As you can read, this is a serious moment in the annals of time for all unbelievers. The final judgment is just that, Final! God is a “bookkeeper.” His books are accurate, and they include the sum total of what is needed to reckon absolute justice.

Bema Seat Judgment

The Bema Seat judgment is the Judgment Seat of Christ where all believers will be judged. Judged not for their sins, for that took place on the cross, but for their works. Paul dealt with that in 2 Corinthians:

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.

2 Corinthians 5:10 NASB

This judgment seat is called the “Bema.” The Roman Bema was where Pilate judged Christ before the Roman citizens and before the Jewish Sanhedrin. Pilot rendered Jesus innocent, but the Jews cried out, “Crucify Him.” Pilate listened to them because he was afraid that they would riot and then he would be held accountable by Caesar for not keeping the peace. Oh, the evil that the fear of man produces; yes, terrible things. But the fear of God brings forth salvation and righteousness. Jesus stood before Pilot in the fear of God, knowing full well He was God’s Lamb for the sins of the world!

Every believer will be judged for what they did with the new nature that God gave to them through Christ. God’s plan is for Christ’s life to be lived out in our natural body. It is a supernatural life within a human frame. We can choose to be soulish or we can choose to be spiritual. In other words, if we choose spiritual, we allow the Holy Spirit to control our actions and empower us to live out Christ-life in all we do.

Paul brings great clarity to this subject in 2 Corinthians as he taught about the warfare in which all believers are to be engaged. That warfare includes judgment. The believer is part of the judgment process that is going on in the earth through the proclamation of the Good News of the Gospel of our King.

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ,

2 Corinthians 10:3–5 NASB

There is a dual nature that the believer possesses. We are walking out of our salvation in the now. We are still dealing with our own flesh as well as all that goes on around us in the natural realm. At the same time, the warfare in which we are engaged is to be fought in the spiritual power given to us through Christ our Lord by the Holy Spirit. We possess power and authority to deal with fortresses established in the mind through the devil’s influence in culture and through worldly-mindedness focused on the self-life. This includes the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life.

When the Word of God is preached, the objective should be the “destroying of speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God.” As Christ’s warriors, we are to take captive the thoughts of men and bring them to obedience to Christ. There should even be a component of being ready to punish all disobedience, through the completeness of our obedience.

The Good News is not just the message of salvation to those who believe in Christ, but of the judgment of all those who reject the gracious offer and provision of the sovereign Son of God and His servants. All this concludes in the final judgments: The Great White Throne Judgment for devil and his angels and everyone who rejected Christ; the other is the Judgment Seat of Christ where believers will give account for their service to Christ and be rewarded for their faithful service or suffer loss of reward, but they themselves will be saved.