In modern times quality control has been sought with diligence. There is an organization called ISO, which checks the quality of products and services rendered. But, what is quality? It's the characteristic of things. From the human point of view it's the moral and ethical disposition in life, in character, at work, in our studies, in the family and in religion. And not a few seek it.
The Bible tells us about creation, which was done in the best way, everything controlled by perfect quality. The prophet Moses, in describing the story of Creation declares: "And God said: Let there be light; and there was light, and God saw the light, and it was good" (Gen. 1:3-4). From then on, at the end of each day, the Lord God said that "everything was good," and of excellent quality. The apostle Paul, much later, continues to say: "Let all things be done decently and in order" (1 Cor. 14:40).
We also must strive to give the best quality in what we do, to the point of even suffering for lack of understanding, with ungratefulness, deceptions or other difficulties. We must remember that our Lord Jesus suffered many disappointments during His ministry, but was very dedicated in what He did and continues to do so in behalf of our salvation.
There was quality control in Christ's miracles
Christ's first miracle was performed in a small town. He taught that we should not discriminate against people, races or ethnicity.
The city was Cana of Galilee. In those days, depending on the social status of the individuals, the parties could last several days. Those in such position had means to offer banquets, drinks, and pastries of goof quality. John tells us that Jesus and His disciples had also been invited to the wedding (John 2:2).
During the feast the wine was finished. Mary, the mother of Jesus, approached Him and said: Son "they have no wine" (verse 3). At the moment, Jesus took advantage of the opportunity to perform a miracle, the first of His ministry. He asked for the water pots to be filled with water and transformed them into wine of the best quality, so much so that the officer in charge of the feast went to the bridegroom and said to him: "Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now" (John 2:10).
What interests in this narrative is the miracle and the quality involved, it being that the product involved was of a higher quality than the one just finished. Was Jesus introducing a new religion or was he reinstating the Jewish religion? The Creator's miracles always suggest a new lifestyle with better quality. Christ's religion is of divine quality. It contains obedience to principles and faithfulness to God. They lead us to eternal life! God wants us to have the best quality of family life, in school, at work, and in our religion.
Quality control in the family
The family, as a divine institution, also has qualitative principles. After Eve was created, when the family was established, it was said: "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh" (Gen. 2:24).
Quality control in marriage is based on love, in solidarity, in fraternity, and the pledge of the couple is extended to the children.
The apostle Paul, on recommending qualities of marriage, said: "However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband" (Eph. 5:33). They should love and respect each other.
Love involves mutual dedication, associated with reciprocity of two hearts, and whose objective is perfect happiness in life. With love and dedication quality of life can be obtained, conjugal happiness, companionship, dialogue and understanding.
The Holy Scripture gives us appropriate rules
Quality control at work
Let's see what the Holy Scripture has to teach us. The apostle Paul tells us: "Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ. Obey them not only to win their favor when their eye is on you, but like slaves of Christ, doing the will of Cod from your heart. Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men" (Eph. 6:5-7).
Cod's word teaches the good hierarchical relationship at work. "And masters, treat your slaves in the same way. Do not threaten them, since you know that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no favoritism with him" (Eph. 6:9). If these commandments are observed the quality of work will improve with dedication, honesty, satisfaction, productivity, professional accomplishment and happiness.
Quality control in relationship with the brethren
The Holy Scripture gives us appropriate rules:
1. Fraternity: "How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!" (Psalm 133:1). "And live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God" (Eph. 5:2).
2. Fidelity: "A faithful man will be richly blessed" (Prov. 28:20). "Let no one deceive you with empty words" (Eph. 5:6).
3. Cordiality: "Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs" (Eph.5:19). "Greet one another with a holy kiss" (Rom. 1 6:16).
4. Gratitude: "Always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Eph. 5:20). "Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you" (Col. 3:13). What beautiful advice given in the Word of God!
Quality control in religion
The Lord continues to instruct us: If you want to enter life, obey the commandments" (Matt. 19:17). "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world" Games 1:27).
"For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say "No" to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live selfcontrolled, upright and worldly lives in this present age" (Titus 2:11-12).
There are "stinging ants" like envy, pride, vanity, intrigue, and desire for supremacy, jealousy and other things that are equally sinful. The ships are turned about with a very small helm.
God's saving grace has been manifested to us through our Lord Jesus, who offers us eternal life with quality control saying: "I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full" (John 10:10).
Josias Gonsiorosk is first elder of his church in Brazil.
Translated by Antonio A. Rios.