The Day Of Judgment

Revelation 20:12-13

Immediately after the resurrection, we must all be judged by God according to the record of our works (Heb. 9:27). “The dead shall be judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.”

The Judge

The Judge before whom we must stand is the God-man, whom we have crucified (John 5:22; Acts 17:31; 2 Cor. 5:10). The Father has committed all things unto the Son, even the throne of judgment, that in all things Christ the Mediator may have the pre-eminence and glory.

The Basis of Judgment

We will be judged out of the books, according to the record of God's strict justice. There will be no favoritism, no partiality, but only justice in that day. When the books are opened, what shocks of terror will seize the hearts and souls of those who have no righteousness and no atonement before the holy Lord God! With the opening of the books, every crime, every offense, every sin the lost soul has committed, in mind, in heart, and in deed shall be exposed (Dan. 7:10).

This is figurative language. The omniscient God does not need books to remember man's sins. However, as John Gill wrote, "this judgment out of the books, and according to works, is designed to show with what accuracy and exactness, with what justice and equity, it will be executed, in allusion to statute-books in courts of judicature".

Another Book

Blessed be God, there are some against whom no crimes, no sins, no offenses can be found, not even by the omniscient eye of God himself (Jer. 50:20).

Their names are found in another book, a book which God himself wrote and sealed before the worlds were made. It is “the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Rev. 13:8; 17:8). In this book there is a record of divine election, an election of grace made from eternity (Eph. 1:3-6). The first name recorded in the book is that of Christ, our Surety, the Lamb of God (Isa. 42:1-4). The record of the works of all whose names are recorded in this book is righteousness, perfect, complete righteousness (Jer. 23:6; 33:16; 1 Cor. 1:30; Col. 2:10). This blessed book contains the record of complete satisfaction made for the sins of all whose names were recorded in it before the worlds were made, satisfaction by blood atonement (Rom. 5:10-11). In this book there is also the promise of eternal life in Christ, life granted upon the grounds of righteousness brought in and justice satisfied (Ps. 24:3-5).

Don Fortner