“And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.”
you will receive
“You will” implies the future. At some future point, the leadership of the local church will receive a “crown.” The “crown of glory” is a crown specially designed for pastoral leadership. There is a special reward for faithfulness to a congregation. The word “receive” means to bear, carry (Luke 7:37). It comes to mean in this verse to bear for oneself, hence to receive. The idea is, “Your faithfulness to your congregation will bring yourself the fadeless crown of glory.”
Sometimes “receive” means requital. We will receive back again at the Judgment Seat of Christ what we have done in time for Christ. Jesus will repay us for what we do for him.
“But he who does wrong will be repaid for what he has done, and there is no partiality” (Colossians 3:25).
“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad” (2 Corinthians 5:10).
“For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise” (Hebrews 10:36).
“These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth” (Hebrews 11:13).
The Chief Pastor is coming back to reward the under-pastors.
One day, pastors will stand before the Chief Pastor to receive the crown of glory for faithfulness to their congregations that will not fade away. This is a major incentive to serve our church faithfully. The simple question he will ask is, “Were you faithful to my flock?”
This passage promises rewards to pastors who faithfully serve their congregations. Are you going to receive a “full reward” for giving everything you could to your church? (2 John 1:8). Will you receive a half reward? A quarter reward? No reward?
“According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire” (1 Corinthians 3:10-15).