Episode 049 – The Sabbath Pt 1: A Theology of Work

Mark Buchanan once wrote, “In order to keep the Sabbath well – to embrace the rest of God – we need a right view of work. Without a rich theology of labor, we’ll have an impoverished theology of rest.” I couldn’t agree more, which is why we’re launching this Sabbath series by exploring the dignity of work, what the Bible has to say about it, and how we’re supposed to approach it in our relationship with God. Buckle up. This series is going to be quite a ride!

Discussion Questions

  • What was your biggest takeaway from the teaching?
  • In what ways has God gifted you specifically to work for His glory?
  • How do you view your work? Is it a burden, where you find your significance, or a form of worship?
  • Have you been allowing your work to define your identity? If so, in what ways?
  • Do you love the work you do, or at least like it? If not, is there something you can do to change that in this season?
  • Have you ever considered that you, in the work you are in now, are in full-time ministry? How can you live out this calling more this week as you seek to worship God with your work?

For Further Study

  • Leadership by Brad Lomenick – Chapter 6 addresses the Identity/Calling/Assignment aspect of this teaching.

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  1. Emanuel January 15, 2019 at 4:50 am - Reply

    Great teaching Brad! Looking forward to the rest of the series!

    • Brad Gray January 17, 2019 at 5:09 pm - Reply

      I’m looking forward to the rest of the series as well 🙂

  2. Jared January 15, 2019 at 9:21 am - Reply

    Man this was good, Brad! Such an encouraging message and true to the Word. Love how you pointed out that work was created before the fall, and is an act of worship!

  3. Bill Black January 15, 2019 at 1:26 pm - Reply

    What did YEHOVAH really mean in the Hebrew to -not “eat” from the tree?
    Could it be not to “partake” of the influence of that tree because the fig leaves, not apple leaves, were used to cover not the mouth but the —-loins?
    Do we lose sight of the fact that Paul is allowing the Gentiles to access the TORAH now, via Jesus, not by sacrificial lambs etc; thus by “faith” to them whereas the Jews were commanded to do TORAH, thus Good works, works which brought them the Hebrew concept of being saved daily and not eternally as we were taught?
    YEHOVAH prepared in -advance—-TORAH, acts 15!
    Why do we teach that to do work for God it has to be in Theological ministry when if one walked loving TORAH where they are,it is the same as God promised as to be a blessing in all areas of ones life?
    Living the gospel says more than preaching it, as anyone can do that. Living it is much much harder when starting our!

  4. Imer Santiago January 17, 2019 at 3:12 pm - Reply


    I had the honor of hearing you teach several times in Orlando, FL, at Discovery Church in the past. You are a very gifted teacher. Thank you for The Teaching Series!! 🙂

    • Imer Santiago January 17, 2019 at 3:15 pm - Reply

      Of particular significance to me was the distinction between “Identity, Calling, & Assignment”. What a challenge this can be for me at times!

      • Brad Gray January 17, 2019 at 5:08 pm - Reply

        Yes, this was extremely helpful to me as well.

    • Brad Gray January 17, 2019 at 5:08 pm - Reply

      You are most welcome, Imer. Glad it’s helpful to you!

  5. Tru Jackson January 20, 2019 at 4:39 pm - Reply

    I’m already loving part one of this series. I’m definitely reevaluating my calling and assignment. Thanks!

  6. Doug March 5, 2019 at 8:24 pm - Reply

    The distinction between IDENTITY–CALLING–ASSIGNMENT is a powerful insight … and a useful one too.
    Thanks for sharing it. It’s spurred me to read the ‘H3 LEADERSHIP’ book … and us it in my teaching.

  7. Karen White April 9, 2024 at 11:10 am - Reply

    I really liked the statement about identity…… calling….. and assignment….. it clearified a lot of things for me. Looking forward to the rest of this teaching.

    • Brad Nelson April 21, 2024 at 4:02 pm - Reply

      So grateful to hear that Karen. May God lead you ever deeper into who He made you to be!

  8. Jeneva April 10, 2024 at 9:05 am - Reply

    Thank you for highlighting identity, calling and assignment. It has settled a question that has popped up a few times regarding the calling God has clearly shown me when my current assignment doesn’t match the vision he showed me years ago. Now that’s settled. Thank you so much!

    • Brad Nelson April 21, 2024 at 4:01 pm - Reply

      Wow. What a gift to hear a small bit of your story. Thank Jen. We hope you’ll discover that nothing was wasted and that God has been using it ALL to prepare you for what He has in store for you next.

  9. Lindsey Barnes June 19, 2024 at 5:16 pm - Reply

    The part I struggle with is how to apply a theology of work in my particular situation. I have been sick and disabled my entire adult life ( I got sick at 19 and am now 31). I’ve tried to find work I was physically able to do, but only ever managed part time for a few years with much difficulty. For the last several years I haven’t been able to work at all. How can I rest when I can’t work? I struggle with feeling like I’m wasting the time God has given me. But what am I supposed to do? I’m trying to bloom where I’m planted but given my restrictions I’m not sure what that even looks like.

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