Coming to One’s Reward: Familiarity with This Expression?

Do you know what this expression means? Do you use it/hear it used?

Probably my favorite scene from No Country for Old Men is the dialogue between Tommy Lee Jones and Barry Corbin. In it, Corbin’s character recounts how the sheriff’s father was killed and he uses this expression. I don’t think I had ever heard “came to his reward” but you can easily figure it out by context.

Then just recently watching (ahem) an old **Dukes of Hazzard **episode, Boss Hogg uses the same expression when the town thinks them Duke boys had been killed.

So by my way of thinking, I take it this is more of a southern expression with the obvious connotation that coming to one’s reward means proceeding on to the pearly gates.

But other from the two references above, I’ve never heard the expression in real life.

Anyone wish to weigh in?

It’s more commonly “gone to their reward”, isn’t it?

I’m familiar with the expression, but don’t think I’ve ever heard it outside of TV

I’ve never heard this phrase specifically, but I have often heard the phrase “so and so needs to have a come to Jesus meeting” to mean getting some sense slapped into them, so “come to their reward” seems to track.

Overcoming my allergy to the Bible — it’s like French, very pretty, but inconsequential — I googled and Revelation 22:12 has
And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.

The rest of the results were mainly credit cards, which must mean something.

I remember “pass on to his/her final reward” from many years ago.

The context was a funny newsletter type thing where “Reginald has passed on to his final reward due to coming in second in a razor fight.”

From the examples in the OP, I think it’s akin to “You reap what you sow”, in that what they did in life lead to what happened to them in the end.

I am familiar with it and variations of it. It is a Southern phrase that is still in use even by younger people.

No, I think it just means that they have died. Presumably, in this context, the “reward” can be either positive “heaven” or negative “hell”. I agree with Aspidistra, however that the more common form is “gone to their reward.”

I don’t see any significant difference between what you’re saying and what Czarcasm said.

You really see no difference between “X reaped what he had sown [implicitly: after he was dead, anyway],” and “X died [implicitly: and so, of course, went either to heaven or hell]”? :dubious:

It gets kicked around here, especially when one is trying to be poetic or delicate.

(Which can be dangerous, as one can sound like the famous Monty Python “Parrot” sketch.)

But, yes, the form of it I hear most often is “He has gone to his reward.” Another relatively common one is “He has gone to meet his maker,” and, of course, the painful cliché, “He’s in a better place now.” I can’t exactly say why, but that last one always galls at me. If death is a better place, why do we so vigorously resist going there?

(To Fred Phelps: after you, my dear sir.)

I haven’t heard it, but have vague memories of “going to one’s reward” in movies or tv. It’s a phrase that doesn’t sit well with my personal philosophy, so I’d never use it myself.

You’ve never seen Aladdin?! The bit where Jaffar is trying to kill Aladdin by tricking him with the promise of riches, Aladdin asks when he’ll be paid and Jaffar tells him he’ll get his reward… “Your eternal reward!”, and then leaves him in the magic cave to die (disclaimer: I have a lot of nephews and nieces).

It’s a common phrase in the UK anyway, and always has been - I think anyone would know what you meant as soon as you said it.

Not really, no. You’re both saying there’s a “die and get what you got coming to you” aspect to the phrase. Originally, Czarcasm used “akin” to make the connection, and you used “presumably,” then when you re-phrased it, you simply used “implicitly” both times. I’m not saying you’re singing the same lyrics, but it sure sounds like the same melody to me.

The version of karma that appeals to me, and I must assume to the majority of the movie-going public based on how often it’s a theme of some revenge flic, is that the comeuppance happens while the offending party is still alive. That way there’s no real doubt that “justice is being served.” The afterlife is not required.

The simplest definition of karma that I have run across is this one.

And the most cathartic exploitation of the theme is this one.