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2021 online sermons » Derek Prince » Derek Prince - We Will Be Judged By Christ

Derek Prince - We Will Be Judged By Christ

Derek Prince - We Will Be Judged By Christ
TOPICS: Judgment

We’re going to go on to the scenes of judgment. And as I understand it there are going to be four major, successive scenes of judgment. The first will be before the judgment seat of Christ. The Greek word bema means a platform on which a Roman official sat to execute judgment. Pontius Pilate sat on his bema when Jesus appeared before Him for judgment. This will be a judgment only of Christians, only of believers. We go again to 1 Peter 1:17. I somehow feel that God wants me to read this verse twice. 1 Peter 1:17: And if you call on the Father who without partiality judges according to each one’s work conduct yourselves throughout the time of your sojourning here in fear. That’s written to us. We call on the Father. And then in 1 Peter 4:17 it says: For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God. And if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel?

Where does judgment begin? Always with the house of God. Always with the people who have the most truth. And so, when judgment starts, the first people to be judged will be the Christians. They’ll have a special judgment. Romans 14:10-12 says this: But why do you judge your brother or why do you show contempt for your brother? For we (Christians) shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ (the bema), for it is written, As I live, says the Lord every knee shall bow to me and every tongue shall confess to me. So then each of us shall give account of himself to God. There’s only one person that you have to give account of that’s yourself. You don’t have to give account of me or your pastor and you waste a lot of time judging others. The only person you’re going to have to give account for is yourself. And that you’re going to have to do.

So Paul says each of us shall give account of himself to God. That’s each of us Christians. And then in 2 Corinthians 5 he returns to the same theme. 2 Corinthians 5:10: For we (Christians) must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ that each one may receive the things done in his body according to what he has done, whether good or bad. We must all appear. But the Greek says we must all be made manifest. There will be no secrets. Everything will be totally exposed. Nothing will be hidden. And, we will be before the judgment seat of Christ to receive according to the way we have lived in the body. I pointed out already, but I’ll say it again: There are only two categories, whether good or bad. Nothing in between. Everything that is not good is bad. Jesus said very clearly: He that is not with me is against me. There is no neutrality. Jesus has excluded neutrality. There are a lot of people in churches sitting on the fence. Do you know what that means, to sit on the fence? To be unwilling to make a commitment. They’re not on one side, not on the other side. Not doing good but they wouldn’t admit that they’re doing bad.

I make this comment sometimes when the Holy Spirit comes to a church, one of the first things He does is to electrify the fence! You have to jump off on one side or the other. That’s why a lot of people don’t welcome the Holy Spirit because He abolishes their neutrality. There is no neutrality with the Spirit. Now, what we have to say is: There are five main features of this judgment. I’ll just go through them very briefly. It’s individual, each one will answer for himself. It’s for the things done in the body, the way we have lived while we were in this body. There are only two categories, good or bad.

1 John 5:17 says: All unrighteousness is sin. Anything that is not righteous is sinful. You see, this third category has slipped into people’s thinking and it deceives so many. There is no neutrality. The next principle is: It is not for condemnation. That’s very, very important. We’re going to be judged, but not condemned if we are true, sincere believers in Jesus. The principle of judgment is for assessment of service.

Let me give you three Scriptures which maybe will comfort you at this point. I see some of you looking a little concerned which isn’t a bad thing to be, believe me.

John 3:18, Jesus says: He who believes in Him is not condemned but he who does not believe is condemned already. So if we are truly believers in Jesus we will be judged but we will not be condemned.

And then again He says again in John 5:24: Most assuredly I say to you... And that’s the most emphatic way that Jesus can express Himself. Most assuredly I say to you, He who hears my word and believes in Him who sent me has everlasting life and shall not come into condemnation but has passed from death unto life.

And finally, Romans 8:1: There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. So we’re not talking about a judgment of condemnation, we’re talking about judgment which will assess the service that you offer to Jesus during your life. The clearest place that this is described is 1 Corinthians 3:11 and following. 1 Corinthians 3:11 and following. Paul is speaking about building the church and he says: 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 manifest. 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. And the NIV says: Like one escaping from the flames. So that’s the essence of the judgment of Christians.

First of all we have to be built on the foundation of Jesus Christ. There is no other foundation. Then we have to determine what’s the value of the service that we’ve offered. And things that are easy to acquire can be offered in large quantities: Wood, hay and stubble. But they’ll all be burnt up. The things that are valuable are not obtained in large quantities: Gold, silver, precious stones. See, some people just assess the quantity of their service but that’s not the way God assesses it. I examine myself continually. What am I producing? Is it just wood, hay, stubble that will be burned up? What a tragedy when you’ve worked all your life for something, you’ve piled it all up and in the day of judgment you see the fire sweep through it and finish it all off. There’s nothing left but you’re a naked soul that escapes like one escaping through the flames. What a solemn thought.
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