Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.
If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
 

3:11 foundation. No part of a structure should be built without a strong foundation if it is expected to stand. Similarly creation is the foundation of the life of the cosmos, and Jesus Christ was the Creator before He became the Savior. The record of His creation in Genesis is the foundation of all revelation. Jesus Christ, first as Creator, then as Redeemer, is the foundation of any true and lasting Christian life.

3:13 what sort. The purifying fires of Christ’s judgment seat (II Corinthians 5:10) will try our works of what sort they are, not how numerous or how great they are. Quality and motivation count more with the Lord than quantity and reputation.

3:15 shall be saved. All who have made Christ the foundation of their lives are saved, and they will be saved even though their works are burned up at the judgment seat. This judgment, therefore, is of believers only, and will determine only rewards or loss of rewards. Note also I Peter 4:17 and I Corinthians 4:5. Judgment will “begin at the house of God,” when every man shall have “[his] praise of God” (I Corinthians 4:5).


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