The Ultimate Reward

Opening Prayer: 

Dear Lord, as the world seems to reject you more and more, you are asking your people to minister more and more, to seek and save the lost. Let our hearts be pricked, our consciences burdened, and our motivation be strong to do all that we can to build your kingdom here on earth while we have breath!

 

Read: Revelation 22:12-13, NIV

12 "Look, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to each person according to what they have done. 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.”

 

Reflect:   

It is important to reaffirm the truth now that Salvation comes from repenting of our sins, believing on the Lord Jesus Christ and acknowledging him as Lord and Savior of your life. “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.” (John 5:24 NIV). There are times when the enemy (the devil) attacks us and tries to convince us that we are not good enough to make it to heaven. The truth is, we are not good enough. Only Jesus is, but because he died on the cross in our place 2000 years ago, he made provision for us to have eternal life. Now, as believers, we can rest assured of his promise of eternal life. “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you will know that you have eternal life.” (I John 5:13 NIV).

Having said that, and our eternal home now established, we look into what Jesus’ promise of a reward really means. This is not the judgment of going to heaven or hell, but this is the assessment of what you have done to build the Kingdom of God, to carry out the Great Commission. Jesus commanded us saying, “therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost; and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely, I am with you always, even to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:19-20 NIV). As we are all his disciples, we are all called to this commission. In yesterday’s scripture reading, Jesus also proclaimed that those who left family and friends for his sake would be rewarded for it. This again speaks of a reward given beyond finding our names written in the Lamb’s book of life.

So, what is this reward? It is not exactly clear what it is, but from a handful of verses in the Bible, we  begin to catch a glimpse. Yesterday’s text in Matthew 19:29 talked about receiving a “hundredfold reward.” Isaiah 40:10b (NIV) says, “See, his reward is with him, and his recompense accompanies him,” which is his reward for us.  We see that God is watching us and his rewards will follow our efforts for him, “so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” (Matthew 6:18 NIV). We know that we will receive a crown of glory and that Jesus is preparing a mansion with many rooms. The crown you receive and the ‘rooms’ waiting for you may well be proportionate to the reward that Jesus Christ has in store for you. My honest opinion is that these rewards will be so great that they will be too much for us to fathom and understand today. So, for now, as Paul exhorted us, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:14 NIV).

 

Apply: 

From the text today, we can see that Jesus could come back anytime soon! This should be great motivation for us to be about our father’s business and be a willing servant in his plans to build the kingdom. Consider asking God to put someone in your path who you can encourage or perhaps share the gospel message with. You don’t have to do it all. Some are called to plant the seed (of faith), some to water and others to harvest. You merely need to be obedient. So, ask God to show you who you can reach…then reach out! There are people out there that only you can connect with…put God to the test! Ask him to use you and he will! I promise!

 

Closing Prayer: 

Father, we pray that you put that special person in our path that we can minister to and share the love of Jesus with. We know you don’t give us more than we can handle, and we know that you equip us to be soldiers in your kingdom, so use us. Send us to do your work, but please send us with the power of your Holy Spirit, because we can’t do it alone.   

Terry Schneider