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OceanSide church of Christ

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QUESTIONS & ANSWERS ABOUT…

The Day of Judgment

Victor M. Eskew

 

 

 

A.     The Bible says that these individuals will be there.

1.       The inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah (Matt. 10:15)

2.       The queen of Sheba (Matt. 12:42)

3.       The men of Nineveh (Matt. 12:41)

4.       The citizens of the city of Tyre and Sidon (Matt. 11:22)

5.       The fallen angels (II Pet. 2:4; Jude 6)

6.       The angels of God (I Cor. 6:3)

7.       The living (II Tim. 4:1)

8.       The dead (II Tim. 4:2)

 

B.     Where are all of these individuals going to be?  They will be at the Day of Judgment.

 

C.     When that day comes, we will either be living or dead.  Therefore, all of us are going to be there as well.

 

D.    Yes, the Day of Judgment is an appointed day (Acts 17:31).

 

Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness…

 

E.      Thus, it is essential for all of us to understand the Day of Judgment and be well prepared for it. 

 

F.      Our lesson tonight is entitled:  “Questions & Answers about…The Day of Judgment.”

 

I.             WHAT IS JUDGMENT?

 

A.     Strong (2920):  (objectively or subjectively, for or against), but extension a tribunal; by implication justice (specifically divine law)

 

B.     Thayer:

1.       A separating, sundering, a separation

2.       An opinion or decision given concerning anything

 

C.     Vine:

1.       A separating

2.       A judgment or decision

3.       Condemnation (B. #3):  the process of investigation, the act of distinguishing and separating…hence “a judging, a passing of judgment upon a person or thing

 

D.    Dictionary.com

1.       The ability to judge, make a decision, or form an opinion objectively, authoritatively, and wisely

2.       The estimate by God of the ultimate worthiness or unworthiness of the individual

 

II.           IS A DAY OF JUDGMENT PROMISED IN THE BIBLE?

 

A.     The answer is a simple:  “Yes.”

 

B.     The word “judgment” is found 76 times in 74 verses in the New Testament.

1.       The first time the word is record in the New Testament is in Matthew 5:21.

 

Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment.

 

a.       The fact of the judgment is mentioned.

b.      The danger of judgment for those who commit murder is also mentioned.

2.       Familiar verses warning of the judgment.

a.       II Corinthians 5:10

 

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.

 

b.      Hebrews 10:26-27

 

For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.

 

III.         WHAT ARE SOME OF THE TITLES OF THIS DAY?

 

A.     The day of judgment is used the most in Scripture (Matt. 11:22, 24; 24:36; Mark 6:11; II Pet. 2:9; 3:7; I John 4:17).

 

But I say unto you, that is shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for thee.

 

B.     The judgment (Matt. 5:22; Luke 10:14; 11:31, 32; Heb. 9:27).

 

And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.

 

C.     Judgment (Matt. 12:41; I Tim. 5:24; Heb. 10:27; II Pet. 2:4)

 

Some men’s sins are open beforehand, going before to judgment; and some they follow after.

 

D.    The judgment of God (Rom. 1:32; 2:2, 3, 5: II Thess. 1:5)

 

Who, knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

 

E.      Judgment to come (Acts 24:25)

 

And as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled, and answered, Go thy way for this time; when I have a more convenient season, I will call for thee.

 

F.      Eternal judgment (Heb. 6:2)

 

Of doctrines of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.

 

G.     The judgment of the great day (Jude 6)

 

And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.

 

H.    The day of wrath (Rom. 2:5)

 

But after thy hardness and impenitent heart, treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God.

 

I.        Other titles by which it is known:

1.       The Last Judgment

2.       The Final Judgment

3.       The Day of the Lord

4.       The Day of Vengeance

5.       Doomsday

 

IV.         WHY HAVE A JUDGMENT DAY?

 

A.     God is a just God (Deut. 32:4).  Justice demands a “day” of judgment.

 

…just and right is he.

 

B.     There three main reasons for the judgment.

1.       God has left man with duties and obligations.  He will return in order to reckon with them.  This is clearly taught in The Parable of the Talents (Matt. 25:14-19).

a.       The Distribution of Talents (Matt. 25:14-15)

 

For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods.  And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey.

 

b.      The Dealing of the Servants (Matt. 25:16-18)

 

Then he that had received the five talents when and traded with the same, and made them other five talents.  And likewise he that he received two, he also gained other two.  But he that had received one went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord’s money.

 

c.       The Day of Reckoning (Matt. 25:19)

 

After a long time the lord of those servants cometh, and reckoneth with them.

 

1)       The Lord does not give us talents and then fail to hold us accountable as to their use.

2)       The Lord wants to reward the faithful.

3)       Too, He will punish all those who have been unfaithful in their duties.

2.       The Lord wants us to be able to have our day in court.  We will have a day to give an account unto God.

a.       The one talent man (Matt. 25:24-25).

 

Then he which had received the one talent came and said, Lord, I knew thee that thou art a hard man, reaping where thou has not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strewed:  and I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth:  lo, there thou hast that is thine.

 

b.      We see a similar event in Matthew 7:22.

 

Many will say unto me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name:  and in thy name have cast out devils?  And in thy name done many wonderful works?

 

3.       Judgement is the place for the sentence of ultimate reward or punishment.

a.       Heaven is the place of ultimate reward for the faithful.

b.      Hell, the lake of fire and brimstone, is the final destination of the ungodly.

c.       At the judgment, we will be sentenced to one of these two places.

1)       The righteous will hear this sentence (Matt. 25:34).

 

Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.

 

2)       The ungodly will hear this sentence (Matt. 25:41).

 

Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.

 

V.           WHO WILL BE JUDGED?

 

A.     All human beings are going to be judge on the Day of Judgment. 

1.       There will be no excuses for not being there.

2.       There will be no reprieves issued to anyone.

3.       There will be no one to stand in for us.

 

B.     Several verses tell us who will be there.

1.       Matthew 25:31-32a

 

When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit on the throne of his glory:  and before him shall be gathered all nations…

 

2.       Acts 17:30-31

 

And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:  because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance in that he hath raised him the from the dead.

 

3.       Romans 14:12

 

So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.

 

4.       II Corinthians 5:10

 

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.

 

5.       II Timothy 4:1

 

I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom.

 

6.       Revelation 20:12

 

And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened:  and another book was opened, which is the book of life:  and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books according to their works.

 

C.     The Jews were the chosen people of God at one time.  They committed all kinds of sins against God.  Paul asked them a potent question in Romans 2:3.

 

And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?

 

NOTE:  Paul is telling us that no one will escape.  Men and women, Jews and Gentiles, rich and poor, Christians and non-Christians, young and old will all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.

 

VI.         WHAT WILL BE JUDGED?

 

A.     This is the most important question that we can ask tonight if all of us are going to stand before God in the judgment.

 

B.     There are three broad answers to this question.

1.       First, we will be judged by the things which are found in the pages of God’s Word.

a.       John 12:48

 

He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him:  the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.

 

b.      Revelation 20:12

 

And I saw the dead, small and great stand before God; and the books were opened…

 

1)       The word “books” is plural.

2)       The Bible is composed of two testaments:  the Old Testament and the New Testament.  We will be judged by the law under which we lived while on the earth. 

3)       Now, we are under the New Covenant (Heb. 8:6).

 

But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.

 

2.       We will be judged as to whether we are the redeemed or the unredeemed. 

a.       If we are covered by the blood of Christ, we are redeemed.

If we are not covered by the blood of Christ, we are not redeemed.

b.      The process:

1)       The fact of redemption through Jesus blood (Eph. 1:7; I Pet. 1:18-19)

 

In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.

 

2)       We contact the blood of Christ in His death when we are buried in the waters of baptism (Rom. 6:34a).

 

Know ye not that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?  Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death:  that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

 

3)       Those who were faithful under the Old Covenant, had the blood of Christ to cleanse them when He died on the cross of Calvary (Heb. 9:15).

 

And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.

 

a)       “…for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament…”

b)      “…that by means of death…”

c)       “…might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.”

3.       We will be judged by all that we have done (II Cor. 5:10; Rev. 20:12-15).

 

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.

 

C.     There are also some very specific things to this answer.

1.       We will be judged on the use of our talents (Matt. 25:14-30).

2.       We will be judged on our service to others (Matt. 25:31-46).

3.       We will be judged on whether we have been willing to forgive others (Matt. 6:14-15; 18:21-35).

 

VII.       WHO WILL BE THE JUDGE?

 

A.     God the Father is the ultimate Judge of all men.

1.       Psalm 9:7-8

 

But the Lord shall endure forever:  he hath prepared his throne for judgment.  And he shall judge the world in righteousness, he shall minister judgment to the people in uprightness.

2.       In Hebrews 12:23, we are told that God is “the Judge of all.”

 

B.     God, however, has delegated judgment to Jesus Christ His Son.

1.       John 5:27

 

And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.

 

2.       Acts 10:42

 

And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be Judge of quick and dead.

 

3.       Acts 17:31

 

Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.

 

4.       II Timothy 4:1

 

I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom.

 

C.     The judgment of Jesus Christ will be most just judgment ever rendered.

1.       Jesus will judge.  Even though He is God, He is also still a man (I Tim. 2:5).

2.       He is truth (John 14:6).

3.       He knows the hearts of men (John 2:25).

a.       He knows their motives.

b.      He knows their agendas.

c.       He knows their loves and desires.

d.      He knows their loyalty.

4.       He sees the secret things that man does (Eccl. 12:14; Rom. 2:16).

5.       With Him, there is no respecter of persons (II Sam. 14:14; Rom. 2:11; Col. 3:25).

 

VIII.     HOW MANY JUDGMENTS ARE THERE GOING TO BE?

 

A.     In his book entitled, Heaven, Randy Alcorn argues for two judgments on page 47.

1.       One judgment he believes happens the moment we die.  He calls it the judgment of faith.

2.       The final judgment he refers to as the judgment of works.

 

B.     A false doctrine referred to as Premillennialism also teaches several judgments depending on the brand of premillennialism you happen to avow.

 

C.     The Bible, however, only teaches ONE judgment.

1.       Hebrews 9:27

 

And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.

 

2.       This judgment will happen on a particular day.

a.       Acts 17:31

 

Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness…

 

b.      Jude 6

 

And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.

 

IX.         HOW DO YOU HARMONIZE HADES WITH THE JUDGMENT?

 

A.     This question is springs from what is recorded in Luke 16:19-31, The Account of The Rich Man and Lazarus.

1.       Jesus is the one teaching.  He tells us about things that happen when individuals die.

a.       Lazarus, a beggar, died.  He was carried by angels into Abraham’s bosom, a place of comfort (Luke 16:22, 25).

b.      The rich man, on the other hand, died “and in hell he lifted up his eyes, being in torments…” (Luke 16:23).

2.       Note:  Final judgment has not transpired at this time. 

a.       Both men have entered into the hadean realm, the unseen realm of the dead.

b.      One went to place of comfort.  The other went to a place of torment.

 

B.     The question asked involves a harmony between hades and the judgment.  If we are either comforted or tormented in the hadean realm due to our manner of living, why is a judgment necessary?

 

C.     Here, we must remember the purposes of judgment:

1.       We will stand before God in the Day of Judgment giving an account of our duties and obligations unto Him.

2.       We will have our day in court to argue our case before Him.

3.       We will receive the final sentence of either approval or condemnation.

 

D.    NOTE:  There have been many individuals who have committed crimes, jailed for a period of time before their court date, given their day in court, and received their final sentencing in jail for a period of time thereafter. 

 

X.           CAN YOUR FATE BE CHANGED AFTER YOU DIE?

 

A.     The answer to this question is:  “No.”

 

B.     In Jesus’ account of the rich man and Lazarus, we learn that once we die, we cannot pass from one place to the other (Luke 16:26).

 

And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed:  so that they which would pass from thence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.

 

C.     The Bible does not teach about a place called Limbo or baptism for the dead that enables one to be baptized for another who has died in order to change his/her eternal destination.

 

CONCLUSION

 

A.     My friends, Judgment Day is coming. 

1.       The fact that man has been on the earth for several thousand years does not change God’s promise.

2.       Peter tells us:  “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night…” (II Pet. 3:10).

 

B.     If we die before the Day of Judgment, we will not be able to change our fate.  We will stand before God just like we were when we died: either lost or saved.

 

C.     Here is something important to keep in mind.  You can change your fate before you die.  God revealed a plan in the gospel of Christ whereby man can be made righteous (Rom. 1:16-17).

1.       It involves hearing God’s Word (Rom. 10:17).

2.       It involves obedience to the faith (Rom. 1:5; 16:26)

a.       Believing in Jesus as the Son of God (Rom. 10:9-10)

b.      Repenting of one’s sins (Rom. 6:6, 11).

c.       Confessing the name of Jesus (Rom. 10:9-10)

d.      Being baptized for the remission of sins (Rom. 6:3-4).