Each week this year, I am challenging myself to memorize a Scripture verse (or verses). This week’s verse is 2Corinthians 5:10… and deals with the Judgment Seat of Christ… the believer’s final reckoning with the Lord.
In 2Cor. 5:1-8, Paul has been speaking of how we as believers have a desire to be with the Lord and receive our glorified bodies. But, just as glorious as that truth is, the fact that our lives are going to be judged is just as sobering.
There are 2 ways of assessing value on your life:
1. Carnally: “How much am I worth, and how important am I?”
2. Spiritually: “What have I done with my life in relation to Jesus Christ and what He has done for me?”
In 2Cor. 5:9, Paul says that – above all else – he is trying to please the Lord because his life will be judged!
I. This is not a judgment to determine fitness for Heaven!
Lost people will be judged because of sin. Christians will be judged for the works/fruit of their lives.
The sins of Christians will have already been judged at the cross of Calvary (v..21)!
If we are in Him, we are the righteousness of God (v.21).
There will be no Great White Throne Judgment for the Christian; only lost people will be there!
II. We shall appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ!
The word “appear” = ‘made manifest’ or ‘stripped down’.
The “judgment seat” = the bema seat… where rewards are awarded.
The fruit/works of our lives will be placed in the fire of God’s judgment (1Cor. 3:13-15).
Only that which is profitable and good and godly will last; the rest will be burned up by God’s judgment.
Every thought, word, deed, opportunity – missed or seized, motive – wrong or right, accomplishment, priority, etc. will be there! Good or bad!
Christians will be rewarded for the good, and suffer loss for the bad.
III. How can I increase the value of my life in the eyes of Christ?
See 2Cor. 5:14,15. We were dead in our sins… Christ died to give us life… We should not live for ourselves, but for Christ!
ILL: Imagine if someone saved your life… and you never said “thank you”, or sent them a card, or remembered their name, or told others about them… You would never do that!
Paul said, “I am constrained by the love of Christ…” It got hold of him… just as it should every Christian! It wouldn’t leave him alone; he couldn’t get it off his mind. It was his motivation!
What Christ did for Paul shaped everything he did! And the same should be true for us!!
Every decision, every conversation, every activity, everything! When motives are right, the deeds will be right and profitable.
What is motivating your life? Is it your own selfishness? Is it the wisdom and the ways of the world? The only way to face the judgment to come is:
- be saved by the grace of God, and
- live a life that is motivated by love for the Lord Jesus Christ.