The Bible is fraught with verses both in OT & NT about all of our deeds bring brought to judgment, along with every secret thing, both good & evil. Solomon’s Ecclesiastes ends with such a verse as a final warning to mankind. Peter exhorts us to pass our time of sojourning in fear, knowing that God is not a respecter of persons.
Truthfully, there are still besetting sins and worldly temptations that I succumb to, even willfully.
In light of the judgment seat and His forgiveness of our sins, do our “forgiven sins” still bring judgment?
IF our sins are forgiven, forgotten, and cleansed, how do we deal with such verses?
I am afraid of being cast out ‘weeping and gnashing my teeth.’
The verse you quoted in 1 Pet 1:17 tells us to conduct ourselves in fear during our stay on earth. And so we should. But what does that mean? Does it mean to be terrified or scared of our Father or something else? The Greek word is:
phóbos - meaning 'fear, terror, reverence, respect, honor.' (Complete Word Study Dictionary)
So you'll see it can mean terror in some contexts and it can also mean reverence and respect in others. Context is important. Who it is written to is important. The unbeliever should have terror if they knew what is to come and don't accept God's offer of salvation. For the believer, it is an awesome reverential fear at the majesty, sovereignty and character of God. That's why the Amplified Bible translates it as:
"...you should conduct yourselves with true reverence throughout the time of your temporary residence..."
The enemy loves to cause fear. He loves to get people doubting God, His love and salvation. It keeps even those that are saved from being fruitful. But God doesn't lead His children that way. Even His discipline of His children (and we all need that from time to time!) is done in LOVE (Heb 12:6). That's why, after saying God is love, John writes (from the Amplified Bible):
1Jn 4:18 There is no fear in love [dread does not exist], but full-grown (complete, perfect) love turns fear out of doors and expels every trace of terror! For fear brings with it the thought of punishment, and [so] he who is afraid has not reached the full maturity of love [is not yet grown into love's complete perfection].
William MacDonald in his Believers Bible Commentary writes on this verse:
"Because we have come to know God's love, we have no fear of perishing. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear. It is His perfect love that casts out our fear. I am assured of the Lord's love first of all, because He sent His Son to die for me. Secondly, I know He loves me because He indwells me at the present moment. Thirdly, I can look to the future with confidence and without fear. Truly, fear involves torment, and he who fears is not made perfect in love. God's love has not been allowed to operate in the lives of those who are afraid of Him."
An illustration of fear vs love
Maybe an illustration might help. In New Zealand we have a lot of farms. We have even more farmers. We have even more sheep! We have fences to keep the sheep in and use dogs to drive the sheep where we want them to go. It is a system based on fear. The result is that the sheep are timid and fearful.
But note... This is NOT the eastern method or mindset and it is NOT what Jesus had in mind when He said that He is the 'Good Shepherd' and spoke of His relationship with His sheep. The eastern Shepherd loves and cares for his sheep and his sheep know this! So fear is not required to drive the sheep for they follow him, knowing that he protects and provides for them. Barking dogs, fences and fear aren't required in the Good Shepherd-Sheep relationship!
SC, you believe in the Lord Jesus. He is your Shepherd. Should we walk with Him in a deep holy reverence? Absolutely! Should we walk close with Him and confess our sins when required? Absolutely! But I pray that His perfect love will cast out your doubts and fear and that you will know that all of your sins (and mine thankfully) were placed upon the One who was nailed to the cross and He paid for them all. The bema seat of Christ (which is the judgement that believers stand before after the Rapture) IS NOT FOR YOUR SINS (God has already dealt with that!) but a judgement of your works since becoming a Christian (1 Cor 3:13). It is also not about salvation, but is for rewards in the life to come (1 Cor 3:14-15). Fear not. If you believe and trust in Him SC, you will not be cast out.
Joh 6:37 All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.
Hope it helps you. God Bless : )
Related Series Posts
- Does the Christian play an active or passive role in displaying Christ's character?
- Are all believers disciples?
- What is blasphemy of the Holy Spirit?
- Does each member of the bride have to make herself ready through righteous acts?
- Is the Christian life easy or hard? Or... Does being a Christian make life easier or harder?
- Why should our gospel be Christocentric?
- When were the disciples born again?
- Why can't I receive the Holy Spirit?
- Has the sinful nature been totally eradicated within the believer? Or do we have one nature or two?
- Will believers give an account for every careless word spoken?
- Where is the sinful nature and what is the soul/heart?
- Confusion over forgiveness
- Can I be forgiven of things that couldn't be forgiven under the Old Testament law?
- Is it God's will that we are always healed from any sickness?
- Is tithing commanded for the churches today?
- Should we be keeping the feasts of the Lord now?
- Is it ever ok to lie?
- What did Paul mean by saying he carried the marks of Jesus in his body?
- Was Paul being 'legal' in Acts 16 and 21?
- Was it a sin for David to have multiple wives?
- Should we pray once in faith and believe we have it or pray repeatedly?
- Does God want to financially prosper all Christians?
- Was the Red Sea 'baptism' full immersion?
- Repentance and confession for a Christian - one time or many?
- Can a Christian commit a sin that leads to death?
- How can I undo the sin unto death!
- Spiritual Gifts And John 20:22
- Has water baptism ceased? Did Spirit baptism replace water baptism?
- Are believers now 'Israel' and commanded to keep the feasts?
- Who do we pray to? Jesus or the Father?
- Why Did God Give The Law?
- Why Should We Try To Be Good?
- Will God make a way for me?
- Will God save my family?
- What does it mean to worship in spirit and truth?
- I'm fearful of being cast out at the Judgment!