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What is the judgment of the nations?

Submitted: 4/29/2006
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Question: Is the judgment of nations judgment of land masses on the earth or people? If it is not a judgment of land masses, but people, would that not have already been accomplished by Jesus on an individual basis? If it is a judgment of land masses/areas would it have anything to do with inclusion as part of the new earth after the passing away of the old? Humans will be transformed, will some land masses be 'transformed' too? I would like to understand this better and trust and appreciate your help toward that.

Answer: In Acts 17:31 Paul declared to the Athenians that God has 'appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained.' God's judgment is against human behavior, not inanimate objects (such as land masses). We see this is Romans 2:5-6 where Paul warned those who are 'treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who 'will render to each one according to his deeds.' Not according to his professed faith, but according to his actual deeds. It is because of this coming judgment that God now 'commands all men everywhere to repent' (Acts 17:30).

There is also coming a time when God will transform the earth into a place of righteousness. 2 Peter 3:10-13 says, 'But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. 11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness,12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat?13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.'

Because of this coming transformation, the very next verse says, 'Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless....' Only those who survive the judgment of God because they have been made righteous through the blood of Jesus will enter into this new heaven and new earth.