Thursday, October 1, 2015

We Will Enjoy Our Work in the Kingdom of God

One of the differences between the Catholic/Protestant views of the ultimate reward of Christians and our views in the Church of God is that we know that in the Kingdom of God, we will be active, doing the work of God, helping Christ to rule. The concept I grew up with, being raised Catholic, was the vague idea that somehow I would be in heaven and be idle, not doing anything, but being happy just because I was with God.

But we know that in the millennium we will be kings and priests with Christ and will help Christ to rule the earth, to rule the human nations, to teach God's law to mankind, and to save mankind and bring happiness to the earth (Revelation 1:4-6). Beyond the millennium will be the white throne judgment period when we will help teach and save the billions who will come up in a general resurrection. And beyond that will be the eternity of ruling the universe and helping Christ accomplish whatever creative projects the Father has in mind for the entire universe.

We will be working.

But we will enjoy our work. We will enjoy it forever.

Some people in the Church may wonder if they will like being a ruler, a judge, or a priest. Some may be concerned that they will not enjoy it or not be good at it. Some may not feel comfortable with the idea of judging or ruling over others and making the kinds of decisions they will be making. They may not feel right now that they would be confident in that role.

But things will be different in the Kingdom of God. God will give us the competence, the training, the wisdom, and the power to do every assignment perfectly, and not only that, but to enjoy it.

Probably all of us have experienced having to do some kind of work we don't like. But most of us or all of us have also experienced doing something we enjoy. We have had the experience of doing some kind of work that gave us pleasure, even if it was only a small part of the work.

Not everyone will relate to this, but when I was younger and physically fit, I enjoyed shoveling snow. It was fun. I liked using my muscles. And in my job as a computer programmer, there were times when I enjoyed my work. When I got to write a brand new computer program from scratch, and I could use my knowledge, imagination, and creativity to design and code the program and test it and see it work correctly, it was fun. I liked that part of the job. I might stay overtime and keep working on it, not because I had to, but because I didn't want to stop. Of course, not all the job was like that - sometimes I had to modify an existing program and figure out somebody else's code, and it could be very tedious and frustrating. And there were other parts of the job I didn't like. But I know what it is like to enjoy a task.

Mothers have the job of raising their children. Probably there are many parts of that job that can be unpleasant, but I am sure there are times and parts of that job that can be very pleasurable for a mother. Teaching her child and caring for her child can sometimes be a joy.

But in the Kingdom of God, we will not grow tired. We will not suffer muscle fatigue or brain fatigue. We will be perfectly suited to every job Christ gives us. We will have the abilities to do each job perfectly and we will have the temperament to enjoy each job as we do it. We will not enjoy seeing human beings make wrong choices and reap the consequences, and some will still make wrong choices. But overall, our jobs and responsibilities will be a joy. We will be filled with a sense of accomplishment at every task. We will know that we can successfully do every job Christ gives us to do.

God will give us our assignments (Matthew 20:23). We will be given assignments that we are suited for by temperament and ability, and God is preparing us now, in this life, for those assignments. And God will also give us the power, the ability, the skill, and the help to do every job well, and we will know it.

So if you want to imagine how we will enjoy our responsibilities in the Kingdom of God, think of a job you have performed in the past, some responsibility you fulfilled, that you enjoyed. It will be like that, magnified probably a million-fold, not just for a few things, but for all or almost all of our work and activity. We won't necessarily enjoy punishing someone, just as a parent does not necessarily enjoy punishing his or her child, but we will rejoice at the righteous and peaceful fruits that result.

God will not give us jobs we have to struggle with, jobs that are hard for us, jobs beyond our abilities, jobs that we will not be temperamentally suited for. He will not give us jobs we will not enjoy. He will give us jobs we enjoy, and He will give us the ability to enjoy those jobs. God has all power and all wisdom, and He will not withhold anything good from us that we will need to enjoy doing God's work in the Kingdom of God forever.

No comments: