.

Do the Work Given

Use Your Character:
* Accept the Job
* Start the Job
* Finish the Job

Scripture

John 17:4 "I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do."

Text

John 17:4 ". I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do."

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Do the Work Given

It is really humorous, sometimes,
the way we go after the things we are not assigned to do.

I don't know why it is
the activities that are none of our business are the activities in which we feel we must expend our labor.
While the work we were assigned to do goes begging.

I am not sure
that I know why that is. But I do have a suggestion.

Success!

There is nothing like success
to give us confidence in our work and take our attention to everyone else's work.and, even be their helper or instructor or guide.

There is nothing like success
to goad us into thinking we have our work under control and we can now control the work of others.

There is nothing like success
to convince us of our brilliance and now use our outstanding intelligence and experience to solve everyone else's problems.

And the most curious of all,
success does not have to be in a spectacular way, long lived, or even accepted by everyone else.

Illustration:
Years ago I used to play a lot of Golf. Even now, I play once or twice a year. And, I have noticed this many more times than a few, that I can be playing with several others, neither of which has hit a long, straight, drive down the center of the fairway. Then all of a sudden one of them, and it never makes any difference which one, will drive a ball 20 yards further than the rest, roll another 30 to 40 yards and be in perfect position
for his next shot. Now at this point, hopefully he will be modest and not say a thing. Now remember, this is not the most recent of a long string of excellent drives, but the first one so far that day.
His partner will then tee up and hit one of his usuals. Now, it is at this precise point that our most recent success story becomes the authority on how to hit a Golf-ball.

Incidentally
I have seen the same thing . Bowling, Hitting a Baseball, Shooting Baskets, even Spinning Tops.

For some
Success is an urging to stay at our work. And that is good

For some
Success is an inspiration to knock off the rough edges and do a better job. And that is good.

For some
Success is a drive to work harder to succeed even further. And that is good.

But for very many people
the work that is given them is not the work they want to do.

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We are all given a work to do

God has given us a work to do.

It is always rewarding
when attempting to get to the bottom of something in the Scriptures to go to the first place it is mentioned.

Not necessarily
the "word" itself but an idea, too.

Adam

Gen 2:7 "And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul."

God created man
from the very clay of the ground.

God put a living soul
into this very first human being.

I am sure you have noticed
that this says nothing of man evolving from animals.

Gen 2:8 "And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed."

Jehovah God
planted the Garden Himself.

I can't help but let my mind wander
and think about what He did.

Did God plant the garden
in the sense of order and symmetry?

Or did He simply scatter the seeds
and let them grow where ever they would?

I personally think
it was very orderly.
Laid-out for beauty to the eye. Planted for the large trees to help the sensitive, tender bushes. Color contrasted and harmonized. Tall and short mingled and merged with slender and wide.

I, personally, don't think
it was designed like the traditional English Gardens, with shaped bushes, stone and brick paths, etc.

Nor do I think
it was in the sense of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon where nature was merged with city walls and streets.

I think it had the appearance of being very natural
yet was balanced, harmonious, practical and in every sense of the word useful to the man and the animals who inhabited it.

Now remember I said,
this is what I personally think, if you don't agree I won't argue with you.

Gen 2:9 "And out of the ground made the LORD God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil."

There were 4 kinds of trees in the Garden.
Those Trees pleasant to look at.
Those Trees that provided food.
That one Tree that provided eternal life.
And .
That one Tree that was forbidden. The one of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Don't miss it.

The reason the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil
was forbidden was because we are to stay ignornant of evil.

Rom 16:19 ". I would have you wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil."
1 Cor 14:20 "Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men."

Be mature in the good things of life.
But, be very immature in the bad things.

Jesus said .

Luke 10:3 ".I send you forth as lambs among wolves."

We don't need to learn about
how to be a wolf, to be out in the world with wolves. We need to continue in our lamb ways.

Gen 2:10 "And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads."
Gen 2:11 "The name of the first is Pison: that is it which compasseth the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold;"
Gen 2:12 "And the gold of that land is good: there is bdellium and the onyx stone."
Gen 2:13 "And the name of the second river is Gihon: the same is it that compasseth the whole land of Ethiopia."
Gen 2:14 "And the name of the third river is Hiddekel: that is it which goeth toward the east of Assyria. And the fourth river is Euphrates."

Since the Garden was probably very large
because we see later that there were some of every animal on earth in the Garden, therefore, God saw to the watering of the Garden.

Now we come to the verse
we have been looking for.

Gen 2:15 "And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it."

Adam's work
was to dress the Garden.

To dress it meant .
to sustain good order,
to have control,
to make it productive,
to simply secure its going forth.

Adam's work
was to also keep the Garden.

To keep has the connotation .
to hedge it about,
to protect it,
to guard it,
to be mindful of its preservation.

When I was writing all this down,
I also got the notion that it may have been Adam's responsibility to keep the devil out of the Garden as well.

But again,
I will not insist on that, it just occurred to me while I was attempting to concentrate and meditate on Adam's keeping the Garden.

Adam had a work to do
and every man has a work to do.

Do the work you're given.

Did Adam get busy
at something else and fail to keep the Garden? I don't know. But I know this, what ever our work is, we ought to do it.

Mark

The writer of the Gospel of Mark
who is of course, Mark, was originally a Missionary. He traveled with Paul and Barnabus on the ancient Mission Field but for some reason .

Acts 15:38 ".departed from them from Pamphylia, and went not with them to the work."

He had a job to do
but decided maybe it was no longer
important,
fun,
a challenge,
interesting, or
worthy of his talents.

He had a job to do
but decided maybe it was .
boring,
lifeless,
becoming unfashionable, or
no one praised him for it any more.

So, Mark

".went not with them to the work."

It was his job.
He was a missionary.
He was on a journey with other missionaries.

Later Mark went back
to helping the Missionaries. He was again useful, helpful and obedient. He got back to the place to where he was doing the work that was given to him.

Saul the King

Saul the King
had a work given to Him.
He was to be King.
We should have so tough duty.

Personally,
I don't know if I would like to be King, but, I did kind of have my sights set on being Emperor.

Saul had a work given to him.
Run the nation.
Protect the nation.

But he, too, got sidetracked.
He began to take on the personal job of attempting to kill David.

Almost everything else
was a lot less important. All he could think about was killing David.

The reason why
he wanted to kill David was to preserve his work.

Doesn't this strike you peculiar?
Saul didn't want David to replace Saul in the work Saul had abandoned in order to get David.
Saul almost completely quit his work as king, in order to kill a man, whom he thought was trying to take him from being King.

Oh, this is what is so bad
about Jealousy and Envy. They attempt to keep a certain position but they ignore the work of that position in their efforts to maintain their position.

This is also one of the pitfalls of anger.
Anger in a person's work takes that person from their work much more
than the person that caused the anger.

Illustration:
Bro. Hoover works for a large manufacturer
Bro. Jones works there as well. Bro. Jones makes Bro. Hoover angry in his comments about the way Bro. Hoover is not do his work. And, instead of Bro. Hoover ignoring Bro. Jones and going about his work, Bro. Hoover allows Bro. Jones to take him from his work and actually becoming exactly what Bro. Jones accused him of.

Do the work you are given

Don't become.
angry,
jealous or
emotionally incapacitated
in the work you are given.

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Do the Work you are Given

and start with the Important Work

I suppose the great weakness
in today's society is the inability to.
discern,
figure out priorities,
sort out the important things
and the unimportant.

The next great weakness today
is once we actually discern what is important and what is not, many don't have the character to go ahead and do the important things.

Do the Important Work.
Some have trouble deciding what is important and what is less important. Some have trouble deciding on whether to do the secular work or the Spiritual work.

People are forever
attempting to sort out the Spiritual Work from the secular work. This is much simpler than most would imagine.

Spiritual work
is always done while doing the secular work. If the Spiritual work must be done separate from the secular, it is not Spiritual work, but is Religious work.

There is no dividing
the lay work from the clerical work. Because there is no such thing as clerical work or clergy.

There is no such thing
as a time to be spiritual and a time to be secular.

There is no such thing
as a time to labor and a time to be Spiritual.

We have to be
secular for 8 - 12 hours a day and Spiritual all during that same time.

Then we must be Spiritual
on the way home, at home, during the evening and all the rest of the time. If not . you are never spiritual but religious.

Of course the next question is. what is religiosity?
So-called spiritual things, that have a time and event of their own.
Worship Services
Mass
Priests
Pharisees
Fathers
Bishops (in the sense used today)
Holier-than-thou's
Cardinals
Popes
Nuns
Monks

Eph 6:5 "Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh..."

Now these people who are according to the flesh
are the ones for whom we must work.

Eph 6:5 "Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ;"

We are not to work for these people one way
then go to church and work for the Lord another way. We are to work for our employers, but, at the same time and place, work for them as if we are working for Christ.

Eph 6:6 "Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart;"

We are not to show up at work
and go through the motions. We are to work for our employers as if working for Jesus Christ.

Do you see,
there is no conflict in priorities? We are working for both the employer and Christ at the same time.

Hallelujah!
That is true multitasking.

Eph 6:7 "With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men:"

Thank the Lord,
I don't have to work all day for my boss and then go home and work the rest of the evening for the Lord. My obligation to serve Christ is not on hold until I get off work, but is cared for all day long at the same time that my employer is paying me.

I just need to learn one thing.
How to work for my boss as unto Christ.

I am going to do a job
as if Christ was paying for it,
as if Jesus was looking over my shoulder,
as if my pay was according to the kindness I showed,
as if anger would keep me from my work, (and it does),
as if envy would sidetrack me from my work, (and it does),
as if serving my boss would be as if I were serving Christ.
etc.

This will make a hardworker out of you
that you ought to be, that you wanted to be.

This will make a Spiritual worker out of you
that you ought to be, that you wanted to be.

Do the Work Given you.

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Do the Work that is Promised.

I don't know of a single soul
when they were saved that did not tell Jesus they would do anything He asked.

I do know of many men and women
who have promised the Lord they would given him their life, but have since
pulled back, renigged.

Many have signed contracts
and promised to live up to them, but have since figured that the Lord was leading them to do something different. And have told everyone that the Lord will provide for their promises they had made.

Do the work that is promised.

A few have agreed to care for the Church
but it seems only if they have the time, or opportunity, or energy, or remembrances.

Do the work that is agreed upon.

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Do the Work that Helps Others

What is our Work??? Always helping others.

There is probably
and I say the word probably, because I don't want to take the time and attempt to evaluate every circumstance. But, there is probably no work on this earth that is valued simply for its accomplishment.

There is value only in work
when it helps others.

Mat 22:37 "Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind."
Mat 22:38 "This is the first and great commandment."
Mat 22:39 "And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself."
Mat 22:40 "On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets."
Eccl 12:13 "Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man."

Do the Work that helps others, thereby loving others.

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Do the Work of

Obedience

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Do Not the Work of

Defending Character

Psa 7:10 "My defence is of God, which saveth the upright in heart."

Allow God
to be your defence

Psa 59:1 ".O my God: defend me from them that rise up against me."

God is able to defend us
from our enemies.

Psa 59:8 "But thou, O LORD, shalt laugh at them; thou shalt have all the heathen in derision."
Psa 59:9 "Because of his strength The strength of my enemy will I wait upon thee: for God is my defence."

Wait on God
for your defense.

Psa 94:22 "But the LORD is my defence; and my God is the rock of my refuge."

The verse before this
describes the strength and determination of our enemies.

But this is not a good reason
to leave the work given to us and begin to handle our enemies.

God is our Defence
not us
or our wit
or our cleverness
or our ability to get even.

Rom 8:31 ".If God be for us, who can be against us?"

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Do Not the Work of

Defending Causes

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Do Not the Work of

Attacking the Devil's Demons

Chasing the Devil's Rabbits

Jude 1:9 ".Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil .durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, `The Lord rebuke thee'."

This is not a time
to get the devil straight

Let's do the work given to us

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Do Not the Work of

Nursing your wounds

Psa 38:4 "For mine iniquities are gone over mine head: as an heavy burden they are too heavy for me."
Psa 38:5 "My wounds stink and are corrupt because of my foolishness."
Psa 38:6 "I am troubled; I am bowed down greatly; I go mourning all the day long."

Skip down to verse 15

Psa 38:15 "For in thee, LORD, do I hope: thou wilt hear, Lord my God."

It is not a time
to cry and feel sorry for yourself

It is a time
to hope in God
and.

Do the work given to us

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Do Not the Work of

Stopping Liars

Prov 13:5 "A righteous man hateth lying: but a wicked man is loathsome, and cometh to shame."
Prov 13:6 "Righteousness keepeth him that is upright in the way: but wickedness overthroweth the sinner."

Who is going to take care of the Liars??
Not the Christians,
not even God,
but their own wickedness will overthrow them.

Let's quit worrying about the Liars
and Do the work given to us.

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Do Not the Work of

Building Self-esteem

There is no time
to work on our self-esteem.

Luke 10:20 ".rejoice, because your names are written in heaven."

Feel good about that.

Prov 15:23 "A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it!"

Feel good about having
a good answer for everyone, an appropriate word at the right time.

Deu 12:7 ".ye shall rejoice in all that ye put your hand unto, ye and your household. "

Feel good about
putting your hand to work.

1 Chr 29:9 "Then the people rejoiced, for that they offered willingly."

Feel good about
offering self and what you have.

Psa 5:11 "But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them."

Feel good about
having faith in God and shout out loud when God comes to your defense.

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Do Not the Work of

Punishing Sinners

Rom 12:19 ". Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord."

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Do Not the Work of

Hating the Haters

Luke 6:32 "For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them."
Luke 6:33 "And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank have ye? for sinners also do even the same."
Luke 6:34 "And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again."
Luke 6:35 "But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil."

Do the work given to you

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Do Not the Work of

Making Money

1 Tim 6:10 "For the love of money is the root of all evil."

Do the work given to us

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Do Not the Work of

Contradicting False Prophets

Titus 3:10 "A man that is an heretic after the first and second admonition reject;"
Psa 101:7 "He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: he that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight."

Don't allow the false prophet and teacher
to live with you or stay where you have to look at them all the time.
We may have to work with them or even serve with them in some ways, but we don't have to take them home.

Beware

Mat 7:15 "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves."

Mindfully receive the sheep of God.

Pray that the Lord handle them

Neh 6:12 "And, lo, I perceived that God had not sent him; but that he pronounced this prophecy against me: for Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him."
Neh 6:13 "Therefore was he hired, that I should be afraid, and do so, and sin, and that they might have matter for an evil report, that they might reproach me."
Neh 6:14 "My God, think thou upon Tobiah and Sanballat according to these their works, and on the prophetess Noadiah, and the rest of the prophets, that would have put me in fear."

Nehemiah asked the Lord to consider those that were false prophets and teachers.

Turn away from them

2 Tim 3:5 "Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away."

Turn away from false prophets and teachers.

Receive not into your house

2 John 1:7 "For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist."
2 John 1:8 "Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward."
2 John 1:9 "Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son."
2 John 1:10 "If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:"

We may have to tolerate them, but not in our homes.

"The porch is for the world"
The living room is for family
Where we commune with Christ to full.
Not for the ear-plugged wicked,
But the porch, It's for the world.
The bedroom is for sleep and prayer,
When visited oft, you'll not be poor.
There is no room for the lost there,
They'er met on the porch, before the door.
The kitchen is to prepare and sup,
Taking food for body and for soul.
Could we partake with the foolish?
They'er met on the porch, by the bold.
Never send away the worst.
To whom do they have to turn?
But don't become unequally yoked.
Meet'em on the porch, we must learn.
And not just on our porch,
Are we to encounter the helpless lost.
But venture into their home no further,
Than their porch, at any cost.
gsa

Of course we are to love even our enemies, but be careful when bringing them into your family.

Mark & avoid them

Rom 16:17 "Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them."

Mark them in your minds,
so you will know to avoid them, not to gossip about them.

Withdraw from them

2 Th 3:6 "Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us."

Withdraw from the brethren who are false prophets and teachers.

Do the work given to us.

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Do Not the Work of .

Making them Take Back Insults
do the work given to us.

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Do Not the Work of .

Setting the Record Straight

Mark 9:38 "And John answered him, saying, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name, and he followeth not us: and we forbad him, because he followeth not us."
Mark 9:39 "But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me."
Mark 9:40 "For he that is not against us is on our part."

Do the work given to us.

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Do Not the Work of .

Gathering Rights

The devil has gained a great victory
in convincing Christians that they must spend their time protecting their rights.

Do the work given to us.

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Do Not the Work of .

Taking on the Injuries of Others

Luke 10:33 "But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him,"
Luke 10:34 "And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him."
Luke 10:35 "And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee."

It is not time to make society pay
for this man's injuries,
for the callousness of the Levites and Priests,
for the thieves that were allowed to exist and harm this man.

It is time to do the work you are given.
Be
Zealous
Steady
Not Weary

"Be not weary in well doing."

About your Father's Business

Illustration:
there was a man in a Hot Air Balloon. He had been taking people up on rides. The day was over and the wind was favorable, and he decided to drift off for a ride. He had filled the balloon with hot air. Made his ascent. Working hard to secure everything, double checking ropes and knots. He was still held by one rope on the ground. It seemed to be very tight. The light of day was quickly turning to darkness and he was working hard to take off. He got out his very sharp knife and cut the rope. It was a good, clean cut. He was working hard to get under way. He was working at the business of staying aloft. But, he cut the wrong rope. The Basket he was standing in and leaning over on the edge of, tilted suddenly, and while many people watched he fell to his death. Working very hard. But doing the wrong work.

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