"And inasmuch as it is appointed unto men once to die, and after this cometh judgment"
 (Heb. 9:27).

It's something a lot of people don't take time to think about anymore, but something everyone should. What happens when we pass from this existence? For some, the only existence they believe in is what they see, the here and now. Yet creation itself offers testimony to the Creator (Romans 1:20), and God has set eternity in our hearts (Ecclesiastes 3:11). For others, it is assumed everyone will go to heaven when they die. Yet Scripture reminds us this is not so either. "Not everyone that saith unto me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven" (Matthew 7:21).

The writer of Hebrews reminds us all that, once this physical existence ends, we all must face the judgment of  God. Paul explains it this way to the church in Corinth; "For we must all be made manifest before the judgment-seat of Christ; that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he hath done, whether it be good or bad" (2 Corinthians 5:10). How one lives his or her life on earth determines what type of judgment one receives in eternity. Jesus said those who have done good will receive the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil will receive the resurrection of judgment (John 5:29).
For those who have lived in faithful obedience to the will of God, the offer is salvation, eternal life (Heb. 5:9). What a glorious thought to know one can be like Christ and see Him as He is (1 John 3:2), to be with Him forever (1 John 2:25). For those who have not obeyed the will of God, judgment consists of punishment, the weeping and gnashing of teeth that lasts for all eternity (Jude 7).

Thinking about the coming judgment can either comfort or condemn, depending on one's point of view, on whether one has lived faithfully for God, or for self. You cannot have it both ways; either you live for God, or you live in sin (Romans 6:16). And the choice you make on how you live determines the judgment you will face. There will be no role reversals in judgment. "For he that soweth unto his own flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth unto the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap eternal life" (Galatians 6:8). The time to think about judgment is today. The time to make changes is today. Which judgment awaits you?

Robert Johnson
Longview, TX

"For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:"

"He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end."

"Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven."

"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad."

"And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation."

"And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;"

"Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is."

"And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life."

"Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?"

For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.