“And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work.”
At the end of the Bible, Jesus Christ encourages us with the urgency of His desire to return. His actions are always in the best interests of everyone involved, and He tells us He is longsuffering and wants everyone to come to repentance and to be saved (2 Peter 3:9; 1 Timothy 2:4). But He is not slack, slow or stalling. He is eager to come and finally bring peace to this troubled world and set up the Kingdom of God on this earth.
God offers the gracious gift of eternal life to all who are called, chosen and faithful. Eternal life is a priceless gift, not a reward according to works. So what is the reward Christ will bring?
Jesus Christ tells us He will give power over the nations to those who overcome and keep His works to the end (Revelation 2:26). They will become kings and priests and reign with Christ a thousand years (Revelation 5:10; 20:4). Salvation is clearly God’s gift, but the responsibilities in His soon-coming Kingdom vary according to God the Father’s decision (Matthew 20:23). He will decide how we can best serve to accomplish His plan based upon our use of His Spirit in this age.
The parable of the minas (pounds in the King James Version) shows that these rewards are based on individual works and accomplishments. In this parable, each servant was given one mina (a sum of money worth about three or four months’ wages for the average worker (Nelson’s NKJV Study Bible, margin and note on Luke 19:13). When the master returned, the servants reported what they had earned by trading.
“Then came the first, saying, ‘Master, your mina has earned ten minas.’ And he said to him, ‘Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities’” (Luke 19:16-17). The servant who gained five minas was rewarded with five cities to serve.
For more about the promised gift and rewards, see our section on the “Kingdom of God.”