Whether you believe it or not, judgment is coming. It is every man’s destiny. Hebrew 9:27 says, “And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment. And if there is judgment, there will be a Judge.
Elohim is the most common way to describe God in the Bible. It is used over 2,500 times. Elohim is Hebrew and it means divine, judge, mighty, and ruler. Therefore, it seems that God desires us to know Him primarily as a judge.
Unfortunately, few people are willing to accept God in this role. However, make no mistake; this is exactly what we see consistently from God in His Word. He judged Adam and Eve in the garden, He judged Cain, He judged humanity during the days of Noah, He judged the people at the tower of Babel, He judged Sodom and Gomorrah, He judged Pharaoh and the Egyptians, He judged the Gentile nations, He judged false prophets, He judged his own people Israel, He judged the Pharisees and Sadducees, He judged the Judaizes, He judged the Gnostics, and some day he will judge us all, whether you believe it or not. If there is one thing you can say about God, it’s that he’s consistent.
And what will be the evidence presented at our trial before God? Our lives. Our text above says that they were judged “according to what they had done.” From the moment we draw our first breath to the moment we draw our last, God knows it all. Psalm 139:1-4 says, “O LORD, you have searched me and known me! 2You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. 3You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. 4Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O LORD, you know it altogether.”
Some of you may say, “No big deal, I am not ashamed of my life.” Really?
What if everything you did and thought was posted on a giant billboard for everyone to read. Your evil thoughts, your lying tongue, your gossiping, your hate towards your neighbors, your greed, your anger…everything. My guess is that you would not be a fan of that idea. Well…that is what judgment day is going to be like. All of your sins brought to light for all to see.
And here is the problem; the evidence of your sin will be overwhelming. As a prosecutor, I am sometimes able to win a case with only a few pieces of evidence. In the Courtroom of God there will be mountains and mountains of evidence against you, and the accuser, Satan will be happy to point out every single one to God.
However, there is hope. The second half of verse 12 says, “Then another book was opened, which is the book of life.” This Book of Life has another name in Revelation 13:8, “The Book of Life of the Lamb Who Was Slain.” In this book there are names. Whose names? Those who have repented and placed their faith in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. And as it says in Revelation 20:15, “And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.”
So as Jesus says in Luke 12:58, “As you go with your accuser before the magistrate, make an effort to settle with him on the way, lest he drag you to the judge, and the judge hand you over to the officer, and the officer put you in prison.”