Knowing This and This Alone Can Help Set Our Lives Free!

THERE is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus– Romans 8:1. This verse does not say there is therefore now condemnation, but, NO CONDEMNATION and this is the will of God. Condemnation also can mean judgment, for there is therefore now NO judgment, and thus no fear of (or for) judgment to anticipate either now or in our future from our loving heavenly Father. Believing this places us in Christ Jesus and permits him genuinely to be our Savior from condemnation and judgment. Knowing this and this alone can help set our lives free!” ~LMJ~

The Crown of Glory

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

I Peter 5:1-5:
-1: The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:
-2: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre {dishonorable gain}, but of a ready mind.
-3: Neither as being Lord’s over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.
-4: And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.
-5: Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.

These verses are discussing the requirements for receiving the “crown of glory,” when Christ Jesus, the chief Shepherd appears we can receive this glorious crown.

Verses 1-3 are encouraging the leaders (elders) in the Church of God to fulfil their commitment to be leaders who genuinely watch over God’s heritage, which is not only their own children, but all of God’s children who are saved. God’s Word is instructing leaders in the Church to be examples to the rest of the believers.

Years ago I heard it taught that the crown of glory was specifically going to be given only to the elders who were faithful. However, if we were to continue reading down to verse 5, a different truth surfaces altogether than if we extract only the first 4 verses above.  The word “Likewise” literally means the same also goes for ─ you, and in the conText above this refers to the “younger.” A newly saved believer can also receive the same crown of glory that leadership can receive, if they submit themselves unto the elder.

“Yea, all of you be subject one to another” the inspiration is for leaders and believers to be subject one to another. Our God is not a respecter of persons (Acts 10:34), and as far as the crowns are concerned, each believer may receive all five of these.

The crown of glory is available to each and every one of us, so long as we are being respectful to each other.

In a leadership position, a leader can give his utmost respect to those whom God has called into His family, to watch over with prayer and believing, giving guidance and direction that leads them to Christ and into the ways of God.

If we just became saved today and we look to our leaders respectfully, then we, too, can receive the crown of glory. But if we spend our days down here rejecting our leaders or ignoring other believers when we know better, then the crown of glory may not be given when the chief Shepherd appears.

The purpose for the verses above is so that God’s children as a whole Church can work together in this life in harmony. “Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God” (Ephesians 5:21); “the fear of God” means respect, awe, and appreciation, rather than meaning to be afraid of God. We are to have the same respect and appreciation for other believers that we have for God (see I John 4:20-21).

“As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10). Yet these days do believers care for one another? do we respect Christians from different churches or denominations? God had so much wisdom in showing us what is required for receiving the crown of glory.

Colossians 3:23-24:
-23: And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily {with all our being from the heart}, as to the Lord, and not unto men;
-24: Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.

When we give to others as though we were giving to the Lord, then the “reward of the inheritance” shall indeed be given to us. When the believers’ focus is on blessing each other, then they truly display the wisdom of God, being wise children in the Lord. “The wise shall inherit glory” (Proverbs 3:35), and for believers in grace they will inherit the crown of glory. “Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us {up} to the glory of God” (Romans 15:7).

When believers are respectful to each other, they will literally be following in the steps of our Lord and Savior, who is our greatest example in this life of giving of himself for others. Jesus has already (spiritually) received us up to the glory of God, therefore we can also respectfully receive other believers in the glory of God, as Christ Jesus has already done for each and every one of us as we anticipate in godly service the crown of glory.

To be continued in The Crown of Life

The Prize

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

Philippians 3:11-12:
-11: If by any means I might obtain unto the resurrection of the dead.
-12: Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.

In verse 11 the Apostle Paul wanted, if possible, to be alive when Christ returns. The word “obtain” literally means to be here on earth (alive), the word “unto” means to reach the destination fully, and the “resurrection” in the Greek text means a rising out from among (the dead). Paul wanted to be alive at the “out resurrection” of the dead. The Christians who have passed away would be those who are raised out and up from among all the dead, but Paul hoped to be alive when Christ returned.

At the return is when Paul, you, and I will be perfected with our new bodies. The hope that Paul followed in his believing was to anticipate, every day, the actual return of Christ. Paul wanted to actually be here physically to see his body change from earthly to heavenly. This is the prize that God will give to the living believers. It is certain that there are many more Christians (through the centuries) that have fallen asleep in Jesus, and in the scope of this bigger picture, the living will be few in comparison with all who will be raised at Christ’s return. The living will have the blessing to experience the actual changing of our old earthly bodies into new heavenly bodies and to have this in our memories for eternity.  We may look forward to this wonderful prize.

Philippians 3:13-14:
-13: Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended {the prize yet}: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind {the past}, and reaching forth unto those things which are before {the return},
-14: I press toward the mark {finish line} for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

What a magnificent lesson we have here. First, Paul teaches that the “one thing” has two aspects: (1) forgetting the past, and (2) reaching forward. The reason for this is that only as we let the past fall by the wayside will we have room for the hope of the future, the hope in Christ’s return, to receive the prize. This is the believer’s “high calling.” We all have been called into God’s grace, but the high point of His calling will be the return of Christ!

With the anticipation of our future hope, the past can be put to rest. Looking forward to the return of Christ, anticipating the joy and excitement of this marvelous prize, to obtain “the high calling of God in Christ Jesus,” is the believer’s greatest hope because it will deliver over to you one of the greatest prizes that can be received. It is receiving an eternal treasure even before you arrive into heaven (for you will be transformed as your feet leave this earth), and in heaven is where and when you will receive all the rest of your rewards for believing God’s Word today.

Christ’s Return for You!

By whom {by Jesus Christ} also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God– Romans 5:2. By the faith of Christ, we have complete access into all of God’s grace and therein we are encouraged to stand, with a further view that we can rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. This hope of the glory of God is the return of Christ in which we can genuinely rejoice and anticipate with a yearning desire. As we stand on the grace of God, we can live without the fear of future retribution because we have the hope for Christ’s return to receive us up into the heavenlies to be with God for eternity. So please continue looking forward to that great and glorious day, the hope of Christ’s return for you!” ~LMJ~