penalties of the kingdom

Truth Is: The LORD is the Judge

God is our Creator; therefore, He has the sovereignty and authority to judge mankind as He sees fit. God is the executor of His righteousness within the created order. God’s commands and judgments meet the perfect standards of justice, and his punishments and rewards are perfectly just. The Lord is the Judge of everyone and everything in all creation.

  • But the Lord reigns forever, executing judgment from his throne. Psalm 9:7
  • It is God alone who judges; he decides who will rise and who will fall. Psalm 75:7
  • … Jesus is the one appointed by God to be the judge of all—the living and the dead. Acts 10:42
  • And remember that the heavenly Father to whom you pray has no favorites. He will judge or reward you according to what you do. 1 Peter 1:17
  • For the time has come for judgment, and it must begin with God’s household. And if judgment begins with us, what terrible fate awaits those who have never obeyed God’s Good News? 1 Peter 4:17

God’s Laws are Unchangeable – He Does Not Lie

  • Your royal laws cannot be changed. Your reign, O LORD, is holy forever and ever. Psalm 93:5
  • But once He has made his decision, who can change His mind? Whatever He wants to do, He does. Job 23:13
  • God also bound himself with an oath, so that those who received the promise could be perfectly sure that He would never change His mind.  Hebrews 6:13-17
  • And he who is the Glory of Israel will not lie, nor will he change his mind, for he is not human that he should change his mind!” 1 Samuel 15:29
  • God is not a man, so he does not lie. He is not human, so he does not change his mind. Has he ever spoken and failed to act? Has he ever promised and not carried it through? Numbers 23:19
  • Whatever is good and perfect is a gift coming down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow. James 1:17

Who Does the Lord Judge? A Few Examples:

  • “But who can teach a lesson to God, since he judges even the most powerful? Job 21:22
  • He judges the great people of the world and brings them all to nothing. Isaiah 40:23
  • The Lord judges the nations. Psalm 7:8 ; Joel 3:2; Obadiah 1:15
  • He will judge the world with justice and rule the nations with fairness. Psalm 9:8; Psalm 96:12-13 
  • …“In due season God will judge everyone, both good and bad, for all their deeds.” Ecclesiastes 3:17; Isaiah 24:5
  • This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says to these shepherds: “Instead of caring for my flock and leading them to safety, you have deserted them and driven them to destruction. Now I will pour out judgment on you for the evil you have done to them. Jeremiah 23:2
  • The adversaries of the Lord shall be broken in pieces; From heaven He will thunder against them. The Lord will judge the ends of the earth. 1 Samuel 2:10
  • Satan and the fallen angelsJohn 12:31; 16:11, Luke 10:18-19
  • Israel Jeremiah 19:4; Jeremiah 44:3; Amos 2:4

Nothing is Hidden from God

O Lord of Heaven’s Armies, you make righteous judgments, and you examine the deepest thoughts and secrets. Let me see your vengeance against them, for I have committed my cause to you. Jeremiah 11:20   

But I, the Lord, search all hearts and examine secret motives. I give all people their due rewards, according to what their actions deserve.” Jeremiah 17:10   

All Are Under Sin

  • But the Scripture has shut up all men under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. Galatians 3:22
  • Now we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, that every mouth may be closed, and all the world may become accountable to God; Romans 3:19
  • Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned…Romans 5:12
  • All of mankind without distinction are under the curse of sin and judged as sinful and separated from God apart from the saving grace of God in Christ. All fall short of the glory of God—the immoral, moral, and religious Rom. 1:18-3:9
    • The only exception is the person of Jesus Christ who, through the virgin birth, escaped the sin problem that is normally passed down from generation to generation.

The Judgment of God is Inescapable

In the book of Obadiah chapter one, (it’s only one chapter) is a great example to understand no one can hide or escape the judgment of God.

The Lord says to Edom, “I will cut you down to size among the nations; you will be greatly despised. You have been deceived by your own pride because you live in a rock fortress and make your home high in the mountains. ‘Who can ever reach us way up here?’ you ask boastfully. But even if you soar as high as eagles and build your nest among the stars, I will bring you crashing down,” says the Lord. Obadiah 1:2-4

The Judgment of God is Impartial

  • For the Lord your God is the God of gods and Lord of lords. He is the great God, the mighty and awesome God, who shows no partiality and cannot be bribed. Deuteronomy 10:17 
  • He doesn’t care how great a person may be, and he pays no more attention to the rich than to the poor. He made them all. Job 34:19 
  • …He will judge the world with justice, and the nations with fairness. Psalm 98:9 
  • For God does not show favoritism. Romans 2:11 

A Look at a Few Causes of God’s Judgment

  • But if we would examine ourselves, we would not be judged by God in this way. 1 Corinthians 11:31          
  • For the Lord is a God who knows what you have done; he will judge your actions. 1 Samuel 2:3
  • …But I judge each of you according to your deeds.” Ezekiel 33:20
  • You will be judged on the basis of all your wicked actions, … Ezekiel 24:14
  • Judgment will come because the ruler of this world has already been judged. John 16:11
  • And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil John 3:19
  • But all who reject me [Jesus] and my message will be judged …John 12:48
  • But because you are stubborn and refuse to turn from your sin… Romans 2:5
  • Anyone who doesn’t obey the Son will never experience eternal life but remains under God’s angry judgment.” John 3:36
  • … those who have continued in evil will rise to experience judgment. John 5:29
  • All these terrible things happened to you because you have burned incense to idols and sinned against the Lord. You have refused to obey him and have not followed his instructions, his decrees, and his laws.” Jeremiah 44:23
  • …I will judge them for harming my people, my special possession, for scattering my people among the nations, and for dividing up my land. Joel 3:2
  • The day is near when I, the Lord, will judge all godless nations! As you have done to Israel, so it will be done to you. All your evil deeds will fall back on your own heads. Obadiah 1:15

Methods Used of God for Judgment – Examples

  • Death
    • He will judge all the people of the earth, slaughtering the wicked with the sword. Jeremiah 25:31
    • All the firstborn sons will die in every family in Egypt, from the oldest son of Pharaoh, who sits on his throne, to the oldest son of his lowliest servant girl who grinds the flour. Even the firstborn of all the livestock will die. Exodus 11:4-12:33
    • By these three plagues a third of mankind was killed—by the fire and the smoke and the brimstone which came out of their mouths. Revelation 9:18
  • Disasters
    • So this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: I will bring such disaster on Jerusalem and Judah that the ears of those who hear about it will tingle with horror. 2 Kings 21:12
  • Exile
    • in Babylon – Jeremiah 29
  • Famine
    • Now there was a famine in the days of David for three years, year after year; and David inquired of the Lord. And the Lord answered, “It is because of Saul and his bloodthirsty house, because he killed the Gibeonites.” 2 Samuel 21:1
    • And I will send the sword, the famine, and the pestilence among them, till they are consumed from the land that I gave to them and their fathers.’ ” Jeremiah 24:10
  • Fire
    • Then the Lord rained brimstone and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah, from the Lord out of the heavens. Genesis 19:24
    • The Lord will punish the world by fire and by his sword. He will judge the earth, and many will be killed by him. Isaiah 66:16
    • On that day the arrogant and the wicked will be burned up like straw. They will be consumed—roots, branches, and all. Malachi 4:1
    • Even now the ax of God’s judgment is poised, ready to sever the roots of the trees. Yes, every tree that does not produce good fruit will be chopped down and thrown into the fire. Matthew 3:10
  • Flood Genesis 7:17–24
  • Plagues
    • But the Lord plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. Genesis 12:17
    • Plagues on Egypt Exodus chapters 7-11
    • the Lord will bring upon you and your descendants extraordinary plagues—great and prolonged plagues—and serious and prolonged sicknesses. Deuteronomy 28:59
  • Sickness
    • behold, the Lord will strike your people with a serious affliction—your children, your wives, and all your possessions; 15 and you will become very sick with a disease of your intestines, until your intestines come out by reason of the sickness, day by day. 2 Chronicles 21:14-15
    • then the Lord will bring upon you and your descendants extraordinary plagues—great and prolonged plagues—and serious and prolonged sicknesses. Deuteronomy 28:59

See Also: Judgements During the Tribulation

Examples of God’s Judgements

  • Adam and Eve – Genesis 3:1424
  • The world-wide flood – Genesis 7:17–24
  • The Tower of Babel – Genesis 11:5–9
  • Sodom and Gomorrah – Genesis 19
  • Babylonian Exile – Jeremiah 29
  • God judged Egypt and their gods – Exodus chapters 7-12
  • The judgment of believers’ sins – Isaiah 53:4–8

Warnings Before Judgment

  1. People of Judah and Jerusalem, surrender your pride and power. Change your hearts before the Lord, or my anger will burn like an unquenchable fire because of all your sins. Jeremiah 4:4
  2. While you were doing these wicked things, says the Lord, I spoke to you about it repeatedly, but you would not listen. I called out to you, but you refused to answer. Jeremiah 7:13   
  3. I will winnow you like grain at the gates of your cities and take away the children you hold dear. I will destroy my own people, because they refuse to change their evil ways. Jeremiah 15:7
  4. Do not go after other gods to serve them and worship them, and do not provoke Me to anger with the works of your hands; and I will not harm you.’ Jeremiah 25:6   
  5. Yet you have not listened to Me,” says the Lord, “that you might provoke Me to anger with the works of your hands to your own hurt. Jeremiah 25:7
  6. Time after time I sent you prophets, who told you, “Turn from your wicked ways, and start doing things right. Stop worshiping other gods so that you might live in peace here in the land I have given to you and your ancestors.” But you would not listen to me or obey me. Jeremiah 35:15
  7. Now upon you I will soon pour out My fury, And spend My anger upon you; I will Judge you according to your ways, And I will repay you for all your abominations. Ezekiel 7:8      

God Seeks Repentant Hearts Over Judgment

  • Let the wicked change their ways and banish the very thought of doing wrong. Let them turn to the Lord that he may have mercy on them. Yes, turn to our God, for he will forgive generously. Isaiah 55:7
  • As surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of wicked people. I only want them to turn from their wicked ways so they can live. Turn! Turn from your wickedness, O people of Israel! Why should you die? Ezekiel 33:11 
  • Perhaps they will listen and turn from their evil ways. Then I will change my mind about the disaster I am ready to pour out on them because of their sins. Jeremiah 26:3
  • But if you stop your sinning and begin to obey the Lord your God, he will change his mind about this disaster that he has announced against you. Jeremiah 26:13
  • But did King Hezekiah and the people kill him for saying this? No, they turned from their sins and worshiped the Lord. They begged him for mercy. Then the Lord changed his mind about the terrible disaster he had pronounced against them. Jeremiah 26:19
  • When God saw what they had done and how they had put a stop to their evil ways, he changed his mind and did not carry out the destruction he had threatened. Jonah 3:10
  • “Do you think that I like to see wicked people die? says the Sovereign Lord. Of course not! I want them to turn from their wicked ways and live. Ezekiel 18:23
  • When the Lord saw their change of heart, he gave this message to Shemaiah: “Since the people have humbled themselves, I will not completely destroy them and will soon give them some relief. I will not use Shishak to pour out my anger on Jerusalem. 2 Chronicles 12:7
  • Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14

The Final Judgment of God

Everyone will stand before God in Judgment one day soon. God’s judgment of all people at the end of the age has been entrusted to Jesus Christ who, at His return, will reward the righteous and punish the unrighteous. The unrighteous Judgment will be based on their deeds, the rejection of God’s revelation, and of Jesus Christ.

  • “There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son. John 3:18
  • He will come with his mighty angels, in flaming fire, bringing judgment on those who don’t know God and on those who refuse to obey the Good News of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with eternal destruction, forever separated from the Lord and from his glorious power. 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9
  • I saw the dead, both great and small, standing before God’s throne. And the books were opened, including the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to what they had done, as recorded in the books. Revelation 20:12
  • Enoch, … said, “Listen! The Lord is coming with countless thousands of his holy ones to execute judgment on the people of the world. He will convict every person of all the ungodly things they have done and for all the insults that ungodly sinners have spoken against him.” Jude 1:14-16
  • For God did not spare even the angels who sinned. He threw them into hell, in gloomy pits of darkness, where they are being held until the day of judgment. 2 Peter 2:4

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