Wednesday, April 4, 2018

The Crown of Righteousness

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the CROWN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing. (2 Timothy 4:7-8
The Crown of Righteousness– This crown will be given to those who have lived a good and righteous life for God while living here on this earth and are waiting for His return.
This life is hard on the best days.  Living a good and righteous life seems like an impossible feat.  It is impossible to live a perfect life because sin lives in this world too, but Paul urges us in 2 Timothy to keep going on hard days and finish the fight.  There is an eternal reward waiting.  
The Christian life is really all about receiving the Crown of Righteousness. Striving to live a righteous life is what Christ has called us to do.  It is remaining faithful and making choices that honor God and His call on our lives.  As a believer, the righteousness of Christ has been placed upon us.  We were made righteous through Him when He died on the cross.  This is called Justification.  Living righteous lives in our actions, words, and behaviors is Sanctification.  
This crown is not a crown of salvation.  Our salvation is sealed forever when we accept Christ as our savior. This crown is about how we run the race and making it to the finish line.  Paul was ready to go when he said these words.  He knew he was at the end and he felt good about his life, his faith, and the course he had run.  What a great way to go out!  I hope when I get to the end of my life I can say with assurance that I have run the race, fought the good fight, and kept the good faith.  This should be our target for life.  
This verse also says the Crown of Righteousness will be given to those who love the appearing of Christ, who anxiously wait and look forward to the day when He will return for His saints. Who is not looking forward to Jesus coming again? With the issues of the world getting worse every day, the promise of Jesus coming again and taking us to our heavenly home, away from this world and the pain and death associated with it cannot come soon enough.  
Keep going.  Jesus gives us strength to finish.  The path won’t be easy, and you won’t always run straight but the reward is great for all who push ahead to the end.  Jesus is at the end and He is waiting to cheer you across the finish line and present the Crown of Righteousness. 

Scripture to Claim:Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:2

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