Learning outcomes: By the end of the lesson you should be able to; –

  1. Define the following terms, wages and industrial action
  • State the Christian teachings on wages
  • List the reasons for industrial action
  • State the results of workers strike/ industrial action
  • Explain the Christian approaches towards strikes

Wages and industrial action (Strikes)

A wage is payments for work done. Payment is in modern times done according to hours, weeks or days that one works.

Christian teachings on wages

  • Human beings have the right to work for a decent living (Matt.20:1 – 16) They should be paid for their work.
  • Workers should be paid wages to the amount and value of their work (1 Timothy 5:18)
  • Wages should be paid as agreed upon (Mathew 20:13)
  • Employers should not take advantage of the poverty of the employee (Deuteronomy 24: 14 – 15)
  • Human beings should not be enslaved to work (Ex.5:22 – 23)
  • Employers who degrade their workers in wages are condemned (Deut.24:14 – 15, Jer.22:13)
  • Oppression is condemned (Amos 5:18, 8;4)
  • Workers wages should never be withheld (James 5:4)

Industrial action

Also commonly called ‘Strike’ this is an effort by workers to stop work in protest by boycott go-slow sit – ins or refuse to work. There has been increase of industrial action in the recent past in most countries of the world.

Reasons for industrial actions

1 Due to increased awareness of workers rights

2 Exposure to global trends through the media

3 Formation of trade unions that fight for the rights of workers

4 Due to poor working conditions

5 Underpaying workers

6 Threatening workers with unjustified dismissals

7 Suspending the workers / interdiction – unjustly

8 A hostile working environment

Results of workers strikes (industrial / action)

  1. Pay cuts
  • Demotions
  • Loss of jobs
  • Employers suffer losses
  • Inflation
  • Injuries even death when confronted by police
  • Victimization of some individuals
  • Bitterness among the workers and employers

Christian approaches towards strikes

  1. Christians recommend a peaceful co – existence between workers and employers
  • There should be fairness, justice, love among workers, employees
  • There should be an open communication channel across the ranks from top to bottom
  • Employees should not destroy property
  • Working conditions should be better and improved
  • Employees to be human when dealing with employees


Learning outcomes:  By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the term child labour
  • State the reasons why children are employed
  • State the disadvantages of child labour
  • List down the causes of child labour
  • Describe the position of the church in dealing with child labour

A child is a person below 18 years. A child does not have an identity card, does not vote (in Kenya). According to International Labour Organization the minimum employment age is 14 years.

Child labour – It is engaging a person below the age of 14 years in wage / paid employment.

Reasons why children are employed

  • To provide cheap labour
  • They cannot fight for proper terms
  • They are easily hired and fired

Disadvantages of child labour

Children are not yet mentally and physically prepared to do adult jobs. This leads to

  1. Exploitation of children
  • Children paid less, taken advantage of
  • It inhibits the growth of a child and denies them a chance to enjoy their childhood
  • It deprives them of their right to basic education
  • It exposes children to hazards (dangers) from machines, chemicals
  • Heavy workload deprives children of social educational, moral, psychological, physical rights

Places where children are employed

  • Plantations – coffee, tea
  • Domestic services – homes
  • Tourism sector
  • Industries
  • Children are trafficked and employed as commercial sex workers

Causes of child labour 

Reasons why children work

1 Lack of money / poverty

2 Death of parents

3 Dropping out of school due to pregnancy, indiscipline, (truancy), poor academic performance or lack of school fees

4 Those who never went or taken to school

5 Lack of good role models e.g. coast province Mombasa, Malindi has several of the financially stable people being school dropouts, engaged in drug trafficking, commercial sex etc.

6 Influence of cultural values e.g. circumcision of boys in some communities is done later in life and one is declared an adult e.g. the kikuyu circumcising at 13 years, or 12 years

7 Children being lured by employers

8 Greed for material benefits

9 Being homeless ending up as a street child

Position of church in dealing with child labour

  • The church condemns it
  • It has put up homes for poor children (orphanages)
  • It provides guidance, counseling to both parents and children
  • Children are blessing from God hence should be loved and cared for
  • Parents have the responsibilities to protect their children from harm.


Learning outcomes:  By the end of the lesson you should be able to: –

  1. Define the term unemployment and self employment
  2. State the causes of unemployment
  3. Describe the response of Christians to issues of unemployment

4. List the problems faced by self employed people


When people are capable and willing to work but are unable to find a viable income or occupation it is referred to as unemployment.

Causes of unemployment

1 Preference for prestigious white collar jobs (Office jobs, non – manual jobs)

2 Corruption – tribalism, nepotism, bribery denying jobs to the qualified in preference for the unqualified

3 Unequal distribution of wealth – some regions are more resourceful than others. Industries, good infrastructure concentrated in some areas.

4 Inadequate resources for self – employment (lack of capital, skills) 5 Limited job opportunities – probably due to high population growth

6 Few international investors in Kenya, probably due to high crime rate, insecurity

Identify ways of creating job opportunities

Response of Christians to issues of unemployment

  1. They encourage self – employment in cases of unemployment
  • They have set up vocational training, polytechnics to train people towards jobs that are for self – employment
  • Christians condemn idleness


Self-employment is an economic activity initiated, controlled by an individual. It is an occupation in which a person initiates a personal enterprise and manages it with the help of others.


Small businesses enterprises, Jua kali sector, music industry, entertainment (e.g. comedians), community work, agriculture etc

Problems / challenges

  • Some lack sufficient capital to start a business and keep it running
  • Lack of necessary skills to run the business
  • High taxation leading to some business closing down
  • Small scale traders face undue competition from larger firms

Revision questions

  1. What is work?
  • List any six reasons why people work
  • Explain T.As attitude towards work
  • List some of the factors that have changed the attitude towards work in the modern society
  • What are the rights of employers?
  • State the duties of employees
  • Why has child labour become common in Kenya?
  • What are the causes of unemployment in Kenya?
  • What can the government do to reduce unemployment in Kenya?

Revision questions

1.  1995 Q 40

      Give five reasons why Christians should develop positive attitude to work.

2.   1995 Q 7

      State ways in which the employer should show respect for the human dignity of


3.    1997 Q 16

       State five factors which hindered expansion of the Christian missionary work in Kenya in the nineteenth Century.                                                                                              (5marks)

4.    1999 Q 4a, c

       (a) With Reference to the life and ministry of Jesus Identify activities which show that he is

             a worker

      (c) Explain the factors that a Christian should consider when choosing a career

                                                                                                                        (6 marks)   

5.     2000 Q 18

        State five ways in which the church can promote self employment in modern society                                                                                                                                                (5marks)

6.    2000 Q 4(pp 2)

            a)         Give reasons why Christians condemn idleness                                (10marks)

            b)         Explain factors that have led to unemployment in Kenya today.      (8marks)

            c)         Outline steps the church in Kenya has taken to solve the problem of employment.                          

7.    2001 Q 6 (pp 2)

            a)         Describe the methods used by the early missionaries to improve the living

standards of the Africans in Kenya.                                                   (7 marks)

  • Give reasons why Christians in Kenya should work in unity           (10marks)
  • Explain ways through which a Christian can serve God.

8.    2004 Q 17

        Give five factors that a Christian employer should consider when decision on a salary for an employee.                                                                                                   (5marks)

9.    2005 Q 19

      Write down five consequences of denying employees rest.                                (5marks) 

10.   2005 Q 2c( pp 2)

         c)            How should a Christian respond when offered a job in a hardship area?                                                                                                                                                     (6marks)

11.   2008 Q 5 ( pp 2)      

         a) Explain the factors that contribute to unemployment in Kenya today        (8 marks)      

         b)  Give eight causes of conflict between the employer and employees in Kenya.

                                                                                                                                     (8 marks)

        c)  Discuss the role of a Christian during a strike.                                            (4 marks)

12.    2009 Q 5c

        (c)Write down seven problems that Christian leaders in Kenya face in their

              work today.                                                                                                    (7marks)

13.   2009 Q 5 (pp 2)

        c)    Identify six ways in which the church is helping to reduce the rate of unemployment in Kenya today.                                                                     (6 marks)

14.    2012 Q3c P1

               (c) What problems do church leaders in Kenya face when carrying out their work                                                                                                                                                 (6marks)


1995 Q40

  • Work was ordained by God
  • God worked for six days during creation and continues to work
  • Work makes human beings complete/by working an individual realizes self fulfilment/self realization / it is natural  to work
  • One has to work in order to provide for his/her family needs/to be self reliant
  • Through work human beings can be useful to others /contribute to the community /share resources with others/contribute  to the development of the community
  • Work keeps the body, mind and spirit healthy and strong
  • By working human beings obey Gods command ‘to subdue and conquer the’ they are co-workers with God.
  • By working Christians follow the examples set for them by Jesus who was himself a worker when he lived on earth
  • Work has a social dimension of bringing people together
  • The bible condemns laziness/idleness

1997 Q 16

  • Lack  of trained  personnel such as ministries, catechists, evangelistic and
    • teachers to do missionary work
  • Lack of resources  ( money), to expand  the work  and  put up facilities
    • For missionary work
  • Poor infrastructure e.g. roads  and others means  of  communication.
    • Missionaries could only  stay in one station  and traveling  from one  place to
    • Another was difficult .
  • Failure by missionaries to use appropriate methods and approaches to  win  the Africans to Christianity.
  • Negative attitudes and lack of interest  by Africans to Christianity
  • Language problems, missionaries would not communicate effectively with the local people and vice versa.  Missionaries spent valuable time learning local languages which they could otherwise put into missionary work.
  • Cultural resistance from the local people. Some people felt that becoming Christians would alienate  them from their communities
  • Environmental and geographical factors hostile climate, difficult terrains, droughts.
  • Attacks by tropical diseases, e.g. Malaria, black water diseases
  • Fear of wild animals
  • Fear of hostile tribes, e.g. Maasai, Gallo
  • Competition from other religious e.g. Islam and African traditional religious
  • Rivalry among Mission societies/ denominations/ religion groups
  • Attitudes of some missionaries towards Africans- considered Africans primitive/ savage / untutored/ unable to comprehend Christian abstract doctrines
  • German  missionaries were not accepted in British colonies
  • Contradiction in the Christian message / some condemned use of alcohol while others tolerated  it some  condemned  polygamy  while others tolerated  it, circumcision of women.

1999 Q 4a, c

  • Preaching /teaching in synagogues/all over the country/ministering
  • Healing the sick/healing the blind man/any other miracles of healing
  • Raising the dead of life-The raising of Jairus daughter (any other miracles of raising).
  • Praying /prayed to God the father
  • Feeding in the people e.g. He fed the five thousands/wedding in Cana.
  • Being a carpenter/he assisted his father
  • Identify with workers by drawing examples of parables/allegories from the world of work-parable of the sower /any other relevant example
  • Washing the disciples feet during the last supper
  • Calming the storm (any other nature miracles e.g walking on water/cursing the fig tree.
  • Fishing /Jesus wet fishing with his disciples (John 21:5-6)
  • Judging cases-the woman caught in adultery (John 8) forgiving sins of paralytic
  • Training instructor-He trained the disciples on how to carry out their work/the mission of the seventy two (72)
  • Leadership-appointment/commissioning of the disciples/apostles looking for disciples                                                                                 

                                                                                                     7 x 2=14marks.

  • Ability- academic/physical/ a person should have the knowledge skills/capability and strength to perform the tasks involved.
  • Inclination attitude-should have a positive attitude towards the career
  • Call-    One should have the desire to serve god/community through the task/glory to God.
  • Talent-One should consider their inborn/natural abilities
  • Enjoyable-convenience-One has to choose a profession that one would to serve is not boring.
  • Remuneration-It should meet ones basic needs in life/job opportunity relevant job
  • A career that would help one to promote virtues in society.
  • The individuals should be able to observe the professional code/honesty/punctuality etc.
  • The career should provide opportunities for one to develop to maturity provide job security.                                                  6 x 1=6Marks

2000 Q 18

  • Open more technical institute for masons, carpenters, electricians
  • Provide guidance and counseling for positive attitude towards work/dignity of work
  • Enhancing a sense of responsibility in work.
  • Giving them assistance in obtaining the equipment to staff small scale enterprises (e.g. sewing machines, tool boxes)
  • Help them final market for the finished products
  • Organise in-service courses for the self employed to improve the quality of the their products
  • Organise communal self help projects
  • Help them in obtaining premises for their business              5×1=5marks

2000 Q 4 (PP2)

  • God ordained work/human beings were given the responsibility of looking after God’s creation.
  • Jesus condemned idleness in his ministry in the parable of the talents
  • Idleness may lead to antisocial activities e.g. stealing, drinking, irresponsible sexual behaviour
  • Idleness leads to poverty/inability to meet one’s basic needs
  • Jesus worked and so endorsed dignity of work.
  • Idleness is a failure to glorify God.
  • Idleness dehumanizes individuals.
  • Christians should emulate Jesus’ example of hard work
  • Idleness is a health hazard e.g. obesity, heart attack.
  • Idleness is a rebellion against God’s intention for human beings.
  • Idleness retards the development of God giving talents.
  • The growth rate of Kenya’s economy is lower than the population growth
  • Inadequate land for those who want to self employed in agriculture sector
  • Inadequate funds to start economic ventures
  • Adoption of lifestyles that do not promote development e.g. drug addiction, laziness.
  • The great part of Kenya is low potential
  • Wrong attitude instilled in the youth by the society/the youth think they should only do the white collar jobs.
  • Poor job distribution where some people hold more than one job.
  • Policies that allow foreigners to take up jobs which would have been performed by Kenyans.
  • Low investment ability due to debt crisis and conditions set by donor countries.
  • Application of redundancy practices by both the government and the private sector i.e (retrenchment)
  • Liberalization of market which has led to the influx of cheap goods thus leading to closure of some industries.
  • Corruption/nepotism/tribalism.
  • Employ people as pastors/evangelists/catechist
  • Has set up youth polytechnics to provide vocational training/skills required for employment.
  • Sponsors people through scholarships and bursaries to enable them acquire the necessary skills for employment
  • Church ran training colleges/universities where people are prepared for different careers
  • Encourage positive attitudes towards all types of jobs/guidance and counseling
  • Establishment of institutions which provide employment opportunities/e.g schools/hospitals
  • Provides funds to start small scale income generating industries and projects
  • Sustain self-help groups by helping them to make products and market them thus creating job opportunities.                                             (7 marks)

2001 Q 6(PP2)

  • Providing them with education/training
  • Providing them with jobs/employment
  • Inviting them to join the church and serve as priests, catechists, sisters etc
  • Preaching against/discouraging some traditional practices
  • Providing them with medical facilities/care
  • Introducing new (crop/house/clothes) modern technology/agriculture.
  • Introducing self-help projects (water)
  • Introducing new means of transport/communication/infrastructure
  • Providing homes for the freed slaves/destitute.                    (7marks)

2001 Q 6 (PP2)

  • Providing them with education/training
  • Providing them with jobs/employment
  • Inviting them to join the church and serve as priests, catechists, sisters etc
  • Preaching against/discouraging some traditional practices
  • Providing them with medical facilities/care
  • Introducing new (crop/house/clothes) modern technology/agriculture.
  • Introducing self-help projects (water)
  • Introducing new means of transport/communication/infrastructure
  • Providing homes for the freed slaves/destitute.                    (7marks)
  • In order to promote oneness of Christ
  • To promote the teachings of Christ
  • To share the scarce resources/minimize expenses
  • In order to achieve effective evangelism/ministry
  • In order to adopt a common attitude to the integration of African culture in worship
  • To prevent the formation of splinter groups/cults
  • To reduce the internal wrangling
  • In order to have a common stand in dealing with issues affecting the society (education/constitutional review/medical care
  • Preaching/teaching the word of God/dedications (priests/nuns/sister) participation in choir
  • Be feeding the hungry/relief food
  • Taking care of the sick/visiting the sick
  • Praying/ fasting for God’s peace in the world
  • Contributing to church/charitable organizations
  • By paying taxes/tithing
  • Taking care of the environment/working in the church
  • Providing homes for the needy/adopting orphans
  • Paying fees for the needy/Providing education
  • Being just and fair in giving services
  • Advocating for equitable distribution of resources.

2004 Q 17

  • Hours  of work
  • Education/ training of  employee/ qualification/ skills
  • Experience of employee/ competence
  • Value of work
  • Needs  of the employee/ state  of the economy  of the country/ standard of living
  • Dangers/ risks of the job to be done/ nature  of work/ type of work
  • The returns/ profits  of the work
  • The  ability to pay/ sustainability
  • The amount  of work to be done  / volume                (5 x 1 = 5 marks)

2005 Q 19

  • Poor working relationships/ lack of respect
  • Leads to exhaustion/ fatigue
  • Can results in  poor health/ death
  • Can  result in go-slow
  • There is mistrust/ need to  be  supervised so as to  work
  • Can lead to strikes/ riots/ violence
  • Leads to loss of job/ sacking
  • Leads to family conflicts/ suspicion/ separation/ divorce
  • Lack  of time for spiritual nourishment/ worship
  • Leads to low  morale/ negative attitude  to work

2005 Q 2c (PP2)

  • Give thanks to God for the job opportunity.
  • One should pray about it.
  • Should take up the challenge/accept the offer.
  • Should carry out the mission of Jesus Christ.
  • Should work with commitment/dedication
  • Should adhere to professional ethics
  • Should keep the contract of service.
  • Should take care of the family
  • Should take care of the family.
  • Should take care of the filmily
  • Should seek guidance on how to work /live in the hardship area
  • Seek training in life skills.                                         (6×1 =6marks)

2008 Q 5 (PP2)

  • High population whereby there are too many people for the available job opportunities.
  • Lack of money to start individual businesses/unavailability of finances.
  • Some people lack skills which make them not to be absorbed in the job market.
  • Rural-urban migration:- many people are congested in towns where job opportunities are limited.
  • Foreign aid:- dependence on foreign aid causes the donors to give conditions of employment, that is lean service.
  • Selfishness/greed:- some Kenyans have more than two jobs, while others lack.
  • Education system:- many Kenyans prefer white collar jobs after school and because of stiff competition for available spaces, many remain unemployed.
  • Negative attitude towards work:- some Kenyans lack the initiative to do or participate in economic activities/just idle around.
  • Unequal distribution of wealth:  Some regions have more resources that create employment than others.
  • New technological advances that has led to retrenchment.
  • Bribery/corruption is a social evil that denies jobs to those qualified in preference to the less qualified.
  • Insecurity/increase in crime discourages local and international investors.                                                                                                                                    (8 marks)
  • Lack of respect to the employer by employees.
  • Employees not given time for leisure/leave.
  • Poor working conditions/environment.
  • When the employees do not receive wages/not paid in time.
  • When employers fail to consider the welfare of employees/allowances.
  • When employees fail to accomplish tasks within the expected time/poor time management.
  • When employees are not allowed to join trade unions.
  • Unequal chances of promotion/discrimination by the employer/lack of promotion.
  • Poor/low remuneration.
  • Sexual harassment by the employer.
  • Differences in religious affiliation between employer and employees.
  • Racial/tribal/ethnic differences may bring conflict.
  • Misuse/destruction of property by the employee.
  • Divulging of secrets of the employer/organization.  (8×1=8 marks)
  • Not to take part in the strike.
  • Encourage other people to find better means of solving the problem.
  • To inform the authority of any grievances if they are not aware/mediate.
  • To pray for a solution to the problem/seek God’s guidance for a solution to the problem.
  • Should not take part in a violent demonstration/encourage peaceful demonstration.
  • To report the matter to the nearest police station.     (4×1=4 marks)

2009 Q 5c

  • Opposition from political leaders/society.                          …
  • Lack of cooperation from the members of the church/lack of unity among Christians,
  • False prophets/cultic affiliation //hypocrisy/ black magic/witchcraft,
  • Misinterpretation of the scriptures.
  • Drug abuse among the-members.                                                                            
  • Lack of adequate time for pastoral care.
  • Poor infrastructure that make it impossible to” reach some areas.
  • Insecurity in. some parts of the country,
  • Lack of resources to enable them spread the good news/poverty.
  • Lacks of professional training to enable them do their work effectively.
  • Permissiveness /moral decadence, which has become the order of the day.
  • ‘Negative influence from the mass media/pornography.    


2009 Q 5 (PP2)

  • The church encourages people to start income generating activities
  • The church provides loans to the unemployed to start small scale business
  • The church create job opportunities through establishing church projects.
  • It teaches the youth about the dignity of manual work/encourages the youth to participate in agriculture/technical fields.
  • It organizes seminars for the youth/unemployment on how to utilize their potentials.
  • It condemns corrupt practices which interfere with the recruitment/economic growth.
  • It encourages its members to pay taxes promptly so that the government can have the resources to employ/pay the workers.
  • It trains/sponsors the youth on vocational skills that are necessary for employment/self employment.
  • The church tries to be fair when recruiting people for various jobs.           

                                                                                                (6 marks)

2012 Q3c P1

  (c)    Problems faced by church leaders in carrying out their work. 

  • They receive threats/opposition from the opponents.
  • Inadequate material/financial resources
  • There is lack of cooperation from the church members
  • There is rivalry among the leaders/themselves.
  • They may not be good role models/hypocrisy.
  • They may suffer from long separation from their families.
  • There is misinterpretation of the Biblical theology from different sources.
  • Greed for material things/property.
  • They may be posted to a hostile working environment.
  • There is political interference in their work.
  • They may lack adequate skills for carrying out their work.
  • Permissiveness from moral decadence
  • Rejection

                                                                   (6×1=6 marks)

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