God’s eternal rewards do not burn; they are eternal –simple enough. An earthly blessing is not an eternal reward because eventually it will burn. For example, the Lord may indeed bless us with houses, cars, good jobs or businesses, and so on; but, they are not rewards. However, these earthly blessings may indeed be seed to be used for an eternal harvest. Everything the Father does is filled with purpose; therefore, everything He gives us has a purpose. It is a question of finding it. Keep in mind that seed goes beyond the material, which we will soon see.
7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. 8 For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. 9 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. 10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith. Galatians 6:7-10 (KJV)
If we sow to the flesh we are going to reap fleshly things, which are empty and hopeless. If we sow to the Spirit, we will find great reward. Going back to our example of earthly blessings: if we squander the earthly blessings on our fleshly desires we will suffer loss in the end. While the Lord does give us things to enjoy, enjoyment is not the end purpose. At a minimum, they should serve as a testimony that glorifies God. That is to say we declare to others what good things the Lord has given and done for us. They are not to become points of self-righteous spiritual pride, i.e., “Because I was faithful I got a new house,” versus, “Because of God’s faithfulness to His Word, I was blessed with a new house.”
The earthly blessings should be used like seed. For example, the new house might serve as a sanctuary for others when they fall on hard times. Perhaps a place that people can go to get away and find a peaceful place to rest. Maybe it is to be a place to house a Bible Study, and so on. The car might be given to share in God’s goodness to others. It may be something as simple as taking someone who does not have transportation to church or a job. Perhaps delivering groceries to someone who is shut-in. Maybe the Lord has called a person to minister in various places that requires reliable transportation. The new job may be given because a person asked for more financial seed to sow into the Kingdom, or the new business to employ those without jobs. The bottom line is that everything has a purpose, and it is a matter of allowing the Holy Spirit to lead us in how to use it.
When we use the earthly blessing for the Kingdom of God, we are planting seed which has harvest and leads to eternal rewards. Using the car as simple example: you might use your new car to take a non-believer to church. While at church, he hears the Message, and receives Jesus Christ as his Lord. In turn, the new believer shares that same message with another non-believer who also gives his life to the Lord, and so on. In the end, you would receive an eternal reward for your obedience to the leading of the Holy Spirit. The car will eventually burn, but the reward in the end will not.
Those who diligently seek God are rewarded as stated in Hebrews 11:6. The ones who diligently seek Him are also the ones to whom He reveals secrets and insights to his Word. Those insights and secrets are to be used as seed as well. When the Lord reveals truth, He means for it to be shared with others. Jesus stated, “Freely ye have received, freely give” (Matthew 10:8, KJV). Of course, there is a planting season, which means if a seed is planted at the wrong time it will produce little fruit if any. Likewise, if it is planted in the wrong soil it will produce very little if any. Again, let the Holy Spirit be the Guide.
Think about this: even our experiences are to be used for seed. The things that we go through can be used to help others in their moments of need. As the Holy Spirit leads us, we can take the lessons we learned in our past experiences to help others gain the clarity they need for theirs. If nothing else, we can say, “I’ve been there and I understand what you are going through.” Our experiences at a minimum can be used as encouragement to others. Perhaps it would be good for us to think of our experiences in these terms: they are not meant just for us, but for others as well. Lets face it, people watch each other, and as they watch us go through our experience, they may also gain insight into their own. Similar to Romans 15: 4 that says, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope” (KJV).
While our motivation is not the reward, it would serve us well to remember that the blessings on earth are not the rewards, but seed.
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