In my last post, I talked about the way that the Lord rewards us for fulfilling our callings. They’re based on what Christ has planned for us. Paul then explains how his ministry relates to the church.
For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building.
1 Corinthians 3:9
Paul understands that as a part of the 5-fold ministry, he can’t complete his calling by himself. It will require supernatural assistance. He sees himself as a co-worker with God.
But what’s the work which he and God are busy at? He talks about two parts of church ministry. The church is God’s field – that’s the production of fruit for the kingdom. But the church is also God’s building. I believe that’s talking about the growth of its structure.
We must have both if we’re going to be the witness the Lord wants us to be. We must have both spiritual and numerical increase.
However, there’s one thing that Paul is very clear about. It’s the basis of every function of the church.
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.
1 Corinthians 3:10-11
We’ve turned our lives over to the Lordship of Christ. We’re in His hands. He’s our foundation. Without that groundwork, nothing we build will succeed. It has to be based upon the work of Christ in us.
But how many Christians are actually building? And what exactly is it that we’re supposed to build?
For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love.
For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
2 Peter 1:5-8
Wow! That sounds like a daunting task. But remember, we’re building. It doesn’t come together in an instant. It’s worked on over time.
I’ve seen many impressive buildings in some of the cities that I’ve visited. Some of them took years of planning and construction to complete their structures. Don’t get upset that you aren’t perfect yet.
The Greek word, add, in the above Scripture means to choreograph over. I think that’s a pretty interesting way to put it. How do we build? By choreographing or lives in deeper and deeper patterns.
It’s like a dancer learning all the moves needed for their recital. Faith – goodness – knowledge – self-control – perseverance – godliness – brotherly kindness – love.
We have to transform our lifestyle into a more intricate choreography. This takes the wisdom and the strength of God, especially when it involves many people working together. That’s why we need the proper foundation.
The work of this building process is beyond our limited capabilities. We need to yield to the life-changing power of the Holy Spirit within us. That’s how we can begin building by faith.
In my next post, I’ll continue by talking about the final test of this spiritual building process. If you haven’t yet done so, I encourage you to subscribe to this blog so you won’t miss any of the articles.
Question: How far along in the building process are you?
© 2019 Nick Zaccardi