Aside from Christ himself, I’ve always looked up to Apostle Paul teaching us and being the perfect example of how a Christian should live.
When it comes to our work, it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of modern society.
That doesn’t mean, however, that you can ignore spiritual principles when running a business or making important decisions at your job.
Thankfully we don’t need to look far for timeless advice on how to properly wade through this chaotic world: enter Apostle Paul!
The Apostle Paul traveled around ministering and teaching people about God’s love—and he also managed many businesses from tent-making to tile work.
As one of the Church’s most influential characters ever lived and arguably one of the most prosperous characters in the Bible (in both monetary and spiritual sustenance), his teachings are as applicable today as they were two thousand years ago.
More than Apostle Paul teaching us leadership and faithfulness lessons, I have learned a lot from his life that have helped shaped my business to what it is today.
Despite being a successful business owner, Paul’s entire life revolved around evangelism and he practically never took his eyes off his one true goal: following his assignment from God.
As a Christian business owner myself, his teachings serve as a constant reminder of why I do what I do! I spend a lot of time reflecting on the lessons of the Apostle Paul and I’m breaking down three lessons taught by one of Christianity’s favorite apostles, which will help guide you towards creating a successful enterprise while staying true to yourself -and even finding fulfillment- along your journey.
3 Business Lessons The Apostle Paul Is Teaching Us
1. Apostle Paul teaching us to work for the greater good of others
Paul didn’t take up shop as a tentmaker to benefit himself.
He did it to fund his ministry and relieve the church of any financial obligations to him.
And he did this to give himself the best means to follow his assignment from God!
Although many entrepreneurs start out with these kinds of motivations, the money and success are tough temptations to fight.
It takes incredible strength and willpower… and for me, it meant trusting in and giving myself to Christ in a whole new way.
I won’t lie and say that I’ve never been tempted to use money I earned for my own benefit first before putting it towards my ministry.
It’s easy to tell ourselves we worked hard, so we deserve it.
But thanks to the Lord, I’ve always had the strength to stay focused on my mission to serve others and put their needs first.
I think Paul’s amazing ability to remain selfless goes hand-in-hand with the next big lesson we can learn from him…
2. Apostle Paul remained humble – even when accomplishing great things
Paul possessed great skill in working with his hands, ran a successful business, and was a very educated man.
For these reasons, he wielded levels of influence and respect that many men could only dream of.
Yet, he always remained incredibly humble. His accomplishments did not go to his head, and he did not let them lift him above others.
There are countless examples in scripture that show us how Paul felt.
In Philippians 3:7 he says “…But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ.”
Paul was so focused on his assignment from God that he considered any personal gains for him as nothing but distractions!
If that isn’t dedication to building the Kingdom and spreading the word of God, then I don’t know what is!
This attitude from Paul reminds me of why I started my business every day.
If I wanted to, I could be living in a mansion, driving fancy cars, and throwing stacks of money around like all the kids on the internet seem to be doing these days.
And sadly, that kind of behavior has become so normal I don’t think many people would even bat an eye.
But that’s not why I do this! And Paul serves as an amazing reminder that no matter what we accomplish here on earth…
It all pales in comparison to being reconciled to Christ.
3. He didn’t care what others thought about him
This one hits home for me.
You see, when I first started having some real success as a digital tentmaker, one of the first things I did was buy my wife a brand new Nissan Murano.
Her MS had taken a turn for the worst at that point in time, so I wanted to provide her with something comfortable.
At first she was ecstatic!
Because her old car was almost 20 years old… and the beat up, uncomfortable seats plus the lack of any air conditioning made it very difficult for her to drive.
However, once she drove around in the new Murano for a couple weeks, she started getting funny looks from people.
People don’t have much money where we’re from in Texas. So even something like a Nissan Murano sticks out like a sore thumb.
We started having people ask us how we afforded it and it made us feel incredibly self-conscious. In fact, my wife even admitted to feeling embarrassed driving it — even though it was the perfect car for her health condition!
What I learned from Paul is that sometimes you just can’t let what others think or say get to you.
I knew my mission was just. And besides, what were the alternatives?
Sell the Murano and buy back my wife’s old car — making her suffer every time she has to drive somewhere?
It’s tough, because sometimes the opinions you need to block out are those of our friends, family, and loved ones.
But as I’m sure you know, in the end there is only ONE person we need to seek approval from. And if our actions are pleasing to Him, then we cannot let what others think throw us off course. Like I said before, Paul is a big inspiration to me and digital tentmakers everywhere.
He is the perfect example of what it means to run a kingdom-driven business and provide more for your family…
While never losing sight of the real mission at hand: to please God and strive to be the best Christians we possibly can be.
This is exactly the life my students in Digital Storefronts are living – providing for their families while still pursuing their missions full-time.
You can watch how my students who are pastors and ministry workers are doing it.
Can businesses be Christian?
Yes, businesses can absolutely be Christian! We need only look to Apostle Paul in the Bible as an example. Not only did Paul work as a tentmaker, but he proclaimed himself to be a “servant of Christ.” He often used his craftsmanship and business skills to further God’s mission.
Paul was an example of Christian business, teaching us that it is possible to live Christian lives and still provide for our families. By following in his footsteps, we can be sure to keep the mission at hand while juggling worldly responsibilities like providing food, shelter and safety.
Can a Christian be an entrepreneur?
Yes, Christian entrepreneurs are in fact thriving today! By combining Christian values with innovative business practices like online marketing, Christian business owners are creating successful Christian-based companies. These Christian businesses offer a variety of products and services that help fulfill God’s mission while also helping to provide for their families.
What is the Church’s teaching on work?
The Church’s teachings on work are clear: we should strive to be Christian business owners and use our talents for Christ. AIn his letter to the Corinthians, there’s Apostle Paul teaching us that “whatever you do, do everything as unto the Lord.” This means that Christian business owners should always remember their Christian mission and focus on providing products and services that honor and glorify God. Christian businesses should also strive to provide for families, help the poor, and serve others in the name of Christ.
Ultimately, Christian business owners must remember that our goal is to use our businesses to serve God’s will and be a shining example of Christian values. At the end of the day, it should always be to bring glory to God and not to themselves.
You see, business, money, and profits are inherently good things! They present amazing opportunities to extend the Kingdom, be good stewards, and imitate His kindness, wisdom, and independence.
However, they do carry the greatest temptation to neglect the Lord, our faith, and our families — and this is where the scripture we read above holds much truth.
It is a fundamental Christian teaching that everyone is called to take part in God’s kingdom – not just spiritual workers but also secular people.
Therefore, everyone must use their God-given talents and resources to bring something to the world that will provide solutions, improve lives and help other people.
I discovered a great book recently that’s filled with a TON of really interesting insights into what it’s like to be a Christian business owner.
“Business for the Glory of God” is the title of the book.
Here are a few of my favorite take-aways from the book that will guide you in your journey in starting a Christian business:
1.Sometimes people think of ownership of property as a kind of “greed” that is morally tainted, and they imagine that in a perfect world people would not even own personal possessions.
But the Bible does not support that idea.
When God gave the command “You shall not steal” (Ex. 20:15), he affirmed the validity of personal ownership of possessions. I should not steal your car, because it belongs to you, not to me.
2. When we work to produce (for example) pairs of shoes from the earth’s resources, God sees us imitating his attributes of wisdom, knowledge, skill, strength, creativity, appreciation of beauty, sovereignty, planning for the future, and the use of language to communicate.
In addition, when we produce pairs of shoes to be used by others, we demonstrate love for others, wisdom in understanding their needs, and interdependence and interpersonal cooperation (which are the reflections of God’s Trinitarian existence).
3. In fact, the Bible does not view positively the idea of retiring early and not working at anything again. Rather, work in itself is also something that is fundamentally good and God-given, for it was something that God commanded Adam and Eve to do before there was sin in the world.
4. [Shady business] actions should not be swept under the rug, but should be subject to the process of personal confrontation and church discipline that Jesus outlines in Matthew 18:15-20
5. Good stewardship, in God’s eyes, includes expanding and multiplying whatever resources or stewardship God has entrusted to you.
Surely we cannot exclude money and material possessions from the application of the parable, for they are part of what God entrusts with each of us, and our money and possessions can and should be used to glorify God.
What should a Christians attitude towards money be?
Your attitude towards money should be one of stewardship – that is, being a good manager and steward of the resources God has provided you. You should view your material possessions as tools to serve God, helping you fulfill his mission in the world and make an impact for His kingdom. It isn’t about accumulating wealth for its own sake, but rather to be used as a means to glorify God.
To the Christians who know that more money = more service, more giving, and more kindness…
that’s exactly right. My wife and I were in the same situation as you after 17 years in full-time ministry. We wanted…
– More freedom
– More resources
And frankly, with the way things have been going…
More security and self-sufficiency was a big one for us too.
It took some time, and a few failures.
Not to mention I had to sift through a ton of shady “businesses”, get rich quick schemes, and outright f.
But I stayed patient, and trusted…
Eventually He led me to exactly what I was looking for.
…an ethical biz that’s actually a blessing to others!
Where I earn by providing a valuable service to local business owners all over the country.
(Not by “recruiting” people, selling random products online, or who knows what other gimmicks.)
Now I’m free to work on my own schedule, on my own terms.
While also having the income required to impact thousands of lives!
Put simply, I’ve been blessed.
And now I want to share this with as many other Believers as possible.
If you’re looking for more abundance in your life, I want to help. Those who want the same resources – NOT for the big houses and luxury cars…
But because they know they could be blessing a lot of people.
And impacting a lot of lives.
Remember that wealth is a tool to be used for God’s glory and mission in the world.
As a Christian business owner, you can definitely succeed without compromising your faith and principles. It is all about bringing glory to God and serving other people.
With the right mindset and approach, you can build a thriving business that makes a difference in the world. If you want to learn more about how to do this, sign up for our free training. We’ll show you how to grow your business while staying true to your Christian values.
Cory Long is the owner and CEO of Yroc Consulting, a local digital marketing company based in San Angelo, TX that specializes in online marketing, SEO, web design, and social media. He has worked full time in ministry for 17 years. Bought several products teaching how to make money online but never found success until he found this model. Five years later, he has a 7-figure Digital Storefront business and has taught hundreds of people how to do this successfully for themselves.