Judgement Seat of Christ - Love


This treatise/vignette is to discuss one of the many facets to the Lord’s Judgement. This is my explanation of the Judgement Seat of Christ in regards to Love.


This little “picture” attempts to describe what will happen when we stand before Him..


We will come before Jesus and He will ask us “ Did you learn to love while you were on earth?” As we go to answer, He will turn to our spouse - in my case Lori and ask her “Did Monty love you and lay down his life for you as I laid down my life for the church?”  Note: “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her” Eph 5:25-26 (NIV)


She will answer and then He will turn to my family and ask the same question and then turning to other relatives and friends, the same question will be repeated. We will not be given an opportunity to answer for ourselves. Our ability to Love will be answered by those closest to us.


For many this will be a shock as they are under the illusion that we will be mainly judged on what we have done for Christ. (Remember this treatise on Love is only one facet of the Judgement Seat of Christ.) There are many parts to it. The Bible talks of 1 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.” 1 Cor 13:1-3 (NIV)


One of the many reasons we are here on earth (and there are many); is to learn to Love. Loving is foreign to us and we basically start off life as selfish and as we grow and mature we learn to lay our lives down and Love others. Getting married really helps us to learn to put others first and having children adds to that process. As we go through life, there are many times the Lord allows someone to touch our life and gives us an opportunity to practise “Love”. Sometimes it is a friend, neighbour, boss, etc who grates on us/rubs us the wrong way; maybe it is the driver of the car ahead of us in traffic and we are given an opportunity to choose to Love or not.


If we think of learning to Love as one of the main reasons for being here on earth - then perhaps we will treat situations differently. A good principle is that after an “event” is to “debrief” - That is to have a quick look at what we did well and what we can improve on. Businesses do this continually so they can improve. For ourselves to do this after an encounter is wisdom so we can see how to improve in regard to Loving.


I'll tell a story on Lori (my beautiful wife) and myself. Back when we were first married, one day Lori and I got into a little "tiff". I can't even remember what it was about, but I do remember that I was right! We were laying in bed but not speaking to each other. Have you been there and had this happen to you? Well, in the middle of my self-righteous attitude, the Lord intervened. I remember so clearly the thoughts that He placed in my mind. He was upset that I was not loving my wife. I explained to Him that she was the one who was wrong and that I was right and couldn't He see that? It was so clear that Lori was wrong and that I was justified in not giving in. He then clearly made it known that I was guilty of stopping the flow of Love and that made me in the wrong. He was not concerned about who was right, but that love had been stopped. He then told me to apologize to her. I gasped and said "Me!, she is in the wrong and needs to apologize to me". He then told me that He was holding me responsible because I had allowed Love to stop flowing between us. I pondered these things for awhile and then apologized to my wonderful wife. She melted. She then asked my forgiveness and Love was restored. It is not so important as to who did what to who first, as it is to see who allowed love to stop flowing. Jesus wants His love to flow between us with those around us, and especially to our loved ones.


The first place to practise and to learn to Love is at home. I am afraid there are many who look good on the outside but at home (where the real you shines through), still need a lot of work. Many are more interested in helping others than in loving their spouse. I remember an incident in my life where I was praying and waiting upon the Lord. As I came into His presence I asked what He would like me to pray about. I heard in my spirit - “go help your wife downstairs”. Quickly I responded - “Get behind me, Satan.” I was in the presence of the Lord and felt this thought was a distraction to get me to abandon my time in the Lord. Again I waited on the Lord and heard the same request. I then realized it was the Lord and went downstairs and asked Lori what I could do - and she said “the dishes”.


There is a lesson here and I think there are many who need to get “their house in order” before they go out “to save the world”. There is a place for “saving the world”; but I think Jesus already did it once and that was enough. There will be times when He will have us lay down our lives for others. But there are too many times when we lay down our families for others, unrequested.


1 Here is a trustworthy saying: If anyone sets his heart on being an overseer, he desires a noble task. 2 Now the overseer must be above reproach, the husband of but one wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect. 5 (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God's church?) 1 Tim 3:1-5 (NIV) The KJV uses “ruleth” and the NIV uses “manage”. I personally like manage. It is easier to be a ruler than a manager. Most rulers do not understand their divine purpose is to assist their  people. It is harder to manage people and a good manager is someone who people feel Loves them and wants the best for them. A good manager is hard to find. Also, I believe it is hard to find ones who have learned to Love. If that is part of our purpose here on earth than it makes sense the Lord would put us in situations where we can be exercised in Love. He is precious in the sense that He gives us opportunity to grow in Love. We might not like it - “Why is that person so irritating?. I remember a situation my wonderful wife was in, where it really showed us this principle.  She was going to College and had this instructor who was so irritating. She was very frustrated with his teaching style and there was a lack of learning taking place. She did not know what to do and as she complained to the Lord, He laid it upon her heart to pray for him.After a while, she noticed changes and they were for the good. A lesson was learned here - that to choose the way of Love helps us and helps the person we pray for.    

 

Again, this is only one portion of the Lord’s Judgement. There will be much more and it will all be good. I remember one time when I was worried about standing before His Judgement Seat. I was concerned that I hadn’t measured up and I would be found lacking. As these fears were pounding against my soul, He came close and asked what I would do if He walked physically into my room now. I said - “Jump up and throw my arms around you”. He then said ” so how do you think my Judgement will be different? “