Summary: how to be able to pass God’s wrath on the Great and Final Day
October 6, 2002 Sermon Series on the End Times - Judgment Day
Some of you may remember the Snickers commercial a few years back. It pictured a very long line of people waiting to see whether they were going to heaven or hell. Finally somebody yelled, “come on, let’s go!” Immediately a hole came through the clouds and he went to hell. The punch line? The next man in line pulled out a Snickers and began to ate it, because he “wasn’t going anywhere for a while.” Obviously, this depiction of Judgment Day misrepresents and trivializes what God describes as a most important DAY. Matthew 25 described it this way -
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
Jesus very clearly says that he will come and sit on his throne to judge ALL people. This Day is so commonly known and referred to in Scriptures that is often just referred to as “the Day” or “that Day.” Just as everyone knew that Hurricane Lili was coming in Louisiana this past week, so everyone knew about Judgment Day in Biblical times, and everyone believed it was coming. Even so today, it seems that almost all people believe that some future judgment is coming. As we move to the fourth of our seven sermon series on the End Times, today we will take a special look at
The Three Essentials To A Good Judgment on Judgment Day
Several weeks ago I told you about the guy who ripped me off on Ebay. I bid on an item for 202.50 cents, and never got the item that was described. Since then I have written him innumerable e-mails and tried to call him, but had no luck whatsoever in reaching him. However, just recently I received a phone call from a new officer who was put in charge of the case! I was excited! He talked about getting a search warrant of the crook’s house so that he could find the incriminating files on his computer! He then wrote this in his e-mail -
It also goes without saying, we would prefer (he) not know we are investigating his business practices. Please do not gleefully e-mail him that the jig is up and the hammer is about to fall.
It made me laugh, because I thought about doing that very thing! Aren’t you the same? Don’t you just love to see people get fried by reporters on Dateline and things like that? On the other hand, it makes us just as passionately angry when we live under a system that often rewards the thieves or lets them go for years without any kind of punishment whatsoever. Therefore, the idea of a Judgment Day is not a bad idea in most people’s minds. We need a system of checks and balances, and we can calm our minds when people “get away” with something, knowing they will still have another trial to face before God.
The problem is, that we know we ALSO will have to face a judge. The second problem is that we know what His STANDARDS are as well. Paul said in Romans that, God “will give to each person according to what he has done.” To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. Ro 2:6-8 Jesus also said, But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken. Mt 12:36 There are two words that terrifying in these passages - the fact that God tells us to PERSISTENTLY do good and that we will have to give account for EVERY careless word we have spoken on the day of judgment.
IF this weren’t bad enough, we also have a blood thirsty prosecuting attorney by the name of Satan. Revelation 12:10 says that he is the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night. (Rev 12:10) DAY and NIGHT Satan continues to run to God and say to him, “did you see that show he watched? How can you put up with that? Did you hear how he lied to his mom? Did you see how he treated his girlfriend? Aren’t you going to punish him? ” It reminds me of what a family member used to do - entice me into trouble and then tell on me. We call such kids “tattle tales.” They aren’t telling on you because they want to help you. They tell on you because they want you to get in trouble, plain and simple.