Be a Christian in the Workplace

1. Follow Christian values instead of worldly values. That means resisting the urge to call in sick when you’re not sick and refusing to filch office supplies for your personal use. No mater how trifling the offense is, recognize its deceptive nature. All dishonesty is sin; God does not distinguish between slight lies and hefty ones.  Scripture exhorts Christians to be distinctive from the sinful world we live in: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” (NIV, Romans 1:2). If your behavior in the workplace mirrors that of your unsaved colleague, do not be flattered. Seek God for restoration. Endeavor to follow God’s perfect will instead of seeking to follow your co-workers’ direction.

2. Respect the authority over you. The Bible speaks to this very issue: “ Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ. Obey them not only to win their favor when their eye is on you, but as slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from your heart” (NIV, Ephesians 6:5-6). While the present-day United States does not operate on a system of masters and slaves, it functions on the system of employers and employees. Therefore, seek to respect your boss with sincerity. Respecting your manager entails not gossiping about them with colleagues and not complaining about the work they assign you. It is imperative to keep Christ at the center of your obedience to authority figures.

3. Obey Christ first. Since Christians are to serve the Lord above all else, if your supervisor asks you to perform a task that is unethical or sinful, stand firm in your faith and refuse to comply. When Peter and the apostles obeyed God by teaching the people at the temple against the Sadducees’ explicit orders not to, the irate high priest demanded, ““Did we not strictly command you not to teach in this name? And look, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this Man’s blood on us!” But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men”” (NKJV, Acts 5:28-29). Throughout their lives, the apostles were repeatedly imprisoned, subjected to torture, and eventually killed for their commitment to God. Tenaciously adhering to your Christian faith in an immoral, God-dishonoring work environment may result in you being laid off or even fired. So, how far are you willing to go? Are you willing to sacrifice your professional ambitions, your relationship with your boss, or your financial comfort if God requires it?