Bad Bosses

Let all who are under a yoke as bondservants regard their own masters as worthy of all honor, so that the name of God and the teaching may not be reviled. (1 Timothy 6:1)

The dominant wisdom the world offers people who don’t love our jobs is to simply quit and move on to a better opportunity. As we will see later in this devotional series, changing your job is a biblical response to work you don’t love, but it is far from the only God-honoring course of action. But regardless of whether you stay or leave your current position, all Christians should be troubled by the tone in which worldly career gurus encourage us to quit our jobs. The overriding tone of this advice has a very “stick it to the man” ring to it. By casting bad bosses and unhealthy corporate cultures as the villains, many talking heads would have you believe that you are doing a heroic thing by disrespecting your employer before, during, and after your departure from the company. But this response is totally out of sync with Scripture.

Yes, there are horrible bosses out there. I’ve had a few of my own and I know how hard it can be to honor employers that don’t honor you. But as today’s Scripture makes clear, God calls us to honor and respect all employers—regardless of whether or not they respect us or if we love our jobs. Why? Because, as Paul reminds us in Romans 13, “there is no authority except that which God has established.” And because God has put our bosses in their positions of power, our response should be to honor and respect them, even if they are responsible for making our jobs miserable. As Paul writes in 1 Timothy 6:1: “Let all who are under a yoke as bondservants regard their own masters as worthy of all honor.”

So, how do we honor and respect our bosses and employers when we don’t love our job? We honor them by not speaking poorly about them behind their backs, by refusing to steal by spending hours at the office scrolling through Instagram, and, as we will see next week, by “working with all your heart.” Notice that today’s verses aren’t saying that you have to stay at a bad job. But while you are there and you’re under the authority of someone God has placed in a position of leadership, remember Scripture’s overarching principle—that one of our responses to jobs we don’t love has to be honoring and respecting those in authority.


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