The Book of Genesis tells us that God placed Adam in the Garden in order to “till and protect” it (Gen. 2:15). Tilling and protecting are thus two basic aspects of a man’s duty. Sadly our consumer culture and oftentimes pacifist clergy tend to lose focus of man’s role as protector. Tilling – having a job and going to work – is perhaps more respected, though our culture seems to promote either working too much or not working at all. But this shouldn’t surprise us when people stop attending church on Sunday and thus fail to recognize the need to worship God and properly rest.
Thankfully our nation still recognizes the importance of tilling and protecting by giving us two national holidays: Labor Day and Memorial Day. The former honors man’s duty to till and the latter his duty to protect. It is a real pity that so many Americans treat these days, particularly Memorial Day, as extended family weekends. As we soon enter into Labor Day weekend, let us recall Genesis 2:15, committing ourselves to our working and to our protecting, living out the dignity of manhood and honoring the Father with our humble obedience and our willingness to sacrifice ourselves in shared protective duty.