Monday, July 28, 2014

Royal Fashions

Looks a bit heavy, doesn’t it? Does this one look lighter?
Lots of bling, isn’t there? Would you want the responsibilities that went with either one of these crowns, knowing the second belongs to Iran? Shakespeare tells us  in Henry IV, “Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown,” and many have found that to be true. Yet, we are promised more than one.

The gospels (Matthew 27:29, Mark 15:17, John 19:2,5) tell us the one Jesus wore was of braided thorns, and His jailers used it to mock Him. His followers tell us of one He wears upon His return:

And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer. (Revelation 6:2 KJV) 

And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle. (Revelation 14:14 KJV)

I expect no less, for the Bible tells me so. I just don’t know when.

The Bible speaks of other crowns, too, as Paul wrote:

Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. (1 Corinthians 9:24-25 KJV)

That’s my first goal – the incorruptible crown, though Paul saw people as crowns, too:

Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved. (Philippians 4:1 KJV)

Can we truly say that our brothers in Christ are a joy and crown for us? Can we do as the next verse asks and be of the same mind in the Lord?  If that is our hope, we have something to look forward to seeing:

For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming? (1 Thessalonians 2:19 KJV)

If we truly love our Lord and look forward to seeing Him, we will receive a crown:

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. (2 Timothy 4:8 KJV)

That’s not the important one, though. There’s a very special one I’m praying for:

Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. (James 1:12 KJV)

There’s one that’s not available to everyone. I thought about it – mentioned it in yesterday’s blog – and know that it applies to those few who minister to the Shepherd’s flocks while here:

Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away. (1 Peter 5:2-4 KJV)

The grace of God provides our salvation, nothing that we do. These pastors who spend their lives feeding God’s flock as examples of His love do earn a crown of glory – and we know it will not fade away.

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