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Title: Paul's teaching on the Christian's future reward, with special reference to I Corinthians 3:10-17
Author: Rosscup, James E.
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 1976
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In previous studies of reward in Pauline thought several specific aspects of Paul's main passage on reward as related to the Christian's work and judgment (I Cor. 3:10-17) have not received adequate attention. Chapter I sets these forth in detail, and the thesis attempts to deal with them in particular while investigating the entire passage in depth and relating its teachings to Paul's ideas elsewhere and to five areas at his background. Chapter II discusses the fact that the OT placed its major emphasis on material aspects of reward in the present life and dealt for the most part with reward for the people of Israel corporately. Still the OT also gives substantial recognition of reward for the individual, usually in the present life but some times beyond this life in texts pertaining to resurrection and immortality. The latter is dearest in the speoifio expectation of eternal life and glory in Dan. 12:21. Chapter III traces the growing focus in the Apocrypha and Pseudopigrapha on reward for the individual and beyond this life The reward Is in terms of eternal life and glory or entrance into God's kingdom. Such an emphasis comes after the demise of Israel's national fortunes in the Babylonian exile and during the distresses of the righteous in lntertestanental times. The reward is often viewed as a vindication for the righteous, who had not received an ultimately satisfying reward which they expected from a just God in the present life. Chapters IV and V deal with the expectations of reward among the men of Qumran and the rabbis respectively. In both groups, the future reward is again eternal life, glory, and the kingdom of God. The rabbinic focus is on man's character and works in observing the law as meriting reward. Chapter VI concerns Jesus' teaching on reward. He is in contrast to rabbinic thought la its general pattern by integrating reward emphatically within a framework of God's grace and insisting that men are not able to merit it. Jesus sees reward in three main aspects: it is a bestowal of supreme blessings in continuity with present values, such as a fuller realization of righteousness for those who hunger and thirst after righteousness now: it is a remuneration for faithful commitment to the Lord and His interests In this life; and it is a greater capacity for serving God in His future kingdom. Jesus agreed essentially with the other sources of background that the reward in its general definition is eternal life, glory, or the kingdom. However, within this general sphere of blessedness He also recognised degrees of reward, evidently in different ranks or positions or roles in the kingdom, so that reward would not be precisely the same for all. Chapters VII-X deal with Paul's teaching. Chapter VII sets the context of 1 Cor. 3:10-17. There, Paul holds that the Lord will reward the Christian at His parousia in accordance with "work" done in respect to building Christ's church. The "work" pertains to sound teaching, activity in service, and character: in brief terms it is Christian "fruit" or "the fruit of the Spirit." Paul utilizes himself and Apollos as examples but conceives the "work" to be that of any Christian, who is to live by the same principle and may receive reward just as the leaders. Chapter VIII argues that various terms for judgment, as in I Cor. 3:13 and other Pauline passages, basically focus on the fact that the Lori will thoroughly reveal the true quality of all work as a basis for bestowing an appropriate reward to each person. The chapter also articulates the position that "work" in Pauline and other NT thought is simply the singular form of which "works" is the plural form, and that the Christian as well as the non-Christian will be judged according to both. However, this does not mean that the Christian's justification, otherwise said to be by faith without works, will be by works in the sense that works merit it, a contradiction in Pauline thought. Rather, Paul means that at the judgment the Lord will look for the nanifestation of righteousness by faith by Inquiring into the works (fruit) that expressed its reality. Chapter IX deals with the nature of the reward itself.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available