Acceptable Service, Serving God’s Way

The Bible contains a very severe warning about service that will be rejected. This passage makes it clear that our intentions are not the determining factor. God presents a very different standard!

1 Cor 3:10 Because of God’s grace to me, I have laid the foundation like an expert builder. Now others are building on it. But whoever is building on this foundation must be very careful. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have—Jesus Christ. 12 Anyone who builds on that foundation may use a variety of materials—gold, silver, jewels[things that endure thru the refining fires of trial], wood, hay, or straw[things that are burned up]. 13 But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person’s work has any value. 14 If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward. 15 But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss. The builder will be saved, but like someone barely escaping through a wall of flames . 16 Don’t you realize that all of you together are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lives in you? 17 God will destroy anyone who destroys this temple. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple. 18 Stop deceiving yourselves. If you think you are wise by this world’s standards, you need to become a fool to be truly wise. 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness to God. As the Scriptures say, “He traps the wise in the snare of their own cleverness.” 20 And again, “The LORD knows the thoughts of the wise; he knows they are worthless.” 21 So don’t boast about following a particular human leader. For everything belongs to you—[Amp boasting of having this or that man as a leader] 22 whether Paul or Apollos or Peter, or the world, or life and death, or the present and the future. Everything belongs to you, 23 and you belong to Christ, and Christ belongs to God.

We need to be sure we are building on the foundation Paul established. Paul established a the volunteer ‘tentmaker’ preacher, the simple preacher who relys on the power of the Holy Spirit, not wise sounding preaching and worldy wealth.

Even if we are carefully building on Paul’s foundation, our work still may be consumed by fire, useless on the day of judgment. I believe that wood hay and straw represent mans efforts to serve God with pride and jealousy; while gold silver and jewels represent pure service that comes faith, obedience, and a desire for God’s will, really loving God*. If we are building with wood hay and straw, our work will be consumed by fire, by trials.

* [Gold; 2 Tim 2:20 Gold & Silver represent purity, things for special use; wood & clay impure everyday stuff.  1 Peter 1:7 Faith thru trials is more valuable than Gold. …16 We must be Holy because God is Holy]

Paul lays the foundation for the gentile church. The other apostles were sent to the Jews. Paul was the only one who was specifically sent for the gentile church.

NLT Act 10:21 “But the Lord said to me, ‘Go, for I will send you far away to the Gentiles !’

There are many passages that tell us to follow the example that Paul established. These warn us not to follow leaders who refuse his examples. For a full list see the postscript here:  Good And Bad Preachers, Know God’s Distinction


To really serve God we need to:

1. Build on Paul’s foundation. Follow Paul Or Accept Pay

2. Make sure that we build with Gold, Silver, and Jewels, not wood,hay and straw. This means that we must turn from the impure day to day stuff, and rely on the pure lasting things, faith, hope and love.

Dear God,

May your will be done. Please turn us from your coming wrath, turn us from our Pastor Idols, and deliver us from our worldliness, and our sinfulness. Help us to come to you with truly repentant hearts, to seek only your will and your glory, to serve humbly and to love truly, In Jesus Name we pray, Amen.


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Acceptable Service, Serving Gods Way

Acceptable Service, Serving Gods Way


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