Hank Hanegraaff, president of the Christian Research Institute and host of the 𝘉𝘪𝘣𝘭𝘦 𝘈𝘯𝘴𝘸𝘦𝘳 𝘔𝘢𝘯 Broadcast, reflects on surviving cancer and eternal rewards. At the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, Canadian snowboarder Max Parrot won the Gold Medal in Slopestyle, three years after being diagnosed with a cancer called Hodgkin’s lymphoma. He was last treated with chemotherapy in June 2019—a remarkably short time ago for recovery into Olympic victory! That same month and year, Hank received his allogeneic stem cell transplant for treatment of mantle cell lymphoma. Hank springboards into a discussion of eternal rewards. St. Paul writes, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing” (2 Timothy 4: 7–8 NIV). Recall also that St. Peter speaks of a “crown of glory.” In sharp contrast to the fading character of leaf-like gold awarded to the winner of a race in antiquity, a crown of glory is an enduring reminder that we are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God—“And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away” (1 Peter 5: 4 NIV). And there is also the “crown of life,” spoken about in Scripture in the context of impending persecution. Christ says, “Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown” (Revelation 2: 10 NIV).
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