Fear of Judgment?

 In Catalyst

 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. (1 John 4:18, NIV)

When I was a kid, I was a bit leery of Jesus’ return.  I know that sounds weird, because Jesus is anything but scary.

In my comic book collection I had several of those Chic Tracts.  Do you remember those? They were evangelistic cartoon booklets intended to lead the reader to Jesus by scaring the Bejebus out of them!  They worked.  One of them, called “This Was Your Life,” had a man die and go to God’s judgment seat – then had his life shown on a big screen for all the world to see.  Even as a kid, I wasn’t sure I wanted my life to be the feature film in heaven.

As John points out above, my fear was misplaced. As a Christian, I had no need to fear judgment.  As I’ve experienced more and more of God’s love in my life since then, that fear has been driven out.

But another reason for my angst was simply a misunderstanding of the Scriptures. Many of us who read the Scriptures don’t really grasp what God has to say about judgment and reward.  For the next two weeks in my new sermon series “Rewarded” we’ll be discussing this.

This week (“A Big Misunderstanding”) I’ll talk about the four biggest misunderstandings we have on the rewards awaiting Christians in heaven. If you need encouragement in life, make sure you’re with us Sunday.

Fear not!