The Lausanne Global Workplace Forum (GWF) will bring together a diverse range of influencers in order to mobilize the whole church—in every corner of the global workplace—as bearers of the gospel. Twenty seven delegates will represent Canada in the 2019 Global Workplace Forum to be held June 25-29, 2019 in Manila, Philippines. Here delegates from 140 countries will collaborate on ways to:
- Mobilize the whole church—in every corner of the workplace—as bearers of the gospel.
- Break down the sacred-secular divide.
- Return to the biblical truth that every believer is involved in the work of God.
- Work together toward kingdom impact in every sphere of society.
The Bible shows us God’s truth about human work as part of God’s good purpose in creation. The Bible brings the whole of our working lives within the sphere of ministry, as we serve God in different callings. By contrast, the falsehood of a ‘sacred-secular divide’ has permeated the Church’s thinking and action. This divide tells us that religious activity belongs to God, whereas other activity does not. Most Christians spend most of their time in work which they may think has little spiritual value (so-called secular work). But God is Lord of all of life.
Yet one of the greatest scandals of our times is the flawed ‘sacred-secular divide’ that has ‘permeated the Church’s thinking and action’, telling us that ‘religious activity belongs to God, whereas other activity does not’ (from The Cape Town Commitment).
We must reclaim the biblical truth that all legitimate work—not just professional ministry—is intrinsically valuable and integral to the missional work of God’s kingdom. Many have for too long seen the 99% of Christians as existing merely to support the ministry of the 1% in professional ministry. Instead, we need to recalibrate our perspective to see the 1% as existing to support the 99% (Eph 4:11-12). Further, we must work toward a broader vision of the workplace that includes voices from all occupations, especially those that have gone unheard.
Just as 500 years ago the Reformation called believers back to the Word of God, so too we must return to the biblical truth that every believer is involved in the Work of God. For it is only when every believer is living integrally in all spheres of human existence—including the workplace—that the whole church will truly be able to take the whole gospel to the whole world.