These daily online studies are adapted from our Quiet Time Bible Guide. The studies go through the Old and New Testaments in just over two years. The approach taken by our quiet time Bible studies does not include answers. The goal of the study is to help you dig into Scripture for yourself. You can go deeper using a commentary, Bible background guide or Bible handbook.

Colossians 3:18-4:1: At Home and On the Job

For more context before you begin studying, read this introduction to the book of Colossians.

Factory workers in the Philippines had been meeting for months for a lunch-hour Bible study. One day the supervisor came to the leader and asked, "Could you start some more Bible studies in the factory? The men in the study have become the best workers on my shift."

That wouldn't have surprised the apostle Paul. In this section he instructs us about the distinctive attitudes and behavior that should mark Christians at home and on the job.

Warming Up to God

When is it easiest for you to have a "Christian" attitude toward your work?

Read Colossians 3:18-4:1

Discovering the Word

  • How do Paul's commands to wives/husbands, children/fathers and slaves/masters address our tendency to do the opposite?
  • The wife is to submit to the husband "as is fitting in the Lord" (v. 18). From what you learned in Colossians 3:5-17, what would that kind of submission include? What would it not include?
  • The husband is to love his wife and not be harsh with her (v. 19). How would Colossians 3:12-17 help him understand what that love should be like in actions and attitudes?
  • What attitudes and actions of parents embitter or discourage their children?
  • When and how are slaves to obey their masters (vv. 22-25)? With what motives?
  • What would it demand of a master to "provide your slaves with what is right and fair" (4:1)?

Applying the Word

  • How could the motivations of pleasing the Lord (v. 20) and not discouraging others (v. 21) improve relationships in your family?
  • How would obeying these instructions change how you do your job as employee or employer (3:22—4:1)?

Responding in Prayer

Ask God to show you any attitudes or actions toward your family or at work that you need to change. Ask for grace to begin making one small change today.