Donate/Tithe with Bank Deposit (direct to Mike Connell)

Overview of Eternal Rewards - Part 1 (3 of 12)

Mike Connell

Overview of Eternal Rewards - Part 1 (3 of 12) One of the major themes of Jesus teachings was the theme of Eternal Rewards. This topic is seldom taught in churches, but it provides major motivation for holiness, personal transformation and faithful service.

We shall all stand before the Judgment seat of Christ to give account for our stewardship as followers of Christ. At stake are position, honour and reward in the coming Kingdom of Christ.

This message looks at the Two of the glorious Eternal Rewards that the Bible reveals are prepared for those who love Jesus, overcome in life and serving faithfully.... Eternal Intimacy and Eternal Authority.
Introduction

We're starting again on Eternal Rewards #3, and this study's going to be called: Overview of Eternal Rewards - Part 1. There'll be two parts to this part, because there's quite a lot of teaching on eternal rewards, and I think it really helps if you do understand them. We start at the introduction, and we just cover a little bit of familiar ground, and in this study I'm going to actually list for you the main categories of rewards, and then we're going to look at two of them and go through them in more detail. Next time round we'll go through some of the others.

Main Message

One of the great things that Jesus had was the teaching on Eternal Rewards. He constantly talked about it, because it motivates us to look beyond temporary, and to eternal.

Matthew 16:27 - "For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father and with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works."

The word reward means to recompense, or to pay what is appropriate and what is due. What he's saying then, is that there is a day when the Lord will come, and He'll come in power! He'll come in glory; and that will be a time when He will reward, or acknowledge in a very specific way, the labours that we've done in serving Him.

The second thing is, there's many different kinds of rewards. When you start to read through the Book of Revelation and then through other places in the Bible, you find many rewards that are listed are different kinds - and it makes sense. God is extremely creative, and if He can create the universe, and create all the details of creation, then He's got unlimited resources to find ways to reward us, which are appropriate for us, and to recognise what we've done. In Revelations 2-3 He describes a number of rewards. He talks in Revelations 2-3 to the churches, and firstly He reveals Himself, an aspect of His character; then He talks about knowing their works, and honours them for the works they've done; then He points out the bit they need to come to grips with or overcome - and then makes promises to the overcomers!

If we're familiar with the significance and importance of different rewards, then it's a huge motivation; becoming aware of it requires a response. Once you're aware of it, you then need to actually then do something - having the information won't be enough! It's meant to change our life and give us motivation.

In Colossians, for example - Colossians 3:22-24, we saw this verse last week: "Bondservants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh, not with eyeservice as men-pleasers, but in sincerity of heart, fearing the Lord. For whatever you do, do it heartily, as though you were doing it to the Lord and not to men, knowing... (and here it is - you do it this way) ...knowing that from the Lord you receive the reward of inheritance, for you serve the Lord Jesus Christ."

What he's saying there in the verse is that, when we know that God is watching every detail of our lives, every aspect of our heart and thoughts and motivation, and that He will recompense us, then we can boldly face up to the difficulties that we have with people, with working with people, with serving people. He's talking to slaves, people who are constantly, or frequently, abused by their masters. He didn't address the issue then, of the slavery or the injustice. He put in their heart an eternal perspective, so they could overcome in the midst of their difficulty.

Third thing is, rewards are not given automatically. There would be many Christians who would like to think, well: we'll all be equal; or everyone's the same. But actually, although we're of equal value to God, nevertheless He relates to us differently based on our response, so rewards are not automatic. They come if we fulfil specific conditions.

Revelations 3:21 - "to him who overcomes I'll grant with him to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and am sat down with My Father on His throne."

John 12:26 - "If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me and where I am My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honour."

Notice there, in both of those passages there is a promise to someone who does something - to him who overcomes, I'll give this place of authority with Me. The second passage there, in John 12 - anyone serves Me, let him follow Me and then He says My Father will honour him.

He talks then about Authority in the first passage, and then He talks about Honour in the second passage. God desires to raise our level of responsibility and authority in the coming kingdom. God desires to honour us in the coming kingdom. Notice there in that first verse, to 'overcome' means to 'subdue' or 'get the victory over' something. At some stage we'll go and look at the Churches of Revelation, but in each one, there was something to overcome; and the last one of all, was the church that was lukewarm. If you look of course at the church now, you will see Luke-warmness is a significant problem, but one of the greatest promises are to those who overcome Luke-warmness, passivity and apathy.