Casting Off the Earthly Crown

Hello, my friends!

Today, I want to share a theme that struck me during my prayer time this morning, “Casting Off the Earthly Crown.” Crowns are mentioned in several parts of the Bible, like the crown of righteousness, the crown of life, and the crown of glory. We know that when we meet Jesus at the Bema seat, or Christ's Judgment seat, we'll be evaluated on whether we can receive our inheritance and rewards. For a saint walking in the spirit in their faith walk, they can be sure of keeping their inheritance and rewards. But for those who are regenerated, therefore becoming saints, and walk in the flesh all their lives, the assurance of rewards and inheritance is shaky.

Salvation can't be lost, but your inheritance and rewards can be. You'll still be part of the new earth population, where everything is amazing, but you won't rule and reign with Christ. Those who used God's gifts wisely will rule and reign with Him; the inheritance and rewards are for those that Jesus sees as good and faithful in service. This is a brief overview of that deep topic. For more in-depth insight, check out Ken Legg's series, “Salvation is Forever,” especially Session 3 – “Gift and Reward,” and Session 4 – “The Judgment Seat of Christ.”

So, crowns are important. Revelation 3:11 tells us to hold onto what we have, so no one will take our crown, and 1 Corinthians 9:27 talks about being disqualified from the race, which could mean losing the chance to get a crown. These aren't salvation issues; your salvation is paid for, in FULL, by the blood of Christ Jesus. You're a new creation, you've been redeemed in spirit, and you've been irrevocably grafted into God's family; this can't be undone. But the crown that's promised, that's available, you can be disqualified from getting one. And some people don't mind; they're like, “any part of heaven is fine by me,” but for me, I want all that's offered, all that the Lord has promised me.

Now, this could turn into a works trip, like, “I better do good for God, so I get all the goodies.” You won't make it, not for a second. You'll wear yourself out trying to earn God's approval. There's a much easier way, and that's to let God's grace, His life in you, naturally and organically live in you and through you, being worked out through your body and every thought. Grace is unforced; it's not about striving; it's not heavy; it's meant to come naturally from your new creation spirit.

So why have I called this blog “Casting Off the Earthly Crown”? It's about the pursuit, in a natural and organic way, remember “no dead works”... it's about being renewed in the mind, having the mind of Christ, and shedding worldly things. One of the biggest things to throw off is pride, bravado, you know, being someone, “being the man,” or “woman.” This is common in the world, but it's also common in the church, and in all ranks, but it's most destructive in leadership, I think.

Trying to be somebody, walking around with an earthly crown, will oppose your walk in the spirit. Your decisions will be about yourself and not kingdom-minded. So how do we cast off these earthly crowns? By putting on the new man, by casting off the old man, by taking every thought and argument captive to Christ Jesus. By constantly discarding negative thinking, by running everything through the filter of God. The Word says we should always be prayerful, and what are we praying about constantly? Well, bouncing our thoughts to Him if they're not helpful for living the life Christ gave you and walking in His spirit, having that clear mind of Christ that can hear His instructions, His will for your life, and the directions He wants you to go.

I meet a lot of people, a lot of Christians, who don't hear much from God, and I don't think it's because they aren't super prophetic or prophets; I think it's too much mind clutter, too much white noise, too much haze, too much distraction in the battlefield of the mind. Not having learned to deflect mind arguments from the mind and into the trash bin at the feet of Jesus. You know if you reject a thought enough, it eventually stops coming. The biggest problem I've had in life is feelings of rejection, and I lived out of that for many years, and it turns out that my biggest rescue and healing from that is also rejection, rejecting thoughts, rejecting carnal living, rejecting mind arguments.

All these things go together; casting off the earthly crowns is about de-priding, de-escalating from being the man or woman, becoming less, so that He, the Lord, can become more, so that He can increase, and be made manifest within you. Choosing the cheap seats, if you will, and not the places of honour. Putting away slander, putting away jealousy, putting away lewd living or lewd behaviour. And I'm not talking about becoming a puritan but letting all that holds you back and all that weighs you down be jettisoned from your life. I find often when you're changing course in life, things that you throw off are a bit like boomerangs; they come back a bit, but usually softer each time, and eventually, they stop coming.

So my encouragement today is, absolutely and totally be blessed today, my friends. Let Him who is so special in your life just minister to you today, and let Him shine a light on the areas of your life that need to be challenged, discarded, or renewed, and let His wonderful love just fill up all those areas, giving you a clear and concise sound mind, enabling you to live a life that is worthy of a crown, worthy of rewards, using all the gifts He has given you to their fullest extent. But don't be shamed by this in any way. This is not a to-do list; this should not be a burden or a works trip, just a retelling of your story, and placing your feet in places that you will be a blessing to people around you. Let your mind be filled with such wonder today, such amazement at how beautiful Jesus is and how much freedom He has for you. Truly, the life He has given you is a life worth living.