THE JUDGE OF THE LIVING AND THE DEAD
"He commanded us to proclaim him to the people, and affirm that he is the one who has been designated by God as judge of the living and the dead" (Acts 10:42, NEB).
In his discourse in the house of Cornelius, the apostle Peter referred to his risen Lord by the sobering title, "judge of the living and the dead" (Acts 10:42, NEB).
Three things emerge from this descriptive title: the authority for Christ's judgeship, the scope of His jurisdiction, and the relevance of this role to the plan of salvation. Jesus our Redeemer, Saviour, and Intercessor is also "judge of the living and the dead." There is no incongruity in this role. God has appointed Him judge. Christ's judicial appointment to the bench is consistent with the plan of salvation. His role as righteous judge and gracious Redeemer are inseparable. Christ is qualified to be the unerring judge of all, because God has chosen to "judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained" (Acts 17:31, NKJV).
Christ's jurisdiction as judge is all-inclusive. He is the "judge of the living and the dead" (Acts 10:42, NEB). This includes saints and sinners without exception. The fact that Christ was Himself human, and yet free from sin, makes Him the logical and rightful one to be judge of all humanity. "For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ: (2 Corinthians 5:10, NKJV). There should be no fear concerning the absolute justice of Christ's verdict. In His court there is never a miscarriage of justice. Everyone will receive what is due him, whether good or bad (see 2 Corinthians 5:10). Of that final day Ellen White writes: "Grace and mercy will then descend from the throne, and justice will take their place. He for whom his people have looked will assume his right,--the office of Supreme Judge."--Review and Herald, January 1, 1889.
My Prayer Today: Lord, I can always trust the justice of Your verdict. Cover me with Your righteousness as I face Your righteous judgement. Amen.