A worker's appetite works for him, For his hunger urges him on. Proverbs 16:26
Did you know that the Bible does not support the idea of a welfare state? There is plenty in the Scriptures that support giving to help out the poor and disadvantaged. But the idea of providing a living for someone without them having to work - especially when they are able to work - is foreign to the Bible.
God's Word encourages us to work - and to work hard. Beginning with God encouraging man to work the garden - prior to the fall - and continuing through the New Testament where Paul tells us that if a man will not work, not to let him eat - God is adamant about people giving themselves to worthwhile endeavors in life. We've seen several verses already that rebuke the sluggard and warn him to apply himself to work hard. God also encourages us to enjoy our work in the book of Ecclesiastes.
God's Word states that a "do nothing" mindset will destroy a man's character - and eventually his life. Welfare will eventually create not just a sluggard, but a person who feels that they are entitled to getting things without working. This entitlement attitude will not just destroy an individual - it can destroy entire economies and states. When the state either cuts off these entitlements or even downgrades them in size - the lazy rise up and riot because they have grown to expect something for nothing.
The whole idea of incentive and hunger is necessary for a society to have a good work ethic. The incentive causes the worker to become more dependable and productive. He works harder and better and in the process not only blesses himself - but his company and even his entire nation. The hunger for food is one way that this is seen - and the hunger for even better things can be a continued way this is beneficial. First we work so that we can feed ourselves and our families. Over time our families are fed, but we want even better things for them. This comes not out of greed, but out of a true desire to bless our families - even beyond the scope of our lives. The incentive to see our children have a better life is a good thing.
Our society is falling apart because it has ignored these things. We have begun to adopt a mindset toward socialism - where the government takes care of all the people. God did not intend for this to be the case. He meant for men to care for their families - and for the state to only have a limited role in governing our lives. The family is the basic unit of society - and the place where values and work ethic is to be taught and encouraged. Even with our children we are to use incentive to help them see the need to work and to labor. When a child is spoiled by his parents - that child is given everything they want - without having to work for what they receive. The child does not appreciate these things - and even has resentment when the parent either cannot or will not provide something they demand. The child never learns a solid work ethic - which damages them for life. They don't work hard - get fired from multiple jobs - which they always equate to a problem with the employer. The problems they have even enter into their marriage and family - because they are unwilling to work and do what is necessary to bless a family. Everything is about them and what they want. Thus they destroy not just their own lives - but in time multiple generations which follow in their footsteps.
The incentive and drive to work - and work hard is a matter of godliness in the end. It is encouraged by God granting to us an appetite - and a hunger for food. If we are coddled and protected from hunger and need. If we are given everything and never made to work for what is necessary. If we are spoiled as children - and even as adults - we are headed for a disastrous end. The older we get, the more selfless we should become. The selfishness of a little child is not to be encouraged - but worked out of them. If this is not done - not even their hunger can get them to engage in profitable work. When multiplied over the face of a region - and even a nation - this will lead to the fall of that nation. Let your hunger and your thirst be a motivation to work hard - and to encourage others to do the same. It may seem hard at first - but you will see the wisdom of God's Word in encouraging work and labor as a way to bless ourselves and others around us.
Proverb a Day
Each day, we'll take a look at a verse from the chapter of Proverbs for the day. Our hope is to gain wisdom each day - and from that wisdom - to have understanding to make godly decisions in the throes of everyday life.
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