“For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment to the Son: that all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father who hath sent him.” John 5:22-23
In the Apostles’ Creed, believers have for centuries confessed that Jesus Christ, who “suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried,” rose again from the dead and ascended to the right hand of God the Father, and “from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead.”
Jesus’ first coming was to fulfill the righteous demands of God’s holy law and then to make atonement for the sins of all by His innocent sufferings and death on the cross. But when He comes again, it will be to judge the living and the dead.
The Bible clearly teaches that Jesus Christ, God’s Son, will be our judge on the Last Day.
St. Paul wrote to Timothy that “the Lord Jesus Christ … shall judge the living and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom” (2 Tim. 4:1). And, in Romans 14:10, he wrote that “we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.”
Jesus, Himself, said that the Father “hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man. Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, to the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, to the resurrection of damnation” (John 5:27-29). And Jesus describes this judgment in the parable of the sheep and the goats recorded in Matthew 25:31-46.
Jesus said: “For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment to the Son: that all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father who hath sent him.”
What does this mean for us? Jesus is coming again to judge the living and the dead. Those who honor the Son by believing His Word, repenting of their sins and trusting in Him and His atoning sacrifice on the cross for their sins will be spared in the judgment — their sins are forgiven; they have been pardoned and forgiven for Jesus’ sake.
But those who do not honor the Son by repenting of their sins and trusting in Him as the Son of God and their Savior do not know or honor the Father either and will die in their sins. They will be condemned on the Last Day, the day of judgment.
It is as Jesus said in His conversation with Nicodemus: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. … He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God” (John 3:16, 18).
Dear Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God and Son of man, forgive my sins for the sake of Your holy blood, shed on the cross for the sins of the world, and cleanse my heart that I may honor You as my Savior and my Lord. Amen.
[Scripture is quoted from the Revised 1883 Webster Version of the Bible.]