Focus on the advent 2 – Christ our judge: Meditation for the Sunday next before advent
Today is the last Sunday of the Church year. In the Roman Catholic Church and many Anglican churches, this final Sunday of the liturgical year is celebrated as the Feast of Christ the King, sometimes as the Reign of Christ.
The key features of the reign of Christ are justice and power. Christ is now more of the Lion of Judah, which signifies rulership, power and justice than the sacrificial lamb, which signifies weakness and suffering. In fact, One of the rewards of Christ humiliation is that, as the Son of Man, He shall sit in judgment upon the wicked, unbelieving world. They brought Him before the Sanhedrin for judgment. They brought Him before Pilate for judgment. They brought Him before Herod for judgment. He has been judged again and again in the court of public opinion. But, one day, all who have been His judges and deemed Him unworthy of their trust shall come before Him in judgment. Even the saved are still yet to be saved for we shall all appear before the judgment seat of Christ.
Our works will be judged at the Judgment seat of Christ. If we are to know Christ, as we ought, we must know Him as Judge. Christ is our judge and gives everyone his due.
Christ Our Saviour And Christ Our Judge
There is a story about a man who was glad when he recognised that his judge in a court case was a man who took it upon himself to be his advocate in an earlier case. But when the same man who defended him with all his ability sentenced him to prison, he was disappointed and asked if he still recognised him. The judge replied that in the earlier case, he was his Advocate and had to defend him, but in the present case, was his judge, and so, should dispense justice.
Likewise, Christ is now our Saviour and Mediator (Matt. 1:21; Luke 19:10; 1 Tim. 2:5). He has defended us and made Salvation available to all who are willing to obey His will (Matt 7:21-23. Heb. 5:8-9). But this same Christ, in His second coming will be our Judge. (Heb. 9:27-28). The same Christ our Saviour is Christ our Judge.
The OT (Amos 5:18-24) is Amos’ prophecy about the Day of the Lord, which was anticipated as the time God would manifest and prove Himself as de facto Lord and judge of all the earth.
In the Epistle (Heb. 9:24-28), the writer pointed out that since Christ’s work is once and for all, His coming again will not be to carry away sins. “Man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgement” (vs 27).
In the Gospel (John 10:7-18), Jesus claimed to be “the gate for the sheep and “the good shepherd.” One implication is that He is both the way and means of salvation. Those who follow Him are saved, while those who derail are condemned in the judgement to come.
What The Bible Further Says On Christ As Judge
The Bible is consistent that Jesus will come as judge (Matt.3: 12). Every person must appear before the judgement seat of Christ (2 Cor. 5:10). He is the righteous Judge (2 Tim. 4:8). The Father has committed all judgement to the Son (John 5:22). Judgement is pictured in Jesus Parables of the close of the age (Matt. 25:31-46). The fact of Jesus being the Judge must be preached to the world (Acts 10:42; Rom. 2:9-16). Jesus will judge us according to the Gospel (John 12:48; Rom. 2:9-16). All people will be judged fairly (Acts 10:34-35; Col.3: 24-25).
Jesus is coming to judge and we need to be prepared. We should have Him as our Saviour now in order to be ready to meet Him as our Judge on the Last Day. To have Him as our Saviour means to believe, trust and obey Him. He is both Saviour and Lord, Christ our Judge.
Ven. Dr Princewill O. Ireoba is the Rector,
Ibru International Ecumenical Centre,
Agbarha-Otor, Delta State.