Tax collectors also came to be baptized. "Teacher," they asked, "what should we do?"
"Don't collect any more than you are required to," he told them.
Then some soldiers asked him, "And what should we do?"
He replied, "Don't extort money and don't accuse people falsely -- be content with your pay."
These are some of the conversations recorded between John the Baptist and those who came to be baptized. But I can't help but wondering what he would say to us today. I know most of us could stand to hear, "Be content with your pay." But would there have been more pointed advice for some trades? What if ...
If some lawyers came to him and asked, "What should we do?"
Would he have said, "Do not defend the guilty nor accuse the innocent; seek only justice" and "Do not bear false witness"?
If some car salesmen came to him and asked, "What should we do?"
Would he have said, "Do not take advantage of the widows or the young" and "Do not use dishonest price scales to take extra money from the unwary"?
I know there are other professions that have a reputation for being ethically challenged. But do you wonder what he would have said if he were talking to people of your trade? Here's mine:
If he were talking to programmers, would he have said, "Do not inflate your estimates to avoid an honest discussion on the merits of a project"? Or "Don't abuse your expertise to give misleading answers that suit your convenience"? (You always suspected some of us did. Well, some of us do.)If your profession had been named, what would have been said to you?