Solomon also gave many wise principles about work. In the beginning, God worked for six days and rested on the seventh, giving us a pattern to follow (Genesis 1–2). He created Adam and Eve in His image and gave them the job of tending the Garden of Eden and ruling over the animals He had made (Genesis 2). Adam and Eve enjoyed their work at first, but after they sinned, God cursed the ground and made it more difficult to work with (Genesis 3). It grew thorns and thistles. Now, our work may often be pleasurable but can also be difficult because we don’t live in a “very good” world anymore.
We follow God’s wise path when we work hard at whatever we have to do and do our best at finishing the job so that we can please God (Proverbs 16:3). Those who are wise are diligent to do the job without being reminded (Proverbs 12:24), provide for their families (Proverbs 28:19), and work hard so they can share with others (Proverbs 21:26).
Those who follow the path of foolishness are lazy (Proverbs 6:9), make excuses for not finishing the job (Proverbs 26:13), don’t work at all (Proverbs 21:25), need many reminders (Proverbs 12:24), want many things but don’t work for them (Proverbs 21:26), don’t have control over themselves—they are not self-disciplined (Proverbs 25:28), and only want to have a good time (Proverbs 28:19).
Solomon contrasted the hard-working ant with a lazy person (Proverbs 6:6–11). Which one are you?