before him

Matthew 25:32

25:32 before him. The description of this judgment does not correlate at all with that of the judgment seat of Christ, where only believers are present to be judged for rewards (I Corinthians 3:12-15); neither can it be the great white throne judgment, where only the lost are judged and cast into the lake of fire (Revelation 20:11-15). At this judgment appear both “sheep” and “goats,” and the criterion by which they are examined is their treatment of a group called “my brethren” (Matthew 25:40). No mention at all is made of a resurrection, the implication being that only those living at this time are being judged. The context has been the second coming (this is the terminating section of Christ’s Olivet discourse) and the great tribulation that precedes its final phase. Although multitudes will have been slain during this period—believers by the Antichrist and unbelievers by the great plagues and by Christ at Armageddon—some will survive, and these must be the ones appearing before the Lord for judgment.

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