What the Knows Have and What the Know-Nots Have NotNovember 28, 2016 at 12:09 pm | Posted in I Corinthians | 5 Comments
Tags: 1 Corinthians 3, Bema Seat, Christian motives, Christian responsibility, commentary on 1 Corinthians, freedom in Christ, Judgment Seat of Christ, motives, Sunday School lessons on 1 Corinthians
In a previous lesson I discussed how “ministers,” including all believers, will have their building materials judged. This is known as the Bema seat judgment.
If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
I Corinthians 3:15
This verse is not a reference to purgatory, although the Roman Catholic Church used it to attempt to bolster its unbiblical tradition. It is actually in the context of Christians having their works, doctrine, and motives judged, not their sins. Christians will be at this judgment. Unregenerate sinners will not.
If you are a Christian without an official ministry title, in what way are you still a “minister?” Hopefully, you are ministering to your spouse, children, parents, friends, fellow church members, fellow Sunday School class members, or whoever finds his way into your sphere of influence. Remember, there is no “secular” versus “sacred” distinction in true Christianity and in true Christian living.
Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
I Corinthians 3:16
Know-Nots do not know that this world, and all our lives, are about God – and specifically about Christ. The Knows know that God designed them to be a temple – a dwelling-place for His presence on earth. In the Old Testament when the profane touched the holy, the holy was defiled, and, in the case of the Tabernacle, the holy destroyed the profane (worldly) in order to preserve its holiness.
If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
I Corinthians 3:17
This goes all the way to our motives. In the church at Corinth the Knows were acting like Know-Nots. They were being childish, forming factions, and feuding over the leaders with which they aligned themselves. To have our “works” judged will be one thing; to have our “doctrine” judged will be another; but to have our “motives” judged, this will truly be a consuming fire. Our motive is revealed – this side of eternity – by cooperation (working together for God’s glory), rather than by competition (outdoing others for my own glory).
Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours;
I Corinthians 3:21
What can the world give you? Nothing, really, because you have everything good in Christ. “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” What can the world take from you? Nothing, really, because you don’t truly own anything. Christ owns it all. The Knows have everything and nothing, which is perfect freedom. The Knows-Nots seek everything and are never able to find it, which is utter bondage.
Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; And ye are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s.
I Corinthians 3:22-23
All things are ours = Christian liberty
You are Christ’s = Christian responsibility