Posted by: davidbowerkingwood | April 8, 2016

Judgment Day is Coming!

Is There a Judgment Day in your Future?

Last week I wrote on the unforgivable sin and concluded that the rejection of Christ as Savior was the only unforgivable sin. If Christians are forgiven, and the Bible assures us there is now no condemnation for Christians, then what is all this about Christians having to appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ? In 2 Corinthians 5:10 it is written:

“10 For we must all stand before Christ to be judged. We will each receive whatever we deserve for the good or evil we have done in this earthly body.”

If all our sins have been forgiven then what is being judged at this point? There just happens to be a Biblical answer to that question, it is our works that are being judged, not us as individuals. As individuals we have been once and for all justified before God and have the blessed righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ imputed to us forever.

This Judgment Seat of Christ should, at least in part, be thought of more as a judge’s stand at a sporting event; the winners go to the judges stand to receive their rewards. Rewards are given for all works done in the power of the Holy Spirit for the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ. Any works done in the power of the flesh for self glory are destined for burning. This is described in 1 Corinthians 3:11-15:

11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have—Jesus Christ. 12 Anyone who builds on that foundation may use a variety of materials—gold, silver, jewels, wood, hay, or straw. 13 But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person’s work has any value. 14 If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward. 15 But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss. The builder will be saved, but like someone barely escaping through a wall of flames.”

The gold, silver, and jewels represents works done in the power of the Holy Spirit to the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ; the wood, hay or straw represents works done in the power of the flesh for self glory. Keep in mind this is a judgment on a lifetime of works and may be a mixture of works done in the Spirit and works done in the flesh. The purpose of the Judgment Seat of Christ is to sort those out and reward those works done in the power of the Holy Spirit.

How do you Think you will feel at this Judgment?

I’m sure all of us can think of many heroic figures of the Christian faith that will probably be richly rewarded at this time. Each of us may wonder if we’ll receive any rewards at all; it can be very difficult to be completely objective about our motives for doing what we do.

While the Bible is not specific on the timing of the Judgment Seat of Christ it is generally believed it will take place shortly after the church is called to heaven by the Rapture. One vitally important change will have taken place in the lives of all Christians by that time; we will all have our resurrection bodies and be freed of our sin natures!

Most of us have had the good fortune to attend a key game and have our team win some sort of award or trophy. The award is made down on the field and a trophy is given to a member of the team. Meanwhile, in the stands, the supporting crowd is going wild with enthusiasm and clapping and shouting their excitement to whoever may be within hearing range.

No one in the stand is receiving anything, certainly not a trophy for winning the game but that in no way inhibits the volume of the shouting or the enthusiasm being expressed.

That is the way I like to think of this judgment; the church will be there, totally free of any sin nature and able to express their love and delight as each member of the body receives their rewards. I believe this will be a wonderful, happy time for all!

Have you ever felt a surge of joy and happiness as a family member received some sort of recognition, of course you have and you were able to do that even though you now have a sin nature within you. At the Judgment Seat of Christ you won’t have a sin nature to inhibit your joy and happiness in any form or fashion; you can rejoice for a brother or sister in Christ as they receive their reward without any reservation on your part; you’re excited and happy for the family!

A Refiner’s Fire?

In addition to rewards for work done in the power of the Holy Spirit, what then will our Lord be accomplishing by the use of fire regarding works done in the power of the flesh? We need to think in terms of renewal, a process of purification from dead works. The Lord will burn off the dross, the impure, to clear the way for the pure, the holy. Gold is refined by burning off the impurities; a field is renewed by burning off the old growth to clear the way for the new growth.

This is the picture that should be in our minds as we read these passages; although our souls and spirits have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb, our works during our lives will be purified, refined by fire at this judgment. As this refining process proceeds all of our wood, hay, and straw will be refined out of our work history and all that will be left will be the gold, silver, and precious stones! By God’s grace even our works will then be exclusively to the glory of God!

A poem, “Only One Life” by Charles Thomas Studd, 1860-1931, a missionary to the Belgian Congo expresses his thoughts on this event.

Only One Life

By C.T. Studd

Two little lines I heard one day,

Traveling along life’s busy way;

Bringing conviction to my heart,

And from my mind would not depart;

Only one life, ’twill soon be past, 

Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one,

Soon will its fleeting hours be done;

Then, in ‘that day’ my Lord to meet,

And stand before His Judgement seat;

Only one life,’twill soon be past,

Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, the still small voice,

Gently pleads for a better choice

Bidding me selfish aims to leave,

And to God’s holy will to cleave;

Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, a few brief years,

Each with its burdens, hopes, and fears;

Each with its clays I must fulfill,

living for self or in His will;

Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

Only what’s done for Christ will last.

When this bright world would tempt me sore,

When Satan would a victory score;

When self would seek to have its way,

Then help me Lord with joy to say;

Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Give me Father, a purpose deep,

In joy or sorrow Thy word to keep;

Faithful and true what e’er the strife,

Pleasing Thee in my daily life;

Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Oh let my love with fervor burn,

And from the world now let me turn;

Living for Thee, and Thee alone,

Bringing Thee pleasure on Thy throne;

Only one life, ’twill soon be past,

Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one,

Now let me say,”Thy will be done”;

And when at last I’ll hear the call,

I know I’ll say “twas worth it all”;

Only one life,’twill soon be past,

Only what’s done for Christ will last. 


Responses

  1. Beautiful. Good timing dad. This is what I’m teaching my 10th grade LifeGroup girls on Sunday night.

    I love you

    Like

    • Karen,
      An important subject; may the Holy Spirit illumine their understanding!
      Love,
      Dad

      Like

  2. David: Wonderful post…blessed me immensely!

    To God be the glory!

    DE

    “Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to an all-knowing God.” Corrie Ten Boom

    >

    Like

  3. Excellent post David. Learned a lot for your explanation.One question: Will we be envious or jealous of the rewards of others as compared with our own rewards? Or, will God purge those emotions from our new bodies and brains?

    Like

    • Dave,
      I think all those sinful emotions will be gone forever and we’ll be free to love and rejoice in the good fortune of others. Although now we can quench the influence of our sin nature by confession of sin we can not be completely rid of it until we leave our mortal bodies behind forever.
      Thank you for subscribing.
      David

      Like

  4. Great message and beautiful poem. Thanks
    Hanna

    Like

  5. Awesome! 🙂 Thank you, David!

    Like


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