Building God's Temple - 1 Corinthians 3:10-17

Building God’s Temple

My dad was, and still is, a carpenter. I would help him install cabinets at houses growing up. When placing an upper cabinet on the wall, we needed to find the stud in the wall. If we anchored the cabinet to the drywall, the weight of the cabinet would pull the scews out and fall down. However, when it was anchored into the firm structure of the house, the cabinet would remain fixed to the wall. As that house was built, the stability of the walls and structure of the home required a solid foundation. 

However, I have seen some houses where the contractors cut corners and substituted things that weren’t the best quality or as solid of a structure. 

What area in our lives are we cutting corners for the structure that we are building on the foundation of Christ? 

1 Corinthians 3:10-17
10 According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it. Let each one take care how he builds upon it. 11 For no one can lay a foundation other than that 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 one's work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. 14 If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone's work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire.
16 Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? 17 If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him. For God's temple is holy, and you are that temple.
What foundation are we building upon? Paul says that it is by God’s grace that he was able to build a proper foundation. He laid the groundwork for someone else to continue building. But Paul’s groundwork was firmly established on the foundation of Jesus Christ. He says that there is no other information or practice that matters. We all need to be firmly rooted in Christ. Jesus laid the original foundation, and Paul says that it is not the foundation that he personally made. He is only establishing a foundation upon which what Jesus taught and then rose from the grave. A foundation of grace and faith and with wisdom gained in God. The wisdom found within the Word of God.

Matthew 7:24-27 gives the parable from Jesus about setting our foundation on the solid rock and not the sand. We see similarities with Pauls analogy and what each person builds upon. We must be careful what we start building upon that foundation. Christ is the foundation, but our sin may establish a rickety shack that will not withstand the storms and fire. Our passive relationship with God will not provide the sturdy walls required. How are can we build on the foundation given to us? It is by the Word of God that we gain the understanding and wisdom needed. We must dig deep into the Word to strengthen our walls and structure. In the end, it is our works that will be judged. Christ has already covered our sins with His blood, but our faith must be active and produce fruit. Fire will test us and reveal our true nature. If our building withstands that fire because we invested in the gold and silver of God’s Word, then we will be eternally rewarded.
Additionally, we must invest in these solid materials so that we can use them to continue building the church with a solid foundation. We must invest in the church’s ‘building’ in the same way that we invest in our own ‘building.’  We invest by searching and mining the Word of God. The more precious jewels and stones are harder to find and must be sought after. 
Ultimately, we are building our temple for Christ. We are building our temple for the Holy Spirit to dwell in. What kind of temple do you want to build for the Lord to reside? Furthermore, our church is a temple for God to dwell. What are we doing within our congregation that is pleasing to God and do we feel His presence within our Church? We are Christians make up the body of Christ and we must ensure we build solid structures on our individual foundations so that the structure of the Church is solid and unwavering on the truths of God. God allows the church to grow, but it is by our diligent work and continued study of God’s Word that allows our structure to remain strong when storms arise.

Therefore, let us search God’s Word and study it with diligence. Build the temple within your heart so that your fruit within the church can strengthen the walls that are built upon the foundation that Jesus Christ started. Prepare your hearts and allow God to work in and through you.

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