At the end of time when the Lord Jesus Christ returns, he will judge the living and the dead. We will all have to face this judgment.
Psalms 1:1-6 states, “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by the streams of water, that yield its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, but are like chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor the sinners in the congregation of the righteous; for the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish”.
I have heard many times people quoting Matthew 7:2, “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get”.
Instead of this being a verse of warning to those who “judge”, it becomes for many a scapegoat or license to sin.
When you present something clearly shown in the scripture as sin, the response is “Do not Judge”. There is a fine line between judging a person to hell, from judging what is right and wrong in a person’s life.
If the people of Nineveh would have told Jonah not to “judge” them, they would have been destroyed.
In fact, in the Old Testament the prophets were killed by the people because they spoke the Word of God and the people rebelled.
The real purpose of this writing is more for self inventory, we need to look at ourselves and see how we measure up to the teaching of Christ.
We know there is a “Personal Judgment” when a person dies and then there will be the “General Judgment” at the Parousia when Jesus returns at the end of time.
Jesus states, “You have heard that it was said to the men of old, ‘You shall not kill; and whosoever kills shall be liable to judgment’. But I say to you that every one who is angry with his brother shall be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother shall be liable to the council, and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be liable to the hell of fire. So if you are offering your gift at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift”.
From this scripture, it is a judgment of the heart. We must work towards forgiveness and that is not always easy. We must condition ourselves as this requires work. It requires surrender to God’s will, it requires our readiness to serve God with a clean heart. An upright heart. It is a condition of the heart.
What are going to be some issues that will bring down judgment?
Matthew 10:12-15 states, “As you enter the house, salute it. And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it; but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. And if any one will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you leave that house or town. Truly, I say to you, it shall be more tolerable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that town”.
What is the meaning here? It is obvious that judgment will be more severe for those who have more opportunity to hear and see the truth.
The more that a person is given the more accountability there will be. Jesus teaches this point very clearly Matthew 12:38-42, “Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to him, ‘Teacher, we wish to see a sign from you’. But he answered them,’An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign; but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three night in the belly of the whale, so will the Son of Man be three days and three night in the heart of the earth. The men of Nineveh will arise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, something greater than Jonah is here. The queen of the South will arise at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, something greater than Solomon is here”.
We have the revelation of Jesus Christ and his Catholic Church which is the voice of the Lord until Jesus returns.
The Catholic Church is graced with many signs and wonders of the Lord Jesus Christ for the sake of his people, the Church.
Even so, many will refuse to obey the Church? People will not obey the Word of the Lord. Many will reject the works of the Lord, Matthew 11:20-21 states, “Then he began to upbraid the cities where most of his mighty works had been done, because they did not repent. Woe to you Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes”.
I have more than once been told that someone would not believe unless Mother Mary would appear to them. They have abandoned Christianity for secular science.
In the last times a great deception would challenge many people to fall from their Faith. No question about it, secular humanism has had a terrible impact on our society and judgment is coming.
St. Peter warns about this scourge saying, “First of all you must understand this, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own passions and saying, ‘Where is the promise of his coming” (2 Peter 3:3-4)?
The signs of the Lord are many, Marian Apparitions, Eucharistic Miracles, the Incorruptibles, Healings, and many many more.
We live in a perverse generation where children learn to imitate the foul language of their parents, the media in movies and music.
Rebellion is everywhere. Jesus warns of this Matthew 12:36-37, “I tell you, on the day of judgment men will render account for every careless word they utter; for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned”.
Foul language is condemned in the scripture.
St. Paul states, “Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for edifying, as fits the occasion, that it impart grace to those who hear” (Ephesians 4:29).
Out of the heart, the mouth speaks! It is still a condition of the heart.
There are some serious signs that need to be understood as terrible reasons for judgment.
Apostasy is a very serious sin. St. John states, (1 John 2:18-20).“Children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the anti-Christ is coming, so now many anti-Christs have come; therefore we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out, that they all are not of us”
Today, there are many millions of fallen away Catholics representing the second largest religious body second to only the Catholic Church.
Hosea 4:6 states, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I reject you from being a priest to me. And since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children”.
I had given a talk in Nothern Texas when I asked the people present if they knew of family members or friends who had abandoned the Catholic Faith. Practically everyone without exception raised their hands.
If I was to look at this as a disease, it would be an epidemic.
James 5:19-20 states, “My brethren, if any one among you wanders from the truth and some one brings him back, let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins”.
The Prodigal Son who returns to the fold can be totally restored to the Church. The Lord would leave the 99 to find the one who had gone astray.
Sin has it’s consequences, especially if they are not confessed. There are Mortal sins and Venial Sins which all lead to death. Mortal sins being serious or damnable. There are the 7 deadly sins (wrath, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy, and gluttony).
Galatians 5:19-21 states, “Now the works of the flesh are plain: immorality, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, anger, selfishness, dissension, party spirit, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and the like. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God”.
There is so much regarding warning to include those who are faithless, disobedience, traitors, apathetic, faithless and filled with heresy.
St. John states, “By this we know that we love the children of God. when we love God and obey his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome” (1 John 5:2-3).
Jesus will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead. We will all be held accountable for the works we did. Our faithfulness to our Lord.
St. John is given a glimpse of of what heaven will be like for those whose judgment brings them home:
“And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine upon it, for the glory of God is its light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light shall the nations walk; and the kings of the earth shall bring their glory into it, and its gates shall never be shut by day and there shall be no night there; they shall bring into it the glory and the honor of the nations. But nothing unclean shall enter it, nor any one who practices abomination or falsehood, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (Revelation 21:22-27).