Recently, God has been wrecking my perceptions regarding church and ministry. It seems that I was really full of myself and I didn’t realize it at all. Isn’t it odd how we can be chugging along, “working for God”, but not notice some of the sin in our own hearts? I just knew I was dialed into what God wanted from me and that I had it mostly all figured out.
So He’s opening my eyes to some things. Take a look at this scripture:
1 Corinthians 3:10-15 – “By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should be careful how he builds. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, his 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 man’s work. If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.”
God is saying, what are you building on? Are you building on Christ, or on something else? And will your work escape the flames and become a reward for you, or will it burn up and be lost? “…the fire will test the quality of each man’s work.”
Then, He pointed me to Matthew 25.
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.‘
“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
“The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’
“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’
“They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’
“He will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’
“Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”
This is what He’s showing me… asking me. What are you doing in ministry that you say is in My Name? What are you building your work on? Will it stand the test of My fire? And are you remembering to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, take in strangers, care for the sick and visit the imprisoned, or are you having church and denying me in these most important areas?
We Christians all get that we’re supposed to share the gospel, and point people to Jesus. But are we forgetting Matthew 25?
2 Replies to “Works”
This is great, and so true. You wrote, “What are you doing in ministry that you say is in My Name? What are you building your work on? Will it stand the test of My fire? And are you remembering to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, take in strangers, care for the sick and visit the imprisoned, or are you having church and denying me in these most important areas?”
Your last sentence really stands out to me and I’d even put it like this…. are we having church or being the church. Having church, congregating in a four-walled structure that is nothing more than that, a four-walled structure, listening to a weekly message and having all kinds of programs is utterly meaningless if we aren’t being the church….. if we aren’t walking like Jesus walked. Unfortunately the greater Christian community has done a tremendous disservice to the body and the world by modeling Christianity as the aforementioned and not the latter…. living simply in the mercy and love of Christ as Jesus clearly described in Matthew 25.
Thanks for sharing and keep walking the narrow road!
Good thoughts my friend, I found your blog through Tams. Will be coming back to read more. God Bless