“Do everything without complaining and arguing” Philippians 2:14
“Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry” James 1:19
A lesson in submission
When someone is under authority, their place is simply to listen and do. Rom 13:1 states that all authority comes from God, therefore if we disobey those in authority, that’s as good as disobeying Him because He is the one who placed them there and they serve as His delegates, whether they are aware of that or not. The idea is to create competent subordinates who know how to take responsibility even if they don’t think they’re superior is right. These people grow into fine leaders because of the sacrifice they would have made in such circumstances, and understand that disobeying command means undermining themselves, their team/company and, most importantly, their superiors. This is why the 214 (say two-fourteen) rule exists. To allow those under authority to remember why they are there and that faithfulness means following the command through to the end, with the exception of one thing: the command going against moral and ethical laws and the Word of God.
The other thing to note is that submission speaks of support, backing up and standing for either the commander or the one carrying the vision, as is the case with a wife submitting to her husband (Ephesians 5:22-24)
The parable of the two sons
Matthew 21:28-31 reads:
“But what do you think? A man had two sons, and he came to the first and said, ‘Son, go, work today in my vineyard.’ He answered and said, ‘I will not,’ but afterward he regretted it and went. Then he came to the second and said likewise. And he answered and said, ‘I go, sir,’ but he did not go. Which of the two did the will of his father?”
They said to Him, “The first.”
Jesus said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that tax collectors and harlots enter the kingdom of God before you.
I don’t think the first son felt regret for not having initially deciding to go but rather for the consequences of not obeying. I believe he may have had too much respect for his dad-despite the relationship-for him to disobey. A respectable person is someone who is able to follow a command. I know this parable focuses on how the Pharisees will not enter the kingdom of heaven since they did not believe John the Baptist [vs 32] (so they would be the second son) and yet sinners would (as illustrated by the first son). The point still stands, faithfulness (as demonstrated through obedience) is rewarded.
Analyzing the faithful
Many will say they are loyal friends,
but who can find one who is truly reliable?
It is hard to find those that have done, and will do more good than they speak, or care to hear spoken of. One example of my favourite Bible character of them all exemplifies this, Enoch. He is spoken of a total of 3 times concerning his actions. The most important being that he was faithful to God as he was in close fellowship with Him (so much for the spiritual death resulting from Adam and Eve eating the fruit-which, by the way, was not an apple, it was a fruit!). Then because of that fellowship, he was used as an example for how to please God in Hebrews 11:5-6:
It was by faith that Enoch was taken up to heaven without dying—“he disappeared, because God took him” (Genesis 5:24). For before he was taken up, he was known as a person who pleased God. And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.
From here we see that one of the rewards of faithfulness is praise for pleasing your superior.
Matthew 25: 20:-23
The servant to whom he had entrusted the five bags of silver came forward with five more and said, ‘Master, you gave me five bags of silver to invest, and I have earned five more.’ “The master was full of praise. ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’ “The servant who had received the two bags of silver came forward and said, ‘Master, you gave me two bags of silver to invest, and I have earned two more.’ “The master said, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’ (Emphasis added)
The second reward of faithfulness is clear, promotion. Those who are faithful in and with the little they have will be trusted enough to be entrusted with more and bigger responsibilities. The advantage of this is that you also serve as someone very reliable in the eyes of your superior.
To the faithful you show yourself faithful;
to those with integrity you show integrity.
To the pure you show yourself pure,
but to the wicked you show yourself hostile
The third reward of faithfulness is pleasure because you pretty much receive that which you give, as the golden rule states:
“Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you. This is the essence of all that is taught in the law and the prophets” Matt 7:12
This God—how perfect (faithful) are his deeds!
How dependable his words!
He is like a shield
for all who seek his protection (GNT)
The fourth reward of faithfulness is protection.
There may be more but this will do it for now. As long as you remain aware of the 214 rule, you’ll reap the rewards! Note that your “superior” does not have to be someone you work for. They simply have to be someone in authority and/or someone with wisdom. Even if it’s a friend or kid who displays wisdom, it should be followed through. Remember the 214 rule is an inspiration from Philippians 2:14. It’s not just something I made up!