We read the words of the Lord Jesus from the cross of Calvary in John 19:30, “When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.”  IT IS FINISHED!  This incredible statement assures us that the cost of our sins had been completely paid for by the Lord’s sufferings on the cross.  Because of that truth, we read in Romans 8:1, “Therefore there is now no condemnation at all for those who are in Christ Jesus.” (NASB).  1 Peter 2:24 tells us the Lord Jesus, “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.”  Our sins were placed on the Lord Jesus, Himself, and have been completely paid for by the Lord Jesus.  We read in 2 Corinthians 5:21 of the Lord Jesus, “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.”  Because Christ was made sin for us (more accurately, He was made our sin bearer), we believers on Him are made the very righteousness of God in Him.  Our standing before God is one of complete righteousness.  How great and effective is the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus for us!

After a believer dies, he/she will meet the Lord at the JUDGMENT SEAT OF CHRIST.  Let’s look at that.  2 Corinthians 5:10 tells us, “For we must all appear before the JUDGMENT SEAT OF CHRIST; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.”  What happens at this judgment seat?  Let’s read 1 Corinthians 3:11-15, “For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.”  It is important to see here that is the believer’s WORKS that are judged at this judgment seat of Christ, not the believer, himself. 

The Lord will evaluate every single work we have done in His name and determine if it was done according to His leading and in order to honor Him.  If so, He will give rewards for each work done.  However, we might seem to work for the Lord, but in reality, we are working in order to be seen, in order to be appreciated, in order to be highly esteemed, etc.  It is possible to do a good thing for the wrong reason.  For those works, there are no rewards.  1 Corinthians 3:8 tells us that, “…every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.”

Does the Lord never judge the believer for his sins?  NO.  The Lord judged His Son for our sins and there is no judgment for us.  However, in His limitless mercy and grace, the Lord may ‘discipline’ us for our sins while we are still on the earth.  Hebrews 12:6-8 tells us, “For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.”  The word ‘chasteneth’ is also translated ‘instructing’ (2 Timothy 2:25) and ‘teaching’ (Titus 2:12).  While we will never receive the condemnation or judgment of the Lord, we may very well receive His discipline.  True discipline is given to teach us to cease from sin.  It is not God’s wrath in action.  It is His love in action!

What are we believers instructed to do when we sin?  1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”  When we are convicted about the sins we have committed, how gracious is the Lord to allow us to confess that sin to Him.  He will forgive us and cleanse us from the unrighteousness of that sin.  (CC)  (503.2)