"He that overcometh, I will give to him to sit down with me in my throne". (Rev. 3: 21).
AS all depends on the meaning of the words - ‘He that overcometh’, it may help those who are unaware of this truth, or have hitherto doubted it, to hear some competent scholars on ‘overcoming’.*
[* “We do well to remember that the consciousness of what is at stake - conditional enthronement - provides an incentive of extraordinary power, while the ordinary teaching - that the worst backslider will share the Throne of Christ - robs every believer of this tremendous urge.” (D. M. Panton.)]
D. M. PANTON:-
“As the Eternal Glory of Christ, the glory He had with the Father before the world was, He inherits as the Son of God, while His Millennial Glory rests on His perfect obedience as man, so our Eternal glory rests solely on our being sons of God, while our Millennial glory can be achieved only by our obedience as servants.”
Lord’s overcoming, being perfect, achieves a reward that is unique; no one, man or angel, shares with Him the
throne of God. ‘I will give to him [the overcomer] to sit down with Me
in My throne, as I also
overcame, and sat down with my Father in His throne.’ Our Lord won the
“The exhortation at the close of all the seven epistles to overcome denotes the victory of a steadfast life of faith over temptations and trials, and over all adverse things in general”.
Professor H. B. SWETE:-
“The Only Begotten Son imparts to His brethren, in so far as their sonship has ever confirmed by victory, His own power over the nations.”
Dr. HORATIUS BONAR:-
“He speaks to the overcomers. Though the gifts are not wages, yet they depend on our winning a battle. They are something beyond mere salvation”.
Professor MOSES STUART:-
“This enthronement will be granted to all who prove to be victors in the contest with the world, the flesh and the devil”.
it is the
“The harvest is composed of those for whom Christ has overcome, the firstfruits are those in whom and through whom He has overcome, as well as having overcome for them.”
“The Apostle Paul had no doubt about his place in the main body, for his testimony is clear, ‘I know Whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day’ (2 Tim. 1: 12). When, however, he was writing to the Philippians (chapter 3.) he told them that there was one thing he was seeking above all else, ‘the prize of the upward calling of God in Christ Jesus,’ that he might by any means attain to the out-resurrection from among the dead. He was sure of having a place in the general harvest, but not sure, as yet, of being one of the firstfruits as an overcomer.
If Peter, James, John, and Andrew needed the warnings given them by our Lord to ‘Take heed’ to ‘watch and pray’ (Mark 13: 3, 5, 9, 23, 33), and ‘be ye also ready’ (Matt. 24: 44), it is clear that something more is wanted of us than faith in Christ for [eternal] salvation if we would be ripe enough for the firstfruits. The teaching that everyone who believes is ready for the Coming of the Lord is a deadly narcotic. No wonder the Church is asleep!
If, on the other hand, we see that, being saved, there is yet a prize to be won which is worth the counting of all else as refuse, then we find in it a powerful stimulant to a holy and victorious life in union with our coming Lord.”
MILLENNIAL RULERS - OVERCOMERS - THRONES
Dr. James Black, in his drastic criticisms of Millennial truth (Edingburgh Record, Jan., 1925), lays his finger - as other unfriendly critics have done before him - on a weak spot in current teaching on the Kingdom of God. “These martyrs (and it is only the martyrs, remember!),” he says, commenting on Rev. 20: 4, “rise and join Him, reigning with Him a thousand years. The only people mentioned as ‘reigning with Christ’ are the martyers: if you are going to be literal, there is no ground whatever in this passage for all the elaborate doctrine of the Pre-Millennarians, who picture Christ and all His Christian people ruling this world for a thousand years.”
It is a fact that many of the sub-apostolic Church so understood the Apostle. Moreover, it is true that the extraordinary emphasis laid on the Martyrs should have warned the Church that co-royalty with Christ in the Age to Come - as distinct from the Eternal Kingdom beyond - is by no means so comprehensive of all the redeemed as has been supposed. But it is also true that such critics overlook the first division of the fourfold thrones:- (1) overcomers, "I saw thrones, and the sitters upon them"; (2) Christian martyrs; (3) Old Testament martyrs; and (4) martyrs under Antichrist. The first group, overcomers not necessarily martyred, are thus defined by our Lord: - "He that overcometh, and he that keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give authority over the nations; and he shall rule them with a rod of iron." (Rev. 2: 26).
“How shining a goal!" ‘ And I saw thrones.’ Thrones! Not one, but many; not the great white throne, standing in solitude, with no other throne near it; but a great multitude of thrones, co-equal thrones: not one sceptre, but millions of scepters; not wielded in independent authority, but rather in associated domination: there is union amongst this confederation of heavenly kings.” (A. A. REES.)