The phrase, Righteous Judgment of God, appears only twice in the New American Standard version of the Bible.
But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God. (Romans 2:5)
This is a plain indication of God’s righteous judgment so that you will be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which indeed you are suffering. (2 Thessalonians 1:5)
In spite of the infrequent appearances of the phrase, it is of critical importance to Bible understanding. The righteous judgment of God is an important component of New Covenant. Remember that a system of rewards and punishments, called blessings and curses, are and integral part of the Abrahamic covenant which Jesus brought to fulfillment by His death and resurrection. There are, therefore, blessings and curses in the New Covenant. Of course, Jesus is the mediator of the New Covenant. A mediator is someone who judges a case that has been brought beofre a court. In the case of a divorce dispute, for example, a mediator would settle disagreements over property distribution. The disputes to be judged in the case of the New Covenant concern whether someone’s actions are keeping or breaking the laws of the covenant. Without a mediator and a system for dispersing penalties and rewards, a blood covenant becomes an empty agreement between two parties. If the stronger can lord it over the weaker, or one party can choose to back out of the covenant without penalty. There must be penalties for breaking the covenant and rewards for keeping it if it is to be of any value. Additionally, there must be a mediator in place who will judge impartially between the two. The ancient Israelites believed God was the mediator of their blood covenants. This is revealed for us in the covenant between Jonathan and David.
1 Now it came about when he [David — he had just killed Goliath] had finished speaking to Saul, that the soul of Jonathan [king Saul’s son] was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as himself.
[Remember that it is a love greater than self that causes a person to want to make covenant with another.]
3 Then Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself. (1 Samuel 18:1, 3)
[The next verse shows that their covenant was not just an agreement between them, it was a covenant of the Lord.]
“Therefore deal kindly with your servant, for you have brought your servant into a covenant of the LORD with you.” (1 Samuel 20:8a)
[The following verses tell us that the Lord is the mediator of their covenant.]
12 Then Jonathan said to David, “The LORD, the God of Israel, be witness! When I have sounded out my father about this time tomorrow, or the third day, behold, if there is good feeling toward David, shall I not then send to you and make it known to you?
13 “If it please my father to do you harm, may the LORD do so to Jonathan and more also, if I do not make it known to you and send you away, that you may go in safety. And may the LORD be with you as He has been with my father. (1 Samuel 20:12-13)
A mediator is an arbitrator who intervenes between people to bring about reconciliation. In 1 Samuel 20:13, Jonathan is clearly indicating that God is the One who will reconcile between he and David if he does not honor their covenant.
Jesus Christ fulfilled the Old Covenant with the shedding of His blood, and it became the New Covenant. It is an eternal covenant.
Now the God of peace, who brought up from the dead the great Shepherd of the sheep [Jesus Christ] through the blood of the eternal covenant, even Jesus our Lord. (Hebrews 13:20)
Jesus is the mediator of the eternal covenant.
For this reason He [Jesus] is the mediator of a new covenant, so that, since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first covenant, those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance. (Hebrews 9:15)
As the mediator of the New Covenant, Jesus makes determinations as to who is keeping and who is breaking the commandments of the covenant.
I said to myself, “God will judge both the righteous man and the wicked man,” for a time for every matter and for every deed is there. (Ecclesiastes 3:17)
And His judgments are righteous. This is why He is called the righteous Judge.
In the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing. (2 Timothy 4:8)
The Righteous Judgment of God is the name of the system of justice through which rewards are administered. The rewards fall into two categories: blessings for keeping the covenant, and curses for breaking it.
You may never have studied God’s righteous judgment, and it is also likely that you have heard few, if any, sermons on this subject. One reason for this is that it is very well hidden in Scripture. It is hidden, but it is referenced numerous times throughout the Bible. A second reason this topic is not given much attention today is timing. The judgment of God is usually associated with the time of the end and the second coming of Christ.
My goal with this blog is to explain Scripture as it has been revealed to me in the hope you will see that you can understand the Bible on your own. I am not interested in trying to disprove doctrinal positions. However, it often happens that the true nature of a doctrine becomes known when the light of truth is focused on it. This may be the case with the study of the righteous judgment of God.
Jesus made an interesting observation in one of His encounters with some religious leaders.
18 Some Sadducees (who say that there is no resurrection ) came to Jesus, and began questioning Him, saying,
19 “Teacher, Moses wrote for us that IF A MAN’S BROTHER DIES and leaves behind a wife AND LEAVES NO CHILD, HIS BROTHER SHOULD MARRY THE WIFE AND RAISE UP CHILDREN TO HIS BROTHER.
20 “There were seven brothers; and the first took a wife, and died leaving no children.
21 “The second one married her, and died leaving behind no children; and the third likewise;
22 and so all seven left no children. Last of all the woman died also.
23 “In the resurrection, when they rise again, which one’s wife will she be? For all seven had married her.”
24 Jesus said to them, “Is this not the reason you are mistaken, that you do not understand the Scriptures or the power of God?
25 “For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven.
26 “But regarding the fact that the dead rise again, have you not read in the book of Moses, in the passage about the burning bush, how God spoke to him, saying, ‘I AM THE GOD OF ABRAHAM, AND THE GOD OF ISAAC, and the God of Jacob ‘?
27 “He is not the God of the dead, but of the living; you are greatly mistaken.”
The Sadducees thought their doctrinal position was correct. However, Jesus tells them that even their hypothetical situation has no merit because it is not based on a correct understanding of the Scriptures. Further, Jesus concludes that their doctrinal position on the resurrection is erroneous. And it is all because they do not understand the Scriptures.
Is there a misunderstanding today concerning the judgment of God? Listen to God’s plan for administering the blessings and curses of the covenant.
6 “For you are a holy people to the LORD your God; the LORD your God has chosen you to be a people for His own possession [to be His covenant people] out of all the peoples who are on the face of the earth.
7 “The LORD did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any of the peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples,
8 but because the LORD loved you and kept the oath which He swore to your forefathers [His covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob], the LORD brought you out by a mighty hand and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.
9 “Know therefore that the LORD your God, He is God, the faithful God, who keeps His covenant and His lovingkindness to a thousandth generation with those who love Him and keep His commandments [those who have repented, died the covenant-making death and walk the walk of sanctification];
10 but repays those who hate Him [those who cannot or will not respond in repentance to the gospel] to their faces, to destroy them [He repays them with curses, not blessings]; HE WILL NOT DELAY with him who hates Him, He will repay him to his face.
[God does not delay. He repays those who break the covenant immediately and directly.]
11 “Therefore, you shall keep the commandment and the statutes and the judgments which I am commanding you today, to do them. [This is the requirement of the Law.]
[God repays those who love Him and keep His commandments in the same way. There is one big difference, the ones who love Him, i.e., who are in covenant with Him and are walking in sanctification, receive blessings not curses.]
12 “Then it shall come about, because you listen to these judgments and keep and do them, that the LORD your God will keep with you His covenant and His lovingkindness which He swore to your forefathers.
[Here are the blessings.]
13 “He will love you and bless you and multiply you; He will also bless the fruit of your womb and the fruit of your ground, your grain and your new wine and your oil, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock, in the land which He swore to your forefathers to give you.
14 “You shall be blessed above all peoples; there will be no male or female barren among you or among your cattle.
15 “The LORD will remove from you ALL sickness; and He will not put on you any of the harmful diseases of Egypt which you have known, but He will lay them on all who hate you.” (Deuteronomy 7:6-15)
If He waited thousands of years to bless you in all the ways mentioned above, how would you know you are being blessed? You expect the blessings to be immediate, and they are. However, the curses are as well. Remember that this is an eternal covenant. What was true of it then is still true today and forever.
The righteous judgment of God is the system by which the judgments are administered, and Jesus is the righteous Judge. All authority has been given to Him. He sits on the throne at the right hand of God judging the world administering justice through the system called the righteous judgment of God.
I hope you will read the upcoming articles on the righteous judgment of God. And remember, as you read this important revelation that you can understand the Bible on your own.