2 Corinthians 5:6–10 (ESV)
6 So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, 7 for we walk by faith, not by sight. 8 Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. 9 So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.
This a section of a letter the apostle Paul wrote to the church in Corinth. In these verses, Paul is laying out the basic issue all Christians have post conversion; namely, we are all still stuck in the physical world. I know there are times when I share Paul’s sentiment of rather being with Jesus in heaven than stuck in this body in the broken world we live in. What I really fail to grasp sometimes and what Paul so rightly describes here is that this time on earth matters. Paul was keenly aware of the fact that the reason he existed was to share the message of Jesus and the Kingdom with others. He had a mission. It was this mission that sustained him and motivated him to march through this life and into eternity with Jesus. He also understood that he would be rewarded for how well he completed this mission. I think sometimes the idea of the Father rewarding us for our good or poor performance on earth is more than folks want to consider. Yet in this passage and several others Paul directly tells us that we will receive in Heaven what we we deserve based on our earthly actions. It is important to understand that this is not a conversation about salvation. There is no work or action that a person can do that will warrant salvation. There is no work or action that a person can do that will remove the penalty of their sin and make them righteous enough to be accepted by God. Salvation only comes by faith in Jesus alone. So its not salvation that Paul is talking about here but it is about reward. I think as Christians we really need to capture this idea of commission or being sent out. We need to go medieval and embrace the reality that we have been commissioned by a King to be ambassadors sent out to proclaim the message of our Kingdom and demonstrate the love and service of our leader and periodically, we need to evaluate ourselves and ask how well we are doing. I know personally, I work hard to be a good worker at my job. I am keen to the objectives that are set out for me each year and strive to make sure that those objectives are met so that when my boss evaluates my performance I am found well pleasing to him. If I am willing to toil and labor to please my earthly boss how much more should I be will to toil and labor for Jesus my eternal King?
Father, thank you for your love and the grace you give all humanity to rise each day and live in the world you created. Thank you for adoption into your family and your Kingdom through the Lord Jesus Christ. Thank you Jesus for your love and your sacrifice and your Kingship. I pray that I would honor your sacrifice and that I perform admirably as your ambassador in this world for as long as this body constrains me to it. I offer you praise. In your name, Amen.