April 13, 2017

How the Day will declare it

How exactly does one “lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven”? (Matthew 6:20).

One of the most vivid and thorough descriptions of eternal rewards in all of Scripture is found in one of Paul's letters to the Church in Corinth.
Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one's work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one's work, of what sort it is. If anyone's work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone's work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire (1 Corinthians 3:12-15).
Most times I have heard this taught, there's a dichotomy drawn between the “gold, silver, precious stones” and the “wood, hay, straw.” I've explained it that way myself. This is quite natural considering those words are immediately followed by “the fire will test each one's work” and if you were to literally put all six of those things in a fire, the “gold, silver, precious stones” will endure and the “wood, hay, straw” will burn.

The next question is, How do you distinguish between “gold, silver, precious stones” and not “wood, hay, straw” in a spiritual, non-material sense?

I went back to the text looking for the answer to the question. I looked. I didn't find anything. I don't see anything in this text that teaches us how to distinguish between “gold, silver, precious stones” and “wood, hay, straw” in a non-material sense.

However, there must still be a basis for differentiating between the work that “endures” and the work that “is burned.” What is it?

November 14, 2015

A Better Resurrection

I have wondered about Hebrews 11:35 before, and since it was part of today's reading, I decided to read some commentary on the verse.
Others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection (Hebrews 11:35, NKJV).
Whenever I had read this in the past, my understanding had always been that when they refused to be released, that it was simply an option they had, to be released, but because they could have a better resurrection by being tortured further, that they did not. I assumed that better resurrection was more eternal reward in heaven because they had been tortured.

December 23, 2013

Time in Heaven

An angel giving John a tour of heaven showed him "a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month" (Revelation 22:1-2).

"Every month" directly implies time in heaven.

After an introduction to "the great city, the holy Jerusalem," and a detailed examination of the city, its 12 gates, and its walls, John observed, "But I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light. And the nations of those who are saved shall walk in its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory and honor into it. Its gates shall not be shut at all by day (there shall be no night there). And they shall bring the glory and the honor of the nations into it" (Revelation 21:22-26).

Two key important parts of this are restated a few verses later: "There shall be no night there: They need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light" (Revelation 22:5).

These do not say there is no sun or moon, but that there is "no need" of the sun or of the moon. The second instance contains an additional word that implies we won't have a desire to hold on to a light as that will be completely unnecessary.

September 6, 2013

24 Thrones

Around the throne were twenty-four thrones, and on the thrones I saw twenty-four elders sitting, clothed in white robes; and they had crowns of gold on their heads.
Revelation 4:4

August 30, 2013

He who is in you is greater

You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.
1 John 4:4

August 23, 2013

They think it strange

In regard to these, they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same flood of dissipation, speaking evil of you.
1 Peter 4:4

August 16, 2013

Makes himself an enemy of God

Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
James 4:4

August 9, 2013

God rested on the seventh day

For He has spoken in a certain place of the seventh day in this way: “And God rested on the seventh day from all His works”
Hebrews 4:4

August 2, 2013

Turned aside to fables

and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.
2 Timothy 4:4

July 26, 2013

Every creature of God is good

For every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving
1 Timothy 4:4

July 19, 2013

His own vessel

that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor
1 Thessalonians 4:4

June 28, 2013

One hope of your calling

There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling
Ephesians 4:4

June 21, 2013

The fullness of the time had come

But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law
Galatians 4:4

June 14, 2013

The god of this age

whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.
2 Corinthians 4:4

June 12, 2013

Who can forgive sins?

The scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, “Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
Luke 5:21

June 7, 2013

Not justified by this

For I know of nothing against myself, yet I am not justified by this; but He who judges me is the Lord.
1 Corinthians 4:4

June 5, 2013

Why have You forsaken Me?

At the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?” which is translated, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”
Mark 15:34, Psalm 22:1

June 1, 2013

Faith without works is righteousness

But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness
Romans 4:5

May 31, 2013

May 29, 2013

May 24, 2013

Many of those who heard the word believed

However, many of those who heard the word believed; and the number of the men came to be about five thousand.
Acts 4:4

May 22, 2013

What had happened?

Those who fed the swine fled, and they told it in the city and in the country. And they went out to see what it was that had happened.
Mark 5:14

May 15, 2013

Who can this be?

They feared exceedingly, and said to one another, “Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!”
Mark 4:41

May 10, 2013

It is written

But Jesus answered him, saying, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.’”
Luke 4:4

May 8, 2013

May 3, 2013

Some seed fell

And it happened, as he sowed, that some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds of the air came and devoured it.
Mark 4:4

May 1, 2013

Which is easier?

Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Arise, take up your bed and walk’?
Mark 2:9

April 26, 2013

Man shall live by every word from the mouth of God

But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’”
Matthew 4:4