Lord, as we start our day today, I ask You to helpus seriously consider the way we have been building our lives, finances, business ,ministry, relationships, and family. Forgive us for getting in a hurry and for doing things too hastily at times when we need to be concentrating on doing things right. Help us build our lives in such a way that it will survive the test of time. Give us the insight we need to know when we are building correctly and when we are building too quickly. I know that our lives are important and that You have trusted us as stewards over everything you have provided. So today we confess that we need Your help to build with the right materials and to build in such a way that what we do for You here on earth produces primarily long lasting gold,, silver, and precious stones. in Jesus’ name! Amen
12 'If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw,
13 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.
14 If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward.
15 If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.' (1 Corinthians 3:12-15, NIV).
We had some tech issues today in the room, so weren't able to get through the entire lesson. I''ll post it next week, but what we did discuss is the question:
how much of your life is devoted to that which will burn in the fire, and that which will not? Some believe that what is left will be placed in a crown and given to Jesus when you finally see Him. If so and if you have lived a full life yet your crown is empty, how will you feel accepting His gift of eternal life while you hand Him an empty crown?
Our lives can't be 100% made of fine jewels, but have you thought about how much of your life really is not going to amount to anything in terms of eternity? How do you spend your time? What do you like talking about? How much time do you devote to praying, praising and reading your Bible? Do you watch TV or listen to music? How much of that is healing to your soul? When you talk with your friends, are you talking about the Lord, or do "other" topics take the stage?
Look at it like this: anything that does not glorify the Lord is hay, wood and stubble. These combustibles aren't necessarily all sinful but still, anything that does not glorify the Lord is combustible and eventually vanishes for good one of these days.
Here are some supporting scriptures and information taken from Compelling Truth, and check back next week for more on this subject.
In Revelation 4:10–11, part of the vision of heaven given to John, the phrase appears: "the twenty-four elders fall down before him who is seated on the throne and worship him who lives forever and ever. They cast their crowns before the throne, saying, 'Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created.'"
These elders model for us our own response when we encounter Jesus in heaven: our gratitude and desire to worship will cause us to give to Him any honors, titles, possessions, or prizes we may have accumulated. England's Queen Victoria famously wished for Jesus' second coming during her reign so she could literally remove her crown and lay it at His feet. As the heavenly elders and the worldly queen exemplified, we give Jesus our best possessions, those things that give us identity—our everything. We can begin to do this even now as we worship Him and live for Him.
Some aspects of Revelation seem to be very poetic. That is, they give an accurate description of what will happen, but not necessarily a literal one. An example from daily life would be when one person "gives their heart" to another. This is accurate, in the sense that they are giving their "all" to the one they love, and taking a risk of great personal hurt. They are not, however, removing an organ and placing it in the other person's hand.
This means that the "crowns" we are given by God, and the way we lay them at the feet of Jesus, can just as well be a beautiful description of what heaven is like, not necessarily what it actually is. Whether with literal circles of metal, or merely His stated approval, God will reward us for our service, and we will return those honors to Christ.
The New Testament also refers to crowns as an example of the rewards offered by Jesus for those who are faithful. See James 1:12 (the crown of life), 1 Peter 5:4 (the crown of glory), and Revelation 3:11 (your crown). Rewards are also referred to in Matthew 5:12 (a great reward in heaven), 1 Corinthians 3:14 (reward for work that survives a refining fire), and Revelation 22:12 (repayment for work).
It would make sense for use to immediately offer back to Christ every bit of glory we receive, understanding that such a gift is nothing compared with His great gift of salvation and His absolute worthiness of all praise! Amen
Morning Bible Studies are held every Wednesday morning @ 11:00 am ET. Those studies will be posted her for those that missed the live study.
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