Three Lessons from The Good Book on Business
If Christian business leaders would accept their significant role in the Kingdom, we could transform the world! However, two current cultural paradigms hold back Christian businesses and prevent them from fulfilling their purpose: The secular idea that business is just about making money, and the Christian cultural idea that business is really a second-class occupation, subservient to the institutional church clergy.
Dave Kahle addresses these challenges in his book The Good Book on Business and helps us grow in our understanding of the importance of business in the Kingdom of God. Beginning with the first words God spoke to Adam and continuing through the entire Bible, Kahle shows that business was, and is, God’s first choice as a venue through which to interact with mankind, take care of people, grow character and faith, and channel God’s power and providence. Here are a three take-aways from the book for those wondering what the Bible has to do with their business:
1. God at Work
At the start, there is the foundational truth that God himself is a worker, as shown through His creation of the universe and culminating with His creation of humankind. God created humankind in His image, and so it is His intent for us is to also be workers, and by extension, to be involved in business.
Work is introduced in the Bible before even the creation of Eve: one of the first encounters between God and Adam was task-focused, as God delegated to Adam the responsibility of naming the animals. Work – and business – is a way for God to relate, communicate, and collaborate with mankind.
2. Biblical Leaders were Business Leaders
Many of the great leaders in the Bible were trained and developed in business: Abraham, Joseph, Moses, David, Peter, Jesus, and Paul, to name a few. These key biblical characters, who were in fact business people, found themselves at the forefront of major movements of God.
We cannot lose sight of how God has used business leaders in the execution and culmination of significant events. What plans might he have for us carrying out His work within and beyond the business realm?
God gives Christian leaders a role of authority and responsibility, and with that comes a natural requirement and opportunity to be Christ-like to our employees.
3. Businesses as a Forum for Conversion and Discipleship
Kahle makes the point that the households that we read about in the Bible were actually businesses. Biblical households often included employees and slaves, households could grow into large entities, and they were central to the acquisition and management of wealth.
In addition, the head of the household had a substantial responsibility for the whole household, and the same holds true for business leaders today. There are numerous examples in the Bible where a household would prosper or suffer based on the decisions of the household head. The same holds true today, the prosperity of the business and the employees can be impacted, either positively or negatively, based on the decisions of the business leaders.
God gives Christian leaders a role of authority and responsibility, and with that comes a natural requirement and opportunity to be Christ-like to our employees. We can embody Christ’s sacrificial heart and seek to bring the good news to the staff members who have been entrusted into our care. Indeed, in the New Testament, businesses led the way in the adoption of the Christian faith, and there are multiple examples of the entire business following the actions of the leader and converting to Christianity.
We cannot lose sight of how God has used business leaders in the execution and culmination of significant events.
The Good Book on Business ends with recommendations for transforming your business into a Kingdom-focused entity. Business really is ministry – work is the original ministry instituted by God – and you are invited to find your place in the movement.
Post adapted from a review of The Good Book on Business.
Dave Kahle has been a Bible teacher, elder, house church leader, short-term missionary and Christian executive roundtable leader. For 30 years, he has been an authority on sales and sales systems, having spoken in 47 states and eleven countries. He has authored 13 books, including The Good Book on Business. Sign up for his weekly messages here. More from Dave at: www.davekahle.com.
Have you ever thought your business was meant to be much more than just a means to make money?
Biblical businesses are God’s first choice as the means to bless mankind, build character, and develop faith. They hold the solution for much of what ails our economy and our culture.
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“The Good Book on Business is a masterful work by Dave Kahle that uses the Bible and its main characters to reveal how the Bible really IS a book about people in business. Dave provides helpful case studies of modern businesses to learn to apply the principles found in the Bible for modern life. This book is educational, inspiring and will help anyone who wants to learn about business see it from a whole new light—the Bible.” – Os Hillman, author, Today God Is First
“I have been an intentional Christian business owner and leader for the past 13+ years, but I have to say that Dave introduced me to some ideas in this book that I have never encountered. I am blown away by his concepts and the Scriptural support he provides for each! Before I even finished this book, I knew that I was committed to reading it again…soon. I can’t wait to begin implementing some of his ideas! This is absolutely a must-read for any Christian in the business world (and even for those who are not, but should consider it!)” – Chris Patton, President, Mike Patton Auto Family