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Defending the Faith

These Daily Reflections supply the messages from Grace Church as daily video clips from the most recent sermons. Each day's clip will last about 10 minutes and if you watch them all, you will have reviewed morning and evening sermons from the previous Sunday.

Ministry Reflection - July 10, 2009

The Only Evidence: Matthew 25:31-46

For the remainder of this week, we’ll consider one more argument Edwards will give us about the evidential power of our works: namely, that this is the very evidence Christ will examine on the Day of Judgment.
This is another very compelling line of reasoning to show that our works are the best evidences of the genuineness of our conversion, not only to others, but also to ourselves.
This is what the Lord will judge us by on that day to reveal the eternal state of our souls: it won’t be our profession, or what our hearts tell us; but what our lives say.

We’ll consider two things: First, that the Lord will put us on trial on that day both to show us and the world the righteousness of His judgment and second, that the evidence He will examine will be our works.

First, the Lord will put us on trial both to show us and the world the righteousness of His judgment. The Lord will not examine us to discover for Himself the condition of our hearts. His knowledge is infinite. He know everything - everything we would do, and why, even before we were born. This judgment is not for His benefit. Rather, it is to show us in particular and the world in general the righteousness of His judgment. On that day everyone will see clearly what he or she is and will know that Christ is absolutely just in either acquitting or condemning them. That’s one reason that day is called the “day of . . . [the] revelation of the righteous judgment of God” (Rom. 2:5).

Now we can deceive others as to what we are. We can even deceive ourselves. But we will not be able to justify ourselves or deceive Christ on that day.

How many times have you argued with someone knowing you were right and the other person was wrong, but that other person wouldn’t acknowledge it, and so you were never reconciled? That won’t happen on this day: Christ will show each of us clearly what we are; we will see it as well as everyone else; and when He passes judgment on us, we will have no choice but to acknowledge that His judgment is just.

No one will be able to argue against His decision: It will be just like the servant whose master forgave him of his great debt but who refused to forgive his fellow servant – he had nothing to say when he was condemned (Matt. 18:31-35). Or like those workers in the vineyard who complained about their wages when those who were hired later received the same wage they did for the day’s work in the vineyard – they knew they were receiving a just wage (Matt. 20:8-15). Or as the man who came to the wedding feast was speechless when he was confronted with his lack of wedding attire (Matt. 22:11-13) – he knew he had no right to be there. Or the man who took his master’s talent, buried it in the ground, and then returned the same to his master, having disregarded his master’s command to trade with them – he knew he had been a wicked and lazy slave when his master called him to account (Matt. 25:19-30; cf. Luke 19:15-23).

The Lord doesn’t need to see these things to know whether or not we’re converted. But He does know it’s the best means to show both us and the world that His judgment is just and righteous.

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