Question / Comment - Will all believers rule and reign with Christ?
I read that believers (church age believers) will reign with Christ in the millennium. Will all believers reign with Christ? But Paul says in 1 Corinthians 3:15
"If any man's work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire." What i mean to ask is, are those rewards (crowns) mentioned in New Testament related with reigning with Christ?
Yes, I do believe that the rewards (often pictured as crowns in scripture) are directly related to our ruling with Christ. You are correct that believers will rule and reign with Christ in His Messianic Kingdom during the Millennium. There are several scriptures that indicate this and I'll just note a few before tackling your main question.
Dan 7:27 And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him.
Rev 5:9-10 And they *sang a new song, saying, "Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals; for You were slain, and purchased for God with Your blood men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation. (10) "You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the earth."
Rev 20:4 Then I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.
Rev 2:25-26 Only hold on to what you have until I come. (26) To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations
Mat 25:20-21 The man who had received the five talents brought the other five. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.' (21) His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!'
1Co 6:1-3 Does any one of you, when he has a case against his neighbor, dare to go to law before the unrighteous and not before the saints? (2) Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? If the world is judged by you, are you not competent to constitute the smallest law courts? (3) Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more matters of this life?
2Ti 2:12 If we endure, we will also reign with Him; If we deny Him, He also will deny us;
Luk 22:28-30 "You are those who have stood by Me in My trials; (29) and just as My Father has granted Me a kingdom, I grant you (30) that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and you will sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
Gal 4:7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir.
1Pe 1:3-4 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, (4) and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade--kept in heaven for you,
While just some of the verses on the topic, you can see that there are many promises given to rule, reign and be a fellow heir with Christ. Some of these verses are for all believers. Some give conditions on enduring, overcoming and being rewards for faithful service here and now.
So concerning your question - "Will all believers reign with Christ"?
Firstly, all believers are heirs with Christ and have an inheritance in Him. This includes enjoying the reality of the many promises He has given including (but not restricted to)
- Receiving a new body like His
- Being like Him in nature when we see Him
- Fellowship with the Lord and with other saints
- Being free from all pain, sickness, death and mourning FOREVER
- Enjoying Heaven and the New Jerusalem that He has prepared for us
- Enjoying a New Heaven and a New Earth, with access to the Tree and river of life.
But there are also promises of special blessing given to certain believers. For example, Jesus promised His 12 initial disciples (with Paul likely replacing Judas!) that they will reign on thrones over the tribes of Israel. That is an incredible position assigned specifically for them. Also the degree of our ruling in the Millennium is a reward directly related to our faithful service in this life. For example,
Luk 19:15-26 He was made king, however, and returned home. Then he sent for the servants to whom he had given the money, in order to find out what they had gained with it. (16) The first one came and said, 'Sir, your mina has earned ten more.' (17) 'Well done, my good servant!' his master replied. 'Because you have been trustworthy in a very small matter, take charge of ten cities.' (18) The second came and said, 'Sir, your mina has earned five more.' (19) His master answered, 'You take charge of five cities.' (20) Then another servant came and said, 'Sir, here is your mina; I have kept it laid away in a piece of cloth. (21) I was afraid of you, because you are a hard man. You take out what you did not put in and reap what you did not sow.' (22) His master replied, 'I will judge you by your own words, you wicked servant! You knew, did you, that I am a hard man, taking out what I did not put in, and reaping what I did not sow? (23) Why then didn't you put my money on deposit, so that when I came back, I could have collected it with interest?' (24) Then he said to those standing by, 'Take his mina away from him and give it to the one who has ten minas.' (25) 'Sir,' they said, 'he already has ten!' (26) He replied, 'I tell you that to everyone who has, more will be given, but as for the one who has nothing, even what he has will be taken away.
So note from the above that all the servants were given the same amount to begin with. For one servant the mina he was given earned 10 more and so he was given authority over 10 cities. For another it produced 5 more and so he was given authority over 5 cities. To another, who just hid his mina and did nothing with it, he was declared a wicked servant and what he had was taken from him. While it is possible that this is a speaking of a believer with no rewards, most take this wicked servant who thought of Jesus as a hard man, as a professing servant only who is exposed at the coming of the Lord. But the main thought is clear:
The extent of our rule in the coming age is a reward in proportion to our faithful service here so we want to be about our Father's business! So will someone whose works are all burnt up at the judgment seat of Christ, and have no rewards from the Lord, be given positions to rule with Him? No I don't believe so. Or if they do it will be in the most limited capacity. It is hard to be dogmatic on it as there are general promises of reigning with Christ that are given to all believers, but also others that are conditional on our service here and now. And the Bible doesn't spend a lot of time or detail explaining our specific role in the Millennium, and even less for those who are saved but receive no rewards.
But the main point that we should take from these passages and parables is to make the most of the time we have, for it glorifies Jesus and has an eternal consequence in terms of our rewards! Our ruling and reigning with Him then is directly related to our faithfulness in doing what He has asked of us now.
And, as we see from the crowns worn by the 24 elders in Revelation, they are cast back at the feet of Jesus for His glory - so we want to be those that have something to give back and honor the Lord with. (Rev 4:10)
Hope this helps. God Bless.