The testing of our work by fire - collective or individual?

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Eoghan

Puritan Board Senior
I was reading David Prior's commentary on 1 Corinthians 3:9-15 and he begged the question as to whether Paul's metaphor of the church as a communal building becomes one of individual workmanship. As I read his paragraph on p59 I realised that the text can be read as the testing by fire of the building (i.e. the whole church) or as the testing by fire of the individual Christian.

[BIBLE]1 Corinthians 3:9-15[/BIBLE]

If we stick to the individual interpretation where in the narrative does Paul cease talking of the building and start talking about the individual?

If the corporate interpretation is maintained are we to view the testing by fire to be of the church as the corporate body and the salvation of the individual to be
a) the salvation of him as the individual shepherd who has built badly or
b) the individual(s) who has been badly led?


This incidentally is the main text on which the Catholic doctrine of purgatory is founded as FF BRUCE reminds us
 
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