I’ve been blessed by Woodrow Kroll’s book ‘Tested By Fire’ from my father’s extensive library. I want to share some key differences between Salvation and Rewards. There seem to be many misconceptions among Christians.
1. Salvation is for Sinners, Rewards are for the Saved
To enter heaven, we need to be saved by Jesus because we are all sinners. Once we are saved, salvation is no longer an issue and now we look forward to receiving our rewards from Jesus at the Judgement Seat. People who have not accepted Jesus will not receive any rewards.
2. Salvation is the same for all Sinners, Rewards are proportionate to service
In terms of salvation, God doesn’t grade on a curve. That means it’s either you are saved or you are not saved. There’s no middle ground. No such thing as half-saved. On the other hand, rewards are proportionate to our service for God. How much we labour in His field will determine the rewards we receive. But not all things done for God can stand God’s purifying fire. I’ll write it in a separate post as this topic is huge.
3. Salvation is a gracious Gift, Rewards are a gracious Wage
We can’t ever work our way to heaven. Jesus did everything for us on the cross. We just need to rest on Jesus’ finished work. However, we as Jesus’ servants are prepared for good works. We will be rewarded for the things we do. In a sense, we do not deserve wages from the One who died for us. We owe Him our all and all we can say is that we have done our duty. But God in His marvellous grace has chosen to bless us.
4. Salvation is a Present possession, Rewards are a Future possession
Let me tell you something: If you don’t have eternal life now, you won’t enter heaven. Okay, has it sunk in yet? What I mean is that eternal life starts the moment you accepted Jesus into your life. Before that you lived in eternal damnation, condemned to hell. Rewards are different. We don’t get any rewards on earth, but when we reach the Judgement Seat. Jesus, the righteous judge, will review under entire life, peeling away the dross. Hopefully, your work stands the fire’s purge and you hear Him say to you, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of your master.’
Go on to Part 2 – Good or Worthless Deeds?