Will I receive Crowns or Burning Coattails at the Judgment Seat of Christ?
Growing up in Mississippi I used to hear people talk about backslidden Christians getting to heaven with their coattails on fire. I did not know there was a scriptural basis for this possibility.
The New Testament tells of a reward that will be given to faithful believers in heaven after the rapture; on the day we are judged for the works we have done (2 Corinthians 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. & also see Colossians 3:23-25). Note that our works do not determine whether we are saved. That’s a matter of faith through grace alone. The reward is described as a crown received in heaven for our works as believers on earth. Despite what you may have heard, though, there is no Bible verse that says we will get jewels in our crowns to show the number or degree of our rewards.
1 Corinthians 3:12-15 If any man builds on this foundation [the foundation of Christ] using gold, silver, costly stones, wood hay or straw, his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work. If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.
Randy Alcorn said: “Our works are what we have done with our resources—time, energy, talents, money, possessions. The fire of God’s holiness will reveal the quality of these works, the eternal significance of what we have done with our God-given assets. The fate of the works will be determined by their nature. If they are made of the right stuff (gold, silver, costly stones), they will withstand and be purified by the fire. But no matter how nice our works of wood and hay and straw have looked in the display case of this world, they will not withstand the incendiary gaze of God’s Son.” From article originally appearing in the January-February 1994 issue of Eternal Perspectives, Randy Alcorn’s-EPM’s quarterly newsletter. http://www.epm.org/resources/1994/Jan/1/believers-judgment-works/
The rewards for good and faithful servants will include the five “crowns” below:
1 – CROWN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS— LOVED THE LORD’S APPEARING –
2 Timothy 4:8
2 – INCORRUPTIBLE CROWN— DISCIPLINED BODIES / SELF-CONTROL –
1 Corinthians 9:25-27
3 – CROWN OF LIFE— ENDURED PATIENTLY THRU TRIALS – James 1:12, Revelation 2:10
4 – CROWN OF GLORY— GODLY LEADERS WHO WERE EXAMPLES TO FLOCK –
1 Peter 5:2-4
5 – CROWN OF REJOICING— SOUL WINNERS CROWN – 1 Thessalonians 2:19, Daniel 12:3
What do you suppose we’ll do with our crowns? For a hint, look up Revelation 4:10. What do the worship leaders in heaven do with their crowns? If that’s what they are for, am I going to hold on to mine?