Will Jesus-followers be judged?
The short answer is: Yes. However, it is not a judgment which leads to condemnation. Romans 8:1 states, “There is now, no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” So, if the judgment is not one that can lead to condemnation, then what kind of judgment is it?
Paul writes to Jesus-followers in 2 Corinthians 5:10, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.”
The judgement doesn’t not lead to condemnation but it does determine our reward or loss. Jesus looks at our service and judges us based upon whether or not we were involved in kingdom work while on earth. In fact, the scripture references many rewards that you could receive at this judgment.
Here are a few rewards that could be received:
- 1 Corinthians 9:25 describes an Incorruptible Crown. This reward is given to the person who has sought to run the race of faith with self-control and discipline.
- Revelation 2:10 describes the Crown of Life. This reward is given to those who are faithful in the face of persecution. Jesus said in Matthew 5, “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
- 1 Peter 5:2–4, describes a Crown of Glory. This crown is reserved for faithful pastors who feed the flock of God and seek to live as an example to them.
- 2 Timothy 4:8 describes a Crown of Righteousness. This is a reward given to all believers who live with anticipation of His return.
- 1 Thessalonians 2:19–20 describes a Crown for Soul-winners. For those you have personally led to faith in Jesus, you shall receive a crown.
- In Matthew 6:19–21, Jesus promises a reward to those who are financially generous. He says, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroys, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there you heart is also.”
- In Luke 14, Jesus speaks about showing hospitality to those who cannot repay you. In other words, you are hospitable to individuals not seeking to get anything in return, with no hidden motives. Jesus says, “You will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”
In 1 Corinthians 3, we see that some will suffer loss as a result of not fulfilling God’s call in their lives. The refiner’s fire of Jesus will melt away worthless living at the judgment. If anything, this should really cause you desire to live in a way that is pleasing to the Lord.
“Only one life, ‘twill soon be past, only what’s done for Jesus will last. And when I am dying, how happy I’ll be, if the lamp of my life has burned out for Thee.” CT Studd
“Fix your eyes on your heavenly reward instead of earthly allurements.” Charles Swindoll
Find out more about the Judgement Seat of Jesus and also the Marriage Supper of the Lamb in the following message: