Passing Through the Waters, #16
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. (II Corinthians 5:10)
The truth is, the members of the royal priesthood pass before the bema during their lifetime on the earth. They receive the bad they have practiced and they suffer accordingly (II Thessalonians 1:5; I Peter 4:12-19). After their obedience has been perfected they are sentenced to become life-giving spirits and to be raised in the first resurrection.
This is the resurrection the Apostle Paul was seeking. It was his mark, his goal.
That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection [Greek, out-resurrection] of the dead. (Philippians 3:10,11)
A little reflection will reveal the impossibility of conferring a body like that of the Lord Jesus on a believer, and after that giving to him the bad he has practiced. It is obvious II Corinthians 5:10 cannot be administered to the saints after they are raised and ascend to be forever with Jesus.
The reason the dead in Christ become immortal at the sounding of the seventh trumpet is that their judgment has been accomplished previously. They are standing in the Kingdom and not in the world (waters to the ankles). They are walking in the Spirit and not fulfilling the lusts of the flesh (waters to the knees). They are dead to their own will and have become the Throne of God and of the Lamb (waters to the loins).
They are ready to swim in the fullness of resurrection life. Their warfare has been accomplished, their wickedness pardoned, and they now are living the life of simple faith and obedience in Christ in God.
All this has come to pass in them before the sounding of the seventh trumpet.
They will not be judged after they are raised. They are the judges of men and angels. They are not raised to enter eternal life. They are the trees of life, the sources of eternal life for the nations of the saved.
And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power [authority], but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. (Revelation 20:4-6)
The fact that the second death has no authority over them signifies all the sins over which the Lake of Fire has authority are no longer part of them. Through the blood of the Lamb, through the word of their testimony, and by loving not their lives to the death they have overcome the accuser of the brothers. They are God's conquerors, God's sons (Revelation 21:7).
To be continued.