The Last Division
2 Pet 3:1-14, Rev 20:11-15
God gave commandments, statutes, and precepts to the people on this earth with the likeness of His image and established a covenant with them. Through the righteous, His prophets and His holy Son Jesus, God repeatedly emphasized that those who do not live according to the covenant will face Him in the end times and receive judgment for their acts of good and evil. This is saying there is a “last division.” God will put the sheep at his right (Matt 25:31-40) and the goats on the left (Matt 25:41-46). Those placed on the right will inherit the kingdom prepared for them from the foundation of the world, and those placed on the left will be told, “Accursed ones, go into the eternal fire.” We must live thinking about where we will stand during judgment day. I am proclaiming this Word to you in God’s sight with conviction.
The Chinese characters of the word “final judgment” means to look and judge. All the dead will stand in front of a large white throne (Rev 4:2, 5:1, 7, 6:16, 7:10, 15, 19:4, 21:5) and two books will be opened in front of them (Rev 20:12) on the last day. One is “books” and the other is the book of life. Those who are not recorded in the book of life will go into the lake of fire. (Rev 20:15, 21:27, Mark 9). We will be judged according to our actions recorded in the “books.” Everything we say and do on this earth is written in those books. We will be judged and be accounted for all our words, no matter how trivial (Matt 12:3-637). Therefore, we must keep our tongue from evil if we want to see good days (2 Pet 3:10, Rom 14:10, 2:6,12, John 5:25). If we love our life and truly love our family, we must not speak too much. We must not speak glittering words but live like scumbags. All of us will be judged by our actions. (Rev 20:12-13). Everything is recorded in the kingdom of God and not one thing will be left out. You will not be excused even if you say that you cannot remember something or forgot something completely. All our actions will be revealed, completely naked, before thousands upon thousands of people, born from the time of Adam to the last day, and before thousands of angels (Dan 7:10, Mal 3:16, Lk 12:3, 1 Cor 4:5). God will remember and say, “You did not put your heart into singing the hymn during the service on this year, this month, this day, this hour and this minute.”
That is why Jesus told us to repent. When we repent, God does not remember our sins and our sins are washed clean. However, we must not repent idly. We must repent with all our hearts and all our efforts, faithfully and honestly without deceit. The fruit born in repentance is true repentance (Matt 3:8). The basic posture for a soldier is “Attention” but if we do not repent, we cannot even hear the word calling for attention. Our minds cannot concentrate. Those who do not repent cannot establish anything, but those who repent will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38).
Judgment is "division." Light and dark, sheep and goats, heaven and hell will be divided (Matt 25:36-46). It is an eternal separation and you cannot see them or meet them again (Rev 20:12-15, Dan 7:10). Those on this earth, parents, wives and even children cannot evade this separation. Those who sin without their parents knowing do so because they do not realize this. Jesus will not ask, "What sin have you committed," when he sits on the throne of judgment. Heaven is a place where everything in our hearts is visible, just like a fish in a fishbowl. We will separate ourselves and go to the right or to the left. It is a just fearful judgment. The rich man coveted even the dust inside the hair of the poor, ignoring the existence and character of mankind to the point that he purchased souls with a pair of shoes. Although his funeral on this earth was magnificent and held by the entire nation, his soul went to hell. The beggar Lazarus, who was diseased and bruised and ate from the doorsteps of the rich, was not even buried with a casket on this earth yet his soul went to heaven (Luke 16:16).
The last judgment is a judgment of fire (Matt 24:37-51, Matt 25:1-13, 14-30, 31-46, 1 Cor 3:12-15). We will be judged in fire to see whether or not we believed Jesus well. People who worked for the church only with their mouths and not with their bodies or materials will burn as soon as they enter the fire, just like grass or wood. Some may seem like they believe well but they will burn up like firewood when they go in the fire. Others will be like diamonds and not burn even in the fire (1 Cor 3:12-15). It is just like how Daniel's three friends did not burn in a fire that was seven times hotter than usual. All mankind who has stepped foot on this earth will stand in front of God's podium of judgment (Rom 14:10, 2 Cor 5:10). Even though there are tens of millions of people, it will not take even a second to judge them. Judgment will be made in a split second. This is because it is a world that is not bound by time and place. It is fun when you are committing the sin. When you sin once, Satan makes you sin again. You wait for the signal and go out to sin. Satan himself who makes us sin will be thrown into the lake of fire on judgment day (Rev 17, 20). Satan makes us sin but does not take responsibility.
Dear saints, listen carefully. 100 years will pass in the blink of an eye. The kingdom of God is a world where a thousand years is like a day. Those who lie and commit sins do so because they do not know the end. Adultery, murder, robbery and lying are all schoolmates (Rev 21, 22, 15:21). No one on this earth falls to ruin without sin. God who is righteous and just asks, "who ever perished being innocent? Or where were the upright destroyed?" ( Job 4:7). Prophet Isaiah said those who were punished without sin can sue God. Jesus also said to his beloved disciples in Caesarea Philippi, "For the Son of Man is going to come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and will then repay every man according to his deeds" (Matt 16:27). When He returns, he will not forget and remember even the $10 we offered up to Him (Rev 11:18). Dear Saints. There is no round two or round three during the last judgment. Sports have three, four, seven, and even twelves rounds, but the last judgment is a single round with no tomorrow or the day after tomorrow. There is no overtime. People will say "Lord, open up to us, we ate and drank in Your presence and You taught in our streets. We served you." But the Lord will say, "I tell you, I do not know where you are from" (Luke 13:24-27). It is truly frightening. Jesus said this because this is something that will happen at the podium of judgment. What does the almighty God lack that He would lie to and threaten such weak and worthless people like us? Those who believe will step forward to eternal life and those who do not believe will step forward to eternal punishment (Matt 25:33-46, Dan 12:2, John 5:29).
People who are stingy to God, who have money but say they do not, will receive dreadful judgment. Our bodies belong to God. There is nothing on this earth that we have brought ourselves. We must bow down before God and pray in the name of Jesus in this sinful world so that God can help us in times of trouble. People who do not pray and live believing in themselves are frightening. They cannot be forgiven for their sins. God said to remember Him, rely on Him, wait for Him and request to Him.
The parable of the ten virgins who took out their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom appears in Matthew chapter 25. They were all virgins and had the same lamps but there was a world of difference in their results. The five people who prepared the oil went into the wedding feast. The five people who did not prepare the oil went to buy some after the bridegroom arrived and the doors were shut. They pleaded and asked for the door to be opened but they were told, "Truly I say to you, I do not know you" (Matt 25:1-13). Following that is the parable of the faithful servant and the evil servant (Matt 25:21-30). The first Chinese character for the word faithful is choong (忠), which is a combination of letters that mean center (中) and heart (心). It means our hearts must be centered. The second letter is sung (誠) which is a combination of word (言) and fulfill (成). This is a life lived according to the Word. We must be faithful in all things. We must concentrate when we are praying, singing, reading the Bible, and living our lives of faith within the church. We must be faithful.
Dear Saints, we must all receive salvation. The thought of eternal death should shake us with fright (Matt 25:46, Ecc 12:14, Luke 12:47-48, Rom 2:16, 2 Cor 5:10). There is no death in eternal life (Rev 21:4). There is no darkness, no lies and no fraud. Jesus the Lamb becomes the lamp for the nations. You do not need the sun, the moon or the stars. The glory of Jesus is seven times that of the sun today. It's difficult to look at the sun during a midsummer’s day. But the light of His glory is seven times brighter than this light (Isa 30:26). X-rays take a picture of even the bones inside our bodies but this light that is seven times brighter than the sun can dissect a single strand of our hair into thousands and ten thousands. If we think about that, how can we sin? We cannot lie and make excuses. I proclaim the Word no matter how sick I am because I think about this. I say, "I must endure," when I feel surges of anger because others plot lies. The righteous men of the Word will receive the glorious light that is seven times brighter than the sun in the kingdom of the Father (Matt 13:43). Our enemy, death, will be abolished (1 Cor 15:26). The wages of sin is death. It will be thrown into the lake of fire. Then why do you becomes slaves of death? We are sons and daughters of God (Matt 13:41-44).
Dear saints, God is not God if He does not judge like this (Rev 15:4-5, Rev 19:2). God's judgment is a legal proclamation. God is the legislator and He does not break the laws He has made. Judgment is God's sentence. He adjudicates according to what is recorded in the books (Matt 25:34-36, Rev 20:12-15). The effect of His sentence is not temporary but eternal. The judgment is one that divides between eternal life and eternal inheritance with eternal death and Sheol (Rev 20:14, 6:8, Ezek 14:21). It is a righteous judgment that cuts no slack. God does not say, "Let us forgive this one mistake because he has believed well for many years." Even if we make a single mistake after hundreds of good deeds, He addresses that. He is a just God (Rom 2:6,12, Gen 18:25, Job 8:3). The judges of this world make biased judgments if they are colleagues or have the same hometown but God's judgment is fair. He judges only according to what is written in the books (Rev 20:12). When the seventy disciples returned with joy saying they healed diseases and that demons were subject to them in His name, Jesus told them, "Do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are recorded in heaven" (Luke 10:17-20, Isa 14:9-10, Exod 32:32, Ps 69:28, Ezek 13:9, Dan 12:1).
Apostle Paul received the revelation that there were people who were not yet dead recorded in the book of life while praying for the saints of the church in Philippi and let them know immediately (Phil 4:3). They were people who would give up their lives for the church and for the servants of God. The names that will not be erased but shine brightly in the book of life will be those who overcome themselves, overcome the world, overcome sin, overcome the lusts of the flesh and the lust of the eyes, overcome the boastful pride of life, and those who do not fall for sweet temptations but gain victory (Rev 3:5).
God gave Jesus Christ the Son all power and authority of judgment ( John 5:22,27, John 9:39, Acts 10:42, John 3:17, John 17:2). God decided the day of judgment through Jesus (Rev 14:14-19, 17:14, 19:19-21). He has put Jesus in the center of judgment (Acts 17:31, Dan 7:10, Matt 25:31-32, Rev 5:6-7, 14:14-20). Jesus comes to judge between the living and the dead with the authority of judgment (2 Tim 4:1). The world throws out the dead. Who would care for people that have died hundreds of years ago? But God says, "Even the dead belong to Me" (2 Tim 4:1). He has allowed Jesus to judge everyone who has set foot on this earth (Rev 20:12). We are all people who will not remain on this earth for long. We must think well. Those who live without believing in Jesus with all their hearts are included in "the dead." What is the use of being alive if one does not believe in Jesus? That person has already received judgment ( John 3:18). Those who do not participate in the first resurrection are all dead ( John 5:29).
People of all sorts of statuses will stand in front of the throne of judgment (1 Thes 4:14, Rev 11:18, 13:16, 19:5,18). Those that have died in the sea, on land and in the air will stand in front of Christ's podium of judgment (Rom 14:10, 2 Cor 5:10). Everything will be revealed (Matt 16:27, Rom 2:6, 14:12, 2 Cor 5:10, Heb 9:27, 1 Pet 1:17, Rev 2:23, 20:12, 22:12, Acts 10:41, 1 Cor 3:8). Shameful events that not even our parents or children know about will be revealed. The law of the Old Testament sentenced the sin of adultery only when the people actually had relations, but Jesus' law of freedom sentences adultery when a person has even the heart of lust. If the Old Testament is a candle, the New Testament is an electric light. In the book of Job, it is recorded that the life that is aborted after adultery reports to God. It is murder. Committing evil sins by coaxing precious daughters of families is the same as murder and robbery. It is the end of the year. We must all be careful.
Jesus has the authority of judgment. Therefore, those who do not love Jesus and do not live for Him are those who will be destroyed. This is written in the Bible (1 Cor 16:22). People who do not give thanks to God with all their hearts, do not praise Him sincerely and do not sacrifice and work are all fake. They cannot avoid judgment. Those people even bring harm to their children. People who sincerely pray for their children even if they are poor and under ill circumstances will be blessed and their children will live well.
In Revelations 20, it is recorded that the books are opened. They are not closed. Everything you have done since birth to your death is laid open. In this world, you must read books but God does not have to read books and everything is already revealed. It is truly frightening. However, those who are recorded in the book of life will enter the new heavens, the new earth and New Jerusalem. This is the assembly of the firstborns enrolled in heaven. How great is this? (Rev 3:5, 13:8, 17:8, Heb 12:23).
There is a theory regarding the future of this world that unites all fields. It is that the world is coming to an end. The end of this world is coming within the redemptive providence of God, whether you believe it or not. Astronomers say the world is coming to an end because of the changes in the planetary system; demographers, because of the explosion in population; environmental experts, because of pollution; war experts, because of nuclear weapons strong enough to blow up earth 240 times; and natural resources scholars; because of the exhaustion of resources. This is not a coincidence. The last days are coming just like the Word of God. What kind of people must we be during this time? We must live godly like Noah who looked to that day with earnestness and did everything for the will and glory of God (Rom 14:7+, 1 Cor 10:31+). We must preserve our spirit, soul and body to be complete and without blame (1 Thes 5:23). We must speak as if we are speaking in front of God. We must speak in the name of the Lord and help the poor in the name of the Lord. The last manna, the treasure hidden in heaven, is given to people like this. I pray that the saints of Pyungkang who have realized this great truth of the Word and final judgment will arm themselves with the Word constantly, give constant praise and thanks and live lives that think about the grace of salvation of the blood shed on the cross of Jesus. Bow down in front of God and repent; with a heart of sorrow and remorse ask for forgiveness for all the sins we have knowingly and unknowingly committed before this year comes to an end. Everything becomes clean when we repent. Pray that our thoughts will be purified through the Word. As a result, may we live unprecedented spiritual lives that bring joy to God, a life that God remembers and is without blemish and is full of fruit for this coming new year. May we live without the slightest shame, whether we look towards heaven or earth, and may we be clean and dignified in front of all creation and mankind. We must not sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray and preserve our spirits, souls and bodies through prayer. I pray in the name of the Lord that we will all live lives that walk with God and become transfigured in body and spirit without seeing death, and go up to heaven like Adam's seventh descendant Enoch and like Elijah.
Sermon by Rev. Abraham Park on December 17, 2008, during Wednesday Service