The Crown of Righteousness

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

II Timothy 4:7-8:
-7: I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
-8: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.

The Apostle Paul, knowing that his life was coming to an end, mentions three things that he was faithful to in his Christian life. He fought a good fight, he finished his course, and he kept the faith. As a result of these three things he literally fulfilled a fourth thing and that was; he loved the coming of Christ and he had great expectation for that glorious day.

Paul had great expectation knowing that he would receive the crown of righteousness. The same crown of righteousness will be given to all believers who love the appearing of Christ Jesus.

I Timothy 5:12 – Fight the good fight of faith {believing faith}, lay hold on eternal life {in your mind} whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed {confessed} a good profession {confession} before many witnesses.

We have received eternal life already, the good fight is knowing this in our hearts and being faithful to our calling by never allowing anyone to talk us out of believing in our eternal life that God has already freely given to us.

I John 5:11-12:
-11: And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
-12: He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.

Fighting the good fight is to daily walk with understanding that we have God in Christ in us, believing that we are more than conquerors through our steadfast believing and standing with God.

To finish the course is to daily walk with the love of God towards others and ourselves until the return of Christ Jesus.

To keep the faith is to walk with believing God’s healing Word, as well as helping the members of God’s household, our brothers and sisters in Christ to believe the Scriptures with us; this is confessing a good confession of salvation “before many witnesses.”

When these three things are incorporated into our daily adventures in this life we will without hesitation or fear look forward to Christ’s coming because we absolutely will be loving his appearing, and when Christ Jesus does appear we shall receive the crown of righteousness.

I Peter 1:7-9:
-7: That the trial of your faith {believing faith}, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
-8: Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing {in him}, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:
-9: Receiving the end of your faith {believing faith}, even the salvation of your souls.

The word “receiving” literally means rewarding and restoring one to complete favor because the salvation of our souls is what brings us to heaven, where we may eternally enjoy the crown of righteousness.

Unbelievers also will be rewarded for their unbelief “and shall receive the reward of unrighteousness” (II Peter 2:13; also see the wages of sin vs. the gift God in Romans 6:17-23). But we who daily anticipate the return of Christ to the point that we love his return shall receive a much greater reward, and as it records in Hebrews 10:37: “for ye have need of patience {during these days when we have trials of our own personal believing faith}, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.”

The promise for the Christian believer who loves with great anticipation the return of Christ shall be the receiving of the crown of righteousness.

To be continued in The Crown of Rejoicing