For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad. (2 Corinthians 5:10)
Before we can appreciate how some of our work might physically last into eternity, we need to first grasp what God’s Word says about our pending judgment.
Because today’s passage and others make it clear that it’s not just our souls that God will judge. He will also weigh every person’s actions, thoughts, and words—including those of believers! And since we spend such a huge portion of our lives working, we can assume that much of our accounting to the Lord will focus on our vocations.
To be clear, the judgment today’s passage is referring to has zero bearing on our admission into the Kingdom of Heaven (see Romans 8:38-39). But it does influence our eternal rewards—a fact Jesus made clear to his disciples when he said that “the Son of Man…will reward each person according to what they have done” (Matthew 16:27).
What are those rewards? Perhaps most famously, they are “treasures in heaven” (see Matthew 6:19) and various “crowns” (see 1 Corinthians 9:25-27). But in this devotional series, I want to turn your attention to another, less explored reward: The reward of God carrying the physical work of your hands into eternity.
We’ll explore the biblical evidence for this next week. But today, I want to encourage you to do one practical thing in response to today’s passage: Judge your work before God does.
The Apostle Paul says that “the spiritual person judges all things” (1 Corinthians 2:15, ESV). Knowing that God will one day judge our work, we’d be wise to examine our work today in light of that coming judgment. One way to do that is to imagine the questions God will ask you about your work and let your answers lead you to repentance and perseverance. Questions such as:
Regardless of our answers to questions like these, if we are leaning on Christ alone for our salvation, we will enter the Kingdom of Heaven (see Romans 10:9). But may we not be those who enter the Kingdom empty-handed. Let us be those who run through the gates and receive great rewards that we can lay back down at the feet of our King!