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|1 Corinthians 3:13-15 |
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13 That man's work will be exposed. For the day [of the Lord] will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will try and test every man's work, of what sort it is.2 [Faith must be demonstrated by works of love, which is obedience to the promptings of the Spirit of God's direction; such is the love of God. "But he who practices truth comes to the light, so that his deeds may be shown to have been produced [formed and powered] through God." John 3:21; such works are the only works that survive passing through the fire, which every man must go through.]
14 If any man's work survives, which he has built upon the foundation, he will receive a reward.3
15 If any man's work is burned, he will suffer loss, but he himself will be saved, yet as through fire.
3 When you pass through the fire that every man passes through, you will receive a reward — IF YOU HAVE DONE TWO THINGS:
- You have built on top of a true foundation: Whoever comes to me, and hears my sayings, and does [practices, obeys] them, I will show you to whom he is like; He is like a man who built a house, and dug deep, and laid the foundation on a rock; and when the flood arose, the torrent beat violently upon that house, but could not shake it because it was founded upon a rock. Luke 6:46-47 This is the true faith: to hear the word of God, which word is in your heart, and to obey it. This is the beginning of your faith — authored by Jesus Christ himself because you have heard him, believed him, and obeyed him. Jesus alone is the author and finisher of our faith: Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith, Heb 12:2.
If you haven't heard the Lord and obeyed him, Jesus says this about you: Why do you call me, 'Lord, Lord,' and not do what I tell you? Luke 6:46. And if you don't listen for him, hear him, and obey him; this is what Jesus said would happen to you in the fire: But he who hears, and does not [practice my teachings], is like a man who built an house upon the earth without a foundation; against which the torrent struck violently, and immediately it collapsed; and the ruin of that house was great.
Jesus said: "There is only one thing needed, and Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her" — to sit at the feet of Jesus and hear his word. Luke 10:39-42. Notice! that good part, which shall not be taken away from her; this work of listening to the Lord will not be burnt up — it will survive the fire on the Day of the Lord. It is a cross to a man's will to sit silently, struggling to keep his mind from wandering; it is a cross to a man's will to obey what he is commanded and taught by the Holy Spirit; this is the cross of which you must deny yourself and pick it up every day to then follow Jesus. To follow is to obey. You cannot be his disciple unless you pick up your cross daily and follow his orders. Salvation is only received by those who follow the lamb wherever he goes — who obey completely the voice of the Lord, in whatever he commands. Do not be discouraged if you don't hear for some time. Even your waiting is to your credit: Let your mercy, O LORD, be upon us, in proportion to our waiting and hoping on you. Psalms 33:22. For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by ear, nor has the eye seen a God beside you, who acts for the one who waits for him. Isa 64:4. The work of the cross will survive.
- You abide in him, listening, watching, obeying — until it becomes continuous — as he leads you through cleansing to purity, while carrying your inward cross of self-denial. This is works of obedient love to God. Abiding in him, you will produce much fruit to the glory of the Father. You will then be led to further works of love, which is his purpose: For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God has ordained before that we should walk in [doing good works]. Eph 2:10. He purifies for himself a people who are his very own, zealous for good works. Tit 2:14. These works will be a lasting treasure, which will allow you to partake of the divine nature, being translated into the Kingdom of Heaven, to share in the inheritance of the saints in the light, be raised with Christ to the heavens and sit down in Christ in the rest.
Death of the evil spirit by fire in everyone is necessary so all can live together in peace, love, kindness, and gentleness; all must be purged from the evil in their hearts. This occurs on earth for the few who are voluntarily crucified on the inward cross with great reward; and it only occurs after you have: waited on the Lord, heard his many spoken-to-you reproofs, consistently obeyed his many commands that you hear him speak to you, died daily on the inward cross of self-denial, suffered many trials and tribulations, and endured with patience and persistence to the end. For the great majority of mankind, this purging takes place involuntarily in the next life. All men learn to hate evil, are drawn to goodness, and to love goodness, which is God. All men are then subject to God's direction, Jesus being the true Lord of all men. Our life on earth is "evil school" where we voluntarily learn to hate evil in this life; or in the next life we experience the hurts and harms we have caused by our evil actions and words, thus being repulsed by our past and becoming completely committed to never repeating those mistakes.