The Book of 1 Corinthians Bible Study Chapter 3 Part 2

We begin this week by reading 1 Cor 3:12-23
v12: Anyone: This is relevant for every individual, it’s a universal truth. 
·      Builds on this foundation: i.e. Builds upon the foundation that Yeshua has set – the truth and fundamentals of our faith. 
·      Gold, silver, precious stones: These things are symbolic of rewards. Here Paul is talking about things which are pleasing to G-d and which are going to endure – especially when fire is added to this equation. When these three things are added to fire they are refined and purified. Things that are not profitable within them are burnt off.
·      Wood, hay, straw: These are things which are consumed in a fire. These things are not pleasing to G-d. They are based on selfishness and are not in accordance with His will. 
v13: Each one’s work: Again, applicable to every individual. 
·      The Day will declare it: Judgment Day is coming. We need to understand Judgment Day in two ways: Judgment Day is a day for wrath (condemnation) for unbelievers, but it is a judgment of reward for believers (1 Thess 5:9). For the believers: Our lives are going to be evaluated based on our deeds (Rev 22:12). Our deeds do not save us (Legalism says we need to do something in order to be saved), but our deeds are proof that we are saved. 
·      Revealed by fire: Fire (spiritual fire/testing) is going to bring out, disclose or document what is truly inside a person. 
·      What sort it is: What substance it is made out of (gold…straw). 
Note: How are we going to fare in that Day? Have we been building properly, on the right foundation? Or have we built with wood, hay and straw? Have we built something that will be consumed, and we have nothing to show for it at the end of the day, or have we built with something that will last for eternity? 
v14: This verse now speaks of a time after the Judgment of rewards. If what we have built survives, we will receive payment/recompense/reward. This is a promise from G-d. He has prepared things for those of us who love Him (1 Cor 2:9). 
v15: He will suffer loss: This one had a reward also prepared for Him (1 Cor 2:9) but he is not going to receive it, he is going to lose it (He can’t ‘suffer loss’ unless he has something to lose). Although G-d has prepared a reward for every person who believes we can only receive it through obediently and submissively serving G-d (in our thoughts, our deeds, our speech etc). If we do not live in this way once we are saved, even what we have will be taken away from us (Luke 19:11-27).
·      He himself will be saved: When we believe in Yeshua (i.e we have experienced G-d’s grace, His justification is eternal) we have assurance of salvation and eternal security. ALL of our sins are forgiven by the blood of Yeshua, making us acceptable to Him and appropriate for His Kingdom.
v16: You (plural) are the temple of G-d: Paul emphasises how precious we are to G-d. The temple was different to the other buildings around it, in that it housed the very presence of G-d – which the other buildings did not. The temple, because of G-d’s presence in it, had a completely different status to the other buildings around it. It was not just a house – it was G-d’s house. 
·      The Spirit of G-d dwells in you (also written in the plural): Through salvation, the Holy Spirit comes to dwell in us and He brings order into our lives (John 14:26, John 16:7-15, Roms 8:26-27) 
v17: In this verse Paul is giving a hypothetical situation that is not based upon reality. The temple in Jerusalem was just a blueprint or a paradigm of the temple in the heavens (Heb 8:5), so this verse is not speaking about this temple in Jerusalem. G-d’s temple (the true temple) is the one in the heavenlies – no one can destroy this temple. In the same way that this heavenly temple is precious to G-d so too are we precious to Him.
v18: Let no deceive himself: Paul wouldn’t warn us against this unless it was a genuine threat to us. 
·      Seems to be wise in this age: If someone thinks he has wisdom he does not. Many brilliant scientists have so much earthly knowledge but many of them reject G-d. They think that they are wise, but they are in fact foolish. It is only when we realise that we are completely dependent upon G-d for any revelation that in fact we become wise. 
v19: The wisdom of this world: The great scientific discoveries etc
·      Is foolishness with G-d: The wisdom of this world is foolish when compared to the wisdom of G-d. 
·      It is written: Paul again backs up his argument with Scripture.
·      He (talking about G-d) catches the wise: Job 5:13. The ‘wise’, who trust in their own cleverness/craftiness, fall into a trap. G-d catching them is not a positive thing. It is unpleasant for them – unpleasant in the sense of judgment. 
v20: And again: Paul refers to another Scripture – Ps 94:11
·      The L-rd knows the thoughts of the wise: G-d knows everything they’re thinking (if we knew everything the chess player opposite us was thinking it would be easy to defeat him – same concept here). 
·      Futile: The world’s wisdom has no eternal significance. 
v21: Let no one glory (boast) in men: Praise and honour are reserved for G-d and shouldn’t be given to men. 
·      For all things are yours: In the end all the things that G-d wants us (who are in a new covenant relationship with Him) to have are within our grasp (Roms 8:32) – we are going to lack nothing (2 Peter 1:3-4). 
v22: All are yours: This is true for whatever we are speaking about [This was true for Paul, Apollos, Cephas (Simon Peter), this world, life, death, things that are now or things that are to come]. We never have to worry about lack. What we do need to be concerned about, and committed to, is building upon the right foundation – and that is Messiah Yeshua)
v23: You are Messiah’s: All things are ours because we belong to Messiah – the L-rd of lords and the King of kings. 
·      Messiah is G-d’s: It is through Yeshua that we belong to G-d. We are the sons of G-d – sons are heirs, they inherit an inheritance. This is what Paul is talking about here. Through Yeshua we become the heirs of G-d. 

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