Scripture: 2 Timothy 4:1-2
This week, we will look at “From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.”
Now I know immediately you are going to either roll your eyes or you may find something else to watch because one of the words I used “JUDGE” the quick and the dead.
I want to tell you it’s going to be ok. I don’t want you to worry about this phrase but let’s talk about it and see where Scripture takes us.
And look I understand, I grew up in a time and in churches that were all about “Hell, Fire and Brimstone.” It scared me and I think to be honest turned me away from the church and God more than it turned me towards the Jesus I know today.
As we think about this phrase in the Apostles Creed “From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead,” I want us to focus first on 2 Timothy 4:1-2.
Here is what it says, “I’m giving you this commission in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is coming to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearance and his kingdom. 2 Preach the word. Be ready to do it whether it is convenient or inconvenient. Correct, confront, and encourage with patience and instruction.”
From 2 Timothy it stats to us…JESUS is to come and JUDGE the LIVING and the DEAD but we know from other passages:
Acts 1:7 “He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority.” Or Matthew 24:36 “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”
Now…I am not going to get into the judgement seat piece today found in REVELATION 20
Rev 20:4-6 Talks about the Judgment seat of Christ. Rev 20:11-15 Talks about the Great White Seat of Judgment.
As we focus on the judgement of the living and the dead what I want to focus on is found actually in another part of Scripture and that is in Hebrews 9:27-28. It says this, “Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face (here is that word) judgment, so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.”
Here is a known fact….Jesus is COMING AGAIN. (Can we SAY AMEN!)
I mean if you are like me, it can happen today……let’s just make this happen now LORD
But we know from the Acts 1:7 & Matthew 24:36 passages only God knows the time
My Grandfather who was a Church of God pastor/Church planter always said
He was “Packed UP, Prayed Up, Ready to be Taken Up.”
Now there is a lot more to Jesus’ 2nd coming but we are not DIVING DEEP into the 2nd coming of Christ today we are sort of just scraping the surface.
AS A PART OF THE SALVIFIC WORK or (Saving work) of CHRIST…..it is a mode or mechanism of showing us WHO GOD IS.
I will say that again
The saving work of Christ, coming to judge the quick (living) and the dead is the work of Christ showing us WHO GOD IS.
Because let’s go back to it.
Hebrews 9:27-28. It says this, “Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, 28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to BRING SALVATION TO THOSE WHO ARE WAITING FOR HIM.
This is all about Jesus POINTING to God as Jesus has done throughout Scripture.
The SAVING WORK of JESUS’ 2nd coming is POINTING to GOD.
In Scripture we see this Salvation as an act of POINTING
Redemption (Romans 8)
Freedom from sin (Romans 6)
Peace with God (Romans 5)
Justification through faith (Romans 4)
Reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5)
Spiritual Birth (John 3)
Adoption (Galatians 4)
Baptism into Christ’s Death (Romans 6)
Holy Spirit Gifting (Romans 5 and 8)
Jesus’ LIFE was always POINTING to GOD…..
Jesus’ coming back to JUDGE THE LIVING AND THE DEAD is GOING TO POINT EVERYONE….TO God.
For those that know JESUS we can approach God with confidence!
For some….. Matthew 7:21-23
“21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many deeds of power in your name?’ 23 Then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; go away from me, you evildoers.’
Man, I want to be passionate and loving and easy going right here, I do….please hear me.
And we do have a VERY LOVING AND GRACE FILLED GOD we do I promise
But Christ will come to (Here is that word again) judge the LIVING and the DEAD.
Those in Christ and those NOT.
It is a harsh reality…..
Let’s go back to 2 Timothy 4:1-5
In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I solemnly urge you: 2 proclaim the message; be persistent whether the time is favorable or unfavorable; convince, rebuke, and encourage, with the utmost patience in teaching. 3 For the time is coming when people will not put up with sound doctrine, but having itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own desires, 4 and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander away to myths. 5 As for you, always be sober, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, carry out your ministry fully.
The key is we have to stay GROUNDED in SOUND DOCTRINE.
PRAY and KNOW that when the time is right…Jesus will be back to make all things right.
Let me say that again, “when the time is right…Jesus will be back to make all things right.”
*** We are to be PREPARED for Jesus to come and EAGERLY waiting for his return.
Philippians 3:20 20 But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ,
***What happens in this WAITING PERIOD we are called to watch, be prepared, keep on diligently doing the Lord’s work.
Watch this in 2 Timothy again….(Charge to the Church)
2 Timothy 4:1-5 In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge:2 Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.
The CHURCH…..ANYONE KNOW WHO THAT IS??? (YOU AND ME)…..NOT JUST THE PREACHER
Has been given a CHARGE. Preach, teach THE WORD. Be prepared in and out of season.
Correct, Rebuke, Encourage. Be patient. Use Careful instruction
A CHARGE is the LEVEL of a COMMAND…..
I don’t want us to get caught ASLEEP AT THE WHEEL in OUR life of following Jesus.
Church….we are accountable for our laziness. I mean if Jesus is coming to judge the living and the dead and we are given a charge….then shouldn’t we feel a sense of accountability?
Romans 14:11-12 11 It is written: “‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bow before me; every tongue will acknowledge God.’”[a]12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.
Here is the deal…Jesus is coming to Judge the LIVING and the Dead
And WE have been given this charge.
That’s a lot of WEIGHT on US…..BUT it just means we have a RESPONSIBILITY.
IT GOES BACK TO THE GREAT COMMISSION DOESN’T IT…
Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to obey everything that I’ve commanded you. Look, I myself will be with you every day until the end of this present age.”
Ok everyone…..Jesus is coming to judge the living and the dead…..
How will you live this life in response to knowing that?
Be a disciple making force for Christ?
You have to make the choice….