[quote="MarcoPolo, post:16, topic:184778"]
I disagree. This doesn't address my larger point of fire used as the analogy at all specifically with the materials of gold or silver, or that the person himself is said to pass through the fire. As Tim said earlier in the debate, White tries to separate the person from the works, when Paul's passage certainly does not, culminating with the person being saved "through fire." I also pointed out how in the NT, "suffer loss" means "no reward" in 1 other Pauline passage. In the other Pauline passage, also to the Corinthians no less, it refers to damage or harm (2 Cor 7:9). I think your final implication above does not do justice to this or the rest of my post.
I think the following goes along well with what you're saying
Now, we remember that in the background to 1 Cor. 3, we see that Paul is talking about some doing bad works which are sins (the very verses brought up earlier,). In fact, much of the Corinthians letter is Paul complaining about the sins of the Corinthians. Thus, he is not merely speaking about greater rewards in heaven for good works, and just less rewards if you have bad works. Because bad works are sins, and according to the passage, must be judged by God. You can not separate this background from verses 14-15 and verses 16-17. Here, Paul is speaking about the day of judgment which tests each man's work. And here, he is not speaking about merely giving rewards to Christians, but judgment for sins. Now, in v. 14 what do we see? Those who have built on the foundation of Jesus Christ, and have co-labored successfully get their reward. And what is the reward? Entrance into heaven. But also rewards for their faithfulness. Now what do we see in v. 15? His works are burnt up. What works? Sins, which are bad works. He suffers loss, the word, with the background can be interpreted 'punished.' What is the difference between the people in v. 14 and the people in v. 15. The people in v. 14, who were so obedient (with gold, stone and silver) that they did not have to suffer loss, or punishment, and went straight to heaven. Why do I say that? Look further in v. 15. it says he will be saved, as through fire. Now, not being a Catholic Scholar who knows Greek, let us look at the word sometimes translated 'suffer loss'. Robert Sungenis writes this:
[INDENT][INDENT]The Catholic exegesis of 1 Cor 3:15 is further supported by Paul's use of the Greek word zemiothesetai (translated as "suffer loss" in many translations).** Its verbal root zemioo, has a wider meaning than merely suffering loss. It can also refer to punishment. Hence, there is a component of punishment associated with the word that is not brought out in most translations. Interestingly enough, in the Septuagint, zemioo is used only in reference to punishment. Since Catholic doctrine understands purgatory as a place to expiate temporal punishment for sin, then the lexical meaning of zemiothesetai which refers to suffering punishment fits in very well with classical Catholic teaching on 1 Cor 3:15. **The Christian will suffer punishment for his bad works. It should also be noted that the Greek word "houtos" ("yet so") in 1 Cor 3:15 is an adverb modifying the verb "sotheesetai" ("shall be saved") and points to how the man is saved, i.e., by fire. "Houtos" can best be translated as "likewise," "similarly," "just as," "in the same way," "even so," "in the same manner," etc. These words are comparative. In context, compare the fire of verse 13 with the fire of verse 15. Hence, Paul is saying that in the same way that God's fire will purge any dross or foreign material from the work accomplished (verse 13), similarly, the fire will purge the man himself of any imperfections (verse 15). The Scriptures use two images of God's fire. One is a refining fire which makes good material better by purging out impurities (e.g., Malachi 3:2-3; 1 Peter 1:7); the other is a consuming fire that totally destroys the object in view (e.g., 2 Thessalonians 1:8; Hebrews 12:29). Those who suffer temporal punishment for sin, either in this life or in purgatory, do so under God's refining fire. On the other hand, those destined for eternal damnation suffer God's destroying fire. Catholic theology holds that these respective judgments occur for the individual immediately after death. It is referred to as the "particular" judgment. At the final judgment, one's eternal destiny is finally sealed. From net2.netacc.net/~mafg/prgtry01.htm [/INDENT]
Thus, the language pointed to here in v. 15, points to punishment. Now, some will say that it is the work that is burned, not him. Thus, it is only figuratively speaking about works. However, as Sungenis, notes, this does refer to the person, as well. Protestants will generally try to say that this has nothing to do with punishment for sins. That one will be 'barely saved', but this is only a reward for good works. If one has works that are bad, they are not sins, according to this view. There is no such distinction in Scripture for that theory in any way, shape or form that bad works are not sins. 1 Corinthians 3 shows that there is punishment for sins in judgment. Some are punished eternally by being destroyed by God (v. 17), others do get refined, where they are purged of iniquity (v. 15), which is purgatory, so they could join those whose works were pure gold, silver & stone (v. 14). [/INDENT]