“He is the One appointed by God to be the Judge of the living and the dead” (Acts 10:42).
Pay attention to that word “appointed.”
God could have appointed an angel but then someone could object that an angel doesn’t understand what it means to be human. But Jesus lived for 33 years on this earth and knows what it means to be one of us. He is touched with the feeling of our infirmities. Sometimes we use the phrase “been there, done that” to convey that our experience in a given area is complete. With regard to living on this earth, Jesus could truly say “been there, done that.”
We fear human judgment because no one else can fully understand our predicament or why we do what we do. “You just don’t understand,” we say. Or “Try walking a mile in my shoes.” We believe that no one is fully qualified to stand in judgment on our behavior. And it’s true that no mere mortal can truly judge our motives—much less every word we say or every deed we perform.
When we try to judge each other we make many mistakes because man looks on the outside but God looks on the heart (1 Samuel 16:7). What we need is someone who truly knows what we have been through who can also see into our hearts. Such a man would be truly qualified to be our judge. We have such a man. His name is Jesus. Because he was a man, he knows what we are going through. Because he is God, he can see into every human heart with infallible vision.
How do we know there will be a final judgment and how do we know that Jesus will be the judge? Look to the empty tomb. This answers the question regarding the qualification of Jesus to judge the entire world. He is qualified by virtue of his Incarnation, and his Incarnation is conclusively demonstrated by his Resurrection. He is the Man from heaven who came back from the dead. No one else could ever make that claim. He alone is worthy to stand in judgment over the human race.
He is not just any man, he is the man God appointed―meaning he is divinely ordained to this task. Today he is appointed as your Savior, tomorrow he will be appointed as your Judge. If you do not want him as your Savior, then you will face him as your judge. Hebrews 10:31 reminds us that “it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” What will you do then?
The time for action is now. No one can escape the final judgment. We will all stand before Jesus Christ. What happens to you then depends on what you do now. Trust in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and when that day comes you will have nothing to fear.
Lord Jesus, I embrace you as my Savior so that I may not tremble when I stand before you as my Judge. Amen.
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