â€œAnd the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.â€ Â (Genesis 2:15)
When God first created man, He gave him work to do. Although â€œthe LORD God planted a gardenâ€ for man (Genesis 2:8), it was up to man to take care of it if he would continue to eat its fruits. Thus, having to labor for oneâ€™s living is not a divine punishment for manâ€™s sin as people sometimes interpret it, but rather a divine benefit for manâ€™s good.
Similarly, even in the new earth, when sin and suffering will be gone forever, there will still be work to do. â€œThere shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve himâ€ (Revelation 22:3).
We donâ€™t know yet what our assignments will be there, but they will somehow be commensurate with our faithfulness in serving the Lord here. â€œMy reward is with me,â€ says the Lord Jesus, â€œto give every man according as his work shall beâ€ (Revelation 22:12).
It is, therefore, a God-given privilege to be able to do useful work, whether that work consists of preaching Godâ€™s Word or improving Godâ€™s world. â€œWhatsoever thy hand findeth to doâ€ (whether being paid for it or not), â€œdo it with thy might; for there is no work . . . in the grave, whither thou goestâ€ (Ecclesiastes 9:10). As Jesus said, â€œThe night cometh, when no man can workâ€ (John 9:4).
No matter what the job may be that has been provided for us to do, it is important to remember and obey the admonition: â€œAnd 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 Christâ€ (Colossians 3:23-24) and â€œyour labor is not in vain in the Lordâ€ (1 Corinthians 15:58). HMM