The Five Crowns
The Five Crowns, or Rewards, are given to those who will have authority in the Messianic Kingdom, and the amount of authority they will have. Not all who are saved will have authority in the kingdom. Some will have their works burnt up, rather than being refined in the fire of judgment at the Bema Seat.
The Incorruptible Crown:
1 Corinthians 9:24-27 Do you not know that in a race the runners all compete, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win it. Athletes exercise self-control in all things; they do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable one. So I do not run aimlessly, nor do I box as though beating the air but I punish my body and enslave it, so that after proclaiming to others I myself should not be disqualified.
This Crown is the crown of self control and victory in the Christian life. It is given to those who have gained victory over the old man and sinful life, who live a spirit controlled life.
The Crown of Rejoicing (Boasting):
1 Thessalonians 2:19 For what is our hope or joy or crown of boasting before our Lord Jesus at his coming? Is it not you?
Philippians 4:1 Therefore, my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved.
This crown is for those who evangelize and win souls, and whose fruits can be seen in those people who have come to accept Jesus as their Savior and Lord.
The Crown of Righteousness:
2 Timothy 4:8 From now on there is reserved for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will give me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have longed for his appearing.
This crown is given to those who keep the faith both doctrinally and morally in spite of adverse circumstances and those who look longingly for the return of Jesus Christ. Their lives are lived in conformity to the New Testament, they have their minds transformed, and they look earnestly for the Rapture.
The Crown of Life:
James 1:12 Blessed is anyone who endures temptation. Such a one has stood the test and will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.
Revelation 2:10 Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Beware, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison so that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have affliction. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.
This crown is given to those who faithfully endure trials and persecutions for the sake of Christ, and who trust the Lord to bring them through these adversities. This crown is also given to those who suffer martyrdom.
The Crown of Glory:
1 Peter 5:2-4 [I exhort the elders among you] to tend the flock of God that is in your charge, exercising the oversight, not under compulsion but willingly, as God would have you do it — not for sordid gain but eagerly. Do not lord it over those in your charge, but be examples to the flock. And when the chief shepherd appears, you will win the crown of glory that never fades away.
This crown is given to those who faithfully oversee the flock as pastors, elders, and others. They are those who feed the flock with the milk and meat of God’s word.