrow”. “You’re going to eat of the fruit of your labors”. That’s part of the curse. Now, if people want to get out of work, don’t always call them lazy. They may be lazy, that’s a possibility, but realize beloved, that part of living in a world that has been touched and spoiled by sin, is that work itself often times, is something that you’d rather not do, simply because that’s how it is with fallen human nature.
Now then, why this emphasis in Titus on good works? For instance again in in Ephesians 2:10, which follow logically upon 2:8 and 9, the verses that speak about being saved by the grace of God through faith, not of works, but in Ephesians 2:10 he said, “We are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus”. See there’s the new creation. The old creation is spoiled and work had a curse on it. “Now the new creation created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them”. God takes work, which was under the curse, and makes it a blessing. Now, look at your job that way, will you beloved? You may have a job that just bores you or frustrates you. A job that you say, “Oh there must be an easier way to die, let me go find it”. A job concerning which you have often said, “I don’t know why I have to have this kind of a position. I don’t know why I have to do this”. You may have all that and worse. Now, look at that job from the point of view of the new creation, and realize that the indwelling Holy Spirit is able to make your workmanship a partnership with the Lord Jesus Christ. “Whatsoever ye do, do it heartily as to the Lord and not unto men, knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance, for ye serve the Lord Christ”. Your job Mister, your job dear lady, whatever it may be, can be glorified, can be touched with the very glory of God, if you’re doing it for Him because Jesus made you a new creation, “Created unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them”. God takes the curse off of work and makes it a sacrifice to Him. Oh, can you take that in today?
Somebody so discouraged, you got passed over for a promotion, someone else got it and somebody else is working in a in a job where the boss never stops leaning, as we say, on you. Always asking for more, always complaining about your work, never encouraging you, and you get so discouraged, and somebody else is in a position where you’re the only Christian in the place and everybody else picks on you and sneers at you, and if you make one tiny mistake of any kind, they say, “Oh, that’s a Christian for you”. You know? Oh, boy that’s rough isn’t it? Listen; let’s look at our jobs through Calvary. Jesus died and rose again, not only to get to safe home to heaven, but to make your daily work of ministry, to make your daily work of ministry and a sacrifice of praise to God. It’s a great concept, isn’t it?I just wanted to share that with you because somebody needs it so badly today and I just wanted you to have that look. Look at your job through Calvary. Jesus died and rose again, and the Holy Spirit dwells within you to make your job a ministry. Sharing God with people through your job.
Now he said, ‘Let ours also learn to maintain good works”. There’s a learning process involved here. Isn’t that interesting? Do you have to learn to keep up the work? Yes, you do because the tenancy of human nature is to quit. Most people are wonderful starters and poor finishers. They run out of steam, like a marathon runner. He’s says, “Let out let our people learn to maintain good works for necessary uses”.
What is this matter of learning to maintain good works? Number one, you have to know for whom you’re doing it. Number two, you have to know the value of consistency if you’re going to have a believable testimony with other people. Maintain means be consistent. Number three, the only way for you to be productive over a period of time is to be consistently productive on the job. Anybody who is an earnest Christian, but consistently unproductive on his job, is not believable. His ministry doesn’t amount to anything, and so maintain, learning to maintain good works means, be sure that you know for whom you’re working, your blessed Lord. Let me quote that Colossians 3 passage for you once again, I give it to you moment ago, “Whatsoever ye do, do it heartily”, that’s our word psyched up, get psyched up about it, do it heartily, “as to the Lord and not unto men, knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance for ye serve the Lord Christ”. Payday’s coming, a heavenly payday, ye serve the Lord Christ. The reward comes from Him. Learn.
Have you given any thought about your attitude, your continuing attitude toward your work? That’s part of the learning process. How am I reacting, how am I acting and reacting on the job, am I really a good testimony on the job? When things go wrong, maybe you’re on an assembly line, every now and again something gets jammed up and you have that terrible, frustrating feeling, “Oh, I have to hit the stop button”, and you stop the whole line while people look at you in dismay or disgust. Have you stop blowing up when you had to hit the stop button on the assembly line? Is there any evidence that God is working in you to will and to do of His good pleasure? These are the questions that have to do with work, learning to maintain good works.
Now, he says, “For necessary uses”, for necessary uses, and that you see has to do with making things go in your everyday life. You want to be successful in your everyday life? Keep a good, steady productivity in your work. It’s that simple. To be successful in your everyday life, keep a good, steady productivity in your daily work.
Let’s take a moment here to think about the different kind of approach that we have for good works. Our Lord Jesus gave us something that is a tremendous truth and can very well be the foundation of much of our attitude toward work, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works”. Now, the phrase, “Your good works”, is in apposition to the phrase, “Your light”. The light that shines has to do with the good works that you do for the glory of your heavenly father. “Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works”. It’s your light and what gives the light, your good works, and what is the result? People glorify God. They don’t glorify you, but they glorify your Father which is in heaven, and that Paul says in the 1 Timothy 6, “Tell people to do good, that they be rich in good works”, he’s speaking especially to folk who have some of this world’s substance, that they be rich in good works ready to distribute, willing to communicate.
Rich in good works. There is a kind of riches involved in a life that is doing good for other people. Something to think about there, isn’t it? Good works, and then of course Paul said to Titus, we studied that a while back, “Show thyself a pattern of good works”. People look at you and they do imitate you. You’ll find that folk who watch you closely could come up with some of your own mannerisms, when you provide a pattern for them of good works. We get back to this the next time we get together.
Dear Father today, make us people whose lifestyle and whose works turn others toward the heavenly father, so they’ll glorify Him, I ask in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Well, till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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