The Great White Throne Judgment – What is it?

The Great White Throne Judgment – What is it? from Compelling Truth

In the Bible’s book of Revelation, the Apostle John is given visions that explain what will take place in the future. One of the visions John receives is recorded in Revelation 20 and concerns a judgment that will take place after Christ’s second coming.

After Jesus returns, the Devil is imprisoned for 1,000 years, and during that time Christ will rule as king upon the earth (a time that is often referred to as the millennial reign of Christ; cf. Revelation 20:1-6). Once the 1,000 years are completed, Satan is released, the last human rebellion against God is crushed, and Satan is consigned forever to what the Bible calls the lake of fire (Revelation 20:7-10).

The Bible describes what happens next: “Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:11-15).

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This event is often referred to as the Great White Throne Judgment. Revelation pictures Jesus as the judge over all the living and the dead, a role He predicted during His earthly ministry: “The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son” (John 5:22). It is the final judgment of God upon humankind. After this event, there will never again need to be a trial, and God will never again need to act as judge.

The prophet Daniel also wrote of this time in a vision he was given hundreds of years earlier: “As I looked, thrones were placed, and the Ancient of Days took his seat; his clothing was white as snow, and the hair of his head like pure wool; his throne was fiery flames; its wheels were burning fire. A stream of fire issued and came out from before him; a thousand thousands served him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him; the court sat in judgment, and the books were opened” (Daniel 7:9-10).

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