Let’s read 1st Corinthians 6:1-3: “Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints? Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Do you not know that we shall judge angels? How much more, things that pertain to this life” (NKJV). The apostle Paul was writing to address some very shameful behavior taking place in Corinth, for believers were taking each other to court and allowing unsaved judges to settle disputes between them. Before urging them to appoint fellow-believers to judge these matters (in verses 4-5), he rebukes them by reminding them that in a coming day they would “judge the world” and “judge angels.”

What does this mean? It means that when our Lord Jesus Christ returns to judge the world and angels, we will reign with Him and be associated with Him in these judgments. Listen to the Lord’s promise to believers in Revelation 2:26: “And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations.” In 3:21 He confirms this promise, “To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with ME on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.” And finally, in 20:4 we read, “And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them.” When Christ returns to earth in power and glory as the “King of kings, and Lord of lords,” we (the Bride of Christ) will be by His side sitting on thrones and judging the world! What a tremendous thought! We see in Matthew 25:31-46 that He will begin His reign by gathering all the nations before Him to judge them. He will be sitting “on the throne of His glory” and we will be there, associated with Him, judging those nations! In Revelation 20:11-15 we have the final judgment at the end of time. The apostle John says in verses 11-12, “Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it…and I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God.” We know it is Christ sitting on this throne, for John 5:22 tells us that “the Father judges no one, but has committed all judgment to the Son.” Yet as His bride, we will share that throne with him and thus here too we shall “judge the world.”

But we will also “judge angels.” In 2nd Peter 2:4 we are told that “the angels who sinned” are “reserved for judgment.” Jude speaks of this also in verse 6: “And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own abode, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for THE JUDGMENT OF THE GREAT DAY.” Revelation 20:10 refers to this event: “The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.” Though only the Devil is mentioned in this verse, we have reason to believe it will include all of his demons that followed him in his rebellion against God. When the Lord Jesus executes this judgment, we will be right alongside Him sharing in His dominion and the judgment of unholy angels.

Some have suggested another thought in connection with “judging angels.” The word “judge” in 1st Corinthians 6:3 can also mean “to rule or govern.” So, besides “condemning fallen angels in the judgment of the great day,” there may also be the thought of “ruling over holy angels throughout the Millennial reign of Christ and on into eternity.” Though we were “made a little lower than the angels” (see Psalm 8:4-5), in the coming day of glory we will be exalted above the angels and will exercise authority over them. But again, this is only possible because of our union with Christ. Ephesians 1:20-21 reveals that Christ has been exalted “far above all principality and power and might and dominion” (in other words, ABOVE ALL ANGELS!) and thus we too shall share that place with Him! Praise be to God!! (236.7) (DO)