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I have been told that when we die we will be judged for how we have lived our Christian lives. Will I be judged?
Thanks for this great question about forgiveness and the judgement in heaven.
This question can be clearly answered directly from the Bible.
Firstly it sounds like you have asked Christ to forgive you from your sin. Jesus came to earth to live a perfect life and die in our place for our sin. On the cross Jesus took God's righteous wrath for us. If we believe that Jesus died for us and rose again and confess our sin to him we will be saved and we will have a place in heaven when we die. Consider these verses:
If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, "Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame." For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:9-13)
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)
My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. (1 John 2:1-2)
On the cross Jesus said "It is finished," and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. (John 19:30). Jesus' work on the cross was final; it is complete. If your trust is in him, you are fully forgiven and the Holy Spirit is the seal of promise for heaven.
Regarding the judgement when Jesus returns we can read these verses:
"When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world'". (Matthew 25:31-34)
"Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.'" (Matthew 25:41)
And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. (Revelation 20:12-15)
There are two kinds of people: those who are made righteous by faith in Jesus and are going to heaven because their name is in the book of life, and those who are not made right by faith in Jesus who will not go to heaven and their name is not in the book of life.
So Christians are fully forgiven from all of their sin. Does that mean that they can do whatever they want? Yes! It does. We can do anything and we are still going to heaven. However, if the Holy Spirit is at work in us and we are truly God's children, we will not want to live for ourselves anymore but for God. Consider these verses:
What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptised into Christ Jesus were baptised into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. For one who has died has been set free from sin. Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus. Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness. For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace. What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! (Romans 6:1-15)
We will stand before God on the day of judgement. Paul wrote:
Why do you pass judgement on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgement seat of God; for it is written, "As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God." So then each of us will give an account of himself to God. (Romans 14:10-12)
For we must all appear before the judgement seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil. (2 Corinthians 5:10)
Jesus also taught that we will have treasure in heaven if we do certain things:
Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. (Matthew 6:19-20)
On the day of judgement we will receive a commendation from God based on what we have done:
Therefore do not pronounce judgement before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God. (1 Corinthians 4:5)
We will be in heaven, but our rewards will depend on what we have done for God. This Bible verse explains that our works will be good or bad:
Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw-- each one's work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. If anyone's work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire. Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? (1 Corinthians 3:12-16)
It is important to note though that everyone in heaven will be completely satisfied. There will be no more jealousy, covetousness or greed. And those who have rewards are seen to throw them before God as a worshipful act anyway:
The twenty-four elders fall down before him who is seated on the throne and worship him who lives forever and ever. They cast their crowns before the throne, saying, "Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honour and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created." (Revelation 4:10-11)
In summary, we will all be judged for what we have done. Those who are forgiven will go to heaven and receive different rewards for how we live upon the earth. But in heaven we will not be disappointed. The call is for the Christian is to live all out for the God who loves us and gave himself for us. Give your all for God today.
I hope this answer helps you to find peace with God through Jesus Christ. If you want to know more about what Jesus has done for you please watch the video on the main part of our site: Watch the video
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*All Scripture references are taken From The English Standard Version of the Holy Bible unless stated otherwise
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