Every human will be judged. There are two kinds of judgment. One is for the lost, judgment for their sin. God will judge them and then cast them into hell for all eternity to endure the punishment of His wrath. (Revelation 20:11-15). This is known as the Great White Throne Judgment.
The other judgment is not really a judgment, more of an evaluation. All believers will stand before Christ after the rapture, and He will evaluate their lives based on what they did for Him, and what their motivation was. Christ will judge our works. We aren’t under wrath because as believers we entered heaven through the Door of Jesus, and He already exhausted God’s wrath for us by absorbing our punishment for sins when He was on the cross. So, God is not angry with us like He is with the unbelievers, but we can lose rewards that we would have otherwise earned. This is known as the Bema Seat. (2 Corinthians 5:10).
Hebrews 10:31 says “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” Though we have nothing to fear, just thinking about standing before Jesus and having all my works and secrets of the heart exposed is cringe-worthy. To add fuel to the fire, so to speak, our pastor said the following last Sunday. I’ll paraphrase.
He was in a court situation observing a woman who was about to be sentenced for her DUI charge. As the court came together and the judge was preparing to speak the verdict, our pastor said that he could see the defendant begin to shake. Her arm quivered visibly, then her leg. She soon was shaking uncontrollably. A human judge was about the render a verdict in her crime, and she knew she was guilty. Her shaking increased. It is a fearful thing to be publicly judged for our crimes.
Now imagine this.
Imagine that God put a tape recorder around your neck. For the next year, He recorded everything you said. At the end of the year, He took off the tape recorder and played it back. Imagine then, He uses the same level of judgment that you used when talking to other people or about other people…on you.
It makes us cringe, doesn’t it? And if we think that our own words used against us as the benchmark of judgment is harsh, a human standard, what then of God’s holy and perfect standard? One cannot even conceive of being able to stand before Him.
If you, LORD, kept a record of sins, Lord, who could stand? (Psalm 130:3)
And yet those who are in Christ, will be able to stand.
The Psalm verse goes on to show the glorious reason why,
But with you there is forgiveness, that you may be feared. (Psalm 130:4)