Summary: Every building has a firm foundation. Without it, the building would fall down. Similarly, our faith has to have a firm foundation. That foundation is Jesus. Anything else will fail-even the church.
Every building has a firm foundation. Without it, the building would fall down. Similarly, our faith has to have a firm foundation. That foundation is Jesus. Anything else will fail-even the church.
The first reason that churches fail is because they violate their commitment to Jesus Christ as their foundation. Churches must be built on Christ; then a community of believers can glorify Him through social justice or outreach or service. To establish a church on any other foundation-even one compromised of seemingly virtuous causes-will not succeed.
Wood, hay and straw will decay. God, silver and precious stones are permanent. The framework of the church must be carefully chosen for endurance. God only uses quality materials such as gold, silver and precious stones. These represent dedicated, spiritual service in building the church. Too many people build the foundations of their lives on material that will decay. They build their lives on worldly ways and worldly things. The only foundation that will last is the foundation of Jesus Christ. When we trust in Jesus, the Holy Spirit takes up residence in our hearts. He will be in us and with us forever. We are significant because God lives in us.
If we want God to live in us, we need a daily dose of disciplined faith. That includes setting aside time every day to pray and study the Bible. These habits will go a long way to achieving spiritual health. Our reward for an earnest faith is a deep hunger to know God.
Paul explains in 1 Corinthians 3:10-23 that the Day of Judgment will declare the validity of each person’s work. This is not the Great White Throne judgment where Jesus will condemn unbelievers. It is the Judgment Seat of Christ, where believers will be evaluated. The phrase, “test each one’s work” means that God will see His children as they really are-all their motivations, desires and reasons for serving Him. The work that Christians do in true faith and obedience to God will survive and be rewarded. Work done in the power of the flesh or in disobedience to the Scriptures will not. A sinner who lives a good life is still a sinner. God needs people who see themselves as sinners and Him as a God who saves. He wants people to ask for mercy.
There are no limits to our possessions in Christ. Pastors and teachers are fellow servants ministering the things of God. It’s foolish to fight over an Apollos versus a Paul versus a Peter when they, like every member within the church, are part of God’s purpose for the body of Christ.
What we do on earth will affect our eternal destiny. If we let our lives and our words be witnesses to the lost, we will build up rewards in heaven. Believers will be given rewards based on the quality of their service. Notice that it is not their service that saves. Both the rewarded believer and the believer who suffers loss are saved. Works can never earn salvation. Faithfulness in service, however, will earn the right to give God even greater glory as the faithful lay their rewards at His feet. God will reward us with heavenly responsibilities according to how faithful we have been here on earth. If we use the best resources to the best of our ability, we will receive all of the goodness He offers.