For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God:
-1 Peter 4:17
Thoughts on Today’s Verse…
From this verse we see, the Lord’s return inis to perform the judgment work beginning with the house of God. Many brothers and sisters in the Lord might ask, will the Lord not directly rapture us into the kingdom of heaven when He returns in the last days? Why does He still need to do the judgment work? In fact, God’s judgment work in the last days is the work of purifying man and perfecting man. God once said, “Be you holy; for I am holy” (1 Peter 1:16). “Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city” (Revelation 22:14). It is obvious that only those who receive cleansing can enter the kingdom of heaven. When we accept the ’ redemption, we have been forgiven of our sins and saved by His grace; this is a fact. But, as we believe in the Lord and follow the Lord, we also often betray the Lord’s teachings, and give in to our fleshly desires to sin. We do things like lie, commit fraud, deceive, engage in intrigue, seek fame and fortune, we give in to vanity, lust for wealth, and follow evil worldly trends… In times of bitterness and trial, we often misunderstand and blame God, or even leave and betray God. When God’s work doesn’t accord with the notions of man, we carelessly judge and condemn God. At the same time we follow God, we worship and follow men. We live in a cycle of sinning and repenting, that’s hard to escape. We can’t free ourselves from the binds and control of our satanic nature, this is a fact. And although the Lord Jesus’ work of redemption is done, and our sins are forgiven, and we are no longer cursed for violating God’s laws, and can come before God to pray to Him and enjoy the entirety of God’s grace, that does not mean God’s work of saving mankind is over, because the sinful nature inside us still remains. We are still compelled by our satanic nature to oppose and betray God. And without knowing God, we will never fear God and distance ourselves from evil, even less can we reach a state of complete obedience to God, the compatibility with God and sanctity. We haven’t been truly gained by God. We all know, God is holy, and righteous. If people are unsanctified, they can’t see the Lord. God won’t allow the impure or corrupt into His kingdom. This is decided by God’s righteous disposition. So, in the last days, God has, according to His management plan to save mankind, carried out His work of judgment and chastisement, to remove the shackles and restraints of sin from the corrupt mankind and the root causes of sinning and help mankind completely escape the influence of Satan, be saved by God, and enter God’s kingdom. The judgment work that God of the last days does is precisely what corrupt mankind needs. It is also the key stage of work that needs to be performed by God to save mankind.
Just as God says, “You only know that Jesus shall descend during the last days, but how exactly will He descend? A sinner such as you, who has just been redeemed, and has not been changed, or been perfected by God, can you be after God’s heart? For you, you who are still of your old self, it is true that you were saved by Jesus, and that you are not counted as a sinner because of the salvation of God, but this does not prove that you are not sinful, and are not impure. How can you be saintly if you have not been changed? Within, you are beset by impurity, selfish and mean, yet you still wish to descend with Jesus—you should be so lucky! You have missed a step in your belief in God: You have merely been redeemed, but have not been changed. For you to be after God’s heart, God must personally do the work of changing and cleansing you; if you are only redeemed, you will be incapable of attaining sanctity. In this way you will be unqualified to share in the good blessings of God, for you have missed out a step in God’s work of managing man, which is the key step of changing and perfecting. And so you, a sinner who has just been redeemed, are incapable of directly inheriting God’s inheritance.”
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