The Task at Hand: Harmonious Living and Working.

15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. 17 Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. 18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. 19 Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” 20 To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by 14 “Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” (Romans 12:14–21 (ESV)

One way to handle conflict at work, along with following proper established protocol by the company or institution for which you work, is to follow the guidelines set forth in Romans 12:14-21. While these commands and encouragements are applicable for the home, personal relationships, church and when engaging the public, they also contain practical wisdom for the work place.

Today, we examine Romans 12:16. The text says, Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight.” Let’s unpack the verse.

The phrase live in harmony (φρονέω; phroneo) is one word in the Greek language. It means to have an attitude and aptitude of understanding based on biblical insight and wisdom (Ephesians 1:8). Believers are to have this harmonious perspective to life in every situation with all kinds of people.

To accomplish this, a believer must never be haughty (ὑψηλός; hypselos). Haughtiness is arrogance and the perspective that you are above, or more valuable than, everyone else.

One way to combat haughtiness is to “associate with the lowly.” This means to share what you have, or are, with those who are downhearted and in more humble circumstances than you.

Another way to have victory over haughtiness is to “never be wise in your own sight.” In other words, do not be conceited.

Dr. John Walvoord explains that, “Being in harmony with other Christians is basic to being able to empathize with them. This idea is then presented in negative and positive details: Do not be proud (lit., “not thinking highly” of yourself; cf. Rom. 11:20; 12:3) and be willing to associate with people of low position (cf. James 2:1–9). These orders are summarized in the command, Do not be conceited (lit., “Do not become wise concerning themselves”; cf. Prov. 3:7; Rom. 11:25), an attitude that makes empathy impossible.”

Have a blessed day as you strive to live in harmony with your co-workers. Soli deo Gloria!    

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