"The more you do for Christ, the more you'll enjoy heaven."
The above sentence was sent to me by a believing friend (not taken word-for-word but the context is the same); for some reason this sentence has instilled a little confusion in me and I'd dearly love your thoughts and comments on it.
I've come to an understanding that we will be rewarded with heavenly treasures dependent upon our works in this world (not salvation through works, salvation by faith alone, but heavenly treasure through works, I guess) but I still find myself confused at the concept of enjoying heaven more or less.
I suppose my question is mostly whether or not the concept of enjoying heaven more or less is biblical. I also wonder if it is wrong that I would simply be contented being the servant girl who washes the floors (if such work was available in heaven or the Age to Come) as long as I was with my God, my Saviour and my Friend? I'll continue to serve God to the best of my ability, of course, and am grateful for anything and everything the Lord has in store for me - eternally so, but I'm really just trying to understand the concept of "more" or "less" felicity and really... I don't rightly understand how one could enjoy heaven more, wouldn't being with God in all His persons (Father, Son, Holy Spirit) be more than enough?
I do believe that God rewards those who earnestly seek him (as the bible states) and I'm not sure if it's my lesser energy levels that are causing my confusion or if maybe God is trying to show me something (I also know he does not give us a spirit of confusion).
Any thoughts, comments, or recommended scriptural readings would be appreciated. I hope the above makes sense... please forgive any incoherency.
God bless you all in Jesus' name!
I think we all seek to sit as Jesus' left and right as the mother of Zebedee's sons asked of her sons, but I also believe we're all going to be overwhelmed just being in the presence of God that there will be no room for unhappiness regardless if we're at His left, right, feet or just bathed in His light. There is no weeping or mourning in heaven. And that tells me that while those rewarded will enjoy the rewards, everyone will enjoy being there regardless. There will be no room to lament what we do or don't get.
I don't understand how someone could 'enjoy heaven more' either. I think that being in the presence of our Lord will be so wonderful beyond words for each one of us.
There will be no more tears, pain or sorrow. Death will be conquered completely.
Rev 21:4; 20:6
1 Cor 2:9 tells us that we have not seen heard or imagined what God has prepared for us.
There are rewards when we are in heaven, but we don't work for rewards, we work because we love Jesus and we want His will done here on earth. Additionally, there are seasons in each believers life where they will 'work' more than other seasons. We have to be discerning when we 'work' for the Lord. I believe that we need to pray before accepting a ministry or 'working'. However, sometimes we do serve because the church simply needs someone to step up and do it...it's a sacrifice... We're to always check our motives. Working with the motivation so that we will get something out of it (ie: enjoying heaven more) is an improper motivation IMO. Our work is never for our own purposes or well being. It's to be sacrificial always putting others first. If there's the slightest part of 'self' in that motivation (1 Cor 3:12-15) than I believe we need to repent from that and ask God to cleanse our motives, or step away from it until the motives are pure.
12If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, 13their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. 14If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. 15If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames.
2 Cor 5:10 talks about the Judgement seat of Christ. At this time our deepest motivations will be revealed as to why we 'worked'
verse 12 says 12We are not trying to commend ourselves to you again, but are giving you an opportunity to take pride in us, so that you can answer those who take pride in what is seen rather than in what is in the heart. (underline and bold emphasis mine)
verses 14 and 15 go on to say:
14For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. 15And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. (underline emphasis mine)
Your friend may have been improperly taught that we work for rewards, but that is not the proper motivation...and all improper motivations will be 'burned' as they are made of wood hay or straw. The works that are made of gold, silver or costly stones will survive the fire. God help us all.
Lord Bless, Carla
I just told someone the other day....I will be the toilet cleaner (if there was toilets in heaven!).....my friend and I got on the topic yesterday. We were having the same questions you are. We decided to just work our best for Jesus and we'll just be happy to be with Him one day! I think a lot of the Christians that "work" looking for a reward, won't be as rewarded as those who just serve Jesus out of love. Because honestly, they are doing it for their own benefit, not the Kingdom. I'm not sure why, but these verses come to mind.
Matt. 19:28-30 28 Jesus replied, “I assure you that when the world is made new[a] and the Son of Man[b] sits upon his glorious throne, you who have been my followers will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or property, for my sake, will receive a hundred times as much in return and will inherit eternal life. 30 But many who are the greatest now will be least important then, and those who seem least important now will be the greatest then.[c]
I still agree with you, I can't understand how it will even matter in heaven! I just want to be with my Lord! Singing His praises forever! I will pray God show you what you are searching for. Sometimes I think the devil tries to trip us up over things like this. If you find your answer, would you please share it, if the Lord leads you to. It's always been one of those questions in my mind also.
Just to clarify, you didn't give the impression at all that you want to serve God for personal gain.. I was just doing my best to answer your question. :-)
It is clear in scripture that our works will be rewarded. Those works we did to bring God glory will not burn away, but will stand.
We can all rejoice at the same thing in different levels of joy, can't we? Of course we can. We are not now robots and will not be robots in heaven, but as individuals and with our individual rewards I have no problem with the concept that some will rejoice more. 12 disciples, 3 were in the inner circle with Jesus, did they rejoice more than the others? I am sure they did. Will those born again Christians who spend their lives here on earth not doing much for God's kingdome, have the same joy as the ones who God gives great responsabilities in heaven for their faithfulness on earth, rejoice more? I think so, I don't see anything wrong with that. God says He will reward everyone according to their works.
We should not store treasure on earth, but in heaven.
“We must work the works of Him who sent Me, as long as it is day; night is coming, when no man can work.”
1 Corinthians 3:11-15
For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man builds upon the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 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. If any man’s work which he has built upon it remains, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work is burned up, he shall suffer loss; but he himself shall be saved, yet so as through fire.
But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who will render to every man according to his deeds…
Food for thought:
If we are heirs with Christ, and the Bible tells us that born again children of God are, then what we are working for is not, or should not be, the reward as if it were pay for a job performed. We are working for the family business (so to speak), co-laborers in God's mission and plan. I really doubt we will be evaluating "a thing" we receive as reward, but will be enamored with Jesus and enjoying the presence of the many who came to know Him through the faithful service of the true church (all children fo God).
Another way to look at it as a child seeking to please His dad. Most liitle children are not looking for an exchange (obedience for gift) until taught by the world system. They are simply looking for daddy's approval. Whatever the reward is it is secondary to our life in Christ. Paul learned to be content in this life, how much more so in the life eternal.
Hi Sis Rachel,
Yes, your friend's statement about Heaven confuses me, also.
Seems like some "experts" have got things like Heaven all figured out....and put in a box....just like some think they have God all explained out....and in that box too.
I'm throwin' in with Carla using I Corinthians 2:9," but just as it is written, Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, And which have not entered the heart of man, All that God has prepared for those who love Him." (NASB).
Jesus has prepared a place for us by going to the cross in our places. He nailed our sins to that old rugged cross.
John 3:16 is the ticket to make a reservation. Amen.
Grace and Peace to all.
I suppose the "great reward" for me would be to actually "Know" and not simply "Believe". I'll pass on the wings and such, just let me have the library card to heaven's library and I'm set for eternity. Lol, no big deal if I have to wash floors or clean toilets for the card, have done that with a toothbrush. And, one of the first bedtime prayers you learn at boot camp as a young Marine is "and while I die and go to heaven to St. Peter I will tell: another Marine reporting in, sir, I've spent my time in hell." Earthly life as a man has been interesting, heaven should be eternally invigorating. (Although some have an idea of heaven that would bore me to death).
LT's comment "Another way to look at it as a child seeking to please His dad. Most little children are not looking for an exchange (obedience for gift) until taught by the world system. They are simply looking for daddy's approval. Whatever the reward is it is secondary to our life in Christ. Paul learned to be content in this life, how much more so in the life eternal." I like a lot, I've always thought the state of contentment was superior to happiness. Especially since so many confuse happiness with pleasure.
God has already given you that card. He gave you 66 books and a lot of self revelation and general revelation as well. The word of God is able to renew our minds and to help us understand beautiful truths about almost everything under heaven and beyond.