Not much else to report this evening. I will close with a quote from the book "God Has Spoken" by Bray-
"Finally, in reconciling the world to himself, the Father has given the world meaning by appointing it for judgment. At first sight, this may seem strange to us, because to our minds judgment sounds negative and destructive. We imagine that when God judges the living and the dead the world as we know it will be destroyed. There is an element of truth in that, but it is not the whole story. To be slated for judgment is to be given a sense that our lives have meaning. Judgment is possible only when there are criteria by which it can take place. If it is true that we have all fallen short of the glory of God and deserve condemnation, this demonstrates that what we do and have done matters to God. There are standards that we are suppose to respect and live up to, even if we cannot. Our lives have meaning and purpose that can be understood only by considering the mind of the Judge. As Cyprian of Carthage explained,
How great will that Day [of judgment] be when it comes! The Lord will begin to count up his people and to recognize what each one of them deserves. . . he will send the guilty to Gehenna. . . but he will pay us the reward of our faith and devotion. How great will be the glory, and how great will be the joy, to be admitted to see God!
That Judge is our heavenly Father. It is his responsibility to pronounce sentence on us and determine what punishment we must suffer for our sin against him. That punishment is death, because to sin against God is to sin against the source of our life and cut ourselves off from it. The Judge cannot waive the sentence, because to do so would be to accept that there is nothing he can do to put right the wrong that has been done. We sometimes do this in human life because we recognize that there are some wrongs that can never be put right and that forgetting about them is the only practical way we can move forward. But God has the power to put things right and does not have to content himself with a second-best solution to an otherwise insoluble problem.
Our Judge has not only decreed the sentence of death but has also carried it out by sending his Son into the world to take our place on the cross and pay the price for our sins. The punishment we deserve has fallen on him and has therefore been paid in full-there is no outstanding debt that we have to make up at some future point. It is in judgment that the work of the Father is seen at its deepest level. By judging the world the Creator give it its value and sets a price on it. By sending his Son to pay that price the Father redeems the world and restores it to what it ought to be. Only the Creator has the authority to judge in a definitive manner, and only he has the capacity to redeem what he has judged. Creation and redemption meet in the last judgment, and it is here more than anywhere else that we see how the two are reconciled in the overarching work of the Father. . ." pg. 173, 174 "God Has Spoken" by Gerald Bray