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Do You Know The Critical Difference Between The Judgment Seat of Christ And The Great White Throne Judgment?

No one likes to talk about judgment. Well, no one likes to talk about cancer either; but we’d all sure like to avoid it. For some, judgment will be a joyful experience. For others, it will be the worst day of their life and the beginning of an eternity of horrors. My friend, if I had the cure for cancer, I would tell everyone I knew about it; likewise, I want as many people as possible to avoid a fate much worse than cancer. This devotional may be more critical to your eternity than…avoiding cancer.

Each choice has eternal consequences.

We will focus upon the two primary judgments: One for “believers” and one for “unbelievers.” [There are other judgments mentioned in the Bible, like the judgment of nations, but these are not part of this summary.] “Believers” are those who have been born again through accepting Christ’s free gift of salvation. “Unbelievers” are those who: 1. Deny the existence of God; or, 2. Are working their way to heaven and seek to be justified based upon their own works; or 3. Are trusting in a combination of works and grace [which, by definition, is impossible] in order to justify themselves before God. 

If you believe the Bible, you know that both “believers” and “unbelievers” WILL be judged. 

The Great White Throne Judgment, refers to the judgment of UNBELIEVERS; while the Judgment Seat of Christ is the judgment of BELIEVERS. So let’s delve into the “when,” “why,” “what,” and “where” about each judgment, as explained in the Bible.

The Great White Throne Judgment

The Bible says:

“At that time Michael shall stand up, The great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people; and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation, even to that time. And at that time your people shall be delivered, every one who is found written in the book. And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, some to shame and everlasting contempt.”

(‭‭Daniel‬ ‭12‬:‭1‬-‭2)

“Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.”

(‭‭Revelation‬ ‭20‬:‭11‬-‭15‬)

WHO will be judged? The “DEAD” are going to be judged. Who are the “dead?” All who have NOT been made spiritually ALIVE by receiving Christ’s gift of salvation. ALL who are not written in the Lamb’s book of life.

WHEN is this judgment? After the Millennial Reign. (Revelations 20:1-10)

WHERE are the records kept? The books and the Book of Life. (See verses above.)

WHAT is the role of WORKS? It is the EVIDENCE God will weigh to determine not only the person’s condemnation, but also the degree of their suffering. (Excellent explanation of degrees of hell provided in this article: Degrees Of Punishment In Hell 

WHAT is the ISSUE being judged? Surprisingly, NOT your works; but rather, whether there was ever a decision to trust Christ as Savior.

WHAT is the final RESULT? Eternal condemnation. 

Every person in THIS judgment will be sent to hell. Why? Because the only issue is whether the person has received Christ as Savior and there is not ONE believer who will be present in this judgment. This is NOT the court you want to end up in!

The Judgment Seat of Christ

The Bible says:

“Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent, to be well pleasing to Him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.”

‭‭II Corinthians‬ ‭5‬:‭9‬-‭10‬ ‭‬‬

“But why do you judge your brother? Or why do you show contempt for your brother? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.

‭‭Romans‬ ‭14‬:‭10‬ ‭‬‬

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.”

II Timothy‬ ‭4‬:‭7‬-‭8‬ ‭‬‬

“For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.”

‭‭I Corinthians‬ ‭3‬:‭11‬-‭15‬ ‭‬‬

“Let a man so consider us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover it is required in stewards that one be found faithful. But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by a human court. In fact, I do not even judge myself. For I know of nothing against myself, yet I am not justified by this; but He who judges me is the Lord. Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord comes, who will both bring to light the hidden things of darkness and reveal the counsels of the hearts. Then each one’s praise will come from God.”

‭‭I Corinthians‬ ‭4‬:‭1‬-‭5‬ ‭‬‬

WHO will be judged? If you look at the context of each of the above passages, they are ALL written to believers.

WHEN is the judgment? Sometime after the Rapture and before the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. (Both of the following articles are interesting explanations “What Is The Marriage Supper Of The Lamb” and “The Judgement Seat And The Wedding Of The Lamb”

WHAT is the role of WORKS? It is the basis for receipt of rewards or denial of rewards.

WHAT is the ISSUE being judged? Faithfulness to Christ as Lord

WHAT is the final RESULT? Rewards being either bestowed or withheld.

My friend, THIS is the court you want to end up in! The moment you trust in Jesus as your Savior, you are justified in the sight of God and you have chosen your venue!

“Having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

(Romans 5:1)

That word “justified” means “declared righteous.” It does not matter what you have done, when you trust in Jesus as Savior, God declares you “not guilty” before Him. God no longer sees your sin; He sees the righteousness of His Son, Jesus Christ. That is what it means to be justified.

“There is now NO condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

(Romans 8:1)

If you are a Christian and have been forgiven by God, you never have to worry that one day YOU will be judged with the DEAD because you have been made ALIVE in Christ! However, we will ALL be judged…but NOT for the purpose of CONDEMNATION. 

God’s justification exempts Christians from His CONDEMNATION; but it does not exempt us from His EVALUATION. 

“We will ALL appear before the judgment seat of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 5:10) No exceptions. That is why Paul encourages us to live for God’s glory. The judgment seat of Christ will be a glorious place for those who have “fought the good fight, finished the race, and kept the faith.” 

I want everyone I know to be summoned to the Judgment Seat of Christ—NOT the Great White Throne Judgment—don’t you?

To learn more about Kimberly Faith and the mission of Faith Strong, click HERE.

Out Now – Essential Faith, Volume II. Find it on Amazon by clicking HERE.

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