We have been meditating on the Lord seeing everything we have ever done for Him, and nothing escapes His attention, and how we are to prepare for eternity by living wholeheartedly for Christ. As Christians, the day will come when we gain our inheritance given to us in Christ before time began.
34Then the King will say to those on his right, “Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in,36needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.” 37"Then the righteous will answer him, “Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?” 40"The King will reply, “I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me” (Matthew 25:34-40).
I find it interesting that the believers in the Scripture above forgot the acts of kindness they had done (v. 37), but God hadn't. He records every act of service and will reward us openly at the Judgment Seat of Christ. Who was Jesus referring to in verse 40, calling them "the least of His brothers?" I think it would be those around us who are often quiet and rarely noticed. Perhaps they are those who cannot help themselves, those sick, or in prison. He is close to those who are poor in this world, those who are alone and bound to a religion of works. He wants to use each of us to set them free, to visit them, to feed them—not only bread and water but also to give them the Bread of Life (John 6:35).
The Reward of Christlikeness
Preparation for eternity can only take place while we are here on Earth because we graduate to eternity with the character we have at death. I believe our "position" or "rank" in heaven depends on how much of the servant nature of Christ we have demonstrated while on Earth. To whatever degree the character of Christ is imprinted on your life while on Earth will be your degree of reward in eternity. The word character was first used to describe the imprint on paper of the letters of a printing press. God has sought to divinely imprint the nature and the character of Christ deep into your soul for others to read.
And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit (2 Corinthians 3:18).
When we come to Christ, our spirit is renewed or made alive from its dead state of being apart from God (Ephesians 2:1, 5), but there is still work that needs to take place on our soul—our mind, will, conscience and emotions. God wants to renew and transform that inner part of us as we meditate on His Word and walk in obedience to His Holy Spirit. King David said it well in Psalm 23: "He restores my soul" (Psalm 23:3). In his first letter, Peter wrote: "For you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls" (1 Peter 1:9). Our mind, will, and emotions are to be brought under the leadership and guidance of the Spirit of God. Godly character is the goal of our faith. We will be rewarded by how much of the fruit of the Spirit, the nature of Christ, is in us. Please help us, Holy Spirit, to die to ourselves that we may put on Christlikeness. Keith Thomas
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