“I tell you the truth, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to Christ will certainly not lose his reward.” (Mark9:41)
Every act of Christian service will be rewarded by spiritual growth that will qualify the disciple for “a rich welcome” into God’s eternal kingdom.
This is not just performing acts out of kindness, though doing so is not wrong per se, it’s more about the relationship with God through Christ. We are also not “piling up reward points” for we have changed within ourselves, to seek to serve Christ in every possible situation we find ourselves in, because this is what He does! To seek the kingdom is to seek Christ and by seeking Christ and how He modeled Himself in His ministry on this earth, we find the kingdom.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Precious Abba, we may not always know how to help others, but by setting ourselves aside and take them to You in prayer, You will guide us through Your Spirit in the right way to minister to their needs. It truly is a blessing to pray to You for others sake and sincerely seek the best way we can meet their needs, whatever they are. In Jesus’ name. Amen
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“Every day in God’s Word is a good day. Many books can inform, but only the Bible can transform.”
“Slaves obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ. Obey them not only to win their favor when their eye is on you, but like slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from your heart. Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men, because you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does, whether he is a slave or free.” (Ephesians6:5–8)
Personal justice is not the goal of discipleship. My task is not to make sure I get justice. I must be more concerned that I act justly and fight for justice for others. Paul called on slaves to accept their unjust status and serve their masters in love and loyalty. Whatever our social or employment status, we know our ultimate supervisor is God.
Every action we take, every job we do, we do to please our true Master. He will reward us from the faithfulness to Him. Earthly status and position will play no role. All are slaves of God.
“Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fail, and you will receive a rich welcome into the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” (2nd Peter1:10–11)
Peter encouraged his readers to cultivate qualities of true discipleship (Verses 5-8 “For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”), and, thereby, to grow spirituality. As reward for such discipleship, disciples will be warmly welcomed to inherit eternal life in God’s kingdom.
Second Thought of the Day:
“Be careful not to do your ‘acts of righteousness’ before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. So when you give to the needy do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” (Matthew6:1–4)
Beloved, we receive no reward for good done for wrong reasons. Motivation determines the reward for acts of righteousness. God does not reward an act done for selfish reasons. The audience before whom we perform the act provides our only reward. God will ultimately reward those who meet the need of others without thought of personal gain. Discipleship is serving Christ by serving others.
Giving is a personal act of worship, not a public demonstration for personal acclaim. Jesus condemned the hypocrites’ motives, not their gifts. They made sure everyone knew they were giving to help the poor. They expected God to be pleased. Jesus said public praise from people was the only reward they would receive. God rewards with His loving acceptance those who give to the poor so only God will know and so the needy will be helped as God desires. Jesus did not say we should not gain inspiration from the dedicated stewardship of others. It’s all about right attitudes.