Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Will Bema Judgment Bring Shame And Regret To Believers?

Will There Be Regrets In Heaven?

Question: Will there be regrets in heaven? What about the Bema Seat Judgment of Christ for all believers, will Christians who did not do much for the Lord on earth be regretful in heaven after this and feel ashamed? In short, will sorrow persist in heaven and in the worst case scenario throughout eternity?

Answer: Greetings in Jesus wonderful name!

The word 'regret' does mean 'a feeling of sadness about something sad or wrong or about a mistake that you have made, and a wish that it could have been different and better.'

Asking the question, 'Will there be regrets in heaven?', makes us to think in our Christian life, can a person really live on earth without regret first and the other question that comes up is, if the way we have lived on earth is able to make a eternal difference for eternity which cannot be changed once we leave the earth, after going to heaven and entering it by the works of Jesus, will be end up regretting for the rest of eternity, how we could have lived in a better way on earth?

To have such a hypothetical question is good, but the answer should be searched and given only based on what the Bible says, or else we will end up in worry about our future rather than in faith.

We know that the basis of our faith safely rest upon the fact, that in spite of our repeated failures, sins and weaknesses, we look forward to live the ideal perfect holy life because we have been given the privilege to become the children of God, and the promise that God will work together both the failures, weaknesses and sins together along with our successes, strengths and victories of faith for our own eternal good if we continue to love God in spite of the ups and downs of our spiritual life on day to day basis, for which we are purposefully called by God with a eternal purpose of God in His mind
(John 1:12; 1 Peter 1:16; Rom 8:28). And therefore now we have the new nature of God working within us competing against the old nature, to live a holy life which has been commanded by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (Gal 5:17). In other words, like a soldier being trained to fight with the whole armor against the enemy lines, where on a particular day we lose the battle, and on other days we win the battle (Eph 6:10-20). Even though the war on the enemy has been fought against by Christ on Calvary and won for eternity ahead (Col 2:15), we can only hope to "Fight the good fight of faith, and thereby lay hold on eternal life [of great reward], to which we were also called through our good confession made in the presence of many witnesses." (1 Tim 6:12).

We cannot tell for sure, whether we have lived victoriously or succumbed to temptation and have been defeated in our trials when the nature of war is like a wave that keeps going up and down, in others words, we are riding on a high wave for a time, but then we are in to the depth of the force under the wave of sin the next trying to save ourselves from its evil, with our limited knowledge we can only hope for the best at the end of it all and according to God that kind of hope is good and appreciated by Him
(Zech 9:12; Jer 29:11). As long as we know that we are walking in the "highway of holiness" (Isa 35:8), our responsibility is to keep walking in it and keep our conscience clean by faith so that we may have confidence that God will answer our prayer because of it (1 Tim 1:19; Acts 15:9; 26:18; 1 John 3:21-22). This is why Paul the apostle who wrote nearly one third of the entire New Testament said, "My conscience is clear, but that does not prove that I am really innocent. The Lord is the one who passes judgment on me." (1 Cor 4:4, GNT).

When our conscience is clear, we will have no regret regarding anything on earth. How much more will it be in heaven? A good Christian is the one who tries his best to please God by His strength, and with faith and good conscience will leave the rest of the judgment to God, who justly gives and rewards each one according to the motives with which he did his work for God. The purest of all motives is to work in thankfulness and gratitude for His unconditional love shown towards us on the Cross, which gave us the privilege to become His dearly beloved children
(1 John 4:19).

First of all we should understand what will happen when we enter heaven after our death and further on in to Eternity:

1) SPIRIT AND SOUL THE INSEPARABLE: When we die, we will be taken to heaven by angels sent by God
(Luke 17:22). Our body will be sown in dishonor and weakness on earth and will become dust from which it was taken initially by God (1 Cor 15:43), but our spirit and soul together as one will return to God who gave it to us initially by breathing in to us (Eccl 12:7; Psa 104:30; Gen 2:7).

2) SOUL LIVES IN HEAVEN EVEN AFTER DEATH: After we die, our soul lives on and it will hold all the recordings of what has happened on earth from our childhood to the day we die
(Luke 16:23, 25). Hell is a place of torment not just because of the unquenchable scorching fire and undying worms (Mark 9:43-44), but because of the conscious state of people who feel so much to regret that they have no chance again to alter their eternal state of condemnation, after which they come to realize that those living on earth only have the power to alter and end up in the better place of heaven by repentance and turning towards God (Luke 16:25, 26, 27-31). When these unsaved were on earth, they took the message of repentance towards God so lightly, and neglected it until the end of their earthly life.

3) HEAVEN'S JOY THE TREE OF LIFE: Those believers who go to heaven in their soul will also likewise remember all things that happened from their childhood to the day they died and how they died on earth
(Rev 6:9-10). But the difference from those who have ended up in hell fire is that, they will realize how the precious blood of Jesus is which have redeemed them from condemnation and death in hell which they actually deserve for their sins, failures and weaknesses (Rev 5:9). And not only that, but a realization of how much God has blessed them for eternity by making them all as "kings and priests" to our God by making them to reign again on the new earth will make them be filled with unspeakable joy (Rev 5:10; Luke 15:21-24; Eph 2:5, 6, 7). In others words, the delayed hope of living a sorrow-less life in heaven makes the heart sick when on earth, but when the reality of heaven comes, their fulfilled desire for the quality life makes the heart become transformed in to a tree of life, which means suddenly there is a joy of heaven which will keep on growing for eternity as they come to realize their unworthiness and God's worthiness and the genius workings of Him that made all things work together in heaven for their own eternal good (Rom 8:28; Prov 13:12).

"former troubles are forgotten...because they are hidden from My eyes" (Isa 65:16). This does not mean that all memories of the life lived on earth will be all forgotten and erased when we enter heaven, but rather the pain that we experience when remembering our failures, sins and weaknesses that has caused perpetual pain in our heart, family members, our faith community and the world at large will be taken away from our system when we die. As we will only have the new nature of Christ which will rule us for eternity ahead, the old nature of Adam will be dead and gone by then which has caused us sorrowful regret of pain on earth (Col 3:5; Rom 7:24-25; 6:6-7; 1 Pet 1:9; 2 Cor 5:1). In other words, the day we die physically, that will be the day the body of sin from which the sin nature rules a believer will end literally from them and cease to exist in them any more. This is the reason God says, "To grant those who mourn in Zion, giving them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting. So they will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified." (Isa 61:3).

The new nature that God has planted within every believer can bring forth, only flowery fragrance of sweet memory
(2 Cor 2:15), oil of gladness and joy unspeakable and inexpressible (Heb 1:9; 1 Pet 1:8), the mantle of praise (Psa 51:15; 119:171), etc so that the Lord is glorified again and again for eternity ahead through his planting which is the new creature (2 Cor 5:17). God has planned ahead a brand new life to live for all believers in the new heavens and a new earth, in it the former things of pain and sorrow of the old heavens and old earth will not be remembered or come to mind to trouble them, instead they will be glad and rejoice in the new creation as there will be no more voice of weeping and crying anymore in it (Isa 65:17-19). Every memory on the old earth whether painful or not will then in the new earth and new heavens will be filtered through the purposes of Christ's redemption to make it sweet to the mind through the new nature within our spirit, which will processes it and will send it to the mind of the soul which will experience only emotions of heavenly joy, peace and righteousness which will come from the heart and start to overwhelm the soul in ecstasy eternally in a more and more ever increasing way.

, 'Bema' was a place of judgement, being the extension of the raised seat of the judge, as described in the New Testament, in Matthew 27:19 and John 19:13, and further, as the seat of the Roman emperor, in Acts 25:10, and of God, in Romans 14:10, when speaking in judgment. Only the Roman citizens were those who could be present before a raised seat of judgment because it was their exclusive privilege as a Roman citizen. Similarly, it is the privilege of all the children of God as believers to approach the judgment seat of Christ to be judged by Him. In a raised seat, Jesus Christ will judge all the believers not for sin, but for glorifying them with rewards for the works done on earth for Him (Heb 9:27-28).

Yes I understand that the BEMA seat judgment is a exclusive judgment for all believers, where Christ the judge will rapture the Church first from the earth and will sit on His seat in heaven, and will reward each one eternally for them to enjoy an abundant heavenly supernatural life for the work which they did faithfully for Him on earth when they were alive
(Rom 14:10, 12; 2 Cor 5:10; Psa 1:5; Col 3:23-24). The rewards for each believer will be more or less based on their motives, sacrifices and faithfulness of the work which God had called and gifted them to do on earth (1 Cor 4:5; 1 Thess 2:4; Matt 25:21, 23; Rom 12:1; Heb 13:15). Apostle Paul reveals that each believers works done for God will go through the fire of God's judgment which will reveal the quality of every ones work done for God, according to the withstanding quality they will be rewarded, but all will be saved to be in heaven based on what Christ did for them on the Cross of Calvary, there is not difference in that (1 Cor 3:11-15). Even though each believer's rewards will be different in glory and joyfulness based on their work done for Christ on earth (1 Cor 15:41-42), neither they will boast in themselves for what they have done (1 Cor 1:29, 31; Gal 3:2, 5), nor they will be jealous of one another by lusting after someone else's glory because the new nature and glorious body will not have any more of the old nature's characters which are jealousy, wrath, lust, etc...which only brings death of separation between God and humans (Rom 8:6; Isa 65:24; Gal 5:19-21).

6) TEARS OF JOY NOT SORROW!: One of the reason when all believers when they enter the new heavens and the new earth will be grieved with tears flowing from their eyes will be because of joy inherited suddenly and eternally, they will take sometime to process the whole magnitude of the promise that they have waited for years in their earthly life looking forward, and with the
"tears of joy" (Jer 31:9) they will continue for a while to express their new emotions of heaven in a godly way because of knowing their unworthiness to receive it all the while focusing on God's goodness, mercies, love and benevolence and not on themselves (2 Cor 7:10). I believe that this is the very reason "God shall wipe away every tear from their eyes" (Rev 21:4). This will not be sorrowful tears of pain but rather tears of joy, as we see God continues telling in the same passage and assuring them of the new life in heaven, and how it will be totally different from their former life of pain in Rev 21:4, "there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying [which causes pain and sorrow in the heart]. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away." God declares in the above verse, that the very place they had ended up and are standing because of trusting in the promise of God is having the characteristics of righteousness, selflessness and God which is diametrically opposite to the old earth where they lived and suffered for Christ because of sin, self and Satan (2 Tim 2:12; 3:12; Acts 14:22). Hallelujah! Glory to God!                         

7) NO REGRETS OF SORROW OR CRYING: So the bottom line is, the sorrow of this world which we all experience in our daily lives because of death, financial loss, deceit, backstabbing, jealousy, murder, bribe, adultery, broken homes, backbiting, hatred, lies, injustice, etc...are something we will face in this earth on daily basis which we cannot avoid because of the fallen nature of human beings, and the curse of sin which has come upon the whole earth because of our forefather Adam's disobedience which has resulted in rebellion against God by all the sons of Adam
(2 Cor 7:10; 1 Tim 6:10; Matt 6:34; Rom 5:12). But God has redeemed and has made a new creatures from among the old, so that in the New Heavens and the New Earth, they will experience a quality of life without sorrow, crying, sadness and death in it (2 Cor 5:17). So sorrow and regret will cease to exist, nor can it ever persist like in our old heavens and earth which has been tainted by sin and the curse of sin.

Yes according to the Bible, those who have not be watchful and praying all the time looking forward to the coming of the Lord will experience shame and terror at the moment of time when they will leave this earthly body to be with the Lord forever
(Luke 21:36; Heb 12:14), not because the Lord wants them to feel bad like that, but because of coming to the spiritual reality where suddenly they could see as clearly as through the crystal all the things they are leaving behind which could have been different if they had lived a more sincere, better and spiritual life according to the ability that the Lord had given within them, which they have not used at all or partially used in their earthly lives (2 Cor 5:11; Rev 3:11; 1 Cor 15:10; 2 Cor 6:1). God never puts any believer in to shame because Jesus carried it all for them (Isa 53:4-6), God has only promised double portion of blessing for shame experienced on earth for Him (Rom 10:11). But the spiritual reality of how they could have been rewarded for their work which has gone to others will make the believers ashamed of how they could have become more useful with the time, talent and treasure that they had been given by the Lord, to make a radical difference for the Lord which they have actually wasted on earth (Matt 22:12; 2 Cor 5:3, 4, 11; Rev 3:17; 16:15). Spiritual nakedness is the conscious state of spiritual reality that becomes bare to our own eyes of our inner self when we rise from the stupor which has been caused by the world of sin, self and Satan (Rev 3:18). Usually when this awakening comes before death, we are safe to become saved from being ashamed later which we call revival and repentance. But this awakening of being shaken by reality of their true spiritual state of nakedness will happen to everyone who dies unsaved, where they will come to realize their own spiritual nakedness in themselves, and others whom they meet in hell fire in their unsaved state too will come to see them in that state without the covering of the blood of Jesus which washes away all the sins. Because Jesus has saved those who have received Him for eternity ahead (John 10:27-29), He will cover their shame instead of exposing it, but on the Bema seat judgment it will be exposed to themselves and others so that they will receive the reward for their works done for the Lord. The terror of the Lord during the Bema seat judgment for believers will be the 'impartial judgment' that He will provide, which will bring terror to souls of many who have been self-deceived to think themselves above what they were spiritually (Rom 12:3; Gal 6:2, 3-5). For example, a minister of God whom God uses powerfully may have a tendency to think that because of his own godliness, God uses him to do His supernatural works through him, when in fact, the people under him who were praying for him might be the cause God has been using his life in spite of his own self-deception. So who will be rewarded more? The simple people of faith who prayed for the minister of God who ministered to them will be rewarded more (1 Cor 9:17; Matt 19:29-30)!

When Jesus received the apostles after they finished their apostolic assignments which he had given them, they told him how even the devils ran away being scared and are subject to them all when they used the name of Jesus, He told them not to rejoice because the spirits are subject to them, but rather rejoice because their names were written in heaven
(Luke 10:17-20). I have always thought why Jesus should tell them such a thing, when actually he should be appreciating the work they were doing for Him? But little did I realize that Jesus was right in saying to them to rejoice because of being God's children and not because of the power or authority they exercised spiritually, which really tells me that even though they do such great work, when they start to rejoice because the spirits are subject to them, their motive for doing the work of God becomes impure with self-glorifying pride which brings no reward but only the judgment of God if they continue in it over a period of time. But when they do the demon-driving or all miracles in Jesus name, rejoicing in doing the work for Him because they are the children of God being loved by a perfect Father in Heaven who takes care of them, their motives for doing the work of God becomes pure. Therefore they will be rewarded fully for eternity. O what a truth Jesus teaches us in doing the work of God to receive the full reward for it later in heaven (2 John 1:8)! Jesus wants his disciples and apostles to receive their full reward of their inheritance in heaven, for all the work they do by doing it with right and pure motive based on the love of God, and their love for God, and above all doing His holy work for the reason of them being the children of God which is a privilege they have received from Him according to His will. Praise the Lord!

A story about heaven's perception which brings to light how different it is from earthly perspective, has been told long time ago in one of my own sermon which I still remember. There was a beautiful Church which was running smoothly for the glory of God. Each person used to think that their Church was the best spiritual Church in the whole world. And suddenly one day a sincere deacon asked God to open his inner eyes to show his own spiritual condition as he was not satisfied with his own spirituality. Then in the middle of the night, while he was in deep sleep, God showed a dream which was about the spiritual condition of the Church which he was in, and himself being a part of the Church. In the dream he saw heaven, and a angel came and announced that, according to the spiritual level of his Church each person will come and appear before him in heaven to give a attendance to him at once. Suddenly he saw himself arrive in a bullock cart slowly, screeching slowly and making way in to the spot giving attendance to the angel who marked it rightly. Suddenly he saw a chartered flight coming down and he was amazed to see some small sincere children from the Church Sunday school coming out of it. He was elated to see them and greeted and took them towards the angel who took attendance one by one and marked them. As he looked back hearing a cycle bell ringing one by one, and when he focused on who they were, he saw some fellow deacons coming in the cycles. He met them and asked them why they were coming in the cycles, to his surprise, they told, you are asking us this question, I saw the Bishop coming to this place walking on his way in his bare foot, and we could not give him a lift as we had no back carriers in our cycles, and lo and behold with much perspiration the bishop arrived to give attendance. Suddenly his dream ended and his spiritual eyes were opened to know his own spiritual condition and he repented to the Lord and became a fiery man of God for the Glory of God.

So heaven sees differently from the way we see the Church and its spiritual condition. Therefore the Lord will justly reward each person in his body the Church, according to the work they did with the right motive for Him. When the work are great, and the motives are wrong, the reward will be very less and may even be nothing. Now is the time to feel ashamed of our spiritual condition and mourn for it
(Matt 5:43, 4, 5-12; Jam 4:9-10; 1:9-11; 5:1-6, 19-20), because now there is hope for us to bring a radical change in our spiritual condition by changing our wrong motives to the right ones and thus receive our full inheritance through repentance, otherwise we cannot change the reward or the glory of it that we will rightfully deserve then in heaven forever. If we want to repent, it is now or never. REPENT NOW!, AND RECEIVE YOUR FULL REWARD AS OVERCOMER THEN!             

Much Blessings.....


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