The Judgment Seat of Christ is where Christians will have their works judged by the Lord. It has nothing to do with our sins, since Christ has paid for them and they can be held against us no more.
The word for “judgment seat” in the Greek is bema, meaning the place where the judges stood at the athletic games. If during the games they saw an athlete break the rules, they immediately disqualified him. At the end of the contests, the judges gave out the rewards.
Paul gives us another picture of the judgment seat of Christ when he compares our ministries with the building of a temple.
If we build with cheap materials, the fire will burn them up. If we use precious, lasting materials, our works will last and we will receive a reward. If they are burned up, we lose the reward, but we are still saved “yet so as by fire.”
Verse for today: “According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise master builder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon” (1 Corinthians 3:10).
Also consider: 1 Corinthians 3:11-15; 6:19-20; 9:24-27; 2 Corinthians 9:6; Matthew 16:27; 2 John 8; Revelation 22:12.
Action assignment: Did you ever participate in a sports event and find yourself unprepared? Or have you ever started a building or handcraft project and realized you lacked the skill or adequate materials to get the job done? How did you feel at the time?
You may have been able to keep your failure a secret. When Christ returns, none of us will have that luxury—the books will be open. Ask the Lord to help you keep a strict account of your life so that you will not be “disqualified” at the Judgment Seat of Christ.
WARREN W. WIERSBE