I. Judgment to non-believers (Romans 2:6-16)

Can a person be saved without having heard of Jesus Christ? The best answer possible is that, since many scriptures tell us that it is impossible for a person to be a Christian without having heard of Jesus Christ today, then a person in past times needed to walk in the light that he had.

  • -1:18: the light about God in nature, which everyone has.

  • -2:14,15: the work of the law written on the hearts of people.

  • -2:4: the providential happenings in people's lives.

With all this light, which everyone has, the heathen then is without excuse. (Romans 1:20)

However, even though this person is without excuse, it still does not mean that there is enough light from those three sources, creation, conscience, and providence to save him. Rather, if a man will walk in the light that he has, God will get him the additional light that he needs for salvation. For example, He might bring another person to speak the truth; or he might miraculously provide a Bible; or He might even send an angel. Probably the greatest illustration of this is the story of Cornelius in Acts 10. Peter mentions in Acts 11 that Cornelius was not a saved man until Peter had gotten there with the message of forgiveness of sins through Christ.

II. Judgment to Christians

A. Once saved, ever saved? (Hebrew 6: 4-6)

The most common interpretation of this passage are:

  1. it refers to Christians who actually lose their salvation.

  2. It is a hypothetical argument to warn immature Hebrews that they must progress to maturity.

  3. It refers to professing Christians whose fall proves that their faith was not true.

B. Will Christians be judged by their services? (I Cor. 3: 10-15)

These verses are often quoted as supporting the notion that if Christians do not serve the Lord well, they will be just saved but receive all rewards in the heaven. Actually, here these verses are concerned with what foundation we lay our faith on. The context is about Paul's attack on division of the church. Paul urged Corinthians not to build the foundation on people such as Peter and Apollos rather than Christ.

C. Will Christians be judged by deeds? (II Cor. 5: 10-11)

This accounting has nothing to do with justification, which is credited to the Christian fully and forever through faith in Christ. Instead, it refers to what we have done with our lives as Christians.

D. A fearless Christian life

  1. . He will keep you strong to the end. (I Cor. 1:7-9)

  2. Perfect love drives out fear (I John 4:17-18)