“In addition, the Father judges no one. Instead, He has given the Son absolute authority to judge, so that everyone will honor the Son, just as they honor the Father. Anyone who does not honor the Son is certainly not honoring the Father who sent Him.” – John 5:22-23 (NLT)
“The Father has life in Himself, and He has granted that same life-giving power to His Son. And He has given Him authority to judge everyone because He is the Son of Man.” – John 5:26-27
This part of John begins with a miracle of healing. As someone who has himself experienced the power of God’s healing touch, I really want to talk about that. The awe and reverence that is planted within the hearts of those who experience and witness this. And one of these days, I will talk in depth about the healing power of God. However, the Holy Spirit impressed upon my heart the need to emphasize a characteristic of Christ that we in our society today tend to turn a blind eye to.
Christ is Judge
We always hear about Christ being love. How He doesn’t condemn the woman caught in adultery. How He showed love and mercy to the thief on the cross next to Him during the crucifixion. And these are all great and important aspects of Christ for us to know and remember. But we cannot neglect to remember the side of Christ that is Judge. He alone has the power of eternal life. This means that He alone has the power to give it, AND the power to deny it in a person’s life. He is sovereign. He reigns supreme over all. He holds the power of both life and death, and He bestows each according to what each person deserves.
Now I know what some are already thinking here. “None of us deserve life. We all deserve death, because we are all sinners.” Though this carries truth in it, it also fails to emphasize the fact that, when a person comes to Christ, their nature is changed. We go from being identified by our sinful nature (i.e. a sinner), to being called children of God. Yes, we will still wrestle with our flesh at times, but God’s grace makes allowances for us to recognize the reality of this wrestle and to work out our salvation (Philippians 2:12) as we live a life guided and directed by the Holy Spirit. We are no longer sinners, but we are the children of the Most High.
True conversion to being a follower of Christ is reflected by the evident change of what nature is followed by the person involved. If there is no change, the claimed conversion is counterfeit and that person still remains in death.
John records the continued words of Jesus in verses 28-30 in this chapter: “Don’t be so surprised! Indeed, the time is coming when all the dead in their graves will hear the voice of God’s Son, and they will rise again. Those who have done good will rise to experience eternal life, and those who have continued in evil will rise to experience judgement. I can do nothing on My own. I judge as God tells Me. Therefore, My judgement is just, because I carry out the will of the One who sent Me, not My own will.”
Somewhere along the way, we as human beings decided to completely ignore these words spoken by the Man Jesus Himself. We have rejected the Truth, which is Jesus. And rejection of Truth is in itself an act of evil. And this act of evil brings judgement from Christ.
I have been assigned in my life by the Lord to speak the hard truths, which are only hard for those who do not want to accept them. I have witnessed, and continue to witness, the havoc that is being wreaked on those who claim to be a part of the Body due to this lack of fullness of Truth. As a watchman on the wall, I refuse to let things go unspoken and unsaid. As I have said numerous times already, we MUST get back to the fullness of the Truth. We MUST get back to a right mindset of the person of Christ. Yes He is love and mercy and kindness, but He is also judge. John, the writer of this Gospel account, was given the opportunity to bear witness to both sides of Christ. Christ as Love and Christ as Judge. Christ as Judge is actually Christ as Love at the same time. This reality is conveyed in a deeper sense in the book of Revelation. And this reality, I believe, plays a huge part in why so many shy away from the book of Revelation. The book is literally the Revelation of Jesus Christ, and so many do not want to see that side of Him.
So this is where we are. This is the crossroads where we find ourselves. We have a very short amount of time to decide which way we want to go before things begin to unfold. Either we choose for ourselves now while we have the chance, or we will be swept away by the events about to unfold. Either we choose the path that leads into the FULLNESS of who Jesus Christ is (ALL aspects and characteristics of Him), OR we choose the path that leads further away from Him and we get off completely. There is no middle ground with Him. There is no in-between. No room for lukewarm people.
Either you are all-in, or you are all-out