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How many times have you heard this irreverent question uttered out of the mouths of ignorant men, “Who is God to judge me? Who does He think He is?” In saying this, aren’t we questioning God’s wisdom with ignorant words and darkening His counsel with words without knowledge? For do we have knowledge of the only true God and Jesus whom He sent, and do we know the Father as Jesus knows the Father?

We think God’s judgment more complex than it is, when His judgment is simply a pronouncement of the truth. His judgment is just ‘saying how it is’. God’s judgment is just about telling the truth. And God’s justice doesn’t get easier to understand than this. God’s judgment of you is His telling you the truth about yourself. But in our ignorance and disrespect of the Lord, we argue with God and criticise Him, saying God is cruel and His judgment is sinister. We fail to acknowledge that only He, who knows the truth, can deliver judgment. Yet we who do not know the truth but judge, judge only by mere appearances, and we do not made a right judgment. But a judgment that is not right is injustice, and the person who has no authority or right to judge is unrighteous. Look at the worldly law courts, all the rules and regulation, doctrines and principles they have created and adopted only help bring them as close to the truth as possible when they deliver judgment. It is not justice, but they try with their human wisdom and sense of righteousness.

Listen to Jesus, who said, “For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son gives life to whom He is pleased to give it. Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, that all may honour the Son just as they honour the Father. He who does not honour the Son does not honour the Father, who sent Him.[1] You judge by human standards; I pass judgment on no one. But if I do judge, My decisions are right, because I am not alone. I stand with the Father, who sent me[2]… For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself. And He has given Him authority to judge because He is the Son of Man.”[3]

This is how you defend your Father and Jesus who is the Judge – this is what you say when people ask this irreverent question: “Who is God to judge me? What right does God have to judge me?” Tell them, “The Father and Jesus have the right to judge you because you were made in their Image and Likeness.” Whether they can accept this or not does not deter us – we just tell the truth.

Since God created man, male and female in His Image and Likeness (His Image is what He imagined and created for Himself and His Likeness is what He is), then only He can pronounce how far each man has fallen off His mark, or how much each man has exceeded His greatest expectations. Only God knows how and when a man, male and female, who is of flesh and blood with a heart, mind, soul and spirit, which dictate and direct his dreams, desires, speech and conduct – a man who is not God but was made in His Image and Likeness – has taken on the nature of God. Only God knows; yet He has revealed this through Jesus Christ who is the Son of Man. And Jesus goes on to say, “I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in Me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.”[4]

Think about it and anchor it in your heart. The Father and Jesus have the right to judge all men because men were made in Their Image and Likeness. God’s judgment is a truthful comparison between you, and the Image and Likeness of God the Father and the Son. Only an artist or a writer can judge the quality of his work because he alone knows his personal expectations and vision, and the quality he aimed to achieve. What other people say is merely criticism and review – therefore it is only an opinion. Only the creator beholds the truth because it is only from him that such work originates.

So where is it written, or hinted at, that this is the standard by which God will judge? Jesus said, “You judge by human standards; I pass judgment on no one.”[5] Here Jesus made a difference between the way we judge and the way God judges – human standards versus God’s standards. In the NASB, the same verse translates that Jesus said, “You judge according to the flesh; I am not judging anyone.” We judge according the flesh – by what we see – this is mere appearance. And we judge by human standards to justify ourselves, and sometimes, we discredit God’s justice (that is the God’s right judgment) and condemn Him just to prove we are right. But how and why does God judge? He said, “I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve.”[6]

Does this sound airy-fairy to you? Am I making this up? Or it is because we have deviated from God’s purpose for man to such an extent that God’s Image and Likeness is a foreign concept to us? Admit it, we lack full understanding and knowledge of God. Everything we know and understand about God is merely the tip of the iceberg. What we have learned and gained from listening to Jesus and the counsel of the Holy Spirit so far has brought us to a place where we have no choice but to admit shamefully, “We do not know You, Father.” At least, this is how I feel personally, so I speak for myself in this.

Read Genesis 5.3, “When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image; and he named him Seth. [NIV] When Adam was 130 years old, he became the father of a son who was just like him – in his very image. He named his son Seth. [NLT]”[7] What if when Adam had Seth in God’s Image and Likeness, instead of his own likeness and image? When God blessed the male and female and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number, fill the Earth and subdue it. [NIV] Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the Earth and govern it [NLT],”[8] was it God’s purpose for the male and female to have sons and daughters in their own image and likeness? No, it was not. It is because Adam and Eve had sons and daughters in their own image and likeness, that God said that every inclination of our hearts is evil from childhood; everything we think or imagine is bent toward evil from childhood.[9] Jesus said, “For from within, out of men’s hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly.”[10]

I used to think, “How can this be?” Now I understand. It is because man begot sons and daughters in his own image and likeness, instead of learning to do so in the Image and Likeness of the Father and Son, that we are always ready to disobey, forsake and rebel against God even from childhood. We were created in the Image and Likeness of God, but we were born in the image and likeness of Adam. That is why Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the Kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit; no one can see the Kingdom of God unless he is born again.[11]

And if people should ask, “What right does God have to judge a man? How would He even know what it is like to be a man – He is far up in the Heavens?” This is your reply, “Jesus is the Son of Man, and He has the right to judge man because He is a Man.” The writer of the book of Hebrews wrote of God’s righteousness, “For this reason He (Jesus) had to be made like His brothers in every way, in order that He might become a merciful and faithful High Priest in service to God, and that He might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because He Himself suffered when He was tempted, He is able to help those who are being tempted.”[12]

We were asked a few weeks ago, what is the proof of man? So now, what is the proof of a son? How do we define a “son”? It is simply this: a son is one who is so perfectly like his father, that they are one. Remember Jesus’ words, “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect;” “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful;” and “You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate.”[13] And the Father and Jesus testified about the Son of Man, “This is My Son whom I love, with Him I am well pleased. Listen to Him![14] … I love the Father and I do exactly what My Father has commanded Me[15]… Whatever I say is just what the Father has told Me to say[16]… Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father[17]… I and the Father are One.[18]

Jesus, the Son of Man, is the Man who is perfectly like His Father should His Father be the form of a Man. Jesus the Son of Man is the exact representation of God the Father in the flesh. That is why Jesus the Son of Man was given the authority to judge. The Father has not given the authority to judge man to someone who has never been a man. This is the Father’s righteousness and justice. God is Justice.

And finally, the elect of the Holy Spirit should ask this question, “If all men will come under judgment, when will those of the first resurrection be judged? For it would discredit God’s justice if anyone should escape judgment.” Read Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 11:31-33, “But if we judged ourselves rightly and examine ourselves, we would not be judged [NASB and NLT] and we would not come under judgment [NIV]. But when we are judged, we are disciplined by the Lord so that we will not be condemned along with the world.”[19]

So examine and judge yourself in regards to sin, wickedness and rebellion; listen to Jesus and put His words into practice; respond to the conviction of the Holy Spirit; seek His counsel and repent, repent, repent, and forgive, forgive, forgive. For the core of the question is still only the tip of the iceberg. Let us not lose faith and good courage. Amen


 

[1] John 5.21-23

[2] John 8.15-17

[3] John 5.26-27

[4] John 14.12

[5] John 8.15

[6] Jeremiah 17.10

[7] Genesis 5.3 NIV and NLT

[8] Genesis 1.28 NLT and NIV

[9] Genesis 8.21

[10] John 7.21-22

[11] John 3.3-5

[12] Heb 2.17-18

[13] Matthew 5.48; Luke 6.36 NIV and NLT

[14] Matthew 17.5

[15] John 14.31

[16] John 12.50

[17] John 14.9

[18] John 10.30

[19] NASB and NLT

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