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Offline Feedmysheep

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How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« on: June 09, 2011, 05:09:46 PM »
 We were discussing the scope of possibilities Christ has with His saved believers after His second coming.

  The parables speaking of the servant being cast into the outer darkness came up. And this response was submitted:

 
Quote from: LivelyStone

  Those who find themselves cast out of the Kingdom will be those who have never trusted Jesus Christ with their lives, and have never been regenerated. They are not true servants. Many live in fear of a harsh taskmaster, and that keeps them out of the House of Love. How many times did Jesus say, "Fear not"?

The eyes of God can see the difference between a spiritual sheep and a spiritual goat.

We cannot always detect the tares. They are identical to wheat.

   Now we have a couple of parables in which a servant of the Lord was can apparently be cast into "the outer darkness". For example in Matthew 25:14-30.

   1.) All three servants received the possessions of the master:

     "For the kingdom of the heavens is just like a man about to go abroad, who called his own slaves and delivered to them his possessions." (25:14)

   Does the Lord deliver His possessions to the unbeliever in this way along with the believer? I say no. All three servants are true Christians.

  2.) The unfaithful servant received the master's possession in the same manner as the two faithful ones:

  "But he who had receive the one went off and dug in the earth and hid his master's money." (v. 18)

  3.) Verse 18 clearly says that the master of the other two was also "his master" who is the slothful servant.

    Up to this point there is still no indication that a false Christian is being depicted.

 4.) As the two came before the master so also the slothful servant came:

 "Then he who had received the one talent also came and said, Master, I knew about you, that you are a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you did not winnow. And I was afraid and went off and hid your talent n the earth, behold, you have what is yours." (v.24,25)

  5.) In verse 26 the master of the other two is still called this one's master as well:

 "And his master answered and said to him, Evil and slothful slave ..." (v.26)

 6.) The master does not disagree with the slothful slaves evaluation of the master as a serious business man:

   "And his master answered and said to him, Evil and slothful slave, you knew that I reap where I did not sow and gather where I did not winnow. Therefore you should have deposited my money with the money changers and when I came, I would have recovered what is mine with interest." (v.27)

  7.) The discipline administered to the slothful servant is him being cast into the outer darkness:

   "And cast out the useless slave into the outer darkness. In that place there will be the weeping and the gnashing of teeth." (v.30)

    To interpret this punishment as eternal damnation is strictly speculative. It does not have to be eternal. The Lord's second coming commences a 1,000 year kingdom BEFORE the eternal age begins.

  8.)  If we do interpret "the outer darkness" here as eternal perdition then it follows that salvation from eternal punishment is by WORKS. For it was the lack of WORKS that caused the slothful servant to be cast into the outer darkness.

 9.) If we conclude that the servant was cast into eternal punishment because of the lack of works we automatically imply that the other two servants were saved by their works.

 This is against the truth of justification by faith.

 10.) It is better to realize that the teaching is not concerning eternal salvation verses eternal punishment. Rather it is a teaching concerning dispensational reward during the millennial kingdom or dispensational discipline during that time.

  11.) Though we are not told explicitly in Matthew 25:14-30 that the punishment was temporary, the parellel passage shows a servant being punished UNTIL a certain lesson was learned.

    That is in the parable of the unforgiving servant in Matthew 18:23-35 which concludes -

 "And his master became angry and delivered him to the torturers until he would repay all that was owed.

 So also will My heavenly Father do to you if each of you does not forgive his brother from your hearts."



 I am not saying that the object lessons of the two teachings are identical. The point is that they both concern the dealing of Christ with His servants after His return to them in the second coming. Therefore they are teachings about His judging of His people at the commencment of the 1,000 year millennial kingdom. Some of us know that that is the major dispensation to follow the second coming of Christ.

 And this unforgiving servant is to be discipliened UNTIL a certain time which can only indicate a LIMIT to his discipline.  That he should repay all that was owed the master should not mean that he can possibly pay the Savior back for His redemptive forgiveness.

 It should mean that he is discipined until he repays the Lord concerning the lesson of learning to forgive his fellow Christian. But the main point is that his punishment is corrective and temporary.

 11.) It is hard to interpret either servant as a false Christian. A sinner is NOT saved by forgiving those who offended him. And a sinner is not saved by trading with the talent given to him by the Lord.

 Justification unto etenal redemption is by faith alone. Romans and John are clear about that.

 12.) The most logical interpretation is that we should refrain from applying lessons of eternal redemption to  either the Matthew 18 or 25 parable of the Lord's servants. They are lessons not on eternal redemption but on dispensational reward or punishment.

 And the punishment should not be more than 1,000 years. It may be some portion of that time. And it may vary according to the severity of the situation.

  Now, I agree with LivelyStone that the teaching of the wheat and tares advizes that the Christians cannot always discern who is a true believer and who is a false believer.

  But the slothful servant definitely has received SOMETHING from the master. A false believer has NOT received from the master.

 Now the Lord says : "Take away therefore the talent from him and give it to him who has the ten talents. For to every one who has, [more] shall be given, and he shall abound, but to from him who does not havem, even that which he has shall be taken away from him." (v.28,29)


 It is not that the one talented servant did not have. It is that he considers that he does not have. This reminds us of our Christian life in the realm of service. We often look around and consider that we cannot do what other Christians can do. Compared to them we have less. So we do not do business with what the Lord has entrusted to us.

 This is not an unbeliever who has nothing from God. This is an believer who thinks that because he has less then the next servant of God, he does not have to do the Lord's business with what he has.

  Think of what could happen if every "one talented" member of the Lord's church would rise up to do the Lord's business with what the Lord has given him. So the teaching of Matthew 25:14-30 is not about a false Christian who received nothing from Christ.

 It is about a true Christian servant who was slothful to serve because he considered that he had nothing. Perhaps because he looked around and compared himself to others, he assumed that he had less from God and need not serve because of that.

 The Lord does not accept his excuse. And I submit that while other servants enjoy the kingdom responsibility this slothful one is temporarily cast into some "outer darkness" during that kingdom time.

  The punishment cannot last more than 1,000 years. And it may last some portion of that time as the Lord deems appropriate.

  
« Last Edit: June 12, 2011, 01:14:00 PM by Feedmysheep »

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How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« on: June 09, 2011, 05:09:46 PM »

Offline Lively Stone

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2011, 05:18:54 PM »
I have no idea where you are coming from abouit the 1000 year punishment.

I hope you are not espousing a Universalist doctrine that the wicked only suffer disciplinary punishment, until they pay for their sin.

NO ONE is required to REPAY anything!

Jesus paid it all.

The unworthy servant is the unregenerate person, who has rejected his salvation, once embraced. These kinds of people are described in the parable of the Sower.

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2011, 05:18:54 PM »

Offline Feedmysheep

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2011, 05:20:31 PM »


 Try at least to read through the post again carefully.

 I do not mind your disagreement. But I do want your understanding of what it is I am writing.

 

larry2

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2011, 08:31:07 PM »

Quote from: Feedmysheep

Does the Lord deliver His possessions to the unbeliever in this way along with the believer? I say no. All three servants are true Christians.


Do you realize that blessings fall on the believer and the unbeliever? For instance the different bodily gifts given unto men. Some unbelievers have a much greater gift of leadership than I do. Do they hide it from God? Yes and will have no reward for its use.

Matthew 5:45  That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.

Psalm 139:14 "I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made." Does this extend to only the believer?

Do I believe a believer is ever cast into outer darkness? No, and in whatever timeframe we see Jesus, He will have our reward with Him. I do believe we can lose reward. Hopefully I understood what you were saying. As to separation from God, He will never leave or forsake us and David said it this way in Psalms 139:8. "If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there."

My thoughts.

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2011, 08:31:07 PM »

Offline Feedmysheep

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2011, 05:52:33 AM »
 
Quote from: larry2

  Do you realize that blessings fall on the believer and the unbeliever? For instance the different bodily gifts given unto men. Some unbelievers have a much greater gift of leadership than I do. Do they hide it from God? Yes and will have no reward for its use.

   I agree with you that in the natural realm God has given to believers and unbelievers alike certain blessings for their natural life.  One is blessed with a certain skill and someone else with another ability.

   But I don't think the giving of the talents are these natural abilities because man cannot build up the kingdom of God with his natural abilities. Only a worldly organization can be built up with the natural worldly abilities of the natural man.

   Our natural ability has to pass through the cross, be transformed by the Lord. Paul said that he and his coworkers had no confidence in the flesh.

  "For we are the circumcision, the ones who serve by the Spirit of God and boast in Christ Jesus and have no confidence in the flesh." (Phil. 3:3)

  Paul was indeed naturally gifted as an intelligent man. He learned that he could not put confindence in his natural ability. Only by undergoing the "circumcision" of the cross, in putting His trust in the Spirit, could that ability be useful. He had to be completely subdued by the Holy Spirit, denying himself and undergoing the process of sanctification.

  The Old Covenant demanded works before life. One had to produce the works in order to become one of the children of God. The New Covenant is different. It first imparts life to produce children of God. Then the kingdom demands works to be servants of the Son. And the order is reversed because God does not want us to serve in the natural flesh of the fallen Adamic man.

 He gives the life of the Son that we not only be born of God as children but serve in the life of the Son.

 
Quote from: larry2

Matthew 5:45  That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.

   It is a excellent point. In this verse the Creator is impartial about His sun and His rain. both the evil and the good are benefitted by His creation. And He is no respector of persons in this realm. The evil are mentioned first before the good and then the just are mentioned first before the unjust.

  But I will try to show you that these blessings of the natural world are not the talents given by the Lord to His bondslaves.

  In Matthew 5:45 the disciples are to do the will of God so as to become sons to express their Father - "But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you that you may become sons of your Father who is in the heavens, because He causes His sun to rise ... etc."

  Matthew wants to emphasize doing the will of God to become sons of the Father. This is the gospel of the kingdom of the heavens. It is full of teachings on responsibility and closeness to God because of doing His will:

 " ... He answered and said to him who spoke to Him, Who is My mother, and who are My brothers ? And stretching out His hand toward His disciples, He said, Behold, My mother and My brothers!

 For whoever does the will of My Fathe who is in the heavens, he is My brothers and sister and mother." (Matthew 12:48-50)


 This is somehwat like the Old Covenant in that the intimate relationship with God comes about because of doing the will of God.
 
 In John's Gospel the most intimate term that Jesus used to refer to His disciples was "friends" in John 15. But only after His death and resurrection does He say that He ascends to His Father and their Father (John 20:17) and He refered to them for the first time as "BROTHERS":

 Compare these two passages to see.

  Before His death and resurrection:

 "You are My friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all the things which I have heard from My Father I have made known to you." (John 15:14,15)

  After His death and resurrection:

 "Jesus said to her, Do not touch Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father, but go to My BROTHERS and say to them, I ascend to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God."

   In John's gospel the disciples graduate from friends of Jesus before His resurrection to brothers of Jesus after His resurrection. In the eyes of God we Christians were all regenerated through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead (1 Peter 1:3)

"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has regenerated us unto a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead" (1 Peter 1:3)

John wants to emphasize that the disciples only became regenerated children of God, brothers of Jesus owning His own Father as their Father too, through Christ's redemption and resurrection from the dead.

Matthew does not share this emphasis. Rather Matthew records that Jesus refers to the Father of the children of God in His sermon on the mount. I accept both evangelists' gospels as the word of God.

 I think the talents as the Lord's riches meant for His interprise are to be interpreted as things of the divine life. The rain and the sun, without question, is a great blessing upon all mankind. I think though that the talents or money of the Lord refers to things of His divine Spirit of life which is only imparted to the regenerated people.


Quote from: larry2

Psalm 139:14 "I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made." Does this extend to only the believer?


 No. It does not extend only to the believer. You are quite correct that there are blessings in the natural realm which are so to ALL peoples regardless if they are believers or unbelievers.

   But look at the teaching carefully.

  Verse 14 - "For it is as when a man, going into another country" This is not God the Creator of the good sun and good rain. This is a MAN (God incarnate) who is going away in ascension after His redemptive death and resurrection. He ascends to heaven as a "far country" . This going away to a far country should point to the ascension of the Lord Jesus the God-man (See Hebrews 9:11, 1 Pet. 3:22)  

This Traveler "Called his own servants". These should be the people who He has BOUGHT with His redemption. These should not be the unsaved but those who have been bught with a price by the Lord.

 He delivers unto them His goods. These should be the "goods" of the One in resurrection who is about to ascend to heaven, a far country.  For this reason I think the blessed rain or the blessed sunshine or even the blessed natural abilities of the born unbeliever are the goods spoken of here.

 Rather, the truth of the Gospel, the gifts of the Spirit, and the things bestowed upon the redeemed are meant as the Lord's money. And His going away to another country is like a TEST to His servants to see how faithful they will be.

 This is not a matter of their relationship as children of the Father with eternal life. It is a matter of SERVANTS of the Lord for doing the business of the kingdom of the heavens.

  For this reason I do not believe the punished servant is losing his eternal redemption. Nor do I believe to be cast into the outer darkness is to lose the gift of eternal life. For that is a gift and not a recompense for work:

 "For the wages of sin is death, but the GIFT of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Rom. 6:23)

 And clearly the believer is not granted eternal life based upon works which he has done but according to God's mercy:

 " .... when the kindness and the love to man of our Savior God appeared, not out of works in righteousness which we did but according to His mercy He saved us ..." (Titus 3:4,5a)

 With this firm grasp of justification by faith and eternal redemption and eternal life by the gift of God, the parable of the talents cannot be a teaching relating to securing eternal redemption.

 The faithful servants cannot work in order to be saved. Nor can the unfaithful servant perish because of not working.

 But in the manifestation of the kingdom reward or discipline for service is being taught here. The reward is not eternal life. And the punishment is not eternal perdition. Both the reward and the punishment relate to the position of the servant in the millennial kingdom based upon his service through the church age.

 It is at that time the Lord went away to a far country and delivered to the saved saints His riches to see how they would profit His kingdom "business."

Quote from: larry2

Do I believe a believer is ever cast into outer darkness?


 But if we say that the servant who is cast into the outer darkness is not a Christian, then what logically follows ?

 It logically follows that he was lost eternally because he did not work. And conversely, the two servants who were rewarded were saved eternally because of thier works.

  By teaching that the servant cast to outer darkness is a false Christian you immediately weaken justification by faith and eternal life is no longer the GIFT but the reward for WORK. This is a mistake.  

 The solution is that the teaching is not about eternal life or eternal redemption. It is about temporary reward or discipline during the time BEFORE the new heaven and new earth, the eternal age.

 For when Jesus returns to deal with His servants it is the beginning of the millennial kingdom and not the beginning of the eternity spoken of in Revelation 21 and 22. I believe five or six times we are told of the kingdom reign for 1000 years in Revelation 20.
 See 20:2,3,,4,5,6,7 for the "thousand years."

  If this period of a thousand year kingdom is right then why would not the Gospel of Matthew's parables about the Lord's return be dealing with matters concerning that period ?
 
 
Quote from: larry2


No, and in whatever timeframe we see Jesus, He will have our reward with Him. I do believe we can lose reward. Hopefully I understood what you were saying. As to separation from God, He will never leave or forsake us and David said it this way in Psalms 139:8. "If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there."

My thoughts.

 I would not say that for the servant to be cast into the outer darkness is to be utterly away from God. However, the Lord Jesus here is the reigning King upon the earth. There well could a realm far away from Jesus on His  throne  of bright glory in Jerusalem.

 This casting into outer  darkness is of one saved eternally. So he is not utterly without God. I think the casting out is remedial and corrective rather than retribution.

  Now concerning the talents delivered by the master to the servants. Some points:

 1.) A talent here is something which a Christian has but which an unbeliever does not have, because the Lord gave them to His own slaves in the parable. He did not give the talents to any one else's servants.

 2.) The telents were given according to each one's ability and not casually or indiscriminatly.

 3.) The talent can be encreased through earning.

 4.) The talents can be taken back.

 5.) The telents seem not to be ordinarily given to men by God. Rather they are given here by the man representing the Lord Jesus in ascension. Christ ascended to heaven as going away to a far country. He will return one day to bring His servants before the judgment seat of Christ.

  All such ones before that judgment seat are securely and eternally saved already.

  I don't believe that the talents represent property, position, influence, time, life, personal character in the natural realm, a keen mind, health, church position, position in religion,

  This money may be the gift of the Holy Spirit which the Lord possesses exclusively (Acts 2:38). And which gift can be distributed (Acts 19:6). The enjoyment of this Holy Spirit can be encreased (1 Cor. 14:12-13).

   This Spirit saturating the soul of the believer can encrease in that sense more and more. If we serve with this Spirit we will deepen our experience with Him. In that way there is an encrease of the Lord's riches with us.

 Our natural ability cannot perform the Lord's work. But if we are sanctified and filled with this Spirit He can use our abilities when they bear the fragrance of Jesus Christ rather than old Adam.

  Peter was a fisher of men through the power of the Holy Spirit. Peter also went through considerable transformation. Through faithfulness and trial and error he learned not to trust himself. But the Holy Spirit could use him as he was sanctified.

  Gifts of the Holy Spirit were given from the ascended Christ on Pentacost. And Paul told Timothy to stir up the gift of God that was in him (2 Tim. 1:6).  All believers have the gift of the Holy Spirit. All believers have at least ONE talent. No believer can say he or she has no gift from the Lord whom they serve.

  Five one talented Christians who are not afraid to serve the Lord equal one Christian with five talents. There are probably far far more one talented members of the Christian church than five talented ones.

  For length sake I must stop here.  
« Last Edit: June 12, 2011, 01:22:11 PM by Feedmysheep »

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2011, 05:52:33 AM »



Offline Feedmysheep

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2011, 08:49:39 AM »
 
Quote from: LivelyStone


    have no idea where you are coming from abouit the 1000 year punishment.


  

 It is quite logical. Both the rewards of the Lord and the punishments of the Lord as pertaining to His redeemed people relate to the time after His second coming.

 Read about this time of 1,000 years following His second coming in Revelation 20. The thousand years is mentioned five or six times.

 This period is fulfillment of much prophecy in the Bible. And it must end before there is the new heaven and new earth of eternity in Revelation 21 and 22.

  Not just the negative pertains to that thousand years but the very positive as well.

Quote from: LivelyStone

I hope you are not espousing a Universalist doctrine that the wicked only suffer disciplinary punishment, until they pay for their sin.


 I am not advocating universalism. The perishing of the unbeliever in the lake of fire is not corrective. It is retribution and vengence from God. It is not meant to improve.

 However, any discipline of the Father towards His sons is corrective. And during the church age He does correct. But not only in the church age but also in the 1000 years following Christ's second coming.

 All perfecting must be finished before the new heaven and the new earth come in in Revelation 21 and 22.

 God is so very soveriegn. And a total remake of the creation will not take place until all of His redeemed people have been fully sanctified, glorified, transformed and made to express Christ their Elder Brother.

 The portion of them who have been matured are rewarded in the 1,000 years.


Quote from: LivelyStone

NO ONE is required to REPAY anything!

Jesus paid it all.

The unworthy servant is the unregenerate person, who has rejected his salvation, once embraced. These kinds of people are described in the parable of the Sower.


 Of course no one can repay the Lord for His redemptive death for our sins. You are quite right. Only God knows the full worth of His Son's precious blood. It will take us unto eternity to appreciate the full value of His eternal redemption.

 I have no debate on that matter.

 Having said that, your comparison to the parable of the Sower is only  partially correct. You should realize that only the seeds stolen from by the birds should represent the lost.

 The seeds stolen from the heart by the birds who probably represent demons, would correspond to those who hear the word of the kingdom and it is totally robbed from them by the Devil. They do not believe to be saved.

 The other three kinds of soils should represent the saved. The issue here is not HOW saved they are eternally but how FRUITFUL they are.

 Some are turned back by persecution. But they are still eternally saved.
 Some are choked by the anxieties of the world which limits their fruitfulness. But they TOO are eternally saved.

 And some with patience and longsuffering DEAL with their hearts. And these bear fruit 20 fold, 60 fold, and 100 fold. Obviously these are fruitful servants of the Lord.

 The two parables intersect here, I believe. The TWO servants who made a profit for the master correspond to the believer with 30 fold, 60 fold, or 100 fold fruitfulness. Generally speaking they made some fruit and profit in their Christian service.

 The servant cast into the outer darkness is probably one of the other two unfortunate cases where either enxiety or persecution or something ELSE, like slothfulness, hindered him from producung fruit unto the Lord.

 He is nevertheless saved as also the two cases of rocky soil and thorny soil.

 I do NOT believe that the servant cast into the outer darkness is unsaved.
 
« Last Edit: June 12, 2011, 01:37:16 PM by Feedmysheep »

Offline Lively Stone

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2011, 11:54:17 AM »
You need to drop the Millennium as a time for perfecting of anyone. Jesus will be on the throne out of Jerusalem and the saints will be already rewarded and changed into incorruptible bodies, and serving Him in their rewarded roles as government over the surviving nations of mortals out of Tribulation.

There is no more perfecting or maturing required of the saints!

Offline Feedmysheep

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2011, 12:25:14 PM »
 
Quote from: LivelyStone


   You need to drop the Millennium as a time for perfecting of anyone. Jesus will be on the throne out of Jerusalem and the saints will be already rewarded and changed into incorruptible bodies, and serving Him in their rewarded roles as government over the surviving nations of mortals out of Tribulation.

There is no more perfecting or maturing required of the saints!

   Then are you saying that the Lord should DROP correcting the unforgiving servant in Matthew 18:33-35 ?

  "Should you not also have had mercy on your fellow slave even as I had mercy on you ?    And his master became angry and delivered him to the torturers until he would repay all that was owed.  So also will My heavenly Father do to you if each of you does not forgicve his brother from your hearts."

  Should the heavenly Father DROP this discipline of the unforgiving disciple in order  to conform with your theology ?

  
  Should the Lord DROP His warning that some servants would be disciplined with few lashes and others with many lashes ?

  "The master of that slave will come on a day when he does not expect [him] and at an hour which he does not know, and will cut him asunder, and will appoint his portion with the unbelievers.

 And the slave who knew his master's will and did not prepare or do according to his will, will receive many lashes.  But he who did not knw, yet did things worthy of stripes, will receive few lashes." (Luke 12:46-48)


   Do you demand of Christ that He suspend His discipline of these unprepared servants in order to conform to your theology ? Perhaps YOU are in error and not the Lord.

  Besides, the Lord LOVES all of His servants. Why do you want to deny Him His authority to use the millennial time that they also may be perfected ? It is out of His love that the Father scourges every son whom He receives (Hebrews 12:5-14) .

  "But if you are without discipline, of which all [sons] have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons." (Heb. 12:8)

  Are you suggesting that in the millennium some unperfected sons of the Father should be then discarded as illegitimate bastards and not given lessons by which they may partake of His holiness ?

  "Pursue peace with all men and sanctification, without which no one will see the Lord." (v. 14)

  
 
  
 

Offline Lively Stone

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2011, 12:51:07 PM »
Judgment doesn't render discipline or correction toward change. It is judgment, and final.


Offline Feedmysheep

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2011, 01:35:08 PM »

 
Quote from: LivelyStone

   Judgment doesn't render discipline or correction toward change. It is judgment, and final.


 That depends. I would think you would know better than to make a broad generalization like that.

 Was the brother in Corinth who was judged and told to stay away from the church not CORRECTED ? He repented and came back, no longer addicted to the worst kind of fornication.

 Was that backslidden brother not judged by the Holy Spirit, the church in Corinth, and the Apostle Paul ? Was that not a corrective judgment ?

 " ... Do you not JUDGE those who are within [the church] ? But those who are outside, God will judge. Remove the evil man from amng yourselves." (1 Cor. 5:12,13)

 We see that this sinning brother was beautifully reconciled back to the fellowship of the church in Paul's second letter. That was a corrective judging which turned out quite positively.


  I can here you protest - "That is not a judgment after the second coming of Christ".

  But you see, if we have unconfessed sins, we have to acknowledge the wrong doing of them SOMETIME. And if we die with sins which we did not deal with, we have to deal with them sometime.

  The flavor and style of those remedial dealings will not have the same "taste" as in the age of grace. I cannot tell you exactly how it will be different.  But it will be different.

  And this judging from Jesus at His judgment seat results not JUST in rewards or loss of rewards. This judging of Christ at His judgment seat can result in specific discipline, correction, few or many lashes, being cut asunder, being burnt in the fire, being cast into outer darkness.

 I warn every Christian reading this post, including myself. Jesus has a large scope of possible things He can do to adjust His children after His second coming and before the age of eternity.

  His lattitude is very wide. It may range from light to severe to VERY severe discipline. You simply have to put all the passages together without preference.

 Why would you not expect the wisest Judge in all the universe to have at His disposal a wide variety of possible remedies for those in the house of God ?

  The scope of possibilities SHORT of condemning one to eternal perdition is wide.
  And His rewards can cover a wide span also.

  Challenge this and you will see the truth come out more and more.

Offline Feedmysheep

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2011, 01:46:52 PM »
 
Quote from: LivelyStone


   You need to drop the Millennium as a time for perfecting of anyone. Jesus will be on the throne out of Jerusalem and the saints will be already rewarded and changed into incorruptible bodies, and serving Him in their rewarded roles as government over the surviving nations of mortals out of Tribulation.
 


 I am not yet sure how this will all play out in relation to our bodies.

 But I think many of us are in for some surprise of some kind.
 We always have a foolish thought that God is locked into something which makes it impossible for Him to deal with His people righteously.

 Frankly, we should have learned some lessons from the FIRST coming of Christ and how in some aspects it surprised the Jews.

 Do you think there will be NO surprises in His second coming ?
 A close examination of the Scripture suggests that we should not be too presumptous.

   I expect that there will be some surprises even given all His wonderful positive promises. The accompanying warnings necessitate it.

  Did we read that God was not mocked. And did we read that whatsoever a man sows he will reap ?  Did Paul write that to Christians in the churches of Galatia ?

 Or did Paul say "Excuse me. I have something I want to say to the unbelievers" ?

 Christian - God is not mocked !  Do some of us think that God can be mocked ?
 Do some of us  think we have our free " ticket to heaven " and  God can be mocked ?

  We need sober teaching today even if we are eternally redeemed.
  
« Last Edit: June 10, 2011, 01:56:30 PM by Feedmysheep »

Offline Feedmysheep

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #11 on: June 10, 2011, 02:05:06 PM »
 We Christians may reconcile dispensational discipline with the GIFT of eternal life carefully and fairly.

You see there is no assumption on my part that when Jesus saves a man He has no possibility to further adjust, correct, or perfect that man. That is a false assumption.

Once the Lord Jesus receives a believing sinner, there exists a wide scope of possible disciplines He may administer to that forgiven sinner aside from going back on His promise that such shall never perish forever.

In fact the eternal age of the new heaven and new earth does not even commence immediatley upon the second coming of Christ. We see that the span of 1,000 years as a preliminary millennial kingdom is mentioned five or six times after the battle of Armegeddon and before the eternal age of Revelation 21 and 22:

1.) The millennial kingdom - "And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key to the abyss and a great chain. And he lais hold of the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years." (Rev. 20:1,2)
 


 During that thousand years Christ still has time to work on some of His saved saints.

2.) The millennial kingdom - " ... that he [Satan] might not deceive the nations any longer until the thousand years were completed ..." (v.3)

During that thousand years Christ has time to further perfect some of his saints who did not produce proper works in the age of grace. Though they have eternal life they need further sanctification in order to LIVE that life and enjoy that life.

3.) The millennial kingdom - "And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded becausee of the testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, ... and they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years." (v.4)

During that thousand years all who have received the gift of eternal life will be divided into those rewarded for this period and those in need of further perfecting.

Once saved from eternal perdition always saved from eternal perdition. That does NOT mean that Christ cannot further discipline His saved saint during this preliminary 1,000 year kingdom.

4.) The millennial kingdom - "The rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were completed. This is the first resurrection." (v. 5)

Between the first resurrection and the second resurrection 1,000 years latter, Jesus Christ still has time to perform some dispensational perfecting of those saints who are in need of it.

5.) The millennial kingdom - " Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no authority, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years." (v. 6)

Examining the New Testament carefully we see that to reign is a reward shared by some overoming saints. So the Lord still has a thousand years in which defeated Christians can be matured.

They do not lose the gift of eternal redemption or eternal life. They do have to be further shepherded into living that eternal life.

6.) The millennial kingdom - "And when the thousand years are completed, Satan will bereleased from his prison." (v. 7)

Before Satan goes to eternal damnation and before the age of the new heaven and new earth, Christ still has 1,000 years in which to accomplish some matters over His people.

Too many people fail to notice that the eternal age does not commence immediately upon the second coming of Christ or at the resurrection of all His saints.

No one who is born of God will perish forever as the Lord promised. Their eternal redemption is secure. Their reward or discipline based upon works is not garuanteed though.

Offline Lively Stone

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #12 on: June 10, 2011, 02:27:12 PM »

 
Quote from: LivelyStone

   Judgment doesn't render discipline or correction toward change. It is judgment, and final.


 That depends.

Don't wander all over the map.

We are talking about the final judgment of God.


Quote
And this judging from Jesus at His judgment seat results not JUST in rewards or loss of rewards. This judging of Christ at His judgment seat can result in specific discipline, correction, few or many lashes, being cut asunder, being burnt in the fire, being cast into outer darkness.

Sorry, but once we have taken on our glorified body, we are already fully sanctified and not in any state of growth---or correction. We, who are Christ's will be receiving reward. Yes, there will be subtractions of rewards that were prepared for us, but there will be no condemnation.

Quote
I warn every Christian reading this post, including myself. Jesus has a large scope of possible things He can do to adjust His children after His second coming and before the age of eternity.

That's just silly, and not based on anything Biblical. We will already be fully sanctified, wearing our immortality, having already received our reward, and REIGNING and RULING with Him!!!

Our focus will be on Him and His reign over the nations, and their restoration, and that the nations love and obey Him



Offline Feedmysheep

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2011, 04:15:07 PM »
 
Quote from: LivelyStone


    Don't wander all over the map.

We are talking about the final judgment of God.


  It is not a matter of wandering all over the map. It is a matter if acknowledging that the New Testament teaches more than just one judgment.

  The judgment at the great white throne after the millennium is not the same as the judgment of believers at the judgment seat of Christ before the start of the millennium.

  
Quote from: LivelyStone

Quote
And this judging from Jesus at His judgment seat results not JUST in rewards or loss of rewards. This judging of Christ at His judgment seat can result in specific discipline, correction, few or many lashes, being cut asunder, being burnt in the fire, being cast into outer darkness.

Sorry, but once we have taken on our glorified body, we are already fully sanctified and not in any state of growth---or correction. We, who are Christ's will be receiving reward. Yes, there will be subtractions of rewards that were prepared for us, but there will be no condemnation.

   You are simply ignoring verses I  refer you to.

  You know it is one thing to be standing firmly for the truth of the Bible.
  It is another thing entirely to just be plain old stubborn.

   This passage does not concern a false Christian. It concerns a true brother in Christ who will be turned over to the torturers until he learned to forgive his fellow brother from his heart.

  "And his master became angry and delivered him to the torturers until he would repay all that was owed." (Matt. 18:34)

 By sheer force of will power, you cannot just stick your head in the sand like an Ostrich and pretend this verse is not in the New Testament. And the Lord's word immediately afterwards makes it impossible to regard it as anything OTHER than a warning to Christian believers -

 "So also will My heavenly Father do to you if each of you does not forgive his brother from your hearts." (v.35)

 What are you going to do ? Do you think by force of will power you can just suppress the teaching ? We have to deal with it.

  This teaching is a warning to ANY Christian who is in danger of going to the grave with a grudge or offended attitude of unforgiveness towards a Christian brother or sister.

  Now I admit that I do not know how all of this warning coordinates with His glorification of the physical body. But the hope of transfiguration does not have the effect on some of us, that we can simply IGNORE the warning tone of the teaching.

 I simply CANNOT dismiss Matthew 18:34,35 under the assumption that a resurrected and/or glorified body put me forever out of the reach of further discipline by God.

  And we should consider that the Lord is working on us from the INSIDE to the OUTSIDE. He is working in my SOUL, in my mind and emotion and will to transform me. The physical body is the last realm that His divine life will burst out into.

 Should I assume that if I have not learned to subdue my temper under the Holy Spirit that a transfigured body will magically cause my to be free from having unforgiving grudges against the brethren ?

  Paul speaks of transformation as happening in degrees, as a process and gradually:

 "And the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

 And we all with unveiled face, beholding and reflecting like a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord Spirit." (2 Cor. 3:17,18)


 This is a transformation of the soul from one degree of expression to another degree of expression to another degree, to another degree. It is a process of succesive changing the personality into the same image as of the Lord Jesus.

 We cannot neglect this transformation from one degree of glory to another, to another and expect that our souls will magically be changed to be like the Lord Jesus in an instant.

 I do believe that the swallowing up of our mortal in divine life at transfiguration will have a liberating effect. But I do not believe so to the extent that a Christian can afford to neglect gradual transformation by the Holy Spirit in successive degrees throughout his Christian life.

 Suppose I do not turn to the Lord with unvieled face ?
 Suppose I do not do so because I spend my life nourishing some offense in unforgiveness ?

 You say "Don't worry about that. We will all be changed into our glorified bodies. There is no more lesson."

 I don't think so LivelyStone. The New Testament would not exhort us to give heed to the Spirit's transformation work if all  problems in our soul would be magically solved at resurrection.

 "And do not be fashioned according to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of the mind that you may prove what the wll of God is ..." (Romans 12:2a)


 Do you honestly think I can ignore this exhortation ? Suppose I have an unforgiven offense which I still hold against a brother ? Should I say:

 " Well I know I should be renewed in my mind in this matter. I know I should not be as the worldly people who have not tasted the forgiveness of Christ. I know that I should seek transformation in my attitude. I know that should not let the world squeeze me into its mold so that I behave as the grudge holding unbelievers.

 But I just don't want to take the cross to my mad temper. I enjoy holding to this offense. When my body is resurrected, THEN I won't have this unforgiving attitude anymore."

  This attitude will not be rewarded. I am going to have to deal with that way of thinking either now or after the Lord Jesus comes back.

  He wants our cooperation. It is God who works in us both the willing and the working for His good pleasure.  


Quote from: LivelyStone

Quote
I warn every Christian reading this post, including myself. Jesus has a large scope of possible things He can do to adjust His children after His second coming and before the age of eternity.


That's just silly, and not based on anything Biblical. We will already be fully sanctified, wearing our immortality, having already received our reward, and REIGNING and RULING with Him!!!

Our focus will be on Him and His reign over the nations, and their restoration, and that the nations love and obey Him


     Reform theology has to be taken in perspective. It is good to realize that in Christ we are in a sanctified position and standing before God. We are after all SAINTS. Positionally we are sanctified all and are called SAINTS.

 But that is not the only side of the New Testament truth. We are also in the life long process of dispositional sanctfication. This is an ongoing growth.  Paul speaks of both positional sanctification and dispositional sanctification. You only know positional sanctification. But here Paul speaks of the process of ongoing dispositional sanctification as well:

 "I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves to uncleaness and lawlessness unto lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness unto sanctification." (Romans 6:19)


 The phrase "UNTO SANCTIFICATION"  indicates with a view to sanctification. It means TOWARDS the result of sanctification. This proves that there is a  movement in the Christian life of the obedient which is towards the result of santification. It is a process moving towards a goal. That goal is sanctification.

 Since it is a movement "UNTO SANTIFICATION" that proves that the Christian should be in the ongoing PROCESS of it. In that regard sanctification is encreasing and we cannot say that we have arrived. We can say that as long as we live and present our members as slaves of righteousness we are moving more and more in a growth   "UNTO sanctification" .

  He is able to present us faultless and without blemish before Him in love. And He ever lives to intercede for us and to save us to the uttermost. But God operates and the Christian CO-operates.

  The jist of your shallower and superfiscial prejudicial teaching is that there is no need for cooperation. And your false teaching asserts that there will be no consequence in the millennium for lack of cooperation, other than to lose a possible reward.

 The BIBLE shows lose of reward, but does not stop there. The BIBLE also shows punishment, discipline, correction, lashes - either many or few. The BIBLE shows the servant cast into the outer darkness.

  While you choose to stubbornly ignore all these passages, some of us choose to include them with all the other passages for a well rounded and more thorough presentation of biblical truth.

« Last Edit: June 10, 2011, 04:31:13 PM by Feedmysheep »

Offline Lively Stone

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Re: How much reward / punishment to Christians ?
« Reply #14 on: June 10, 2011, 05:17:24 PM »
Quote from: LivelyStone


    Don't wander all over the map.

We are talking about the final judgment of God.


  It is not a matter of wandering all over the map. It is a matter if acknowledging that the New Testament teaches more than just one judgment.

  The judgment at the great white throne after the millennium is not the same as the judgment of believers at the judgment seat of Christ before the start of the millennium.

That's correct. So, why do you claim that believers, already fully sanctified and enjoying their reward, seated in authority over the earth with Jesus, need further maturity in Him?

Philippians 1:6
And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.

Who needs further completion among those of Christ after His coming?

Quote
You are simply ignoring verses I  refer you to.

  You know it is one thing to be standing firmly for the truth of the Bible.
  It is another thing entirely to just be plain old stubborn.

   This passage does not concern a false Christian. It concerns a true brother in Christ who will be turned over to the torturers until he learned to forgive his fellow brother from his heart.

You misinterpret these verses.

Quote
By sheer force of will power, you cannot just stick your head in the sand like an Ostrich and pretend this verse is not in the New Testament. And the Lord's word immediately afterwards makes it impossible to regard it as anything OTHER than a warning to Christian believers -

 "So also will My heavenly Father do to you if each of you does not forgive his brother from your hearts." (v.35)

 What are you going to do ? Do you think by force of will power you can just suppress the teaching ? We have to deal with it.

  This teaching is a warning to ANY Christian who is in danger of going to the grave with a grudge or offended attitude of unforgiveness towards a Christian brother or sister.

  Now I admit that I do not know how all of this warning coordinates with His glorification of the physical body. But the hope of transfiguration does not have the effect on some of us, that we can simply IGNORE the warning tone of the teaching.

 I simply CANNOT dismiss Matthew 18:34,35 under the assumption that a resurrected and/or glorified body put me forever out of the reach of further discipline by God.

There is no mention of eternal damnation of the redeemed.

Quote from: 'Lively Stone'
That's just silly, and not based on anything Biblical. We will already be fully sanctified, wearing our immortality, having already received our reward, and REIGNING and RULING with Him!!!

Our focus will be on Him and His reign over the nations, and their restoration, and that the nations love and obey Him[/size]

Quote
Reform theology has to be taken in perspective. It is good to realize that in Christ we are in a sanctified position and standing before God. We are after all SAINTS. Positionally we are sanctified all and are called SAINTS.

 But that is not the only side of the New Testament truth. We are also in the life long process of dispositional sanctfication. This is an ongoing growth.  Paul speaks of both positional sanctification and dispositional sanctification. You only know positional sanctification. But here Paul speaks of the process of ongoing dispositional sanctification as well:

 "I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves to uncleaness and lawlessness unto lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness unto sanctification." (Romans 6:19)


 The phrase "UNTO SANCTIFICATION"  indicates with a view to sanctification. It means TOWARDS the result of sanctification. This proves that there is a  movement in the Christian life of the obedient which is towards the result of santification. It is a process moving towards a goal. That goal is sanctification.

 Since it is a movement "UNTO SANTIFICATION" that proves that the Christian should be in the ongoing PROCESS of it. In that regard sanctification is encreasing and we cannot say that we have arrived. We can say that as long as we live and present our members as slaves of righteousness we are moving more and more in a growth   "UNTO sanctification" .

  He is able to present us faultless and without blemish before Him in love. And He ever lives to intercede for us and to save us to the uttermost. But God operates and the Christian CO-operates.

  The jist of your shallower and superfiscial prejudicial teaching is that there is no need for cooperation. And your false teaching asserts that there will be no consequence in the millennium for lack of cooperation, other than to lose a possible reward.

 The BIBLE shows lose of reward, but does not stop there. The BIBLE also shows punishment, discipline, correction, lashes - either many or few. The BIBLE shows the servant cast into the outer darkness.

  While you choose to stubbornly ignore all these passages, some of us choose to include them with all the other passages for a well rounded and more thorough presentation of biblical truth.



Our sanctification is COMPLETE upon death, or resurrection, whichever comes first.