Principles of Judgment

great white throne judgment 1

Mini-series on Rom 1-5 continued:

Q. In the Last Judgment, how will God judge people? What criteria will He use? Wouldn’t He favor His chosen people?

A. There are 9 principles of judgment given in the first half of Rom 2:

v2 God’s judgment against those who do such things is based on truth.
• v3 do you think you will escape God’s judgment?
• v5 storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed
• v6 God will repay each person according to what they have done.
• v11 For God does not show favoritism.
• v13 those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.
• v16 God judges people’s secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares.

1. Based on truth. In earthly courts there are wrong judgments because they are based on evidences which might be faulty, and witnesses who might lie. They also depend on the rhetoric of the lawyers, not necessarily truth. But there will be no wrong judgments before God, because God is omniscient and knows all truth.

2. No escape. Nobody is exempt – unbelievers before the Great White Throne, and believers before the Judgment Seat of Christ. Rom 14:10, 12 For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. Each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.

3. Cumulative. Not only will no one escape, everything will be accounted for. The unrepentant will be storing up wrath against themselves. What now seemed like God overlooking things is only apparent. All will be reckoned with.

4. According to what was done. This one everyone recognized as fair. Everybody is responsible for what he/she has done, not what others accuse them of, or mere intentions.

5. No favoritism. In this world there is bias, discrimination, inequality, nepotism, unfairness. But not when God judges. God is impartial and favors no one. He is absolutely fair.

6. Based on obedience. Some complain that God is not fair by selecting Israel as the chosen people. They certainly had the privilege of hearing God’s law. However, it is not those who hear, but those who obey the law who will be declared righteous. Knowing the law will not benefit you, but will in fact increase your penalty if you knowingly disobey.

7. No secrets. People keep secrets because they feel ashamed of who they really are, or what they have done. However, according to the parable of the sheep and the goats, the general judgment will be public, not private. There will be no place to hide.

8. Through Jesus Christ. Jesus Himself, whom many have rejected, will be the judge. Jn 5:22 Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son.

9. According to the gospel. Although judgment is according to what was done, to show that all fell short of the glory of God, no one will be declared righteous on their own merit, because all have sinned (Rom 3:23). Only those who believe in Christ will be saved. Jn 3:38 Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

When you truly understand how God will judge, the only wise response is to cast yourself at God’s feet and beg for mercy. Not to do so is utter arrogance and foolishness. Think it through and act accordingly.

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