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Different Degrees of Rewards and Punishment

If a person is to have eternal punishment, then there must be different degrees of that punishment, just as eternal life has different degrees of rewards.

John 19:11  Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin. (KJV)
Jesus told Pilate that it was a sin for Pilate to condemn Him, because in his mind he knew that Jesus was innocent, but the Jews who delivered Him to Pilate, and Judas who delivered Jesus to the Jews, had greater sin to answer for. Jesus was not excusing Pilate for reacting to the political pressure placed on him. Pilate was certainly responsible for his decision about Jesus, but Caiaphas and the other religious leaders were guilty of a greater sin because they deliberately premeditated Jesus' murder.

Mat. 16:27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works. (KJV)
Books opened: (Ps. 69:28; Dan.7:10; 12:1-2; Lk.10:20; Jn.5:28-29; 11:25-26; Acts 24:15; Rom.14:10-12; 1 Cor.3:13-15; 4:5; 15:21-23; 2 Cor.5:10; Phil.4:3; 1 Thes.4:15-17; Rev.3:5; 13:8; 17:8; 20:12; 21:27). This will not be just for unbelievers; Christians, too, will face a judgment. Their eternal destiny is secure, but Jesus will look at how they handled their gifts, opportunities and responsibilities in order to determine their heavenly rewards. At the time of judgment, Judge Jesus will deliver the righteous and condemn the wicked.

Matthew 20:1-16 For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard. 2 And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. 3 And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, 4 And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way. 5 Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. 6 And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle? 7 They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive. 8 So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the labourers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first. 9 And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny.10 But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny. 11 And when they had received it, they murmured against the goodman of the house, 12  Saying, These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day. 13 But he answered one of them, and said, Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with me for a penny? 14 Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. 15 Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good? 16 So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen. (KJV)

God's standard for giving rewards is stated in this parable: faithfulness to the job, not of the amount of work done or the impressive nature of the work done, governs the giving of rewards.
This Parable of the laborers in the vineyard, is recorded only by Matthew, and is very closely connected with the last part of chapter 19. It is spoken with reference to Peter's question as to how it would be with those who, like himself, had left all he had for Christ. It is intended to show us that while all who work for God, would be richly rewarded in the eternal "vineyard" (Heaven), a crystal-clear equity and fairness would still be observed towards converts and workmen who come later in His service. Completely fair and just rewards shall be administered to ALL God's servants, no matter when they arrived to labor in the vineyard.
This is a tremendous Parable which illustrates a very important Truth . . . it is NOT the amount of time that you serve, neither is it the status or importance of your position which determines your reward. You shall instead, be rewarded for your faithfulness to God and to the task which He has given you to do. It does NOT matter how small or how insignificant you think you or the job is.

Luke 12:47-48 And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. 48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more. (KJV)
Christians shall appear before the judgment seat of Christ. Our judgment will NOT determine whether or not we will be saved. This will not be a criminal court, but a circuit court where our works will be in danger. He will judge us in order to see IF we are worthy or not to receive rewards. There will be degrees of rewards for the believer just as there will be degrees of punishment for the unbeliever. Degrees of rewards and punishment: (Ps.62:12; Mat.5:11-12; 10:41-42; 16:27; Lk.7:41-47;12:43-48; Gal.6:7-8; 1 Cor.3:8,12-15; Heb.6:10; 10:35; 1 Pet.5:4; 2 Jn.1:8; Rev.2:23; 3:11; 22:12)
Maybe He will not come today or tomorrow, but He IS going to come. Our tendency is to let things slip because He has not yet appeared. We feel like we can get by with things, but in reality, we get by with nothing. In that day when He comes, we shall be judged. 2 Cor. 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. (KJV)

The general idea concerning the eternal destinies of both saved and unsaved is outlined in the Bible. Rewards for believers and punishment for unbelievers are both clearly intended by our Creator. Ideas like punishment to fit the crime for unbelievers, and a believer’s relative station or position of authority are purely guesswork on our part. But one thing is clear. There is no promise that either an unbeliever’s regret or a believer’s joy will be lessened in any way because of their behavior, good or bad, here on Earth.

Will Heaven be the same for every Christian? Absolutely NOT! Not every Christian will have the same experience in Heaven. This is so important.

<><><>God makes it clear that EVERYONE after death will be judged by God.
Heb. 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: (KJV)
2 Tim. 4:1 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; (KJV)
Everyone, both Christians and non-Christians, will be judged by God, but NOT all will be judged in ONE single judgment.

<><><>There degrees of punishment and rewards after the judgment!
2 Peter 2:20-21 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. 21 For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. (KJV)
This is a very difficult Passage. Some commentators omit it or try to slide by it. Maybe the following article will help . . . http://www.hisservants.org/hard_heb.6.4-9_h_s.htm
2 John 1:8 Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward. (KJV)
There is NO half reward to any saint! Your reward is either lost completely, burnt up in the judgment fire (1 Cor.3:15) . . . OR received in FULL! There shall be NO service of pastor or people that shall fail to receive its reward. 1 Cor.15:41 There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differeth from another star in glory. (KJV) . . . I do not think any two people shall receive the same exact reward. God loves diversity! Look at people! No two alike. Consider the ocean . . . from the tiniest shrimp, to the vast whales! What awesome diversity!

I think Christians will each be rewarded in proportion to what they have done, and in regards to punishment, there also seems to be degrees of punishment. Someone like the Apostle Paul will gain more rewards than a new convert who dies soon after obeying the Gospel.

Judgment Shall Come, To ALL People

Judgment Coming

Judgment According to Works

Judgment, Angry With God?

Judgment, Books

Judgment, Bottomless Pit

Judgment, Degrees of Rewards and Punishment

Judgment, Different

Holy Spirit vs Evil Spirits

Judgment Seat of Christ

Judgment Sure

Great White Throne Judgment

Earthquakes in the Bible

What's in Store?

The World's View vs God

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