There are some things for which we need not show up, though others may want us there—weddings, funerals, business meetings, outings, etc. We may or may not attend services of the church. However, there is one appearance we will all make, whether we want to or not—the judgment. Paul said, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad” (2 Cor. 5:10).
God committed all judgment to Jesus as a part of the scheme of redemption (Jn. 5:22). Some will be found guilty, while others will be innocent (Jn. 5:28-29). None who are guilty will be able to claim a prejudice judge or faulty law. No innocent person will be found guilty. The judge will be righteous in all He declares and, thus, there will be no appeals (2 Tim. 4:8).
We are assured of the judgment by the resurrection of Jesus Christ (Acts 17:31). His resurrection guarantees ours (1 Cor. 15). Holding this conviction will help us abstain from sin, knowing we will live again to give an account (Heb. 9:27). Those who reject or suppress knowledge of the resurrection will enter into all manner of sin (1 Cor. 15:33). Therefore, we need to constantly remind ourselves of the coming resurrection.
Our judgment will be based on two things. First, our thoughts, words, and deeds will be brought out in the open. If we have harbored anger, lust, bitterness, or greed in our heart, it will come out (Matt. 5:21-32; Eph. 4:31; 5:5). That which we speak and do in the dark, will be brought to light. Nothing shall escape the Judge.
Second, the things done in the body will be compared to the gospel. Jesus said, “He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him—the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day” (Jn. 12:48). Therefore, it is imperative we learn and apply the gospel of Christ to our lives now.
We may avoid an appearance at a wedding or family reunion. Contrary to the will of God, we may skip worship services or Bible studies (Heb. 10:24, 25). However, we will not miss an appearance before the judgment seat of Christ.