“Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.” Matthew 25:21 “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4
We continue exploring promises of Jesus for believers, as recorded in the Bible.
When our children were babies we loved playing patty cake and peek-a-boo with them. The rewards in these games were the chortles, laughs, and joyful delight in the relationship between beloved child and adoring parent.
Likewise, the joyful delight of a relationship with the Lord is the ultimate prize as we ponder promises of rewards from Jesus. Psalm 42:1 expresses it this way: “As the deer pants for flowing streams, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.” How do we receive the reward of a relationship with God? Hebrews 11:6 states, “And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.”
The Apostle Paul often yearned for the reward of Christ’s presence. He steadfastly fought the good fight of living for Jesus, and he focused on finishing the race. He related, “I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me [. . . .]” (2 Timothy 4:7-8)
Moreover, Christ-followers also can experience rewards on earth through the fruit of the Holy Spirit, including “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.” (Galatians 5:22) As God’s children we can bask in the reward of his presence, protection, and unfailing love. And, eternity’s rewards will include “glory and honor and peace.” (Romans 2:10)
Jesus revealed in the concluding words of a parable in today’s introductory Bible verse that the heavenly reward for devoted followers will be the welcoming words: “Well done, good and faithful servant.” However, without a relationship with Jesus Christ, unregenerate, rebellious humankind is lost and without reward. Paul made clear, “But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger.” (Romans 2:8, NIV)
Lord Jesus, the reward we desire is to know you. We delight in your presence, and we rejoice in the mystery of future glorious delights that “no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, [and that] God has prepared for those who love him.” (1 Corinthians 2:9) Hallelujah!
Kay Henry is a columnist for the Claremore Progress. All Bible quotations are from “The Holy Bible, English Standard Version” (ESV), unless otherwise noted.