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Wordwise Insight, Issue #060
October 14, 2009

WORDWISE INSIGHT is the free monthly newsletter of


BIBLE INSIGHTS (and Reader Q & A): What are the believer's "crowns" awarded for?

WORDWISE HYMNS: My Blog called Wordwise Hymns for you to check out!

MORE ARTICLES: Is Sunday the Sabbath? and, Tithing: Is It for Today?

DO YOU HAVE A QUESTION? See below for how to send it to us.


Are you finding Wordwise helpful? And do you have your own website? We would be delighted if you would provide a link on your site to ours. This will enable your friends to find us too! Check the page on the Wordwise website called "Link to Us," and follow the simple instructions. Click on Link to Us.

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LIKE TO ASK A QUESTION? On a Bible topic or passage of Scripture? Or one about a hymn or gospel song? Click on Questions from You.



(The Christian's Heavenly Awards)

There are five, or possibly six "crowns" referred to in the New Testament as being associated with the Christian life. And in each Bible passage, the word for "crown" is a special one. (The Greek word is stephanos.) That's not the word for a kingly crown, the symbol of rulership, which is diadema. It's true we will reign with Christ (Rev. 5:10). But the stephanos crowns are for a different purpose. The Greek word means a garland, or a laurel wreath. And that puts us back into the setting of the ancient Olympic Games.

Back then, instead of a medal for the winner, a crowning wreath was presented, and placed upon the victor's head. It could be woven of oak, or ivy leaves. Or sometimes it was made of gold–but made to look like a wreath of leaves. That's the word used for the believer's crowns. It refers to a prize or award.

And it's of interest to us just what those crowns are to be awarded for. What kinds of things fall into the category of being worthy of eternal reward? Well, the crowns indicate that there are basically three areas of commendation–each of which has a couple of aspects to it. There may be other things recognized and rewarded. But these are the ones God tells us about. So, let's look at them briefly.

I. The Saint's Crowns
These are awarded for our sanctification–for holy living, in other words. God desires our progressive sanctification in daily life and experience. And the two aspects of that are: saying "No" to self (selfishness and self-will), and saying "Yes" to God.

A) And for the first of those there's what's called the Imperishable Crown, for saying "NO" to self, when we're tempted to indulge our fleshly desires. Scripture says:

"Do you not know that those who run in a race...

To see the full article, click on Believers Crowns.


Come and Pay Us a Visit!

In the spring I developed a blog that is called Wordwise Hymns. As the title suggests, it is about hymns, and church music in general.

But as many of you will know, a blog is especially designed to facilitate a conversation on its particular subject. Readers can easily post comments about what they see, and I'm able to reply. I hope you will take part in the discussion!

A Special Feature
There is something unique about this blog that I don't believe has ever been done before. It contains what we could call a Hymn Almanac. If you want to know what happened in the history of hymn writing on any particular day, just click on the blog and you'll see!

My hope is that the blog will add to the value of the website and this newsletter, and promote some profitable exchanges on the subject of sacred music.

What happened on this day in hymnology? To find out, click Wordwise Hymns.


There is a theological position that tries to drag various injunctions from the Mosaic Law over into the New Testament, and apply them to Christians. But it is not consistent. Only certain points are said to relate to today, and the Law seems to be altered at will to fit those of us on this side of the cross.

This teaching fails to recognize the fundamental differences between the nation of Israel, the earthly people of God, and the spiritual body of Christ, the church, whose members are citizens of heaven. The moral standard of God remains unchanged. Sin is still sin--lying and stealing are still wrong. But we are no longer living under the Mosaic Covenant. Only by doing grave violence to it can we impose it on the church.

Two articles that relate to this subject are here for you to check out:

Is Sunday the Christian Sabbath?

Tithing--Is It for Today?

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