Love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord. Leviticus 19:18
Sarah has a rare condition that causes her joints to dislocate, making her reliant on an electric wheelchair to get around. On her way to a meeting recently, Sarah rode her wheelchair to the train station but found the elevator broken. Again. With no way of getting to the platform, she was told to take a taxi to another station forty minutes away. The taxi was called but never arrived. Sarah gave up and went home.
Unfortunately, this is a regular occurrence for Sarah. Broken elevators stop her from boarding trains, forgotten ramps leave her unable to get off them. Sometimes Sarah is treated as a nuisance by railway staff for needing assistance. She’s often close to tears.
Out of the many biblical laws governing human relationships, “love your neighbor as yourself” is key (Leviticus 19:18; Romans 13:8–10). And while this love stops us from lying, stealing, and abusing others (Leviticus 19:11, 14), it also changes how we work. Employees must be treated fairly (v. 13), and we should all be generous to the poor (vv. 9–10). In Sarah’s case, those who fix elevators and drag out ramps aren’t doing inconsequential tasks but offering important service to others.
If we treat work as just a means to a wage or other personal benefit, we will soon treat others as annoyances. But if we treat our jobs as opportunities to love, then the most everyday task becomes a holy enterprise.
Why do you think we can become annoyed at someone needing extra assistance? How can you turn your job into a channel of love today?
Father, a job is never just a job to You but an opportunity to love You and serve others. Help me to see my work as an opportunity to benefit others today.
Bible scholars refer to Leviticus 17–26 as the “Holiness Code,” so called because of the emphasis on the holy conduct of those among whom God’s presence dwelt. The previous chapters of Leviticus concern sacrificial offerings (1–7), priestly preparation and ritual (8–10), instructions regarding things clean and unclean (11–15), and the Day of Atonement (16). The remaining chapters stress holiness within the family and society, in sexual relationships, in economic dealings, and more.
To be holy is to be set apart and to live—by the power of the Spirit—according to the principles found in the Scriptures. In the New Testament, Peter called believers in Jesus to holiness using the words found in Leviticus 11:44 and 19:2: “But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: ‘Be holy, because I am holy’” (1 Peter 1:15–16).