Hebrews chapter 11, the faith chapter, makes a profound statement in verse 24. “Moses faith when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, esteeming the reproach of Christ as greater riches than the treasures in Egypt, for he looked to the reward.” Have you looked toward the eternal reward friend? I don’t mean a works mentality to gain heaven. I mean the reward that’s mentioned in James 1:12, blessed is the one who endures temptation when tried, for you shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those who love him.
You’ve probably seen in the movies those leaf crowns that are worn in the Greek games not unlike our own Olympics. But the crown this verse refers to is much more ornate and elaborate, spiritually speaking. And according to the word study for crown, it’s a badge of royalty, a conspicuous prize. Now if you’re not someone who’s won a lot of accolades in your life, you might resist the idea of God honoring individuals for their steadfastness separate from salvation. But these types of scriptures are meant as an encouragement for us to continue to press in and run to win the race as opposed to just phoning our Christianity in. It’s true, through repentance and acceptance of Jesus, we gain heaven through Jesus’ shed blood sacrifice, but we’re encouraged to engage our gifts and talents to make a difference for the body of Christ on earth and the heavenly kingdom to come.
This falls in the same category as Jesus’ words in Luke 12:8 when He says, whoever acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God.” Also, when Jesus says in Matt. 10:32, “Whosoever confesses me before men, him will I also confess before my Father in heaven.” I encourage you to commit to storing up the treasure of good works that glorify God and does not tarnish, and be willing to sacrifice any earthly pleasures that prevents your witness from being a bright shining light for Christ.