Judgment Day Separations And Surprises

Matthew 25:31-33


When we take the Bible, in hand and open it, one of the first things to be noticed is that it is divided into two great books, for example here at the proper place ,On the one side, is  the Old Testament, the old covenant.  On this side, the New Testament, the new covenant.


The Old Testament is further divided into ages, into time periods.  The was the Edenic  period where Adam and Eve the first to dwell upon this earth did so in a paradise in fellowship with their Creator.


There is the Antediluvian time period,  a era before the time of the great flood.  There is the Patriarchal, and Mosaic time periods as well.  When we look at it closely in the Word of God, you will find that each one of them closes with a judgment.


This Edenic dispensation, time period, closed in death and dismissal and expulsion from the garden of Eden.  The Antediluvian time period closed with a great flood that destroyed the world.  The Patriarchal time period for the nation of Israel was characterized by judgment upon the Egyptians. And the Mosaic time period closed with the destruction of the Jewish nation  by the Roman Emperor Titus,   AD 70. 


The New Testament likewise is divided into time periods the whole is normally referred to  as “The Christian Dispensation”   Our age is often referred to as the age of grace …. the church age…. the age of the  gospel, and the age of regeneration but this age likewise shall close with a great judgment, and separation of the good and bad.

32And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:

 Matthew 25:32


“And He shall separate them one from another”   A few years ago  while sitting in a hospital waiting room, I noticed a card, I picked it up and began  reading:  This was printed one side of that card:

Are you pestered by sincere people who are forever wanting to save your soul, giving you tracts, inviting you to church, to accept Christ as your Savior, talking about salvation, are you forever pestered by that kind of people?” 

And I thought, yes, I’ve been there, and done that, as I go out knocking doors and inviting people to come  to church to hear about the Lord,

 Are you pestered by those people?”  Well, it will not be long until these kind of people won't be allowed to bother you any longer. These people will no longer around. There's a place for them.  There won't be any of them allowed in hell,  to bother you any longer no not one.


I had not particularly considered that before but there won't be anybody after the great separation inviting, encouraging you to come to church or  to obey the gospel of Christ,  or to save your soul.  These people will no longer around. There's a place for them. There won't be any of them allowed in hell, not one.   No faithful Christian’s left”


The great separation.  Down here in this present age, we all live together, but our Lord  in His parables spoke of  the world as a field; the wheat and the tares were growing up together. Another as a great sea, and the fish good and bad living in the seas together.  Other times the Lord would speak of the world  as a great field, where the sheep and the goats are there, grazing together. 


But the day is coming, says our Lord, when there will be a great separation,  dividing of the wheat and the tares, and the tares thrown into unquenchable fire.  A division of the fish caught in the great net separated, the good and the bad.   And in the great judgment day, the sheep are separated from the goats. Matthew 25:32


Perhaps the most sobering thought of my life is the realization that at some future time  I must appear before Jesus in judgment and give an account of how I have spent every dollar,  spent my time upon earth and of how I have used my talents.


In listing events of the future about which there can no doubt,  judgment day is a certainty. It is one of the most certain teachings of the Bible.  The coming judgment day is as certain as the “Resurrection of Jesus Christ” from the dead. I have often tried to imagine how the apostle Paul felt as he entered into Athens Greece,  The Bible says that  “his spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry.” Acts 17:16 and he announced to these idolaters: &  Acts 17:29-31


29Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device. 30And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: 31Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.


udgment Day is as CERTAIN as is DEATH itself, and God has arranged warning signs along  life’s pathway to let us know that we must die. In Genesis chapter three after the transgression of God’s command in eating of the forbidden fruit we read concerning man’s future:   & Genesis 3:17-19


17And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; 18Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;  19In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.


The turning of the leaves each season, the aging of our physical bodies are but warnings that death is inevitable….  Death is certain

27And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: Hebrews 9:27


Death has reigned from the time of the Garden of Eden, From the time sin entered the world….. death has reigned making our world  one huge grave yard.  Every generation follows the path of their fathers. It is interesting to read of the genealogies recorded in Genesis chapter 5, their lives were very long, and we are amazed at how long they were here upon this earth. But there’s one thing we read concerning each of them, save Enoch,  their record closes with these words “and he died.


Judgment is as sure as death, because God has linked the two again Hebrews 9:27-28 

27And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: 28So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation. Hebrews 9:27-28     Death, man’s appointment, Judgment linked with the 2nd coming of our Lord Jesus Christ


The Gospel preacher who faithfully preaches the Word of God must also preach the impending  day of Judgment. Matthew describes this scene as spoken from the Lips of Him who holds the keys of death and hades   Matthew 25:31-34  hear it:


31When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 32And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 33And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. 34Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:


Since judgment is a certain event in every man’s future, I remind you that there will be a number of surprises that judgment day holds for many:


1st  Many will be surprised that the great  judgment has really arrived!  If the judgment should come today, even while we are at worship, most of us and all people living, would be surprised. All would easily admit that we believed judgment would come the Bible said it would come, but I’m certainly surprised that it would come today.


We read concerning the judgment that came upon those  of Noah’s day:  Matthew 24:35-39


35Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away. 36But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. 37But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. 38For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, 39And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.   “Caught by Surprise”!


Another judgment surprise will be the fact that there is an eternal existence of punishment.  Matthew 25:41

41Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into the eternal fire which is prepared for the devil and his angels:


It is not popular today to believe in an existence of eternal punishment called hell. Many feel that an eternal punishment is not conducive to their idea of God’s love. “God is love“, the Bible certainly teaches that.  But the Bible teaches just as surely that our Lord will come in flaming fire, taking vengeance on all who obey not the gospel, 

& 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10

7And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels,  8In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ:  9Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; 10When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.


 further believe that God has placed  a note of severity and fear in the gospel of Christ , and those who faithfully  preach the Gospel today will preach God’s wrath. Paul writing to the Corinthians stated:   2 Corinthians 5:10-11


10For 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. 11Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men;


When he preached before  Felix Acts 24:25

25And as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled, and answered, “Go thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee”.


A number of persons will be surprised to find that there are only two divisions in the judgment. Those placed on the Lord’s left hand and those placed upon the right. In America we have the great middle class, and many believe that they are not really good enough to be put with those on the right, but neither bad enough to be on the left, and therefore they will in some way get by the Lord in the  judgment to come. However according to the records given in the gospel accounts there shall only be two classes, Notice our text this morning  & Matthew 25:31-32


31When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 32And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:


Those who have not obeyed the Lord, but are simply sitting on the top but who are straddling the proverbial fence, will be place with those on the left. There is no middle ground. You are a Christian or a Sinner,  you are either saved or lost.


Many will be shocked to find that many members of the Lord’s church will be placed on left hand, and there appointed their portion with those lost.   It is possible for a member of the church to live as to be lost. The purpose of parable of ten virgins Matthew 25:1-13 is to show that it is possible that we may fail to keep our lamps trimmed and burning unto the coming or the bridegroom.  Notice these sad words

& Matthew 25:10-13


10And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. 11Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. 12But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. 13Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.


Every member of the Lord’s church is a minister, in the judgment to come there will be those who have not ministered faithfully: Again we read the words of Christ   & Matthew 25:42-46


42For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: 43I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. 44Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? 45Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. 46And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.


Will you be among the number who will be surprised when judgment comes?  There will be many who will be surprised in the number of separations.  The Bible tells us in Matthew 25:32

32And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats


Christ will be able to separate the ones who  died in innocent childhood, from those who died at a later age in life, in rebellion to His will, “outside of Christ”. “outside the fold of safety.   A  judgment day surprise for many will be that the most important  relationship in life is: “Am I In Christ”?  Only in Christ is there salvation.  

10Therefore I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory. 2 Timothy 2:10


We read this marvelous statement in Acts 4:12:

12Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.


The person who is in Christ has put on Christ (Galatians 3:26-27) and then must reproduce the life of Christ in his own life. Colossians 2:6

Think of what it means to be out of Christ. The accountable person who is spending his life out of Christ is wasting each of his days, because he is living that day for Satan.  And he is living that day in danger of eternal death without a Savior. Jesus is the only Savior of the world, Matthew 1:21, and He saves the body the church, Ephesians 1:22,  Ephesians 5:23.


Therefore a person who is out of Christ is outside the church and does not have  the promise of eternal salvation which is in Christ,  and must be separated with  those on the left hand who will be consigned to eternal punishment.


In the judgment to come, Jesus will separate the faithful Christian from those who lived like the world. In Galatians 5:19-21 we read  characteristics of some who will be lost.

19Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21Envyings, murders, drunkenness, reveling, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. 


Physical death is sad because it is a time of separation from love ones. The judgment to come is far sadder because it will be a time when those who die out of Christ will be separated from those who die faithfully in Christ.

13And I heard the voice from heaven saying, Write, Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from henceforth: yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors; for their works follow with them. Revelation 14:13


It is sad, when people allow money, worldly recreation, and the cares of this world to keep them separated from God, because these are the things that will cause many to hear on the day of judgment:   Matthew 251

41Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: