accountable, building materials, building work, Community of Faith, Fire test, foundations, gold, grass, hay, Messiah's Ekklesia, poor-quality, precious gemstones, shoddy, silver, substandard, suffer loss, top-quality, warning, wood, Yeshua's Gospel
10 Using the grace YeHoVaH gave me, I laid a foundation, like a skilled master-builder; and another man is building on it. But let each one be careful how he builds. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Yeshua the Messiah. 12 Some will use gold, silver or precious stones in building on this foundation; while others will use wood, grass or straw. 13 But each one’s work will be shown for what it is; the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire — the fire will test the quality of each one’s work. 14 If the work someone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward; 15 if it is burned up, he will have to bear the loss: he will still escape with his life, but it will be like escaping through a fire. ~ 1 Corinthians 3:10-15
In the above verses, apostle Paul compares himself to a skilled master builder who laid Yeshua the Messiah’s Ekklesia (Community of Faith) Foundation. Then Paul warns that the preachers and teachers who build on the foundation he laid are responsible for their own work – they will be held accountable for their top-quality work (metaphorically speaking, whatever they built with materials made of gold, silver, and precious stones); likewise, they will be held accountable for their poor-quality work (metaphorically speaking, whatever they built with materials made of wood, hay, and straw). What Paul is saying is that some building materials are better than others. This truth is why he also warns each present and future Gospel preacher or teacher who builds on top of the Foundation he laid to use materials that won’t be consumed by Fire.
Apparently, the Ruach HaKodesh had revealed to Paul the real reason why choosing the best building materials was the wisest decision a Yeshua follower could make – especially if he or she functioned as an apostle, prophet, evangelist, shepherd, or teacher in the Kingdom of YeHoVaH. The Ruach HaKodesh, no doubt, wanted Paul’s contemporaries and successors who preached and taught the Gospel of Yeshua to know that they would be departing from the Foundation, which Paul laid, whenever they built on that Foundation with fables, idle stories, and corrupt doctrines of men that were mingled with the unadulterated doctrine of Yeshua’s Gospel. This kind of building – using fables, idle stories, and corrupt doctrines of men as their building materials – weakened Yeshua’s Gospel. This truth is also why the Ruach HaKodesh, no doubt, wanted Paul’s contemporaries and successors who preached and taught the Gospel of Yeshua to know that their other gospel – their departure from the Gospel apostle Paul taught – would cause those who preached and taught it to suffer loss. Without exception, their building work would fail the Fire test.
The other bad news is that, in addition to the preachers and teachers’ inferior building materials failing the Fire test, these preachers and teachers also would be held accountable for the ways their substandard building work affected the Yeshua believers they preached to and taught – especially if their preaching and teaching made or kept Yeshua’s believers spiritually immature and unfaithful. Lastly, their poor-quality building work also would cause them to lose the heavenly rewards that overcomers earn. However, the one good news is that the apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds, and teachers who preached and taught a wood, grass, and hay gospel were still saved, despite the fact that their substandard building work was (or would be) consumed by Fire.
The inconvenient truth is that everyone today who is born again and saved has been called to be an evangelist. Even so, it is irrefutable that each believer in Yeshua is either a preacher or teacher (or both). As such, Paul is speaking to every evangelist about the top-quality or poor-quality building materials that today’s evangelists use to build on Yeshua the Messiah’s Ekklesia (Community of Faith) Foundation that Paul laid. For this reason, every preacher and teacher should always build with top-quality materials – should always preach and teach the kind of Gospel that helps to make believers in Yeshua’s Community of Faith spiritually mature and faithfully obedient. If they don’t, these preachers and teachers will suffer loss.