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God’s Word for You

Luke 19:27 a warning

by Pastor Timothy Smith on Tuesday, January 22, 2019

27 But as for these enemies of mine who did not want me to be king over them—bring them here and kill them in front of me.’”

Jesus ends his parable with a horrifying act which nevertheless must have been a common sight in ancient times. A new king would call forward all his opponents after a rebellion or, in this case, all who opposed his accession to the throne, and demand that they be executed: “Kill them in front of me.” In the parable, we see the point. The king cannot reign when there are opponents who would murder him and replace him. He had to end their rebellion and at the same time stop the thought of rebellion from entering the hearts of anyone else.

The spiritual meaning is also clear, but a somewhat different picture. We need to be careful not to superimpose the story of the parable onto the reality of Judgment Day. God will not kill anyone on Judgment Day. Quite the reverse: everyone, believer and unbeliever alike, all mankind from all of human history, will all be raised from the dead, “some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt” (Daniel 12:2). The few (millions?) who are still alive on earth when the end comes will be joined by the billions upon billions who have gone before, from Adam’s generation to Noah’s generation to our own, we will all be there. We will see God in person, those who have believed and those who have not. We will all hear his words—terrible to some, victorious to others—as our names are read from the two books of God’s account. We with faith in Christ are in the Book of Life. What about the rest? “May they be blotted out of the Book of Life and not be listed with the righteous” (Psalm 69:28). There is another book (Daniel 7:10). What is in that other book is what God will use for the unbelievers, who will be judged “according to what they had done as recorded in the books” (Revelation 20:12). When the Bible talks about the saved, it is always with the Book of Life (Philippians 4:3) or “the scroll of remembrance” (Malachi 3:16). The others are blotted out from that book (Exodus 32:33), which is a reminder that God wanted all to be saved (he had their names before him), but some did not believe, and so their names were removed. Their sins are all recorded in books that will then be opened and read in judgment on them on Judgment Day. But for believers, there will be no public shame; our sins will never be published. “You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea” (Micah 7:19).

The souls of those who rejected Christ in unbelief have been punished in hell since their bodies died. This is what Peter meant when he said, “The Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold the unrighteous for the day of judgment, while continuing their punishment” (2 Peter 2:9). After the resurrection, their bodies (reunited with their souls) will be punished forever. They will never be completely destroyed since the Bible says that there will be no end to their pain (Isaiah 66:24).

This parable stands as a warning for everyone who questions Jesus as the Savior and as God. The Bible is clear and simple with its explanation: “Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son” (John 3:18). Praise God and give him glory in your life today because your name is written in the Book of Life. He has given you faith, and enabled you to embrace your Savior like a newborn infant embracing its mother. Trust in your loving Jesus always.

In Christ,
Pastor Timothy Smith

Pastor Tim Smith

About Pastor Timothy Smith
Pastor Smith serves St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in New Ulm, Minnesota. To receive God’s Word for You via e-mail, please contact Pastor Smith.


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