Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him.
As Jesus talked to them, a lively discussion started on Judgement, based on a
statement Jesus made,
He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where
there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
God‘s coming judgment and the despair those people who are not ready for it will
feel, are as certain as Jesus’ return to earth. Jesus, you expect us to lead
productive lives to be prepared. You said,
The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce
good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.
Just as a fruit tree is expected to bear fruit, God’s people should produce a
crop of good deeds. God has no use for people who call themselves Christians
but do nothing about it. We are of no value if we are Christians in name only.
If others can’t see our faith in the way we treat them, we may not be God’s
people at all.
People will be judged for their unproductive lives. God calls us to be active
in our obedience. Those people who claim they believe God but don’t live for
God can be compared to unproductive trees that will be cut down. To be
productive for God, we must obey his teachings, resist temptation, actively
serve and help others, and share our faith. How productive are we for God?
I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me will come one who is more
powerful than I, whose sandals I am not fit to carry. He will baptize you with
the Holy Spirit and with fire.
To be effective, we have to have an inward change of attitude leading to a
changed life – the work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will empower us to
spread the gospel. The Holy Spirit will also bring God’s judgment on those who
refuse to repent. You, Jesus showed us how this will separate believers and
unbelievers, when you said,
Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the
harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then
gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.
God’s harvest (judgment) of all people is coming. We are to make ourselves
ready by making sure that our faith is sincere. And we must be sure to leave
this judgment up to you. Jesus, you taught us that when you said,
As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of
the age. The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his
kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. They will throw them
into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then
the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of Their Father. He who
has ears, let him hear.
There are true and false believers in churches to day, but we should be cautious
in our judgments because only Christ is qualified to make the final separation.
If we start judging, we may damage some of the good “plants.” It’s more
important to judge our own response to God than to analyze others’ responses.
Those who say they don’t care what happens to them after they die don’t realize
what they are saying. They will be punished for living in selfishness and
indifference to God.
There is a double benefit to those who understand Jesus’ teaching about the
kingdom of heaven. This teaching give’s practical guidelines for faith and for
living in the world. Jesus, you taught us that the kingdom is now and how we
deal with it(judgement) is in the future. Do not be blind to the significance
of the kingdom that Christ brought for now.
For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and
then he will reward each person according to what he has done.
Although Jesus, your judgment is already working in our lives, there is a
future, final judgment when you return and everyone’s life is reviewed and
evaluated. Although as believer our destiny is secure, you, Jesus will look at
how we handled gifts, opportunities, and responsibilities in order to determine
our heavenly rewards. Also at that time you will condemn unbelievers.
Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.
When you, Jesus warn us against unbelief, you are trying to save us from
agonizing punishment. I remember the warning when you said,
This is a wicked generation. It asks for a miraculous sign, but none will be
given it except the sign of Jonah. For as Jonah was a sign to the Ninevites, so
also will the Son of Man be to this generation. The Queen of the South will
rise at the judgment with the men of this generation and condemn them; for she
came from the ends of the earth to listen to Solomon’s wisdom, and now one
greater than Solomon is here. The men of Nineveh will stand up at judgment with
this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and
now one greater than Jonah is here.
Jesus, you are the perfect Son of God, and yet people reject you.. Thus we make
ourselves more liable to judgment. This is the key purpose for your second
There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that
very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day.
When you come again, one of the main purposes will be to judge people for how
they lived on earth. Your words, Jesus, that we would not accept and obey will
condemn us. We must decide now which side we will be on, for the consequences of
our decision will last forever.