‘I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.’ John 17:4 NKJV
The ant literally dies working. Now let’s be clear, the Bible doesn’t promote a workaholic lifestyle that endangers your health and causes you to neglect your family. Too many marriages fall apart when a couple subscribes to that philosophy, and too many children grow up resenting the fact that their parents never had time for them.
That being understood, the contemporary concept of retirement can’t be found in the Bible. Yes, you may retire from a job, but you never retire from work. As long as you’re alive, there’s always work God wants you to do. Harvard University commissioned a study of some of its graduates. One group of one hundred participants retired at age sixty-five, while those in the other group worked to age seventy-five. In the first group seven out of eight were dead by age seventy-five. In the second group, of those who continued to work—only one in eight had died by age seventy-five. Researchers consequently concluded that retiring too early can reduce longevity. Stop and consider the three-and-a-half-year ministry of Jesus. At the end of it, He said, ‘I have finished the work which You have given Me to do.’ Has it ever occurred to you that salvation is available because Jesus proved Himself a faithful labourer who stayed on the task until the job was done? Again, rest, relaxation, and retirement are worthy and well-deserved rewards for a life of hard work. But the truth is, as long as you’re alive God has something for you to do! And in doing it you’ll not only find joy and fulfilment, you’ll bless those around you too.
SoulFood: 1 Sam 16–17, Lk 4:31–44, Ps 102:1–11, Prov 17:4–6
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright 2023