Another purpose of this series hopefully is to understand the believers restriction on judgement.
What can a Christian judge? How is he to judge? What is prohibited in the Christian life to judge. So many questions and concerns.
Our third greek word related to judging is…
βῆμα – bēma – judgment seat, throne, to set (one’s) foot on
This word is found 12 times in 12 verses within the New Testament. A full listing of all verses may be found below for your self study. I will consider the verses that are not clear, that create questions in my mind, with the remaining verses left for the reader to ponder.
Judgment Seat of God
Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God;
This first verse brings two words for judgement together. The first term will be discussed in a later post, but is the most common term for judgement.
Vines defines this first term as
those who judge severely (unfairly), finding fault with this or that in others, Matthew 7:1; Luke 6:37; Romans 2:1; τινα, Romans 2:1, 3; Romans 14:3f, 10,
The context of this passage is of two groups (Jewish and Gentile) within the body of believers that have different views on food and religious holidays. Some eat everything and consider each day the same (thinking the Gentiles here) whereas some see certain foods as defiling and certain days as holier than others.
In the midst of this difference, love reigned – Ummm not so much! One group was despising his brother, thinking of them as nothing, or contemptible. The other group was judging the first group, condemning them for their lifestyle. Note that this difference in lifestyle was not a moral difference, but in the observation of non-moral issues.
Come with me to the day of judgement. I am standing beside a brother I despised, and a sister I may have judged, and I hear the Lord commend both of them. (See previous post for verse and teaching on this truth).
I don’t know about you, but I will realize my failings in loving the brethren completely at that time. How proud and boastful I will realize I have been. How proud and boastful I really am!
But we have not so learned Jesus, and we are to encourage one another and the more so as we see the day approaching.
The term we are dealing with in this verse is the judgement seat of God. The term describes a location of judgement, a seat or throne where upon the Judge will sit to make declarations of judgement upon the subject before Him. Notice it will not be a separate room where I can discuss my failings and foibles with a manager, such as we may experience in our workplace. This is a family gathering, where I am on display with all of my family.
Remember, that brother or sister you got a gripe with… put the gift for God down, and go to them. Seek reconciliation. Seek forgiveness, even if it is for perceived sins you have committed.
Thanks for joining me in this study. Hope to visit with you in our next post as we continue to look at the Greek term βῆμα.
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