Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Vindication: A Believer's Biblical View of The Judgment Seat of Christ - Part 2

(It is imperative that you read "Intro" and "Part 1" first)

So Is There Judgment Or Not?

What I want to be clear to explain well is that I’m not saying in any way that there will not be judgment. I am however attempting to make sure that we understand what judgment is and is not. At salvation, I was declared innocent – period. Does an innocent man have anything to fear regarding his judgment? I personally believe that this is why the distorted view of salvation that many people cling to is so devastating to understanding how God views us. If I can’t grasp that I’ve been vindicated and deemed free and innocent in Christ, then I will never walk as a victorious overcomer - ever.

So let’s take a second and look at this word “vindicate”. It is defined as to afford justification for, deliver, set free, defend, prove worth of, liberate. In order to understand exactly what I’m saying here, some antonyms of vindication are accused, blamed, convicted, punished and sentenced. When anyone who is on trial for anything, only two results can take place - they will either be convicted or vindicated. They will either be found guilty or innocent. There is no other verdict!

James 2:10 states, “For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of all.” So, we see that we are guilty, in need of someone to come and deem us as innocent. The psalmist understood Who could resolve his need to be vindicated when he wrote, “Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” in chapter 51, verse 7. 2 Peter 3:14 states, “Therefore, beloved, since you look for [new heavens and a new earth], be diligent to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless.” How did they know that they could be made “whiter than snow” and found “spotless and blameless”? The answer is found in Luke 1:7, “…if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.” The blood washes, the blood frees, the blood vindicates!

“[Christ Jesus] who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds.” Titus 2:14 We are now not just freed and vindicated, we are a possession of Christ Jesus! So many misunderstand this to say that we must begrudgingly serve the LORD now since we “owe it to Him”. If this is the way that you see living for the LORD, then I would dare to say that you’ve not understood what He has done for you! If I stood before a judge knowing that I was a completely guilty orphan, rightfully charged and he chose to pronounce me as free and then adopt me as His own son, I would be indebted beyond words! Sadly, few people will ever see salvation as the incredible supernatural act that it is. It’s no wonder that we see such disinterest and lack of zeal within the Body! One must look to the Word and understand all that The Christ has done for us in order to set us in place as sons and daughters of the Most High. We have settled for too little for too long!

Part 3 will address God, The Righteous, Impartial Judge.


Mark S. said...

What a sweet transition when we move from "doing" for God to just "being". It is not a lazy, works-less life that some may assume, but it is allowing everything that I do to flow out of my love for Him. I think you've hit something here with this. When I understand all that He has done, I long to please Him!!!!

You mentioned 2 Peter 3 and it says, "since you look for a new heaven and a new earth" - I think that is the problem. We all get so wrapped up in this earth that we forget to look to the one to come.

That's my thoughts anyway.

Joel Spencer said...

Mark S.: If only the Body would understand and see! It is not about programs, outreaches, visitations, classes... it is about intimacy with our LORD!

Like you said,this doesn't give us license to "do nothing", but in fact fuels us to get to Kingdom business because all earthly efforts pale in comparison.

When we grasp that we have been deemed free, we will be overwhelmed with living as Kingdom Children of God.

Harriet said...

Luke 1:7, “…if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.” The blood washes, the blood frees, the blood vindicates!

I also think that people don't get THIS aspect..because we HAVE to "walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light".. it is a daily thing..not just a one time "I got saved" thinking..because of Jesus I CAN walk in the Light WITH Him and be set free from sin and death and be washed clean"..I need that daily bath..and can only have that as I WALK with Him.
AND because of that Love beyond understanding, that He poured out for me...I WANT to walk with Him! I LOVE to walk with Him! I am FREE to walk with Him!! Praise God!
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Great blog Joel!!

NINA said...

I was raised as a preacher's kid. I was from the "hell" generation where Satan was preached in the church more than the word of God and every bad action was the influence of a "demon". Worshiping God was a chore and the only thing I dreaded more than going to church was going to hell! Eventually after I grew up I turned away from the church and I raised as much hell as I possibly could so that I would not have to worry about taking the trip because hell was where I was. It wasn't until I decided for myself to chose Christ and develop a true relationship with Him that serving God was no longer a chore but a pleasure. It became my lifestyle. Being raised in a family who are set in their own ways and many have their traditional ideas of what "being saved" means makes me still somewhat of an outsider even after I accepted salvation. I started out doing the jump on the bandwagon traditional thing, but that was not enough. I was still empty and my spirit was not being fulfilled, only temporarily gratified.I still worried about everything concerning life as well as death. I went through a period where I would have constant panic attacks and stayed depressed all of the time unless I was in church and sometimes even there too. But once you come to the reality of salvation and into true relationship with God, you no longer concern yourself with "hell" or worries of judgment nor do you allow yourself to be overwhelmed with the cares of this life. You know what you know and there is no doubt. Fear is like bondage and there is freedom through Christ Jesus. Had I experienced the freedom that I experience now when I was a child, I would have probably excepted salvation long before I did.

Yvonne said...

Beautiful blog ~ We serve him out of love! ~ I look at our relationship with God as a marriage. I serve him because I love him and I want to have relationhip with him because of my love for him. If I do something that displeases my husband that does not mean I am no longer married to him, my relationship just suffers. Likewise with our Lord! If we do something that displeases him the blood still covers us but our relationship may suffer. Repentence brings us back to that place of intimacy. None of us will ever reach perfection, there is only one that is good and that is Jesus Christ. The blood is ENOUGH, period! His love is enough! Therefore we can come BOLDLY before the throne of grace! We have access by the blood of the lamb! ~

Joel Spencer said...

Harriet: I agree. It is often overlooked, our role in the entire process. It is not about earning anything, it is about responding to, as you say, the great love that we have been shown. For those truly in love with the LORD, walking enamored with the Light, fruit will absolutely follow.

Nina: Christianity is a lifetyle, not a one-time event. When I am infatuated with who I am in Christ, it is hard to be distracted by any cares of this world. Now, with that said, when I start becoming distracted and meddling in things thatare not Kingdom productive, I know what to do - return to my Father.

Yvonne: I too often use marriage metaphorically. God surely knew what He was ding when He established the beautiful Husband/Bride "model". Your imagery paints a great picture of His unconditional love!