What are you Building? (1 Corinthians 3:10-15)

Today as I was reading 1 Corinthians chapters one through five, a few verses from chapter three caught my attention. 1 Corinthians 3:10-15 LSB “According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it. 11 For no one can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each man’s work will become evident, for the day will indicate it because it is revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work. 14 If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward. 15 If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.”

When I read that this morning, I immediately thought of the words from Ephesians 2:20, we are members of the household of God; the foundation is built on the apostles and prophets (New and Old Testament), Jesus being the chief cornerstone. Paul warns in 1 Corinthians to be careful how we build on the foundation. This brought two questions to my mind: what are churches building on the foundation, and two, what am I, and what are other believers building upon the foundation?

If a church puts more into the production of the service, or if the sermon is more like a TedTalk than an exposition of Scripture, are we building on the proper foundation? Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 1:23-25 LSB, “but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block and to Gentiles foolishness, 24 but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger then men.” So when a church decides to be pragmatic and does relevant things for the lost, are we sacrificing the gospel, which is the power of God? Yes, we are. The book of Romans is clear; no man seeks God. Jesus said, if I am lifted up, I will draw men unto Me. We lift up Jesus by proclaiming His gospel; that’s how we build on the foundation.

What about our personal lives? Do you ever find yourself asking God to speak to you, yet you don’t think to pick up the Bible? Why is it that we find it easier to hear God in a song instead of His Word? Why do we look to everything and anything other than the Word of God? Are we building with gold and silver or wood and hay? These are questions we need to ask ourselves. We don’t want to just make it into Heaven; we should long to hear, “well done, good and faithful servant.” Are you building your life with the Word of God or news and Netflix? Is what you’re doing, does what you’re consuming have eternal value? Take some time and evaluate the building material of your life today; make sure it’s material that will last.

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