Life gets in the way of the contemplation of our last end. Days become a blur as we work, sleep, pay bills, run errands and tend to family responsibilities. Dazed by the routine, we awake to realize years have passed and the wrinkles on our faces are not a defect in the mirror, but a reminder of the miles we have traveled. Stilled momentarily, we remember that our souls once mattered and that the judgment day is before us (Romans 13:11).
God is good, loving, gracious and “is not willing that any should perish” (2 Peter 3:9, NKJV). Yet, there will be a judgment day where we will be judged according to our soul’s condition.
The end of our soul’s journey will be either in an eternal heaven or in an eternal hell (Matthew 25:46). We choose where we will be as we live our lives each day. Jesus will come back to gather his own to take them to a prepared heaven (John 14:1-6).
The Apostle John presents the massive throngs as they appear before the throne of God. He writes, “And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books” (Revelation 20:12).
The judgment cannot be avoided. We are told that “it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).
No one will escape this appointment. Revelation 20:11-15 tells us that everyone will face the judgment of God. And we will be judged by God’s will and not by looks, social standing, wealth, gender, nationality, race or any other man-made barrier. We will be judged solely on our spiritual standing in God’s eyes. Therefore, the final judgment will be a time of rejoicing for a few and the ultimate nightmare for everyone else. Jesus said that only a few would be saved while the rest would be lost (Matthew 7:13-14).
We will stand “before the throne of God.” Everything will be open and naked before God. Hebrews 4:13 says, “And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.” He will “render to each one according to his deeds” (Romans 2:6). What we do in our lives, goes into the books that will be opened at our judgment.
We will be judged by a perfect God (Matthew 5:48; 1 John 1:5). This will manifest itself in many undeniable proofs. First, God will be perfectly just and fair (Acts 10:34; Galatians 3:28). Second, God cannot be deceived (Galatians 6:7). Third, God cannot be swayed by any prejudices, excuses or lies (Luke 14:16-24).
God will judge us based on our works. Ephesians 2:8-9 tells us that we will be saved by grace, not works. So, why does this passage say that we will be judged by our works? These two statements are both inspired and are not in conflict. Grace gives us the right to come to God for the forgiveness of sins and allows us to wear his son’s name. When we come to judgment, grace allows us the chance to be in heaven. Yet, our works dictate whether we have been faithful to God and have borne fruit in his kingdom (John 15:1-8; Ephesians 2:10; James 2:26). They tell God that we have sought his will above our own and been committed to bringing glory to his name (Ephesians 3:21-22). Then, he will tenderly say, “Enter into the joy of your Lord” (Matthew 25:21).
Where Will our Soul Spend Eternity?