|1 Corinthians 3 |
1 However brothers, I could not speak to you as spiritual men, but as to men of the carnal nature, even as to infants in Christ.1 [A carnal man is man of flesh and none of Christ's; a carnal man is still sinning, still walking by the impulses of his flesh, his fallen mind, and his evil imagination. Don't read this scripture and think that carnal, sinful men can be born in Christ, for John clearly tells us: Whoever is born of God does not commit sin, for his seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God; and We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but God protects the one he has fathered, and the wicked one does not touch him. 1 John 3:9, 1 John 5:18.]
2 I have fed you with milk, and not with meat; for previously you were not able to receive it, neither are you now able. [As Peter says: "Yearn like newborn babies for pure, spiritual milk so that you may grow up to salvation," 1 Pet 2:2)]
3 For you are still carnal [captives of the sinful nature]. Because there is envy, and strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal; and do you not walk as men? [So then those who are in the flesh [live in their sinful nature] cannot please God. Rom 8:8. Until a man's sinful nature has been crucified, he walks according to the ways of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air [Satan]. Eph 2:2.]
4 For when one says, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are you not still men of the flesh?
5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom you believed, even as the Lord has given to each man his task?
6 I have planted, and Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
7 So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but God who gives the growth.
8 Now he who plants and he who waters are one; and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labor.
10 According to the grace of God that has been given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let every man take heed how he builds upon the foundation. [Let every man take heed how he builds upon the foundation. You must build on the foundation, which building needs to be by spiritual revelations received from the Word and Light within your heart; the words you hear Him speak to you are spirit and impart the life of God, which build the temple of God within. It is work to wait on God, hard work, but the only work that yields eternal results.]
11 For no other foundation can any man lay than what has been already laid, which is Jesus Christ.
12 Now if any man builds upon this foundation [of the gospel of Christ] with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw;
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.
16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?
17 If any man defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him; for the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.
18 Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seems to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, so that he may be wise.
19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, "He traps the wise in their own craftiness."
21 Therefore let no one boast in men. For everything exists for you; [The purpose of the earth is to create saints; and all things work together for the benefit of those who love God and are called to his purpose.]
22 Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are for you;
23 And you are anointed, and anointed of God.
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1 However brothers, I could not speak to you as spiritual men, but as to men of the carnal nature, even as to infants in Christ. Don't read this scripture and assume that carnal men can be "in Christ," rather read this as carnal men that are infants in the things of Christ. John explains who is in Christ: whoever keeps his word [obeys the Lord's commands spoken to him], truly the love of God is perfected in him; by this we know that we are in him. 1 John 2:5. If we love one another, God dwells in us, and his love is perfected in us. 1 John 4:12. Notice, this is to be "in Christ" — to have the love of God perfected in you.
To be those who are in Christ is also explained by Paul: Therefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 2 Cor 5:17; and those those who who are in Christ Jesus, walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Rom 8:1. This is not to imagine yourself a new creature; this is to experience the death of the old and the birth of the new; old things having passed away definitely includes your sinful nature having been mortified by the Spirit. The Word of the Lord within, explained the new life: "The new life is as radically different as a man who has lived underground his whole life, suddenly coming above ground to see the sun, the sky, the plants, the animals, the wind, the stars."
From the Word of the Lord within: "The errors in understanding the Bible come from men saying: 'look at this Bible verse.'" You must consider the whole of scripture's verses and not just focus on a few.
2 Verse 13 says: every man must pass through the fire. Either by the unquenchable fire of the Holy Spirit's baptism, or have their part in (pass through) the unquenchable lake of fire, called Hell. Through obedience on the inward cross of self-denial, you experience the Holy Spirit's baptism of death, to share in Christ's death, to share in his burial, and then to share in his resurrection in you. So blessed and holy are those who have part in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him for a thousand years. But if you fail to crucify your sinful nature while alive on earth, when you die for the first time, death will have power over you, to destroy your soul, as your spirit is sent through the lake of fire — a place of great pain, for long duration, but with eventual purifying love.
3 When you pass through the fire that every man passes through, you will receive a reward — IF YOU HAVE DONE TWO THINGS:
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.
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