“For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry, ye are God’s building.”  (1 Corinthians 3:9)  

The recent events in the church reminded me very much of this verse, and especially the phrase “labourers together with God”. Here are three main thoughts:  

  1. We are labourers. This means that we are not expected to be lazy, but fervent in the Lord’s business. We must also make sure that the work we are engaged in, is truly of the Lord. Many may be busy, but they are only concerned about the things of work. They work hard to magnify their name, and to fatten their bellies and wallets. On the other hand, the Christian knows that he belongs to the Lord, and thus he presses on with all his might to fulfil God’s will in His life. Are you working hard for the Lord?
  2. We are united. Because we are all working together for the same Lord, therefore we are united in the same spirit and aim. Though the Lord may grant us different gifts, callings, and appointments, yet we know that our chief aim in life is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever (WSC Q.1). Each and every one of us is to do our part in building up the body of Christ.

Ever since news broke that we are not able to gather in groups of more than 10, brethren have worked tirelessly to ensure that everyone continues to be ministered by Christ’s Word. The IT team conducted numerous trials to ensure that live streaming services and meetings can be held smoothly. The Sunday School Department produced materials so that parents may be assisted in teaching the Bible to their children. Lastly, we have the brethren who knowing the predicament, have constantly laboured in their prayers to God for the church.   

This sweetness of unity in the Lord’s work brings us to Psalm 133. “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments; As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, even life for evermore.” 

On the other hand, this verse also reminds us that we must never view the service of the Lord as a competition. The Corinthian Christians were split into different parties, each striving for their own glory and name. Thus, Paul had to remind them that they are labourers together with God and thus, should not be striving against each other for vain glory. Such behaviour reveals a carnal mind, and is detrimental to the work of the Lord. Let each one abide in their calling and gifts, and serve faithfully to promote the Lord’s kingdom. We are labourers together.  

 In the midst of this COVID-19 plague, our unity in Christ will be severely tested. Will the bonds endure? Will we continue to serve together for the Lord? We must remember that we are labourers united. Let pride be set aside, and serve Christ in all humility.   

  1. We are privileged, for who are we to serve the Lord? Moreover, the text says we are serving with the Lord (i.e. in partnership with Him). We are but mere creatures, and sinners saved purely by God’s grace, yet the Lord account it faithful that we should be committed with the gospel, and to testify the truth in this world of darkness.  

Let us then remember that it is a high calling to serve with the Lord and it does not matter what He appoints us to do. It may be a task that is not in the limelight. It may be a duty that may appear small in the eyes of men. And yet, because this work is done in partnership with the Lord, it should therefore be regarded as a privilege, and therefore of highest  importance. We must never slight nor despise any task which the Lord gives us to do. “Our talents may be few, These may be small, But unto Him is due Our best, our all.” (S. C. Kirk)  

Furthermore, we are privileged because when we serve with the Lord, we have Him as our Help and Guide. So long as the Lord is on our side, victory is assured.  

Lastly, Paul reminds us in this verse that the increase is always of the Lord. Two illustrations are used here. The first is that of the husbandry (or farm land) where God is the cultivator. The second is that of the building, where God is the architect and builder. When the Lord therefore grants success in His work, we must always remember to give Him all the glory. Do not let success get to your head. Always praise the Lord. Without the Lord, we can do nothing.

That the increase is always of the Lord, should also be of great encouragement to us in this period. It may seem bleak that we are not able to meet for some time as a congregation, yet it gives us unique opportunities to evangelise to our families and friends. 

From every Lord’s Day now till the end of April, every HDB estate will ring with praises of Christians unto Christ. Sermons will be blared all over the island through the online platforms. Perhaps there will be some who will hear the truth being preached and be convicted unto salvation in Christ by the Holy Spirit. All these things we leave into the hands of God. All glory be unto Christ’s name.


We started the year with trade wars, and some fighting between the USA and Iran. This was followed by COVID-19 which is still raging today. Now news emerges that due to tighter controls of food imposed by the nations, there may soon be food shortages in parts of the world (see news article: World could face food crisis in wake of coronavirus, say UN, WTO in The Straits Times, 1st April 2020). Will the next step be famines (Matt. 24:7)?  

One thing is for sure, Jesus Christ is coming again imminently. This is not the time to be loving the world, but rather to live by God’s Word. How have you been faring? Do not be blinded in chasing COVID-19 news and miss out on the true implications for us who profess faith in Christ. It is a call to shake us out of our spiritual stupor. And yet many Christians are still obsessed with fashions and trends despite these warnings. To such we can only plead from 1 John 2:15-17 – “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.” (1 Jn. 2:15-17 KJV)  

With all these signs are you still loving the world? Love it not!  

On the other hand, we must be thankful to the Lord for a wise government that has much stock of food for the nation. Nevertheless, we are under pressure to maintain prices, being a nation without natural resources. Will this generation see famine? We pray not. But even if we do not experience it, we must not be complacent. How often have we murmured about our food just like the children of Israel in the wilderness and ended up wasting what God has provided at the table? Now is not the time to be picky, especially Christians!  

With the many years of prosperity, many Singaporean have not experienced war and famine. What if a famine arrives? Will this generation act with a sense of entitlement? Will this generation survive? What about us who call ourselves by the name of Christ?   

I am thankful for one teacher in FEBC who will advise students concerning beverages – “Coffee or tea, just drink!” That is the right biblical spirit. We pray that our young ones will learn this too. Little children, please eat up all the food which your parents give to you. No complaints!  

Godliness with contentment begins at the meal table.  

Yours affectionately
Pastor Clement Chew