ER3. Overview of Eternal Rewards Part 1
Friday, 19 June 2020
ER3. Overview of the Eternal Rewards Part 1
1. A Great Theme of Jesus Teaching was Eternal Rewards
· Jesus constantly taught about seeking Eternal rewards, and the need to pursue them
· “For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works.”(Mat.16:27)
2. There are very Many Different types of Rewards
· In Rev.2-3 Jesus names many different rewards for those who Overcome specific challenges and trials
· The many Eternal Rewards that are described potentially form an important part of our Eternal Destiny
· We need to be familiar with the significance and importance of the different rewards revealed.
· Understanding what is at stake gives us great motivation for perseverance and transformation
“Bondservants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh, not with eye-service, as men-pleasers, but in sincerity of heart, fearing God.
And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.
But he who does wrong will be repaid for what he has done, and there is no partiality” (Col.3:22-24)
3. Rewards are Not Given Automatically…Only to those who fulfil specific Conditions
· “To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne” (Rev.3:21)
· “If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor” (Jn.12:26)
· Note that in each of these scriptures receiving a reward is conditional upon our works and actions in response to Jesus
4. Our Small Sacrifices Now have Huge Recompense Eternally
· “You were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things.” (Mt. 25:21)
· “Well done...you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities.” (Lk. 19:17)
· God greatly values our small expressions of obedience in our mind , emotions and will
· He remembers them and rewards them in a much much greater proportion
· God is a “Rewarder” ( Heb.11:6) and He is extremely generous!
· “Everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My name’s sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life.” (Mt. 19:29)
5. A Summary of these Many Rewards
· The many Rewards mentioned in the Bible could be listed under the following possible headings:
· Reward 1. Eternal Intimacy
Our communion with God will vary according to our spiritual capacity.
Jesus will reward some by writing the Father’s name on them. This includes receiving insight about God.
· Reward 2. Eternal Authority
We will all have different work assignments with varying measures of authority and responsibility
“...because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities.” (Lk.19:17)
· Reward 3. Eternal Glory
God’s glory will be manifested in our resurrected bodies in varying measures.
“The righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father.” (Mt. 13:43)
· Reward 4. Eternal Garments
Garments will vary in glory according to how believers lived
“He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments,”(Rev.3:4)
There may be many different types of clothing with unique designs, fabric, brightness, color, etc.
· Reward 5. Victor’s Crowns
Some will receive crowns to publicly honor their private victories
“Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him”(Jam1:12)
· Reward 6. Honour & Praise
Each will receive varying praise from God
The Lord comes...then each one’s praise [affirmation] will come from God. (1 Cor. 4:5)
“….likewise he said to him, “You also be over five cities.” (Lk. 19:17-19)
· Reward 7. Riches & Treasure
Jesus’ call to gain treasure in heaven includes many different things
“…but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. (Mt.6:20).
· Reward 8. Vindication
Being vindicated before one’s enemies
“Indeed I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, who say they are Jews and are not, but lie—indeed I will make them come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you” (Rev.3:9)
6. The First Three of these Rewards Deserve Special Attention
· This is because God’s original design for man is to be a Son
Having Intimate Relationship with Father….Knowing the depths of His heart and communing with God
Exercising Authority on behalf of Father……Working with Him to extend His Kingdom
Representing Father………………………………….Revealing through words and actions His Character and Glory
· One of the Rewards mentioned more than any other is Ruling and Reigning with Christ
II. Reward 1. Eternal Intimacy
1. The Parable of The Ten Virgins (Mat.25:1-13)
· This parable reveals that some believers will have greater intimacy with the Lord than others.
· All were Virgins
Because of the blood of Christ, every believer is a ―pure virgin who has been betrothed to Jesus as His Bride (2 Cor. 11:2 ).
· All Ten Virgins had lamps, and oil and were waiting for the Bridegroom
That means all ten virgins are genuine believers.
· Only the five wise virgins paid the price to purchase the oil in order to make themselves ready
· “ but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps” (Matt. 25:4, 9-10).
· The foolish virgins, on the other hand, lived an undisciplined life. They did not pay the price for the oil
“And the foolish said to the wise, 'Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.'
But the wise answered, saying, 'No, lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.” (Mat.25:8-9)
· They ran out of oil, their light went out, and they did not make themselves ready as a worthy Bride
· Jesus clearly revealed the reward for the wise virgins when He said,
“Those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast; and the door was shut” (Matt. 25:10).
· Because the wise virgins paid the price to purchase oil and to make themselves ready, they were rewarded with eternal intimacy with the Bridegroom.
2. The Promise of Intimacy (Laodicean Overcomers)
· “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.(Rev.3:20)
· Dining with others is an opportunity to relax, laugh together and enjoy one another. It is a time where communication at a deeper heart to heart level occurs
· This promise of dining is one of increased intimacy with Jesus in this life, but mostly will find fulfilment in the Millennial Kingdom at the extended celebration of the Marriage Supper of the Lamb
· “Dine”…. Is the same word used in Rev.19:9 referring to the Marriage Supper
· In the Bible culture dining is a place of intimate conversations and the developing of bonds of friendship and companionship
· “I will dine with him”…. Jesus is offering us the opportunity to experience deep communication and oneness with Him, to celebrate with Him and enjoy His close friendship
· The Marriage Supper of the Lamb is a Highlight of History. It will be a wonderful time of celebration and enjoying close relationship with Jesus
· It is impossible to describe in words the joy and pleasure of this deeper intimacy with Jesus
· David: Intimacy is Indescribable Pleasure
“You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (Ps.16:11)
“They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of Your house, And You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures” (Ps.36:8)
· Paul: Intimacy is A Prize to be Won
Paul described this intimacy as a prize to be won greater than any other pursuit or achievement
“Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ”(Phi.3:8)
3. The Promise of Hidden Manna (Pergamon Overcomers)
· "He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give some of the hidden manna to eat. " (Rev.2:17)
What is Manna?
· Manna was the food supernaturally supplied by God to nourish Israel in the wilderness
· ”So when the children of Israel saw it, they said to one another, "What is it?" For they did not know what it was. And Moses said to them, "This is the bread which the LORD has given you to eat” (Exod.16:15)
· And the house of Israel called its name Manna. And it was like white coriander seed, and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey” (Exod.16:31)
· Manna represents revelation we receive personally from Jesus who is the Bread of Life (Jn.6:48-51)
· The Manna was called “Bread of heaven” and “Angels food” (Ps.78:24-25)
What is Hidden Manna?
· The Manna was hidden on a golden pot in the Ark of the Covenant in the Holy of Holies
· This Hidden Manna could only be seen by the High Priest once a year in the Holy of holies
· Hidden Manna means being fed revelation knowledge of Kingdom mysteries by Jesus personally.
It means a privileged much greater depth of intimacy with Him
4. The Promise of a White Stone with a New Name written upon it (Pergamon Overcomers)
· “I will give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name written which no one knows except him who receives it.” (Rev. 2:17)
What is the White Stone?
· Precious stones were given as awards of honor to those who did valiant service, won victories in the Games, or who performed courageously in battle
· Those receiving these stones with their name on it were given privileged access to special events including games and feats offered by the Roman Empire
· “White”…..to shine or glisten, brilliant, dazzling white
· “White Stone” probably refers to varying degrees of honor and status and privileges at the Marriage Supper of the lamb
New Name Written on it
· Your Name is one of the means by which you are identified.
· Sometimes people are renamed or given a nickname as a sign of endearment and friendship
· Bible names all have a meaning which describes their character or personality
· When God gave people a new name it meant a change of relationship, of status, or of role in the Kingdom
Eg. Abram was renamed Abraham……..Father of a Multitude, Nations (Gen.17:5)
Eg. Sarah was renamed Sarah …………….Princess (Gen.17:15)
Eg. Jacob was renamed Israel………………Prevailing with God (Gen.32:28)
Eg. Simon was renamed Peter……………..The Rock (Mat.16:18)
· Jesus Himself was given a New Name
“Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth”(Phil.2:9-10)
· “Exalted”…. To lift or elevate to the highest possible rank or position, Supreme Majesty and Authority
· Jesus new name reflects that He humbled Himself being obedient to death, and now Father has exalted Him to the highest possible rank……..Eternal Emperor
· Our New Name will characterise who we are, how we lived our lives in the secret place with Jesus, and the rank or position that Father has exalted us to in His Kingdom
· The new name which no one else but God knows describes an intimate , private and deeply personal relationship with Jesus and Father God ( Close friends have secrets they share)
The White Stone with a New Name written upon it means Jesus has raised us to a new level of
deep personal intimate relationship with Him and given us a new rank of status and honor
5. The Promise of Jesus New Name
· “I will write on him My new name.” (Rev. 3:12)
· “Write on him” refers to the Holy Spirit bringing personal revelation to our hearts
· “… clearly you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart.” (2Cor.3:3)
· Jesus new name is the new identity and rank that He now has as King of Kings and Lord of Lords who overcame. He is Supreme Emperor
· “He had a name written that no one knew except Himself”. (Rev. 19:12)
· Jesus will reveal his heart and beauty and glory in a much deeper way to those who overcome
· “He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name.”(Rev.3:12)
· Jesus will impart and share with us a deep revelation of Father God and lift is up to a new realm of loving intimacy, an exalted rank of honor and authority in the Kingdom
6. The Promise of The Morning Star
· “I will give to him the morning star.” (Rev. 2:25-28)
What is the Morning Star?
· The Morning Star is the brightest star in the sky seen just before the dawning of a new day
· The Morning Star is a reference to the Person of Jesus Himself.
· "I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches.
I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star." (Rev.22:16)
· God revealed to Abraham that he Himself was his “exceeding great reward” (Gen.15:1)
· Paul referred to intimacy with Jesus as being a prize to be won (Phil.3:8)
· Overcomers are promised the exceeding great reward of a deeper personal intimacy and relationship with Jesus. He will reveal much much more of His presence and of Himself
7. Now is the Time to Cultivate a Deeper Intimacy with Jesus
· Each of the promises of greater intimacy with jesus in the Millennial Kingdom were give to Overcomers
· “Overcome”……to subdue, prevail, gain the victory
· There are always obstacles to us developing intimacy with Jesus on a daily basis
· Some of these obstacles are External (circumstances) and some of these are Internal(the flesh)
· Intimacy is a progressive journey of deepening connection, openness and responsiveness to Jesus
· We pay the price daily to cultivate Intimacy with Jesus…The rewards are indescribable
Questions for Personal Reflection
1. What has the Holy Spirit impressed upon you in this study?
2. How would you describe your current relationship and intimacy with Jesus?
3. How consistent and fruitful are your times of prayer?
4. What could you do to cultivate an atmosphere of worship in your home and life?
5. Are you experiencing Jesus in Daily Worship Encounters?
6. Are you journaling to develop a two way relationship with Jesus?
7. What external circumstances are hindering your relationship with Jesus?
8. What internal blocks or issues are hindering a deeper intimacy with jesus?
9. What steps of action do you need to take to deepen your relationship with Jesus?
III. Reward 2. Eternal Authority
1. Believers will Rule with Jesus for 1000 years.
· I saw thrones, and they [saints from Rev. 19:14] sat on them, and judgment [decision making] was committed to them...and they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.
...but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years. (Rev. 20:4-6)
· The Millennium is a 1,000 year period in which Jesus will rule the earth in partnership with resurrected believers
· Understanding the Millennium gives us insight into what the Lord is preparing His people for.
2. Jesus is King over all Kings
· Jesus has been raised to a position of supreme authority and power by God the Father
· “far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come. And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church” (Eph.1:21-22)
· Jesus has been made King over All Kings
· He has...a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS. (Rev. 19:16)
· “ Yes, all kings shall fall down before Him; all nations shall serve Him”. (Ps. 72:11)
· Jesus reigns now at God’s right hand over the kings of the earth, yet His leadership over these kings is not fully manifested to all.
· However, in the Millennium he will come in glory and power and will fully manifest His Kingship and Authority on the earth.
· He will Manifest Authority with Consequences
· All will yield to His Authority, His right to Rule, or face consequences
· The Lord is at Your right hand; He shall execute kings in the day of His wrath.
Psa 110:6 He shall judge among the nations, He shall fill the places with dead bodies, He shall execute the heads of many countries” (Ps110:5-6)
3. Before His Coming there will be a Time of Great Tribulation on the Earth
“And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.” (Mat.24:6-8)
“For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Mat.24:21)
· There will be a period of vast destruction and suffering in the earth in the period before Jesus return when the seals in revelation are opened.
· The Earth will Need Restoration having been devastated by events preceding the Coming of Christ
4. When Jesus returns it will not be as the Lamb but as the Lion of the Tribe of Judah(Rev.5:5)
· He will return to establish His Kingdom on the Earth
· “Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war.
His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself.
He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God.
And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses.
Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.” (Rev.19:11-16)
· There will be inevitable confrontation and conflict with those who resist His Rule
· Eg Moses confrontation and conflict with Pharaoh over release of God’s people from bondage in Egypt
· Eg. Elijahs Confrontation with the false prophets of Baal
· Jesus will overcome all resistance to His Rule and establish His Kingdom on the Earth
· He will partner with Overcoming Believers to accomplish this
5. Jesus will Establish His Rule Over a Worldwide Kingdom.
· He has...a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS. (Rev. 19:16)
· “….and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth (Natural).
· He will establish His rule in partnership with two types of kings—
Resurrected Kings ……Believers with physical, resurrected bodies walking in great authority
Kings of the Earth…….People with natural, non-resurrected bodies
· Together they will establish a godly social order that will transform every sphere of life in the Millennium.
· “And they shall rebuild the old ruins, They shall raise up the former desolations, And they shall repair the ruined cities, The desolations of many generations” (Is.61:4)
· Every aspect of society will be transformed to become aligned with the the Kingdom of God
· This will involve major transformation ….government, law, finance, education, media, entertainment, sports, community, religion,
6. Jesus government will not be instantaneous but will progressively increase
· Eg. “Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, To order it and establish it with judgment and justice From that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.(Is. 9:7)
· Eg. Dan 2:35 Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold were crushed together, and became like chaff from the summer threshing floors; the wind carried them away so that no trace of them was found. And the stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth” (Dan.2:35)
· It will take time to transform the Kingdoms of this world. It will not happen in an instant.
· Natural processes will continue but deeply impacted by the presence of God and His glory
· “For the earth will be filled With the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, As the waters cover the sea” (Hab.2:14)
· What an enormous honor to be chosen to work with Jesus to establish true peace and prosperity upon the earth
· “Then the kingdom and dominion, And the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven, Shall be given to the people, the saints of the Most High. His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, And all dominions shall serve and obey Him.” (Dan.7:27)
7. Faithfulness in this Life determines the Level of Authority we have in the age to Come
Each of us will have differing responsibilities and assignments in the Millennial Kingdom
· Note these scriptures indicating different levels
· They will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years (Rev. 20:6).
· “And he said to him, 'Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities.' (Lk.19:17)
· “Likewise he said to him, 'You also be over five cities.' (Lk.19:19)
· “ And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations” (Rev.2:26)
· “To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.” (Rev.3:21)
8. Faithfulness in Our Serving now Determines our Responsibility and Authority in the Age to Come
· Your life now is your preparation for your eternal Ministry in the coming Kingdom
· The Parable of the Pounds(Minas) Luke19:11-27)
· “ A certain nobleman went to a far country to receive a kingdom for himself, and to return” (Luke 19:12).
· Jesus is that Nobleman and the far country is heaven. He will receive the Kingdom at His Heavenly Coronation and Return (Dan.7:13-14)
· “ Do business until I come (Luke 19:13)
· Every believer is entrusted by Jesus with gifts, resources, time, ministries, and opportunities and commanded to engage in advancing the Kingdom of God
· "And so it was that when he returned, having received the kingdom, he then commanded these servants, to whom he had given the money, to be called to him, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading” (Lk19:13)
· Every one of us will be called to give account of our stewardship at the judgment Seat of Christ(Bema)
· Our faithfulness in serving Jesus in His absence will be acknowledged and rewarded
· Our rewards will reflect how faithful and productive we have been during our brief life on earth
One was given rule over ten cities, one was given rule over five cities
· There will be a multitude of levels of responsibilities for people to serve in the coming Kingdom
· But bring here those enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, and slay them before me.” (Lk.19:13)
· Jesus enemies who refuse His rule over them will meet an untimely death
· Jesus will give his faithful servants authority to rule over literal cities in the Millennial Kingdom.
· With such a High Calling of God upon our lives we must become faithful in all areas of our life
· We need to be faithful Jesus and His call upon our life even in the dry and difficult seasons
· These difficult times “ work for us an eternal weight of glory” as we remain faithful to Christ
· We need to be faithful in the small things especially when no one but God is watching
9. To Participate in Ruling with Jesus we Must Overcome in this Life
· Jesus has invited us to sit down with Him on His throne and to rule the nations with a rod of iron in the Millennial Kingdom and for all eternity.
· What a Great Honor we have been called to participate In….everything else pales in significance
Our eternal destiny is the Throne of God
· To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne”(Rev.3:21)
“ And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations. HE SHALL RULE THEM WITH A ROD OF IRON; THEY SHALL BE DASHED TO PIECES LIKE THE POTTER'S VESSELS'—as I also have received from My Father;” (Rev.2:26-27)
· To qualify for this high calling, Jesus says that we must overcome.
This reward of eternal authority is not for every believer.
These rewards are reserved for those who overcome losing their first love, trials and tribulations, compromise with the world, the works of Jezebel, spiritual slumber, apathy, and being complacent
· Those granted authority will participate with Jesus in judging the nations in the Millennial Kingdom.
Not only will the overcomers sit down on the throne with Jesus, but the Bible says that ―judgment [will be] given to them (Rev. 20:4).
· “Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? If the world is judged by you, are you not competent to constitute the smallest law courts?” (1 Cor. 6:2-3).
· The overcomers will assist Jesus when He judges the nations and evaluates their role in the Millennial Kingdom (Matt. 25:31-46).
Questions for Personal Reflection
1. What has the Holy Spirit impressed upon me in this teaching?
2. In what areas do I need to repent of being unfaithful, inconsistent, resentful ?
3. In what areas do I need to cultivate greater faithfulness to The Lord?
4. In what areas do I need to overcome passivity, lack of motivation, complacency?