Sunday, 4 May 2014
If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. 1 Corinthians 3:14
Paul has been speaking of the building of the church upon the foundation, which is Christ Jesus. He noted six different materials of varying quality which one could use to continue the building process and then he noted that whatever we use, something of value or something worthless, it will be seen for what it truly is in the end.
Now he notes that “if anyone’s work which he has built on it endures…” Obviously, those more valuable and lasting materials will endure while those of lesser quality won’t. Using these metaphors, he is certainly speaking primarily of teachers, preachers, and ministers who take and build upon the foundation. However, could it not be said of the mother who sits with and instructs her children on Christ? Could this same principle not be applied to the cashier behind the counter who takes time to tell about the Lord who saved her? And could it not be applied to the electrician who speaks to his fellow workers about Christ?
Each of these examples are people who are building upon the foundation. Their knowledge may be less than trained teachers, but it may actually be of better quality. One does not have to be a theologian to get the principle tenets of the faith right and then to properly repeat them to others. Even a person who is confined to a wheel chair and has no other ministry than posting on Facebook or doing other internet work can build upon the foundation.
No one is truly exempt from participating in the work for Christ and each has a role that can and should be filled. As long as the words are correct and correspond to the doctrines of the Bible, it will endure. And if it endures, “he will receive a reward.”
Christians are saved by grace through faith. It is a done deal and it is a guarantee. What occurs after salvation is up to the individual. Those things that we do, be they many or be they few, are to be of the highest quality if they are to be rewarded. Let us, therefore, endeavor to hold fast to the principle tenets of the faith and thus bring glory to God, And we can do so in the hopes of a reward from our gracious Lord.
Life application: You are a minister of the gospel to those around you. Fulfill your commission to the best of your ability and be pleased to do it… the rewards are heavenly.
Lord, Your word promises a reward to me for those things which I do in Your name which are enduring. I will endeavor to conduct myself and my work in a manner which is pleasing to You, edifying of others, and lasting in nature. But the reward which matters the most to me is to simply hear from You the words “Well done.” With this, I will be eternally pleased. Amen.