BIBLE STUDY | LESSON 12: God’s Court
In our last lesson we learned that Jesus is working (ministering) for us in the heavenly sanctuary. We might call this sanctuary Jesus' and His Father's office or court.
The ministering angels are their staff. There are many types of work carried on in the sanctuary, but one of the most important is that of judgment. Sometimes we think of judgment in negative terms, but the purpose of this judgment is to declare us "not guilty"–if possible! In this lesson we shall study the work of the judgment as carried on in the heavenly sanctuary.
- What court summons do we all have pending?
2 Cor. 5:10 [The Further-study verse is Rom. 14:10.]
- There are three parts to a court case: (1) Investigation, (2) Sentencing, and (3) Execution of the sentence. When will the investigative part of the judgment be done–before or after Jesus comes?
Rev. 22:12 [Ans: Jesus comes WITH the rewards to pronounce sentence, therefore the investigative part of the judgment must already have been done. Matt. 16:27]
- Must we appear in person, or is there a record of our lives that will be reviewed?
Rev. 20:12 [Mal. 3:16]
- With whom does this investigation of people's life record begin?
1 Peter 4:17 [Ans: With the professed followers of God. Daniel 7:22 states: “The Ancient of Days came, and a judgment was made in favor of the saints of the Most High” (NKJV). The Beast had judged against the saints, but God judges for them. Actually, the words “in favor” are italicized in the NKJV, meaning they were supplied by the translators. The passage literally reads, “A judgment was made of the saints.” Dan. 7:21, 22; Matt. 22:11-14]
- Though no longer permitted in the sanctuary courtroom, who is the prosecuting attorney who accuses God's people?
Rev. 12:9, 10 [Job 1:8-11]
- Who is the defense attorney who serves as our advocate?
1 John 2:1 [Rom. 8:33, 34]
- What will happen to the record of the sins of God's people who were converted and who repented of their sins?
Acts 3:19 [1 John 1:9]
- There are various books of record in heaven. What is the name of the register that records the names of those who have accepted Jesus as their Savior and Advocate?
Rev. 21:27 [Phil. 4:3; Rev. 13:8; 20:12; 22:19]
- What will happen to those who were once "saved" and registered in this book of life, but who continue to cherish sin?
Ex.32:31-33 [Rev. 3:5; Eze. 18:21-24; 33:11-16]
- Will all who profess that Jesus is their Savior, and who claim to be saved, ultimately be saved?
Matt. 7:21-23 [2 Thess. 2:9-12]
- Will we be judged by our religious profession or by some other means?
Eccl. 12:13, 14 [James 2:12]
- Although we are saved by grace through faith alone and not by works, for it is by faith that our sins are forgiven and our lives are changed, by what will we be judged?
Matt. 16:27 [Rev. 22:12]
- How do our works reveal our faith?
Matt. 7:16-20 [James 2:17]
- When God showed Daniel the future of the earth (Lesson 7), He depicted the rise of Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome by four symbolic beasts; and then He used ten horns to depict the splintering of the Roman Empire into European fragments. What did Daniel see happening in the heavenly sanctuary, where God's throne is, sometime after the division of Rome into the European nations?
Dan. 7:9, 10 [Rev. 14:6, 7]
- Jesus offers to be our advocate in this court of justice, but He does not plead everyone's case. Jesus said He had never "known" (never represented or been the advocate of) those who called Him "Lord" in Matthew 7:21-23. How can we make sure that He will be our advocate and thus win our case, in the judgment?
1 John 2:16 [John 15:10; Prov. 28:9]
The judgment in the heavenly sanctuary has eternal consequences for every one of us. Do you desire to have Jesus as your advocate in this judgment? Will you continue to learn from Him and to walk in the light that He is revealing to you so that you may have the assurance of eternal life in Him?