The out of fellowship, master, which we refer to as the sin nature, is a tyrant master. When we become slaves to sin, we stop being our own masters. We lose self-command, we lose self-willpower, we lose self-decision, we lose character, we lose dignity, and all of the while, we are under the false impression that we are free and independent and actually profiting from this chosen pattern of life.
And then sooner or later we discover that sin is a very poor paymaster, and anything that is gained, is temporary, and when we finally come to the end of our life, we come face-to-face with the real and final paycheck, which is death.
And death here, is the final end of that pattern of life which was pursued because of its enticements and pleasures, which are replaced with a sudden realization that the expected benefit, or pay, or profit, never really existed at all.
In effect, the person pursuing life under the rule of the sin nature, is doing nothing more than working for a cruel master, and receiving no pay for his effort.
The Bible typically refers to the fruit of the sin nature, as wood, hay, and stubble.
There are two forms of fruit that originate from the sin nature. The first, is human good, which is basically all good that is performed while out of fellowship or outside of the spiritual life, and the second, is sin, which spans a wide spectrum from asceticism to lasciviousness, and of course includes all criminal activity.
All of the sin nature production, comes with a collective value of zero.
Therefore, living out of fellowship, provides no gain, no reward, no profit, no pay, no benefit of any kind. The only result is that of a wasted life.
The only true benefit or pay or reward or profit, etc., results from a life that is lived, in fellowship. And that is a benefit that is exclusive only to believers in Christ, because one has to be saved in order to have a spiritual life in the first place, and one has to confess regularly to God the Father, in order to be in fellowship, and therefore have a functioning and productive spiritual life.
Gold, silver, and precious stones, are the descriptive terms of the intrinsic value of spiritual life production. And just as gold and diamonds are almost infinitely more valuable than straw, then so too, the production of the spiritual life, is infinitely more valuable than the production of the sin nature.
It is infinitely more advantageous to be a believer in Christ, and live within the sphere of a productive spiritual life, than to ignore Christ and live within the sphere of the sin nature.