As part of my Connect Study we recently looked at the Cultural Mandate, Gen 1.28:
“God blessed them and said to them, ‘Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.'”
We talked about how this verse affirms God’s interest in a wide scope of life, and by extension our work. For example God is just as interested in businesses as in church community groups. Likewise God calls people to work as missionaries in China just as He can call people to work as barrister’s in Starbucks.
So far I’m on comfortable ground. (One book in particular which has helped bring me to this point was Tim Keller’s: Every Good Endeavor.) As Christians we are called to bear the promise and calling of Abraham to be blessed and to bless the nations.
So I want to ask, how do we pray blessing over unethical businesses. For an extreme example a brothel house? Or a betting company? If God is interested in a wide scope of life and business, and we are called to bless nations and the people in them. What does this look like, when it comes to the work of deforestation?
Well, read Colossians 1:15-20!
“God was…[through Jesus] reconciling to Himself all things…by making peace through His blood, shed on the cross.”
God is in the business of reconciliation, redemption – in other words making things new! So our prayers of blessing over the brothel house and over the gambling shops. Isn’t “Lord bless the business so that they are successful” (obviously!)…But “Lord bless this brothel house in that you would reconcile it to Yourself”.
This has massive implications!
Imagine a brothel house redeemed, what beauty we would see! As God transforms peoples hearts and frees people. What would it be like? What would a reconciled gambling house look like?
For those for whom this is too abstract and far off, think about it this way. One of the ways we can pray blessing over our friends who do not know Jesus. Isn’t necessarily that they would succeed in everything they do, or even that things go smoothly (all great things, in their proper place) but that God would bring them to Himself. He would transform them into the likeness of His Son. How much more fruitful will all their efforts be, in spiritual and lasting terms, when they are in Christ (John 15)?!
One of the greatest blessing someone can receive is reconciliation to the Father
. “This is eternal life, that they know You” (John 17.3). One of the greatest blessings a business can receive is reconciliation to the Father and His heart for work.
Let’s be challenge to pray like this over people and over every area of life:
“God redeem this!”