We have this wonderful salvation offered to us simply for the accepting. After that acceptance – after we have acknowledged God’s unspeakable gift as our own -- we build on that foundation. As a pastor who provided a base, a foundation, for new believers, Paul wrote about what should follow.
According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon.
But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;
Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.
[1 Corinthians 3:10-13 KJV]
Seeking out what God has for each of us to do is part of that building. If we build on our own, without using His plan, I would expect quite a bit of hay and stubble. Sort of the sod houses of our western frontier at the turn of the 20th century. Shelter provided, stable? Not hardly.
Just as no one can be saved for us, no one can build upon the foundation except ourselves. Where do we find the plans? Where are the building codes? Are there minimums, where we can just ‘get by’? All of the answers are in God’s word.
The framing of the house would be the commandments Christ left for us in His word. Look for them in the Bible with prayer and you’ll know which ones will provide the strongest structure for your building.
The walls? I think Paul laid that our in Ephesians six, describing the whole armor of God. Use that armor in building the walls and they will not only stand but provide strength to add the gold, silver and precious stones.
What are they? James mentions what I think they are.
Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. [James 2:18 KJV]
We know Peter had neither silver nor gold on this earth.
Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. [Acts 3:6 KJV]
What better precious material could decorate the walls of such a building than the good works of the devout follower of God? One who truly understands and believes the foundational commandments.
Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. [Matthew 22:37-40 KJV]
So, what will be built on the foundation given?