1 Corinthians

by David Gibb

Day 8

Read 1 Corinthians 3:10-23

In the early hours of 14 June 2017, a fire engulfed the Grenfell Tower block in west London, killing 72 people. It was the greatest loss of life from a fire in the United Kingdom since World War 2. The fire spread very quickly because the block was covered in a highly-combustible weather-proofing cladding which did not comply with fire regulations and was incorrectly installed. It matters how you build.

leaders of Jesus' church must lead and teach in ways that bring glory to Jesus Christ as our Saviour

What's true for towers is also true for God's church. From a divine point of view, the Corinthian church began by God's grace (1 Corinthians 3:10). From a human perspective, that grace was given to Paul to start the work. And when Paul did his job of preaching Jesus Christ, it was as though he laid the key part of the church, the foundation (vv. 10-11), on which everything else would depend. After Paul left Corinth, other leaders came along to teach the believers and carried on building the church (v. 10).

What is crucial is that future builders use materials that are worthy of the priceless foundation (v. 12)-shoddy cladding will not do. In other words, leaders of Jesus' church must lead and teach in ways that bring glory to Jesus Christ as our Saviour. One day, when Jesus returns, all leaders, along with their ministry, will be judged. On that day, however popular these leaders may have been among us, their work will be seen for what it is.

If the quality of their ministry is not up to par, it will be burned up, though they will escape the flames (vv. 13, 15). If their ministry is of a high quality, it will survive, and these leaders-those who have been faithful to Jesus and His gospel- will be rewarded (v. 14).

Next, we see why faithful leadership in the church really matters: because this building is none other than ″God's temple″ (v. 16)-made up of His people, the home of God's Spirit, and sacred to God. He will deal very severely with any leader who, by their faithless and self-seeking ministry, damages His church (v. 17).

Heavenly Father, thank You for placing me in Your temple, Your church, alongside my brothers and sisters. Please protect it and supply it with ministers and leaders who love Jesus and His cross; who will act, speak, and minister in ways that are worthy of Him.

Think through:

How does knowing that your work will be shown for what it is affect how you approach ministry work?

What are some ways you can support your leaders in building a church ministry that will survive the flames?




About Author

David Gibb has a deep love for the Bible and a passion to communicate it relevantly. After ministering in churches in Oxford and northwest England for over 25 years, he is presently pastor and team leader of Duke Street Church in Birmingham, UK.

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Our Daily Bread Journey Through® Series is a publication of Our Daily Bread Ministries.

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