God's Courtroom


Thankfully, God has made such wonderful promises that we need not fear this coming judgment at all!

"[God] commands all people everywhere to repent. For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead." (Acts 17:30-31)

High above the buildings of the Old Bailey law courts in London stands the golden statue of "Justice" with a sword in her right hand and scales in her left hand, symbolizing the justice promised in the courts below. Sadly human courts are not always just, for a whole variety of reasons. But there is one courtroom in which all of us will one day stand where justice will be absolutely impartial: the courtroom of God at the end of the age.

The fact of judgment, uncomfortable as it is to us, is clear throughout the Bible. For example, the prophets foresaw that God, the righteous judge, would bring his judgment upon sinners on "the day of the Lord." As Obadiah put it, "The day of the LORD is near for all nations. As you have done, it will be done to you; your deeds will return upon your own head" (Obadiah v. 15).  In the New Testament, the writer of Hebrews put it like this: "Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account" (Hebrews 4:13). All of this could sound like a very frightening prospect, for none of us likes the idea of being judged, least of all by God.

Thankfully, God has made such wonderful promises that we need not fear this coming judgment at all! For the Bible promises us that, at the very moment we put our trust in Christ, we are "justified" – that is, we receive his "Not Guilty!" verdict right there and then. We don’t have to wait till Judgment Day to wait and see what that verdict will be; we can know what it is right here and now – and know that this is God’s last word on the matter!

This doctrine of "justification of faith," lost under centuries of church tradition but rediscovered at the Reformation, is a wonderful promise that gives us great hope, encouragement and security. Live in the light of that promise today!

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. (Romans 8:1)

© Copyright 2017 Martin Manser and Mike Beaumont

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