One of the great doctrines of Christianity is our belief in a heavenly home. Ultimately, we shall spend eternity with God in the place He has prepared for us. And part of that exciting anticipation is His promise to reward His servants for a job well done.
Most rewards are received in heaven, not on earth. God reserves special honor for that day when "each man's work will become evident" and "he shall receive a reward" (1 Cor. 3:13–14).
All rewards are based on quality, not quantity. God's eye is always on motive.
No reward that is postponed will be forgotten. When that day in eternity dawns, no act of serving others—be it well-known or unknown to others—will be forgotten.
Someone once counted all the promises in the Bible and came up with an amazing figure of almost 7500. Among that large number are some specific promises servants can claim today.
When we did what was right, with the right motive, but received no credit, no acknowledgment, not even a "thank you" . . . we have God's promise that "we shall reap."
When any servant has served and given and sacrificed and then willingly stepped aside for God to receive the glory, our heavenly Father promises he will receive back.
And then there are the eternal rewards. Some of them are referred to as "crowns" that are being set aside for God's servants. The Bible speaks of at least five crowns:
- The imperishable crown (1 Cor. 9:24–27), awarded to those believers who consistently bring the flesh under the Holy Spirit's control.
- The crown of exultation (Phil. 4:1; 1 Thess. 2:19–20), distributed to those servants who are faithful to declare the gospel.
- The crown of righteousness (2 Tim. 4:7–8), awarded to those who live each day with eternity's values in view.
- The crown of life (James 1:12), promised to those who endure trials, loving the Savior all the way.
- The crown of glory (1 Pet. 5:1–4), promised to those who faithfully "shepherd the flock."
What a scene! All God's servants before His throne. They are bowing in worship, having cast all crowns before their Lord in adoration and praise, ascribing worth and honor to the only One deserving of praise—the Lord God!
God alone is perfectly and consistently just. We forget; God remembers. We see an action; God sees a motive. This qualifies Him as the best recordkeeper and judge.
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