Summary: I want you to remember that part of that exciting anticipation is His promise to reward His servants for a job well done. Tonight, I want you to see that Scripture not only supports the idea of eternal rewards, it spells out the specifics.
Crowns Anyone! 1 Corinthians 3:10-14NASB
Bob Carlyle, who sang Butterfly Kisses a few years back, also sang these words in the song Heaven: “Sometimes this tired old world starts bringing my heart down, but you gotta bear the cross if you want to wear the crown.” To have reward, you must first undergo hard times. Jesus told us that we too must follow God’s will for us; sometimes it comes like a cross, a burden that seems too heavy to bear. What is your burden today? What are you afraid to bear? What are you holding out on? What is God saying to you, that you are telling Him “no”?
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. (John 14:1)
According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it. 11 For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work. 14 If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward.
I want you to remember that part of that exciting anticipation is His promise to reward His servants for a job well done. Tonight, I want you to see that Scripture not only supports the idea of eternal rewards, it spells out the specifics.
As I read our text, I found 3 primary facts about rewards.
Most rewards are received in heaven, not on earth.
There are earthly rewards, but when it comes to servanthood, God reserves special honor for that day when “each man's work will become evident” and “He shall receive a reward.”
1 Corinthians 3:13-14NLT But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person’s work has any value. 14 If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward.
2. All rewards are based on quality, not quantity.
We humans are impressed with size and volume, noise and numbers. It’s really easy to forget that God’s eye’s are on motive.
Again, when He rewards servants, it will be based on quality- Which really means everyone has equal opportunity to receive a reward.
Illustration: An elderly woman who prays before an audience of one will be rewarded as much as the evangelist who preaches before an audience of thousands.
3. No reward that is postponed will be forgotten.
God doesn’t settle His accounts at the end of everyday. Nor does He close out His books toward the end of everyone’s life.
Remember this, However when that day in eternity dawns, when time shall be no more on this earth, no act of serving others- be it well-known or unknown to others- will be forgotten.
Unlike many people today, God keeps His promises.
2 Corinthians 1:19-20NLT For Jesus Christ, the Son of God, does not waver between “Yes” and “No.” He is the one whom Silas, Timothy, and I preached to you, and as God’s ultimate “Yes,” He always does what he says. 20 For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!” And through Christ, our “Amen” (which means “Yes”) ascends to God for his glory.
In other words, “When you're obedient to Christ, God hears an amen!”
According to one person's count, there are 3573 promises in the Bible. The word promise itself occurs over 50 times in the King James Bible.
Just one example: 2 Peter 1:4NLT And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.
Don’t forget, 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 record keeper and judge.
Again back to the text, 1 Corinthians 3:10-11NLT Because of God’s grace to me, I have laid the foundation like an expert builder. Now others are building on it. But whoever is building on this foundation must be very careful. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have—Jesus Christ.
Believe me, “There will be times that the only thing that keeps you going is a promise from God that your work is not in vain.”