Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. Try to please them all the time, not just when they are watching you.
Imagine if your boss had been able to contact God for assistance in filling the position you now hold. God replies with, “I have just the right person for you!” and sends you over. Would that change the way you approach your work each day? I’m pretty sure the answer would be a resounding “Yes!”
Now, I’m sure that some people reading this devotional might be saying, “But Steve … you don’t know what kind of a jerk I work for!” While I certainly understand your frustration, I’d like you to consider what Bible commentator William Barclay has to say about today’s verse:
“Christianity does not offer us escape from circumstances; it offers us conquest of circumstances.”
As always, context is king, so remember that Paul was addressing Christian slaves in this passage. Is Paul brushing aside the issue of slavery? Not at all, but that’s not the point of this verse. God was calling Christian slaves to submit and obey their “masters” as a way of properly reflecting their new nature as followers of Christ. So, even though you might work for a jerk, you have been saved by a gracious and loving Lord who calls on you to represent Him well in the context of your “slavery.” Will you?
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