The misconception about the "Prophets" reward

Posted by Mark Labuschagne on Wednesday, April 27, 2011

There is quiet a lot of misconception regarding what the "Prophets reward" is and I felt that I would post this teaching in the hope that it  will help you to understand a little more about this subject.       


An encouraging aspect of faithfully serving the Lord is knowing that we will be rewarded for all eternity. The loss of rewards, however, is also a possibility and even likely for many Christians living in these last days of apostasy. We hear a great deal about the former but not the latter. This article will help you to have a grasp of what a Christian can expect regarding receiving or losing rewards---for all eternity.


One of the first things to consider is that if your motivation for serving God is to receive a reward then you probably will not be rewarded as greatly as you could have been. Our motivation should be because of our love for the Lord and our desire to serve and please Him.


Many Christians think that it is important to have a large ministry, or be a well-known preacher or evangelist. But did you know that God is more concerned in making you more like Christ than He is in your ministry?There is one all-important criterion to understand concerning rewards; that is, 


The vast majority of men (and women) in the ministry today have not even been called, nor prepared, nor sent by God, so how can they be rewarded for doing something that God did not send them to do? Jesus said that He only said and did what the Father told Him. He was always in the perfect will of the Father, both in deeds and timing.


You probably will be surprised when you get to heaven to find out that some "little old ladies" who never preached a sermon, nor were ever heard of by more than a few around her in her life, will receive a much greater reward than any well-known "pastor" or preacher or evangelist that comes to your mind. Why? Because there are some "little old ladies" that are more Christ-like than all the big-name preachers put together. Jesus said that if you want to be first you will be last (Mk. 9:35). In other words, if you desire to be first, your motive is wrong. Jesus also said many who are first (prominent) now will be last in heaven and many who are last now will be first (Mt. 19:30).


Jesus warned not to lay up treasures here on earth, but in heaven, and that the deceitfulness of riches chokes the Word. Our Lord said you cannot serve both God and money.


Jesus said you are blessed when people insult you and persecute you because of Him. Rejoice and be glad, He said, because great is your reward in heaven (Mt. 5:11-12).


Christians must be careful not to do their good deeds to be seen by others. "If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven" (Mt. 6:1).Christians who give in order to have their name put on a plaque or otherwise published for all to see have received their reward in full (6:2).  Also, when you give to the poor do not make it publicly known to be honored by men. Your giving must be in secret (6:3).


You should give as you are led by the Holy Spirit. Ministers who are always asking for money have not been sent by God (even if they are true Christians) and you are "throwing your money away."  You should not expect any eternal reward for giving to a work that is not of God, no matter how benevolent it is.


One who gives out of his wealth is giving very little, if anything, in God's eyes. Jesus said the poor widow who gave from her poverty gave more than than all the rich people who gave large amounts (Mk. 12:41-44). God has nothing good to say about the wealthy in the New Testament. In fact, for one to be a disciple (learner) of Jesus Christ, one must give away or forsake all that he has (Lk. 14:33). Many who are last will be first, and the first, last.


There is a special reward for prophets who faithfully serve the Lord and endure the inevitable persecution and hardships that come with exercising the prophetic gift, that is, proclaiming the truths of God's Word. Unlike the evangelist whose primary ministry is to the unsaved, the prophet is raised up, especially in times of apostasy, to preach to God's people. But a prophet must speak the truth in love.


One can have the gift of prophecy, but if he does not have love he is nothing (1 Cor. 13:2). "Anyone who receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet's reward" (Mt. 10:41a). Also, there is a reward for a righteous man, and anyone who receives a righteous man because he is a righteous man will receive a righteous man's reward (Mt. 10:41b). Indeed, there is a reward for anyone who even gives a cup of cold water to a true disciple of Jesus (one who has met the three conditions in Luke 14 to be a disciple, Mt. 10:42). Does this mean that even some of the unsaved will be rewarded? No. Unsaved people do not receive prophets or righteous men or disciples because they are prophets or righteous men or disciples.


It is God's desire to conform us to the image of Christ (Rom. 8:29), therefore the more Christ-like you are when you die  the greater your reward will be. Becoming Christ-like has nothing to do with specific works, per se, but rather is based on whether or not we are fulfilling the role to which God has called us. In other words, it does not matter whether one is a well-known evangelist or a woman who is the keeper of a home, for example. The popular evangelist, however, if he was not sent by God to be an evangelist, need not expect any reward for that work, nor could he have become as Christ-like as he would have by fulfilling a role for him.


"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward" (Col. 3:23-24). "Watch out that you do not lose what you have worked for, but that you may be rewarded fully" (2 Jn. 1:8). else. And if she was faithful in fulfilling her God-ordained role, then she could receive a much greater reward than Likewise, if God wanted a woman to be the keeper of the home, then she could not possibly become more Christ-like by doing something she was not.


Some Christians will not only forfeit rewards, but will forfeit their salvation as well. Paul warned, "The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith" (1 Tim. 4:1), and that "Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith" (1 Tim. 6:10). The apostle also said that the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine; they will turn their ears away from the truth" (2 Tim. 4:3-4). 


Jesus warned that we should be overcomers so that we would not lose our crown (Rev. 3:11-12).  Jesus said concerning the Great Tribulation that "many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other" (Mt. 24:10). And our Lord said, "Whoever disowns Me before men, I will disown him before My Father in heaven" (Mt. 10:33). They, along with anyone else who takes the Mark of the Beast, will spend eternity in the Lake of Fire (Rev. 14:11).


Christians who faithfully "run the race" of service to Christ will receive a crown that lasts forever (1 Cor. 9:24-25). There will be glory in the presence of the Lord associated with crowns received (1 Thes. 2:19). Those who persevere, even to the point of death, and love God will receive the crown of life (James 1:12; Rev. 2:10). Jesus said, "Everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields" for His sake will be greatly rewarded (Mt. 19:29).


There is a crown of righteousness for all who long for Jesus' appearing (2 Tim. 4:8). Elders who faithfully serve the Lord will receive a crown of glory (1 Pet. 5:1-4). But don't count on keeping any crown that you receive as a reward. Christians who receive various crowns will doubtless be like the elders mentioned in Revelation and lay their crowns at Jesus' feet because He is the only one who is really worthy. It would only be because of the grace that He gives to us that we could receive any crowns anyway.


The essence of receiving rewards will not be in wearing a crown for all eternity. Our real reward will be the ability, in varying degrees, to comprehend God and enjoy communion with Him for all eternity. We might think of the rewards for Christians like this: Everyone who goes to heaven will be perfect. But some of the first on earth will be last in heaven and some of the last will be first.


Even though everyone in heaven will be perfect, like perfect diamonds of varying sizes we will have varying capacities to reflect the glory of God. God is the Source of the light, all we can do is reflect that light or glory. "Star differs from star in splendor. So will it be with the resurrection of the dead" (1 Cor. 15:41-42). A small, perfect, diamond will not reflect as much light from God as a larger, perfect, diamond. Likewise, there will be varying capacities to enjoy God for all eternity. This will be our reward.


Our reward therefore is to be more like Jesus and nothing more than this. It is not to have "More money" or anything else that benifits the flesh... You do well to remember that. 


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