The Quick and the Dead

The message was brought by Rev. Eddie Foster on April 23, 2023.

II Timothy 4:1 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; 2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. 5 But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.

There is a coming judgment for everyone.  The Judgment Seat of Christ is for the saved. It is not to determine if you’re going to heaven. It is when those who have accepted Jesus as Savior will give account of how they did in the work God called them to do. The White Throne Judgment is for the unsaved. Standing before God people will realize that what they did with Jesus Christ in this life has determined their place in eternity.  Hebrews 9:27 tells us And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment. We all agree with the first part. We will die. But we cannot ignore the last part.  After death is the judgment.  Christ will judge everyone, in one of these two judgments.  In this life justice can rarely be found, but in the judgments of the Lord it will be done right.

Following the rapture of the church the earth will plunge into seven years of tribulation. The rapture and the second coming are two different events. I believe that the saved will be raptured prior to the tribulation. We will go to the Judgment Seat of Christ, followed by the Marriage Supper of the Lamb.  At the judgment we will be judged on the basis of how we handled the responsibilities we were given. I’ll be judged on every message I’ve preached. If you’re a teacher, you’ll be judged on how you handled that responsibility. Do you use your musical abilities for God? Whether we are pastors, deacons, trustees, teachers, singers–whatever our responsibility–we will be judged. God expects us to use our abilities for him.

Paul told Timothy how to be a preacher for the Lord. First he was to preach the Word. I must stay in the Word. When?  In the good and bad times.  It’s easy to pastor a church when everyone gets along and things are going well. It’s another thing when there are problems. But I am to preach the Word and remain faithful to what God called me to do.  Paul said the Word is profitable for reproof:  it convicts and corrects. We need that at times.  It’s profitable for rebuking.  Sometimes we need to be admonished. But I am also to exhort, to encourage, you.  Why?  The time will come when even the church won’t endure the Word. We see attitudes toward the Word of God changing before our eyes. Paul said people would refuse sound doctrine and turn their ears from the Word.  The Bible still declares marriage is between a man and a woman.  It still says adultery is wrong.  Murder is still wrong. It’s still wrong to steal.  Homosexual lifestyles are still condemned; it’s not an alternate way. Abortion is still wrong. This is taught in many scriptures; we see how God sees the unborn in Jeremiah, in the birth of Christ and John the Baptist. It’s never right to do wrong.

There are some spiritual absolutes. (1)  In order to go to heaven a person must receive Jesus Christ as Savior and be born again.  (2) As Christians we are obligated to live holy. There is too much loose living. (3) If a person rejects Jesus in this life, he/she will spend eternity in hell. (4) Truth does not need updating. The truth of the Bible will never change. (5) The flesh will cooperate anytime we want to do anything fleshly.  The battle will come when we try to act on spiritual things. When we rely on our own wisdom instead of the wisdom of the Word, we will not do the right thing. Is the Bible or society wrong?  It’s not the Word of God.

Be faithful in your assigned tasks.  Do them to the best of your ability for the Lord. I’ll be accountable for my faithfulness as a pastor.  Paul also told Timothy to be an evangelist. He was to win souls. We’re all to do that. Are you telling others about Jesus?  We are to be faithful because of the ONE who gave us the job.  We’ll give account to God. I will.  You will.  If you’re not saved, you’ll give an account as well.  Judgment is coming for all of us. Let’s get ready.

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