Rewarded For Taking Heed To The Warnings
By: Brian A. Yeager
Our Lord says this: “Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip” (Hebrews 2:1). By taking heed to the things God wants us to learn we can cleanse our way (Psalms 119:9). By taking heed to the word of God we can save ourselves and help others to be saved as well (I Timothy 4:16). The warnings of God exist so that we can be perfect at the coming of our Lord (Colossians 1:28).
The word of God says this: “But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end. Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years. Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known my ways. So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest.) Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end” (Hebrews 3:6-14).
God is not just about punishment. He is also a rewarder (Hebrews 11:6). God doesn’t want to have to exercise His Judgment in a way of punishment. God wants all men to be saved (I Timothy 2:4 and II Peter 3:9). That should be of great comfort for us. In fact, thinking about the coming of Christ and being with Him should be a comforting thought. Consider this: “But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words” (I Thessalonians 4:13-18).
As we focus on our obedience, fear is certainly a motivator (Psalms 2:11, Philippians 2:12, and Hebrews 12:28-29). Our love for our Creator is a motivator as well (Deuteronomy 10:12 and Mark 12:30). Yet, as this article states, the reward we have to look forward to should be a motivator for us too. In fact, we are supposed to look for and hasten unto the coming of the day of God (II Peter 3:12). The reward is truly wonderful. Let’s consider some things that will serve as motivation for us.
Consider The Reward
Go outside and consider how great of a planet we live on. Disregard what man has done, and just consider the beauty of the world as God made it. When God was finished with His work it was “very good” (Genesis 1:31). The Psalmist referred to God’s creation as “handywork” (Psalms 19:1). It took the Lord six days to make this wonderful creation we enjoy (Exodus 20:11). In looking at things like our wonderful mountains here around El Paso, the beauty of the sky, the stars above, the creatures that roam the earth, and even consider the wondrous creation of mankind; God has made amazing things. Yet, all that He made concerning this world is temporary (Matthew 24:35-36 and II Peter 3:10). Consider that for a moment.
If God made this wonderful world just to be temporary, what does your mind go to in considering a place the Lord is preparing to be eternal? Jesus said: “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” (John 14:1-3).
Heaven is an eternal place. God states this in allowing our minds to consider how our temporary problems are not that big (II Corinthians 4:8-18) when we consider eternal life. Notice this verse out of that context: “For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens” (II Corinthians 5:1). The promise of the resurrection (I Corinthians 15:1-58) and eternal life in Christ (I John 5:20) are the promises we have hope in.
Even Moses, whom did not know what we know (I Peter 1:3-12), was motivated by the reward of serving God faithfully (Hebrews 11:24-26). Even under the Law of Moses, there was the promise of reward for faithful service to God (Ruth 2:12 and Proverbs 11:18). Now, we are promised a “great recompence of reward” (Hebrews 10:35).
Now, what motivation do we have to continue to be faithful? Here is God’s answer: “Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: (but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also. Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father. And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life” (I John 2:23-25). Thus, we fight and hold on to the promise of eternal life as our reward for adhering to God’s will (I Timothy 6:12).
We have a hope (Romans 8:24-25). That is, we have something to look forward to. We don’t just have to fear Hell, but we can look forward to Heaven. Thus, in conclusion, consider these Scriptures: “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure” (I John 3:1-3).
Volume 15 – Issue 9 - November 16th, 2014