College students will know what I’m talking about. You’ve been drifting off in class for the last twenty minutes, struggling to pay attention. Then, through the brainfog, you hear the professor say, “this will probably be on the test.” Suddenly, you snap awake, find your pencil, and focus on every word!
God will judge. Hebrews 9:27 says, “it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment.” God is all powerful and all knowing, and “He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man…” (Acts 17:31).
There are at least twelve passages in which God specifically reveals something that will be part of His standard of judgment. This would be an excellent time to listen up.
How We Judge Others
If you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions (Matt. 6:14-15).
How We Speak
I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned (Matt. 13:36-37).
How We Use Our God-Given Talents
You wicked, lazy slave… You ought to have put my money in the bank, and on my arrival I would have received my money back with interest. Therefore take away the talent from him, and give it to the one who has the ten talents… Throw out the worthless slave into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matt. 25:26-30).
How We Treat Others in Need
Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me (Matt. 25:41-43).
How We Speak to Others about Jesus
Everyone who confesses Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven (Matt. 10:32-33).
How We Lead Those Entrusted to Our Care
Obey your leaders, and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account (Heb. 13:17, cf. Jam. 3:1).
How We Spend Our Money
Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy. Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is life indeed (1 Tim. 6:17-19).
How We Redeem Our Time
Run in such a way that you may win… They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable (1 Cor. 9:24-25, cf. Rev. 2:10).
How We Suffer for Christ
To the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing, so that also at the revelation of His glory you may rejoice with exultation (1 Pet. 4:13, cf. Luke 6:22-23).
How Carefully We Avoid Sin
Now the deeds of the flesh are evident… Those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God (Gal. 5:19-21, cf. 1 Cor. 6:9-11, Eph. 5:6, 1 Thess. 4:3-8).
How We Do Good Works
An hour is coming in which all who are in the tombs will hear His voice, and will come forth; those who did the good deeds to a resurrection of life, those who committed the evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment (John 5:28-29).
How We Treat the Word of God
If anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city (Rev. 22:18-19).
The above may seem like a daunting list. We have all failed spectacularly, despite our striving. Thanks be to God that “there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 8:1)! Through the blood of Jesus, we have our names written into the Lamb’s book of life (Rev. 20:11-15). —John Guzzetta