Are You Ready For The Fireworks?

Bible Book: 1 Corinthians 
Subject: Judgment; Christian Works; Bema Seat; Independence Day

Fireworks are very exciting. At county fairs, on Independence Day, and every time the Braves hit a homerun at Turner Field, fire works are a regular activity. The fireworks at the 2008 Olympics were beautiful, but there was a controversy regarding them. It seems some of the fireworks shown on television by NBC were digitally enhanced by the Chinese - in other words, they weren't real!

But, there is a day of fireworks coming in the future that will be real and critical to everyone of us. Paul shared this fact in the text we are considering today. He was talking about the fire of God's judgment that will be used to test the works of all Christians while they lived the Christian life in this world. Paul is talking about the “Grand Finale” of our lives as Christians! Are you ready for the fire that God will use to test your life and work as a believer?

How can you be ready for your “Grand Finale?” What should we be thinking about now in order to be prepared for that faithful day that is coming?

I. You Need To Hear

A. Every Christian Is Responsible To God

Each of us is responsible for what we say and do in this life. We are not just responsible to our families, our church and our friends; we are ultimately responsible to our God! You can either be building up the work of God or you may be tearing it down - and God will be the judge by placing the fire of His judgment on our words, attitudes and deeds.

B. Every Christian has been Given a Gift for the Glory of God

Great gifts do not necessarily translate into great works. Your actions must be thought out and your intentions must be pure. Many greatly gifted believers have failed miserably and have misused the gifts given by the Lord. In the end, God will judge whether we used the gifts He gave us for His glory or for our own.

C. Every Christian will Face Challenges in Working for God
  • Some of the obstacles concern the flesh.
  • Some of the obstacles concern immaturity.
  • Some of the obstacles concern our enemy, Satan.

Whatever the obstacles, you must prove yourself faithful in the use of the gifts God has given you. We will give an account for our lives to Christ on that great day when he brings out the “fire works” against our “faith works.”

Next, realize that ...

II. You Need To Know

A. The Grande Finale will Occur at Real Place

2 Corinthians 5:10 says, “For we must all stand before Christ to be judged. We will each receive whatever we deserve for the good or evil we have done in this earthly body.” The place is called the Beam Seat Judgment. Every Christian will appear at a specific place and specific time before the Lord.

B. The Grande Finale will have a Real Purpose

The test of our works will be to determine our rewards or the loss of our rewards when we appear before Jesus. A reward is something given in return for good accomplished or evil done. Heaven is not your reward, it’s your inheritance. Eternal life is not your reward; it’s your gift from God. The reward has to do with how you live this life after you are saved. You can’t live a good life and obtain eternal life. You receive eternal life when you admit you are a sinner, believe on Jesus Christ, and confess Christ as your Lord and Savior. But, once you are saved, you are to live a life that honors Him. This means using your gifts and opportunities for His glory.

C. The Grande Finale will be Really Personal

It is going to be about your time as a Christian, not about what someone else has done or not done. Christ will judge the fruits of your faith and your works. It will be a look at how you handled temptations, how you worshipped, how you served, how you gave, how you prayed, how you witnessed, how ou lived and how you treated others in the light of all that Christ did for you at Calvary. Yes, this will be some really personal fireworks on that day.

D. The Grande Finale will Involve a Real Process

Our works will be judged by fire. Did you ever stop to think that fire plays no favorites. The fires in California this year have swept away some of the finest homes in America. The fire did not care how things looked on the outside, but moved along to burn anything that was combustible. When Jesus places the light of His eyes on our works, it will not be according to what people said about us, how good we looked to our friends but according to what He knows about us. Anything that is not gold, silver and precious stones will be burned. What does that mean? Anything that was not genuine in our lives will be burned away, leaving only the genuine life for Him to be seen by the Lord and everyone at the judgment. What was done for His glory will survive the fire works. What was done for our glory, or from a selfish attitudes will be destroyed.

Also, note what ....

III.You Need To Do

To have rewards in Heaven, you need to invest in some things that will endure the fire.

A. Spiritual Resources

Gold, Silver, and Jewels will stand the test of the fire. These are products of God’s creative acts through our lives. These are works of the Spirit of God! However, Wood, Hay, and Straw, the products that we can grow or produce are works of man and they will vanish in the fire.

B. Valuable Resources

Valuable things are not always big things. A big piece of granite is worth very little, but a small diamond may be worth thousands of dollars. That is the way God views are Christian lives. We may do something seen by a lot of people, and yet it may not be worth much to God. He knows the true motive. But, we may share a simple witness in our community, give a tithe that doesn’t seem very large when compared to others, or serve in some unseen ministry in our local church, but if it is done for His glory, using His gifts to the best of our ability, God sees it as valuable.

C. Eternal Resources

Only the things done for Christ will last. A poet said,

“Only one life, twill soon be past,

Only what’s done for Christ will last!”

How true that is. What we do for Jesus with a faithful heart will last into eternity. Remember, God judges the heart.


Do we need to make a fresh commitment to do our best to live a life that can endure the fireworks that are coming one day in the future? I expect most of us do. You can do that right now.