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What the Bible says about Judgment, Timing of
(From Forerunner Commentary)

One's judgment occurs throughout the time of his opportunity for salvation (I Peter 4:17). Beginning with God opening the individual's mind to understand His way of life, the judgment extends to the end of his life, and its consequences are eternal.

God looks upon the heart (I Samuel 16:7), mercifully judging a person based on his attitude, his knowledge of God and His way, his application of what he understands, and his personal relationship with the Father and Son. By this judgment, God determines who will be in His Family.

The vast majority of mankind will receive the gift of eternal life, and only the few who deliberately and willfully reject God's salvation will not (Hebrews 10:26-27).

The judgments are broken into three broad periods: from Adam to Christ's return, the thousand-year reign of Jesus Christ, and a period following the Millennium when all those who have not had an opportunity for salvation will be resurrected to physical life (Ezekiel 37:12-14; Revelation 20:5-6, 11-14).

Additional scriptures regarding judgment: Hebrews 6:2; 9:27; Romans 2:16; 14:10-12; Acts 10:42; John 5:26-30; II Corinthians 5:10; Matthew 11:20-24; 12:41-42.

Staff

Related Topics: Judgment, Timing of


 

John 5:28-29

Jesus refers to the time of the resurrection when all men will be judged. At the resurrection, both the righteous and the wicked will be brought back to life to receive their reward or punishment.

Earl L. Henn (1934-1997)
Basic Doctrines: The Fate of the Wicked

Revelation 7:9-17

Revelation 7:1-8 describes the 144,000, then verse 9 begins with "after these things." This is simply a time marker in John's vision, not in prophetic time. It means afterward, later, John saw an innumerable multitude. The Greek does not say that the events of Revelation 7:9-17 immediately follow or that they are part ofthe preceding information—only that John received this information after the previous information. Perhaps it could follow right after, but the Greek does not require it.

John says "no one could number" this multitude (verse 9). Why? Notice that this multitude is comprised "of all nations, tribes, peoples and tongues."That would seem to be a great many people! The context indicates a large number, not just an indeterminate one.

John sees these people "standing before the throne and before the Lamb"—not with Him on the throne ruling, but before the throne in judgment. Remember, judgment occurs over a period of time. The firstfruits have already been judged and have risen at Christ's return, so this multitude has to be people in a different group who are judged later.

Revelation 3:21, written directly to Laodicea, says God grants overcomers the reward of sitting with Him on His throne! Thus, they have qualified to be in the first resurrection, having been judged to be worthy now (I Peter 4:17). We have already seen that whether we die in Christ or are still alive, we are "changed—in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet" (I Corinthians 15:51-52) as firstfruits. None of those in the first resurrection will stand "before the throne" for judgment when He returns, for we are currently under judgment, which God will complete and reward us at His Son's return (Revelation 11:18).

This multitude, then, cannot be in the first resurrection! In the process of judgment, they have donned white robes, a growth in spirituality that takes considerable time.

Staff
The Innumerable Multitude


 




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