Paul: A Wise Masterbuilder

 

“For we are labourers togethers with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building. 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. If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire. Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are” (I Cor.3:9-17).

“Likewise greet the church that is in their house…” (Rom.16:15).

“..Aguila and Priscilla salute you much in the Lord, with the church that is in their house” (I Cor.16:19).

 

   Paul was a wise masterbuilder of churches. He knew that God’s building, God’s temple, was not a building made with hands. God, in these N.T. times, no longer dwells in a dead building, but in the living temple of God; He dwells in born again saints baptized with the Holy Spirit, a living temple. “Howbeit the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands” said the martyr Steven as the religious crowd murdered him for speaking these words. Paul said “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” No, millions of people don’t know that they are God’s temple, because they aren’t. They have never been born again and baptized by the Holy Spirit.

 

   Paul was a wise masterbuilder of churches and he did no carpenter work or mason work. He knew that God’s N.T. temple, the Church, was not made out of wood or stone, but of saved, sanctified people made of flesh and bone. Paul never paid any carpenter or mason any money to build him a church and he didn’t raise one single dollar during his entire ministry for a dead building that were called churches. Are you listening? Are you following the example of Paul, the wise masterbuilder? I’ve heard many preachers preach on Nehemiah in order to get money for a building because there is certainly no N.T. scripture on it.

 

   Paul was building churches that could never be burnt up; he was spending his time and money getting people saved and ‘edifying’ them and they will never burn in hell. He spent his time erecting the spiritual living house of God, not a large, dead, massive ‘edifice.’ He didn’t go around fleecing the flock to build cathedrals and mega-church buildings with shopping centers and stores and gymnasiums and bible schools. He built nothing that could burn, nothing that could burn, nothing that could burn – “If any man’s work shall be burned - he shall suffer loss…” – amen. Don’t be foolish and build buildings.  Paul built not one single church building in his entire life. Don’t follow the world that looks on outward appearance and not the heart like the Lord – don’t be a foolish builder.

 

   Paul built only spiritual church buildings; he built spiritual edifices. Twenty times in the N.T. we find the word ‘edify.’ A true church is built up by the preaching of the gospel to get people saved and born again and they are built up by the teaching of the Word and edification. Our ‘edifice’ is a living church, not a dead building. God dwells in a living church, not dead buildings.

 

   Well, you say “We certainly need a building of wood and stone to worship in”. No we most certainly do not. We should follow the example of the wise masterbuilder and meet in homes. “The church that is in their house” – amen. All false religions in the world are building temples and mosques and sacred buildings to worship in, spending multiplied millions and reverencing these dead buildings of wood and stone made with hands. And God’s true churches met in homes in the early church as a testimony and an example against them. God’s temple today is built by God the Holy Spirit, not men’s hands. When Christ dwells in them through the Holy Spirit, they are the living temple of God. And when the true church starts following the world you lose the power of God.

 

   God doesn’t want mega-churches of thousands of unsaved people playing church in million dollar buildings; He wants small churches of saved, sanctified, born again saints meeting in homes. That’s the way the Lord worked in the book of Acts and should be followed today. Let these worldly, religious people have their dead buildings and reverence them, let us saints meet in homes according to the Word of God. Let us be obedient and follow God’s Word of truth. I’ve heard many preachers speak against home churches and even call them cults, simply because they meet in homes: going directly against God’s Word. It is the preacher in a building that is called a church that is going against God’s Word. Putting up a church sign in front of a building made by hands is heresy. Paul, the wise masterbuilder of churches, would never do it.

 

   Soon will come hard times for the saints and persecution will break out against them, not just in other nations, but here in the U.S. as well. And when this persecution comes, then the true church will go underground so to speak, and meet in homes like the persecuted church in the early church. And the church will cease to be worldly and the power of God’s Holy Spirit will fill them and they will be great witnesses for the Lord Jesus.  The church will end like it started, not following the world. “…and when they had called the apostles and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. And they departed… rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name And daily in the temple, and every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ” – (Acts 5:40-42). O true church of Christ, let the religious unbelievers have the dead church buildings, have a home church according to God’s Word. We need to bring the church back home.

 

   But bringing the church back home will not eliminate all the problems. We will have the same problems of heresy and false prophets and false brethren as the house churches had in the early church. We must have a house church that follows the Bible with only born again saints as members, not mixing the children of God with the children of the Devil. There must be men pastors and deacons and teachers who are in authority with the women in submission. We must end the Jezebel-feminism in our churches. Small churches are the example set by our Lord Jesus as He had only twelve in His church and one was a devil. We must abandon the church building but not the pastor, because a flock without a shepherd is wide open for the devil-wolf. The Word of God must have final authority as Paul the wise masterbuilder taught us and use it to check out house churches as well. When we build our house churches we must follow the wise masterbuilder that the Lord Jesus called to be the apostle to the Gentiles. Going to church or attending church is unscriptural. It is impossible.

 

   O Pastor, make sure your work abides what you build so that you receive Jesus’ reward and that it’s not burnt up. Don’t strive for big buildings and big congregations; strive for born again, holy and righteous members. Don’t worry about ‘how’ you preach but ‘what’ you preach. The pulpit is no place for a spiritual coward.

 

   Remember, that if you’re not saved and born again and baptized by the Holy Spirit, it doesn’t make any difference where you worship, either in a house or in St. Peter’s in Rome, because you’ll go to hell anyway. We must be wise church builders and build upon the sure foundation shown to us in God’s Word – “And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief cornerstone; in whom all the building fitly framed together growth unto a holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit” – (Eph.2:20-22). God doesn’t want a large, magnificent temple, He wants a ‘holy’ temple with the Holy Spirit.

 

   God’s tabernacle in the wilderness showed us inward beauty and holiness while the outside was covered in plain badger skins; In contrast to the temple of Solomon that was rich, magnificent and gaudy and much more ritualistic and ceremonial and complicated. The temple of Christ, the church, started the same correct way as the tabernacle with all beauty and holiness inwardly and meeting in homes and then turned more and more into Solomon’s temple with expensive church buildings and no holiness in the people. The temple of Christ is supposed to be like Christ who had inward beauty and holiness and not outwardly handsome – “he hath no form or comeliness: and when we shall se him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. He is despised and rejected of men…” – (Is.53:1,2). And people today have despised and rejected the same inward holiness and beauty today and want outward beautiful churches.

 

   Remember also that turning on the TV on Sunday and watching an evangelist doesn’t qualify for being a house church. God doesn’t want you worshipping through a walking, talking image. Throw the wicked TV out and become a part of God’s holy temple. Shape up if you’re a child of God because we’ll soon be suffering under a wicked dictator like in China and Africa and the Mideast. Time is fast running out for wicked America. God’s judgment is coming soon. Today (May 15, 2008) the state supreme court of California said it’s legal for sodomites to marry and Sodom was our example of God’s judgment upon this wicked sin – (2 Pet.2:6 and Jude 7). And soon the true ministers of Christ will be imprisoned for refusing to marry sodomites in the church. Our holocaust comes soon. Remember Paul the wise masterbuilder, had all his churches meet in homes.

 

   Are you a part of God’s spiritual temple not made with hands? Have you been saved and born again of God’s Holy Spirit and baptized with the Holy Spirit? All the water in all the baptistries in all the world cannot wash your sins away. “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into body…” – (I Cor.12:13). Repent of your sins and believe on the Lord Jesus in your heart by faith and you will receive forgiveness of sins and become a new born again creature in Christ. You are spiritually crucified with Christ and become a new man, baptized and born again by the Holy Spirit into the spiritual temple of God not made with hands. “That which is born of the flesh is flesh: and that which is born of the Spirit is Spirit. Marvel not that it said unto thee, ye must be born again” – (Jn.3:6,7). We are baptized by the Holy Spirit into His death, buried with Him into death and we become a new creature and walk in newness of life – (Rom.6:3,4).

 

   Become a living stone in the living temple of God – Be saved by Christ the chief cornerstone of His spiritual temple – “Ye also as lively stones are built up a spiritual house” – (I Pet.2:5). Be saved by the Master Carpenter, the Lord Jesus Christ, who came to build His Father’s spiritual temple – “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. But he spake of the temple of his body” – (Jn.2:19,21).

 

Be saved and become a builder in God’s spiritual temple.

Christ in you makes you a part of God’s temple.

 

Pastor Mike Storti

5000 N. LaCholla- Lot 76

Tucson, AZ  85705

Email: BibleWatchman@aol.com

Website: BibleWatchman.com

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