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"We Shall Give An Account"
"For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?" I Peter 4:17
Since God now dwells in the hearts of men and not temples, His judgment will begin where He dwells. However, a frightening delusion overshadows a vast majority of the Church who believe thay are of the House of God, yet obey not the Gospel.
A false premise taught in many churches today says that the worst thing that can happen to a professing christian at the Judgment bar of God is simply the loss of rewards. This teaching is perpetrated upon the church because of the misunderstanding of God's word; the following passage is one such scripture.
"According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire." I Corinthians 3:10-15
The Christian will either receive a reward or suffer loss, however you must note that this scripture is based upon the assumption that the builder has built upon the correct foundation. (if any man build upon this foundation, Christ!) But to say that this is the only outcome would contradict the doctrine of Sowing and Reaping and an understanding of the scripture as a whole.
"Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting." Galatians 6:7-8
God says emphatically, Be not deceived! You will not disregard my commandments and not pay the price. (We're not talking about sin repented of.) Sowing speaks of a continued lifestyle that brings forth the fruit thereof. Either to corrution or life everlasting.
So what exactly is it that we going to have to confess before God? What are we going to have to give an account of? Here are five areas the scriptures tell us that we will have to give an account of on that day, for as the scripture says;
"...we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ. For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God. So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God." Romans 14:10-12
1. We will give Account of Every Word we Speak.
"But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment." Matthew 12:36
Christians will give an account for every idle (useless) word spoken. We fail to appreciate how powerful our words are and how wicked our tongue is, (James 3:5-6). Christians should learn how to "hold their tongue."
To many times we speak without thinking; we complain without considering; we discuss without knowing. We are going to give an account for every idle word we speak. We should think about what we say and consider the effects of what we say before we speak.
Not one word will go unaccounted for.
"Therefore whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which ye have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed upon the housetops." Luke 12:3
2. We will give an Account of our lives Lived.
"Some men's sins are open beforehand, going before to judgment; and some men they follow after. Likewise also the good works of some are manifest beforehand; and they that are otherwise cannot be hid." I Timothy 5:24-25
God says a man's sins go "before to judgment" and some men's sins follow after. The verse also says that the good works of some are manifest beforehand for others to see, but when God reveals everything at the judgment, nothing will be hid because the books will reveal all.
"And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened:" Revelation 20:12
3. We will give an Account of our Stewardship.
"And he said also unto his disciples, There was a certain rich man, which had a steward; and the same was accused unto him that he had wasted his goods. And he called him, and said unto him, How is it that I hear this of thee? give an account of thy stewardship; for thou mayest be no longer steward." Luke 16:1
Who are the stewards today? It can only be Christians. Paul tells us: Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful (I Corinthians 4:2). This is the only usage of the word required in all of the Church Age epistles. God gives us this requirement of our walk... faithfulness!
Faithfulness covers every aspect of the Christian's life; church attendance, giving, praying, witnessing, etc. Faithfulness covers every aspect of the Christian walk and we will give an account of our faithfulness.
What type of steward are you? Are you a good steward of the mystery. Are you a good steward of the word of God? Are you a good steward of men's souls? We fail to grasp the eternal consequences of our actions. We do not fear the day when we will stand in judgment of our faithfulness or lack thereof.
4. Those in positions of Authority will give an Account.
"Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you." Hebrews 13:17
There will be at the Judgment Seat preachers and teachers who were unfaithful in service and even hindered the true Gospel. Read the rebuke of Jesus to those in spiritual authority.
"Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered." Luke 11:52
Think about it! Every man, but especially those of spiritual authority, will be accountable for how he present the Gosepl; are we faithful Ambassadors of Christ?
"My brethren, be not many masters (teachers), knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation." James 3:1
5. We will give an Account of our Witnessing.
"When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand." Ezekiel 3:18
God will require us to give an account of our faithfulness in warning the lost of their sinful condition. Can you make the same boast as the Apostle Paul? His hands were pure from the blood of all men.
"Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men. For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God." Acts 20:26
Accountability of Our Lives
How does your life measure up to scripture (Christ). How will you stand at the Judgment Seat of Christ?
"Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves." II Corinthians 13:5
The real loss at the judgment seat of Christ deals with our being clothed in Christ.
"For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked... Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him." II Corinthians 5:2, 3, 9
"He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment;..." Revelation 3:5
But God is not mocked... whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. Can you imagine standing before the righteous God of the universe naked? Shamefully, many Christians today are blind and naked to the truth they profess and will have to give an account, not by what you think but by Christ Himself who is the law of God on Judgment day. Now is when we need to measue our life with God's word, later will be too late.
"...behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation." II Corinthians 6:2
"So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see." Revelation 3:16-18
Nakedness is a shame. Christians think they are doing well because they make it to church on Sunday morning. There is much more to faithfulness than simply going to church and "punch your time card." God is not mocked.
"Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God." Revelation 19:7-9
"Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame." Revelation 16:15
"And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming. If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him." I John 2:28, 29
Colossians gives some final clarification concerning the Church. Paul speaks of the presentation of the individual Christian in verse 22, but qualifies his remarks with the word "if" in verse 23.
"In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight: If ye continue in the faith..." Colossians 1:22
We are saved by the grace of God, through faith... but contrary to what many believe, abiding faith is the key to saving faith. These are they who will go in and the door will be shut. "Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not." (Matthew 25:11-12) Even though the foolish virgins will give an account of their unfaithfulness, it doesn't sound like they were allowed in!
"And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ. But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons." Colossians 3:23-25
"Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God (when we stand before Him) Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless." II Peter 3:11-12, 14