At Work

How to See Productivity from a Biblical Perspective

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Productivity sometimes seems like a bad thing, or at least a purposeless one. We work and produce more, more more, but to what end? Is there a purpose to all our productivity? From a biblical perspective, there is.

So how can Christians see productivity from a biblical perspective? First, by recognizing that productivity isn’t morally neutral – in fact, it’s just the opposite. Second, by seeing the bigger picture of productivity within God’s plan for creation.

See Productivity as a Moral Good

In his Doing Business and Pleasing God seminar, theologian Wayne Grudem states the following:

Increasing the production of goods and services is not morally evil – and it’s not morally neutral – rather, it’s fundamentally good and pleasing to God. It’s part of his purpose in putting human beings on the Earth. When we create something, productivity creates value in the world that didn’t exist before. Therefore, productivity imitates God in his creativity…God’s wisdom led him to create us with a need and a desire for material things.

Grudem is right. We were made by God to produce quality goods and services as a product of our work. When we are productive in obedience to the calling that God has given us, our work becomes a rightful source of personal fulfillment and dignity.

See Productivity as a Gospel-Driven Good

In addition to viewing productivity from a moral perspective, we need to see it from a biblical perspective. Matt Perman set out to do just that in his book What’s Best Next. In the book, Perman lays out a solid, biblical reason for why we should be getting things done by exploring the bigger picture of productivity in God’s plan.

This idea of gospel-driven productivity calls us to:

Use all that we have, in all areas of life, for the good of others, to the glory of God…to be on the lookout to do good for others to the glory of God, in all areas of life, and to do this with creativity and competence.

How does this new view of productivity translate into practical results? Perman writes that gospel-driven productivity

Also means actually knowing how to get things done, so that we can serve others in a way that really helps, in all areas of life, without making ourselves miserable in the process through overload, overwhelm, and hard-to-keep up productivity systems.

This new perspective makes it clear that we as Christians are called “to put productivity practices and tools in the service of God’s purposes.” From a biblical perspective, productivity isn’t just about getting more things done; it’s about getting the right things done.

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  • This puts a new perspective on my procrastination, and calls me to want to be prolific as a Christian Artist, even if the Body of Christ tends to ignore its Artists / Craftsmen. I can be fulfilled knowing I did my work “as unto the Lord…” Thank you for the inspiring article.

    In Christ,

    Christopher Marion Thomas

  • Love this! I’ve read both of these books and have found them very helpful. Tim Challies wrote a book on productivity as well that I found very helpful. All three are great books and have greatly helped me in my productivity coaching and training with leaders and companies.

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