• Matt Beaney

#487 (23/11/21) BUILD ON THE FOUNDATION WITH CARE (1 COR. 3:12-15)



This week’s devotionals are based on 1 Corinthians 3:10-23.

If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames.’ (1 Corinthians 3:12-15)

i) ARE WE BUILDING WITH GOLD OR STRAW?

This text makes it clear that one can build with poor materials upon the foundation of Jesus. We can be a Christian and yet waste our lives by building in ways that will not make it through God’s judgement.


Building with ‘gold, silver and costly stones’ is to serve others in love and truth. Love and truth are the most precious things. Jesus even tells us that the whole teaching of the Old Testament is summed up in love,

'Jesus replied: 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."' (Matthew 22:37-40).

Paul, later in the book, teaches us about the paramount importance of building a loving church community,

‘Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.’ (1 Corinthians 13:4-8)

As we love people in a Christ-like fashion and seek to help them to know God’s truth, we are building with precious materials. However, If we live selfishly and without love for God’s word, we are building our lives with poor and impermanent materials.


ii) THE FIRE WILL TEST WHAT WE’VE BUILT!

This reference to ‘fire’, ‘reward’ and ‘suffer loss’ is to final judgement. If we build on the right foundation (Jesus) with precious materials (love and truth) we will be rewarded. This text also makes it clear that a Christian can waste their life. Such a person has received Jesus for salvation but fails to build on Him properly. We read that such a person ‘will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames’. We can squander the gifts and opportunities that the Father is giving to us.


Let’s finish by taking a moment to meditate and pray out of Jesus’ teaching on building the right foundation of His teaching.


“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” (Matthew 7:24-27)


OVER TO YOU - PRAY AND WORSHIP OUT OF THE BIBLE

I’ve made a few comments. However, it’s more important that you engage with the text yourself. Take a moment to pray and listen to God’s voice out of today’s text.

If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames.’ (1 Corinthians 3:12-15)

I find it helpful to use the following questions which are based upon The Lord’s Prayer (Matt. 6:9-13).


1. Praise - What does this text teach me about God? What can I praise Him for?

2. Petitions - What does this teach me about His will for me and others? What could I pray for from this text? This is a good time to pray for our non-believing. friends. It’s good to ask, Is the Holy Spirit leading me in any specific response?

3. Peace-making - Is the Holy Spirit convicting me of sin for which I need forgiveness? Do I need to forgive others?

4. Protection - Ask for God’s protection generally and for any specific areas of vulnerability. Am I believing lies regarding the truths in this text?

COMMUNITY GROUP NOTES AND STUDY


1. Notices

It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News.


Let's be talking, planning and praying about who we could invite to our carol service.






Please feel free to use these as a digital invite for your friends.

2. Icebreaker

How has God spoken to you from the Bible this week?

2. Focus on the carol service

If you didn't watch this video last week, please do so now. (The image below is the link)



Here is the link for you to book ticket for yourself and your friends:

https://www.communitychurchputney.com/carol-service-2021



3. Recap of Sunday's message - please share in your group


On Sunday, we looked at 1 Corinthians 3:10-17

'By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, 13 their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. 14 If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. 15 If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames. 16 Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst? 17 If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for God’s temple is sacred, and you together are that temple.' (1 Corinthians 3:10-17)

We are to do two things;


i) BUILD WITH CARE ON THE RIGHT FOUNDATION - JESUS IS THE ONLY FOUNDATION

When we first become a Christian, when we put our faith in Jesus, we are unshakably saved. We are justified, adopted and have the hope of glory by grace alone! However, having become a Christian, we must be careful to keep our lives built on the only true foundation.


ii) BUILD WITH CARE WITH THE RIGHT MATERIALS

We are urged to build our lives and that of others with precious materials rather than rubbish. These precious materials are love and truth. We see in 1 Corinthians 13, that all of our works are worthless unless they are motivated by love - for the good of the other.


We are told that those who build themselves and help to build others on the love and truth of Jesus will be rewarded.


Discussion questions

1. What is the only true foundation? (2:1-2; 3:10-11)

2. What is the 'gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw' that we are to build ourselves and others upon? (2:13; 13:2; 2 Tim. 3:16; Jude 1:20)

3. How will our identity as 'God's sacred temple' affect how we build our lives and the church?

4. SIV - Let's share, plan and pray about those that we are inviting to the carol service on 5th December.







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