The Pre-Advent Judgment

The Pre-Advent Judgment

Scripture: Daniel 7:27, Genesis 3:8-20, Psalms 51:4
Date: 11/30/2013  Lesson: 9
"The pre-Advent judgment results in fulfilling the hopes of both God and the believers. God's desire is to save His people and eradicate sin while leaving no doubt about His love and justice."

Formula 4 Faith by Doug Batchelor

Formula 4 Faith by Doug Batchelor
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Welcome to Sacramento Central Seventh-day Adventist church right here in Sacramento, California on the west coast of the United States of America. We are so glad that you are tuning in, whether this is your first time or you join us every week, welcome. Many of you listen on the radio. Many of you watch live at our website at 'saccentral.org' and, of course, I think that most of you - most of you watch on various television networks. So however you are joining us, we're so glad - and welcome.

Our first thing that we're going to do before we open up the Bible and we study together, we always start with singing and many of you have favorites that you like to sing with us and we're going to sing a couple of those today. And next week we start - I think it's next week - we start Christmas carols. So hurry up, send them in, and we will start those very soon. #294 - 'Power in the blood and we're going to sing all three stanzas. And this is a request from lots of people around the planet, but shelley, liam and chantal in australia, robert in belize, leidy in colombia, and marion and dick in the netherlands and many more.

All three stanzas - #294. Join with us. There is power, wonder working power in the precious blood of the lamb. Do you agree with that? If you have a favorite song that you want to sing with us on an upcoming program, it's very simple. Send in your Christmas request to 'saccentral.

org'. You can click on the 'contact us' link and send them in and we're going to start singing those very, very soon. Don't forget to request 'silent night', okay? Our next one is 'o world of God' which is #80 - beautiful song from composer parry from the piece 'Jerusalem'. We're going to sing all three stanzas and this is a request from hugo in san marcos in guatemala. #80 - Join with us.

Father in Heaven, your plan was never for this world to be filled with sorrow and pain. You always had something better in mind for us but you gave adam and eve a free will and they made a choice that hurt themselves but hurt you far greater and you decided to come down to this world to give us a second chance so that we can choose for ourselves to be with you in heaven and you went on that cross on that cruel hill and we thank you so much for doing it - for loving us that much. And I pray today that we will live our lives for you. And I pray that you'll be with us as we worship you - we open up Your Word and we study together. Thank you so much for pastor white who's going to bring us the lesson study and I pray that you'll bless our time together.

In Jesus' Name, amen. At this time our lesson study is going to be brought to us by pastor harold white. He is our administrative pastor - somewhere - there he is - administrative pastor here at sacrament central church. Alright, thank you singers and musicians. We really appreciate that.

Every Sabbath morning it's such a blessing. Good morning and welcome to all of you who have joined us here in Sacramento and all of you who are joining us wherever you are - live streaming, radio, the internet, satellite - just - we're happy to have each and every one of you. We're in some exciting lessons this quarterly, as you know. We have a free offer and it's offer #132. It's entitled 'case closed' and it's all about the subject that we're discussing this morning.

This will support many of the things we will discuss this morning - some of the questions that are asked about the pre-advent judgment - so you'll want to make sure you get this offer. #132 - All you have to do is call 1-866-study-more or -866-788-3966. Okay, the pre-advent judgment. A big subject, right? A lot of people get scared off when they think about a judgment and maybe rightfully so. We'll see this morning.

Let's begin with our memory text and I would invite you to read it along with me if you will. It's found there in your quarterly - Daniel 7, verse 27 and it's the nasb translation. Are you ready? "Then the sovereignty, the dominion and the greatness of all the Kingdoms under the whole heaven will be given to the people of the saints of the highest one; his kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all the dominions will serve and obey him." Wow, pretty amazing. The lesson starts out by talking about how the book of Hebrews clearly spells out that after the death of Jesus, he would go back to heaven and he would begin a new work in behalf of his people here upon earth. And it points out how he became the high priest - our high priest in the heavenly sanctuary.

That's very important information. Then it points out from the book of Daniel chapters 7 and 8 - reveals to us at some specific time in history, and this - we'll get into this more next week, but at some specific time in history, Jesus would then, as our high priest, begin the work of judgment. Now we know, if you've studied - most of us, I'm sure, have - that that began in 1844 and that's specifically spelled out in a very dynamic and wonderful time prophecy in the book of Daniel and next week we'll get into that more clearly, but it's undeniably true that that's what the year was and what took place in that year. Now somebody asked me just, actually not too long ago, since Jesus wasn't - he went back to heaven and he wasn't involved in the judgment - the judgment wasn't going yet, what was he doing between the time he went back until 1844? He wasn't involved in judgment, we know that. Well, the Bible is a little bit silent about that.

We don't have a lot of specifics, but one thing I do know that Jesus was very concerned about his church here upon earth. He spent three and a half years establishing his church, training his disciples, sending them out into the world, and so I do not believe Jesus went off to heaven and just forgot about his church on earth. I believe that he was keenly aware of every single thing, of course we know he is, every single thing that was taking place upon this earth, and he was - I can picture him in heaven dispatching an angel here and one there and 'go to Peter. Go to John, he needs you.' Go to this person and down into our time, 'go help pastor white, he needs you. Go help pastor buttery, he needs you.

' Go help this person in the church and so Christ has been totally involved in his church. Would you agree to that? I wholeheartedly believe that. Now there are some things we have to be careful of. We are not told a hundred percent some things and we have to be careful of what we hear. Now I want to give a couple of examples this morning.

I'm not going to mention any names because that doesn't serve any purpose, but is it very important that when we hear what we hear that we compare it to what the Bible says? Well this was several years ago, somebody came right here to this church - and like I said, I'm not going to mention names, it doesn't matter. We all make mistakes. We all make mistakes, believe me, we do. I've made my share in front of people, in front of classes like this. This person, one day - he's a very dynamic preacher - he's out there in the circuit.

You all know him very well, I'm sure. He's preaching away and he actually made two significant errors in his message and nobody seemed to bother or care. Everybody was soaking it up like he was the best preacher since Noah and one was he was talking about the parable of Jesus when he said that the parable of the wise man who built his house upon the rock, that the wise man represents Jesus and he kept emphasizing that point. Well, Jesus is represented in that parable by the rock, not the wise man. We are the wise man, in a sense, if we build our house upon the rock.

It's not a very significant error but it wasn't the truth, really. The second one was a little more significant. He was talking about the sanctuary and the sanctuary, he said, in the holy of holies there's the mercy seat and above the mercy seat there's these two cherubims - two angels - and he said, these two angels, one is represented by the good angels and the other angel is satan. And so I said, 'wait a minute, wait a minute' and he kept emphasizing that point and - and I can assure you that one of the angels above the mercy seat is not satan. Satan is not in the holy sanctuary in heaven.

He's not there. He was cast out of heaven. But not one person ever complained about that afterwards and I thought, 'wow, we've got to be careful of people preaching.' Don't take my word for what I'm saying, go home and study the Word of God. We must, especially - I'm pointing this out especially when it comes to the sanctuary because a lot of people have gotten off track on the sanctuary message and the pre-advent judgment and we must not allow ourselves to do that and that's why I point out that this morning. Well, we - so let's stick with the word and let's get into our lesson.

Sunday's lesson is entitled 'the vision and the judgment'. Daniel 7:10 says "a fiery stream issued and came forth from before him. A thousand thousands ministered to him; ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him. The court was seated, and the books were opened." Do you know how many times - you know how many people - how many that is? Well, I don't know either but it's a lot. We can know that.

And the question is asked: 'what is happening here in verses 1 through 14. It is a courtroom scene, is it not? Yes. The scene described by Daniel is likewise described by John the revelator in Revelation chapter , verse 1, where it has this to say, "after these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven. And the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter." This door was opened in heaven. It says that it was opened in heaven, not 'into heaven'.

There was a door opened into heaven that - when Jesus went back to heaven, but this door is opened in heaven and that means the door to the second compartment. So there's a distinction there. You have 24 elders seated on thrones. You get a picture in your mind, of course, of a courtroom with a judge, a defendant, prosecutors, a jury - the whole - everything there. And I remember scoffers years back that were trying to downplay or actually teach something different than what we understand to be the truth about the sanctuary.

They were saying things like, 'you know, when Jesus went to heaven, he sat at the right hand of The Father. That means he went right into the most holy place with the father at that time, so you can't say he went in there in ...' And I'm thinking, 'you know, first, The Father could have preceded him right before he went into the holy place, right? Secondly, they could have gone back and forth between the two compartments but we know for a fact, biblically speaking and from the pen of inspiration, that Jesus, as our high priest went into the most holy place in . We know that. Don't get confused about that. And at the bottom of Sunday it says things like this: 'imagine being judged by God.

You will be. Imagine everything you have ever done being judged. It will be. If you have to stand on your record, your own deeds, your own good works, what hope do you have? Zero. What then is your only hope in judgment?' These questions sound ominous.

Do they strike fear to your heart? Well, it depends on your relationship to the judge, for one thing, right? Pure and simple. But there are some other very important factors also. When one of my boys was still a teenager, he didn't have his driver's license yet, and he was out with some of his friends. One of his friends had his driver's license - they lived in the country and they were traveling to this boy's home and, I suppose, my son asked, 'can I drive your car?' And the other boy said, 'yeah, sure.' Well, you can already picture in your mind a disaster in the making, right? Didn't have his driver's license, driving out in the country, first time really that he was driving a car and he gets uncontrolled in the loose gravel and off into the ditch he goes. Nobody's hurt - we're thankful about that - but he did run into a telephone pole and broke it off.

Well, at least one thing we can say about those boys, they were honest. They didn't back up and run away and 'nobody saw it. We'll just forget like it never happened.' No, they didn't do that. They reported it. They told their parents.

They went and told the authorities. And so my son had to go to court. Now this is the first time I've ever been to court in my life. I have to admit I was extremely nervous. Now I thought in my mind, 'nothing really terrible's going to happen.

' But some of the worse things conjured up in my mind, 'well, they're going to take my boy and take him to a delinquently, you know, a juveNile delinquent center and he's going to be whisked away' and I was just really nervous. Well, I'm thankful to report nothing like that happened. He did have to pay for the pole being replaced. I don't even think that he had to delay his time getting his license, so he came out of that pretty good. The outcome wasn't all that bad.

This was a very small courtroom scene compared to the one we're talking about. The one that we are talking about has universal coverage. Now, do you know how big that is? No, you don't. You know why? Because they keep discovering, with that telescope out there, new galaxies far, far, far away so none of us have any comprehension of how big this universe really is, but that's how big this judgment is because everybody in the universe is concerned and interested in this judgment that we are now in. Think about that.

Everybody is watching what's going on in the courts of heaven about this judgment that is taking place when the judge of the universe is judging you and me. Whew, that makes it very, very big. So, here's the thing with this courtroom scene. The more you can learn about it, the more fear that will be removed. I was nervous about my son's condition because I didn't know the laws.

I didn't know what was going to happen. But we can know very, very, very many details about this judgment that is now in process. First of all, one thing we can know, which my son knew in his little courtroom thing, is that he was guilty and we can know we are guilty. My son didn't try to avoid the fact that he was guilty and I can tell you it is going to do you no good to try to plead, 'not guilty.' Why? Because the adversary - the prosecuting attorney - has all the low-down dirty details on your life. He knows them from a to z.

Exhibits a to z on every one of us and they will be right there for the judge to see - for the whole universe to see. So you cannot go to this judgment scene and plead 'not guilty'. It amazes me. It absolutely astounds me when you see somebody, in the public, go out and shoot maybe ten people or one and there's hundreds of people that are witnesses - maybe it's even caught on camera - they capture the person that's responsible, they take him to court months later and what does he do? He pleads 'not guilty'. What? What do you mean you're not guilty? Everybody saw you do it.

Not guilty. Ha, I can tell you it's not going to do us any good to please - to plead 'not guilty'. Lately in the news - you've probably noticed it, those of you who live here in the united states - saw this young man, got intoxicated with alcohol, went out driving, got involved in an accident, and in this accident some 50-something-year-old guy in the other car was killed. This young man went on the social media, videotaped himself and said, 'I am guilty. I did this.

I'm ready to take my punishment.' And it was almost amazing that it seemed like the media thought this young man was doing something wrong. 'Why is he doing that? What, does he think he's going to get off more because he's doing this?' No, he was doing it because he knew he was guilty. He was overcome with guilt. He took a person's life because he was intoxicated. It was his fault.

And so, when it comes to the judgment, we are guilty. We are sinners. We all deserve the death penalty. People do something today, they go to court and say 'not guilty'. They add a lie to all their other problems.

When we go to this judgment and we say, 'oh, I didn't do that. I didn't do that.' You're adding lies to all the things you did do. You're guilty. People who don't know this - what is going on - might say, 'are you giving up that easy just to admit your guilt?' Well, yes, it is that easy because we know some other facts that we're going to get into. We do not plead 'not guilty'.

We plead for mercy and mercy can be extended to all of us. That's the good news about the pre-advent judgment. I've seen through the years - I've actually seen it many times - people get upset with the pastor - and it's happened to me but people get upset with the pastor. They all go on this rampage against the pastor - even go public about it - accusing the pastor of this and that and, in time, the truth comes out and they realize that they were totally wrong. I've tried to think back and I can never think back to any individual that says, 'you know what? I'm sorry.

I was wrong.' What? Why don't you? You can't go into the judgment - if the pre-advent judgment doesn't teach us anything else, we'd better say, 'I'm wrong. I did something bad. I must confess.' It seems like we just say, 'well, it's better to try to hide it and cover it up and act like I didn't do anything wrong.' Or we try to change the playing field. Like a little boy announced to his mother. He said, 'mother, I'm like Goliath.

I'm nine feet tall.' 'Well, why do you say that?' Asked his mother. Well, he says, 'I made a little ruler - I made a little ruler and I measured myself by it and I'm nine feet tall.' He changed the rules, didn't he? He changed the ruler. And it seems like some people try to do that when it comes to sin. We can't change the rule. We're judged by a specific rule - the perfect law of liberty.

The law of God is the standard of the judgment, right? You can't change it no matter what you do. You can't act like you're innocent of it. You are guilty of it. I'm guilty of it. The measurement for the judgment has always reMained the same.

It cannot be changed. My son didn't have a lawyer. That's one thing he didn't have going for him that we have going for us. He stood there before the judge by himself. I couldn't even speak for him.

No lawyer spoke for him. It was just he and the judge. Well, in this pre-advent judgment we have representation. We have a lawyer. No, we don't have a lawyer, we have the lawyer.

The advocate, Jesus Christ. If you've taken him as your Savior, if you've given him your life, you have him as your representative - as your lawyer. Now compile the facts to our case and things begin to start looking pretty good. In fact, they look really good. We may, in essence, lose our case because we're guilty but we win eternal freedom because of the mercy that our lawyer and our judge - same person - you can't go wrong when he's your Savior.

He's both. He will extend you mercy and you will have eternal freedom and salvation because of absolutely nothing that we have done but because of everything that he has done. The judgment isn't a bad thing if you know all the facts of the case and if you comply with the pertinent information of all those facts. The judgment is not a bad thing, it's a good thing. It's a thing unto salvation as the lesson points out.

Well, we need to move on to Monday entitled 'the judgment pattern' - which we've already started to address, actually. The lesson starts by making this statement, 'the concept of an investigative judgment is biblical.' Then it brings out the example in Genesis 3. Well, what was happening in Genesis 3? The downfall is what was happening. Adam and eve sinned and they fled the presence of God and God begins to inquire - he begins to investigate and he begins to ask questions. Does he ask those questions - does he investigate because he doesn't know the facts? No, he asks those questions because he wants everything to come out in the open.

He knows the details in this investigation for the judgment that is now in place more so than we do. He knows our every detail. The investigation is public so that all creation will know every detail as God knows them. God always does everything in perfection. But he always does them in perfection for the benefit of other people because he knows everything.

So he does this whole pre-advent judgment thing for the sake of all created beings of all the worlds and ourselves. God doesn't need books in heaven - for them to be opened - because he helped keep those books and he knows everything in those books. He has more than a photographic mind. Books are kept for the benefit of everyone else. If you have a small business - even a little business - you have to keep books.

Now you may, because your business is very small, let's say, you may know exactly where you stand financially at all times but you still need to keep books. Why? For the benefit of others. People like irs need to know that you're keeping books and you need to report some of these facts to people like that. And that's what God does. He keeps books so that everybody will be informed - everybody will understand all the facts.

That's what they're there for. The bottom quotation from testimonies volume 5 is appropriate to what we've already been talking about. It says, "the fact that the acknowledged people of God are represented as standing before the Lord in filthy garments should lead to humility and deep searching of heart on the part of all who profess his name. Those who are indeed purifying their souls by obeying the truth will have a most humble opinion of themselves. But while we should realize our sinful condition, we are to rely upon Christ as our righteousness, our sanctification and our redemption.

We cannot answer - we cannot answer the charges of satan against us. Christ alone can make an effectual plea in our behalf. He is able to silence the accuser with arguments founded not upon our merits but on his own." Wow. That's pretty good. I couldn't say it any better.

Moving on to Tuesday entitled 'time of the judgment'. We consider the issues of when we are to look forward to this judgment. When I was boy, in another church, I didn't know hardly anything about the Bible. The concept of the end of the world and the judgment, this is how I pictured it - that i, at the end of the world - God would be there as the judge and I would be in this long, long, long line of people and eventually, after shaking for probably years and years until it got to be my turn, my turn would be there to stand in front of God. That's how I pictured the judgment.

Whew, was I ever happy to read the Bible about the truth. It made such a wonderful relief to my whole being. It's nothing like that at all. When Jesus comes - the Bible says, 'his reward will be with him when he comes.' He gives his rewards out at that time so that judgment will already have been finished when he steps out of the courts of heaven. And I believe the lesson will get into this more fully next week, but the judgment we are now in was the fulfillment of the day of atonement once a year in the sanctuary services in the old testament.

While the priest would go into the most holy place once a year, it was a time of intense - intensity for the people of God. Will God accept their prayers of, you know, repentance and confessions? Will he clean the sanctuary of all those sins of the whole past year? The longer the priest stayed in there, the more intense the people got. Would they be accepted? A lot of praying went on during that day. When he came out, judgment was done. There was a huge, corporate sigh of relief and, here's my point, during that day of great intensity, how also should the children of Israel been thinking? What should have been in their hearts and minds? Yes, intensity, 'will my sins be forgiven, Lord?' Praying that my sins will be blotted out and completely cleansed from the sanctuary, yes, but it also should have contained - there should have been in their hearts and minds a great deal of hope and peace that this judgment is all about sanctuary - I mean all about salvation.

This judgment is all about salvation and if we confess our sins he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and we can have peace. We should live in a continual state - this is what we've been told actually - a continual state of repentance, while at the same time living in a continual space of hope and peace because our judgment is going on right now and Jesus is taking our case. In fact - in fact, it's already been decided. It's already been provided - the outcome - if we are on the right side. We must have this dual dynamic going on in our life.

We must live in a state of humility and repentance but also with peace and hope. So, while this time should be a time of intensity on our part, it is also to be noted - as the lesson pointed out - the pre-advent judgment is good news. It's good news. It's great news. It's the best news.

Which all that brings us to Wednesday's lesson entitled 'when the judgment ends'. Now I realize we've been jumping around in this lesson a little bit - getting ahead of ourselves, behind ourselves. It's a little hard not to do that on this subject because it all just ties in so much, but when we talk about this one, what are the results? 'When the judgment ends' and in the lesson it brings out some questions: 'what are the results of the pre-advent judgment?' And then it gives several of those results. I think it's kind of important we just touch on those very quickly. The first one - and it probably wouldn't be the first that most of us write down.

If we were to say, 'write down the first results of the pre-advent judgment' we probably wouldn't be writing this down but we should. It says, 'that is, The Son of man is crowned.' That's the result of this pre-advent judgment - The Son of man is crowned. Daniel 7:14 says, "and there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed." In all things Jesus needs to be the one lifted up. He's the one that's provided us all the good news about this judgment and if we aren't - haven't totally gotten used to that concept, we better get used to it because when we get to heaven we're going to be filled with such gratitude - an attitude of gratitude continually, that we'll be singing 'holy, holy, holy' and never get tired of doing it. That seems amazing to me but it's true.

When the judgment ends something will happen in the heart and mind of every redeemed person: a change in the twinkling of an eye will take place that you will not want to do hardly anything but praise God from whom all blessings flow. Now I personally kind of get disgusted sometimes with the way the world tries to promote this person or that person as some kind of a hero. Whether it's in the field of sports or the field of entertainment - even firemen and policemen. We want a hero and, yes, there are some amazing people that do some amazing things to rescue people and I'm not putting that down - that's wonderful. But we just seem to have this attitude - we've got to have ourselves a hero that we almost bow down to.

I have a hard time with that because we only have one real hero and that's our Lord and Savior. So when Jesus comes, I'm not the most emotional person, you know, music - I love music but I don't get as wrapped up in music as a lot of people do, it just stirs into something, I guess, more than I can imagine, but I think that when Jesus comes and does that twinkling of an eye change in me, I'm going to be so bubbling over with emotion, I don't know what happened - what hit me. I think it's going to be something dynamic. Well, the second result mentioned in pre-advent judgment is the saints receive the kingdom forever and how we should love - Daniel 7:22 - "until the ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the most high; and the time came that the saints possessed the Kingdom." We need to let those words sink in, especially where the lesson says, 'this judgment leads to a time when the King of the everlasting kingdom is reunited with his people. This is the greatest reward - and his.

' Wow, we need to let that sink in. Is this how you feel about it? Do think on this as the greatest reward, not only for you but for him? It is his greatest reward. He paid the price for this reward and we need to spend time contemplating that fact. Stop and think about what you are pursuing in life. Well, there's a lot of good things people pursue - a lot of wonderful things people pursue, but they all kind of pale into insignificance when it compares to pursuing the Kingdom of God.

We need to keep pursuing these things because we live here on this earth, but at the same time, we should be pursuing the kingdom of God ultimately number one, right? Now the third result mentioned in the lesson is 'the rebellion is defeated and destroyed. Sin will not rise up again.' Nahum 1:9 says, "what do ye imagine against the Lord? He will make an utter end: affliction shall not rise up the second time." No more sin ever again. Now we've heard people say in the past, 'no more taxes' and then we had taxes. Well, I can assure you no more sin. Yeah, we don't have to doubt that because God said it.

Yeah, well, amazing. The ugly experiment with sin will be forever behind us. I don't think we can even begin to imagine the depth of this concept. I think we should try. The sentence is also made, in the lesson, that after that - after the horn makes war with the saints it is defeated itself and destroyed forever - this horn power.

Now we read that and we say, 'oh, yeah, well, it's going to happen. Yeah, this is what's going to happen.' But read that again. 'After the horn makes war with the saints it is defeated itself and destroyed forever.' That's powerful news. No, none of us are suffering right now from this horn power - probably nobody here, but one day soon we will be and so badly that when it's over you're going to - you're going to have such a sigh of relief you can't even begin to imagine what it's going to be like. This little horn power is going to make your life miserable.

That's right. Things are going to change. It's going to be drastic. And I hope that you remember back to this lesson. During those times when it becomes extremely hard for us because of this little horn power, that there is an end to it and there will be relief.

Think back to a time in your life when something was terrible going on in your life - you couldn't hardly do anything but think about it day and night. Somebody or something was just pressing on you and life was horrible and finally that whole problem - whatever it was - was resolved. You can remember back how relieved you were, right? That's just a small minute comparison to the relief that's going to come to God's people after the horn power is destroyed once and for all. Amen. You'll remember this part of the lesson, I hope.

Tuck it in your mind when we're going through that. We'll need it, I'm sure. The fourth result listed on Wednesday is 'the absolute justice of God is demonstrated.' When the pre-advent judgment is over and Jesus returns to this earth, even the wicked will bow their knees recognizing God as being just. Is that true? The Bible says that God will bring his reward with him. He hands out salvation to those who put their full trust in them and those who haven't will receive their just rewards, which will be just the opposite.

None will miss what is happening when that transformation takes place - in the twinkling of an eye when you are changed so dramatically nobody will miss what's going on. They'll know. And yet, for the redeemed, there must be an intense amount of emotions at this time. Yes, we can't help but be overwhelmed with joy and amazement that we're in the presence of God, but at the same time there are loved ones - some of our loved ones that are not overjoyed and they're going to be destroyed - they're going to be destroyed and it's going to be a time of mixed emotions. Yes, the end of the pre-advent judgment brings perfect justice, but it's going to take a thousand years for God's people in heaven to look over the books for this justice to be completely confirmed.

As everybody gets a chance to see why God has to destroy or how these people have to be destroyed because of the choices they've made when everything was done in their behalf by a loving God. And after - only after the thousand years - only after the thousand years will God wipe away all tears from everybody's eyes. That's what the Bible says. So yes, it's going to be a time of intense emotions, but that recognition of justice will be reinforced during this thousand years as the saints get to review the books. Now the question I have for you today: do you believe in the fact that God is perfectly just and perfectly merciful? Do you know that by faith now? Allow me to read that quotation from that great book entitled 'the Great Controversy' - it was there in your lesson at the bottom Wednesday.

It says, 'the Great Controversy is ended. Sin and sinners are no more. The entire universe is clean. One pulse of harmony and gladness beats through the vast creation. From him who created all flows life and light and gladness throughout the realms of the unlimitable space.

From the minutest atom to the greatest world, all things animate and inanimate in their unshadowed beauty and perfect joy declare that God is' - what? 'Love.' Are there times that you question about God being love? Sure, everybody has questioned - everybody has times of - moments of doubt, despair, hard times. But imagine a time when nothing like that at all - nothing so remote as that will ever take place again. Just think of it: we are, right now, in the middle - probably not in the middle, probably closer to the end of the pre-advent judgment. It's not something you look forward to a hundred years from now or five hundred years from now, as people who wrote the book - two thousand years from now. No, it's here now.

We're almost at the end of it. Our names may be coming up today. Imagine that. We're almost concluded with the pre-advent judgment. Do you realize how happy we should be? It's not just a bunch of dry facts, this is where we're at.

We're at the very, very end of the pre-advent judgment. Wow, it's been going on for over 150 years so we know it won't be delayed forever. Thursday is entitled 'responsible assurance'. Psalms 96:11-13 is given for us to read where it says this: "let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; let the sea roar, and the fullness thereof. Let the field be joyful, and all that is therein: then shall all the trees of the wood rejoice before the Lord: for he cometh, for he cometh to judge the earth: he shall judge the world with righteousness, and the people with his truth.

" The reason all creation can rejoice is the fact that God Judges the earth - the world - as he does and he does it with righteousness and truth. Is that good news? Well, it depends. You often hear people say things like this: 'I can't wait for my day in court. I can't wait until I have the opportunity for my day in court so all the facts can come out and I will be vindicated.' You ever hear people like that? Sure. Now in one sense that should be our attitude - not that we can go to court and say we're innocent, but that we can go to court and it will be clear once and for all for all the inhabitants of the universe that we have been given mercy by the great substitute for our sinfulness.

That's what the judgment is all about, in one sense. That should be our attitude even though we can't clear our names, ourselves, we will end up being vindicated simply because we made the best choice in all the world: Jesus is my Savior. This is our day in court. Are we - are you well represented? Does the Savior of mankind stand in your defense? If so, then by all means you can say, like the lesson says, 'judge me, o Lord.' Judge me and you'll find me guilty but you'll also find me having on the robe of Christ's righteousness. Amen.

The outcome of the judgment has already been decided, as we said. Judgment is in favor of the saints. And why can we assume the role of being a saint? Well, it's not because of what we do but because of what Jesus has done for us. The judgment is God finalizing our choice. Think of it that way.

The judgment is God finalizing our choice and sealing it - sealing it once and for all forever. So another important question in all this is, if our choice is for Christ to stand for us in the judgment, what must we do? Is there any responsibility for us? Well, sure there is. And probably there isn't a better example than the old tried and true example of somebody going down the highway and pulled over by the patrolman for speeding and you go off to court and the judge just happens to be in a good mood that day and you just happen to take a liking - he takes a liking to you and he says, 'you know what? I feel good today. I'm going to grant you mercy and I'm not going to charge you anything for this ticket. You're free - go.

' Well, what does that freedom bring to you? Does it bring the freedom to go out and drive a hundred miles an hour again in a sixty mile an hour zone? Well, you have that freedom but how many times can you go back to court and the judge is going to say, 'well, I'll give you mercy another time and another time and another time.' No, being pardoned by Christ - being represented by Christ in the pre-advent judgment shows us that we have a responsibility to go out and live as he asks us to live. But the good news is we don't have to do that on our own power. In fact, we can't. We can't do it. So yes, knowing how you stand on the right side of the judgment should affect our lifestyles, but I have a suspicion - I have a suspicion that most of us wrestle with doubt as to where we stand in the pre-advent judgment - some of us.

We can understand all the facts that there are about this judgment and, boy there's a lot of good things to focus on - a lot of exciting things, but we also know that having this assurance should lead to a holier life and that's where the rub comes. While we may be doing some things better than we did when we first came to Christ, we know we're not doing everything right yet. We're still falling short and so how am I supposed to relate to this pre-advent judgment? And I think maybe it's helpful for us to step back for just a moment and take a broader look at this and maybe looking to Bible examples will be helpful likewise. Are there examples of any perfect people in the Bible? One and that's Jesus, right? There are no examples other than Jesus. Everybody else sinned.

Now, do we have the assurance from the Bible that many of these people that have sinned are going to be saved in God's kingdom? Yes, we have that assurance. I mean, think of it, even David, a man after God's own heart - did he really foul up big time? He even fouled up big time in the very last years of his life by becoming so proud he numbered Israel and thousands of people were killed because of his sin. So how do you - how do you balance all this? David was a man after God's own heart. That is, when it came to him, he repented sincerely. He truly repented of his sins and God accepted his repentance.

And so, his overall life was one of following God. Falling - getting up and following God - maybe falling again even at the end of his life, but getting up and repenting of his sins and going on to finish the work that God had given to him and there is laid up for him a crown in the heavenly kingdom. So sometimes I think even though David isn't our - he isn't our example that we keep our eyes focused upon - Jesus is our only example - but these are earthly examples that give us a broad concept of the walk of the Christian life - is if you sin, get up and repent of those sins and keep going and there is laid up for you a crown in the courts of heaven. Now, whereas on this topic, we want to give all the encouragement that we possibly can because we don't want to be - have anybody be afraid of the judgment so we want to give everybody as much encouragement as we can with all the wonderful facts. But we also need to be very honest with ourselves.

The pre-advent judgment is a very serious thing. It is a matter of life and death - no, it is a matter of eternal life and death. That which is going on right now is a matter of eternal life and death and so we better be as serious about what is going on right now as the children of Israel were serious about it on that day of atonement. And you say, 'well that's not fair, it was one day. Ours has been going on for over years.

Well, it wasn't just one day for the children of Israel, they had to confess their sins all year long. The judgment was just the final phase of seeing whether their sins would be completely blotted out and that's where we are. We sin, we confess our sins and now, in these last days, the sanctuary in heaven is going to be cleansed. The heavenly sanctuary is cleansed from all the sins of all of God's people and we stand as if we had never sinned once we have accepted Christ as our Savior. So take a look at this amazing teaching - biblical teaching - in the broad concept of what is taking place and we will find that - I don't think people with a death-bed experience kind of attitude back in Israel, 'well, I'll wait until the day of atonement and then I'll really get serious.

' I don't think it worked that way nor do I think it's going to work that way for us. 'Well, I think it's almost time for my name to come up so I'm going to get serious right at the end when I see all these laws being passed' and so on and so forth. It's not going to work that way. There has to be a trend of one person's life. And you know, I don't - I know there's going to be people making decisions in the last hour - and praise God for them, but that shouldn't include us.

We know we better make the right decisions right now while we're living in this pre-advent judgment. Well, let's see, we're running out of time here but I need to bring back to you this special offer today. It's offer #132. It's entitled 'case closed!' Free handout that's yours by calling 1-866-study-more - -866-788-3966. Alright, are you happy about the pre-advent judgment? Is it a positive thing? It is a positive thing.

Let us rejoice and be glad that we are right now involved in this judgment hour for as soon as it's over we look up and we see him, our Savior. God bless.

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