The following scriptures show that the judgment seat of Christ takes place in mid-heaven in view of both heaven and earth. The Father is still on His throne in the open heavens as Christ judges the saints and the nations.


"When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. "All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them (the individuals of the nations) one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats," Mt 25:31-32.
  1. The judgment of nations. These two verses and their context (Mt 25:31-46) present a scene of what is called "the judgment of nations." This scene, as in each of the individual scenes of Dan 7, does not present the larger, overall picture. Numerous individual throne scenes and related passages must fit into the larger more inclusive judgment scene described in the first chapter of this book, which include all the open heaven activities. When the heavens are rolled back the kingdom of the Antichrist becomes the kingdom of God for the long promised and public execution of God's wrath upon the earth and the direct rule of God through Christ and the saints.

  2. The judgment of nations, or individuals, or both? All nations, both Jew and Gentile, are here represented as being judged by Christ. However, this is NOT a judgment of "nations" as nations. Observe that the word for "nations" (ethne) is neuter while the word for "them" (autous) is masculine. Christ does not separate "nations" but "individuals." Christ separated the "goats" to His left (actually, still in their nations), while He separates the sheep to his right (into a special nation of elect, covenant people).

  3. The judgment seat of Christ. Again, the whole picture is not seen here in Mt 25:31-46. This scene is general in a number of ways. Yet it presents only one sub-general view of the activities of the judgment seat of Christ. This scene is as one slightly complex piece in a jigsaw puzzle, and is presented in a kind of parabolic form. There are perhaps two dozen or more similar scenes and passages supplying numerous details of the heaven standing open activities which are not included in this passage. Two of the major prophetic features missing in this passage are:

    1. There are three groups of people in the end, not two. This passage describes ONLY TWO groups: the "sheep" on the right, and the "goats" on the left. The group on the right, the "sheep" or the "righteous," are the same as "My brethren," and are the faithful saved. We may argue (hopefully, in the spirit of Christ) till kingdom come about who the "right" and "left" are in this passage. There are many such "two group" passages, and our theology will be greatly twisted if we do not interpret them correctly. Be assured, however, there are three groups in the end, not two: the faithful in the New Jerusalem, the lost in the lake of fire, and the nations of the unfaithful saved who will never enter the New Jerusalem or the lake of fire. Space will not allow discussion here.

    2. The 1,000 year reign of Christ and the saints, called "the day of the Lord," "Millennium," etc., is not provided for in this passage, Mt 25:31-46. It is implied in verse 34, but there are no nations, no peoples in the flesh, indicated in the passage.


      "For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Is it not even you in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ IN His coming?" I Thess 2:19.
  1. The judgment seat of Christ. This is a judgment scene where the saints will mutually bear witness to each other's good works and receive and welcome each other into the firstborn sonship of Christ, Lk 16:9. See also I Thess 3:8; I Cor 9:23; Heb 11:4; Rev 14:13; John 4:36-38; II Tim 2:10. Christ will not reward the saints until the heavens are rolled back, which is the first phase of his glory coming, Mt 16:27; Mk 8:38; Lk 9:26.

  2. The coming of Christ. Christ will come publicly in great power and great glory. It is THEN that He will reward His saints and judge the individuals of the nations, Mt 16:27; Mk 8:38; Lk 9:26; Mt 25:31-34. This is the presence (parousia) of Christ, not His absence (apousia). Parousia is a composite word: para eimi, means to be beside, or to be present. The judgment seat of Christ is at or after the revelation of Christ, Lk  17:30; Rom 2:5; I Cor 1:7-8; II Thess 1:3-7-10; I Pet 1:13. See my book, "IN THE LAST TRUMP," that the revelation of Christ, the day of the Lord, the day of Christ, The thief coming, the glory coming, the body presence, etc., of Christ all refer to the same public return of Christ. There are still two phases of Christ's return, with the judgment seat of Christ between them while the heavens are standing open.

  3. IN the coming of Christ. The judgment seat of Christ is BETWEEN the two phases of Christ's glory coming. "IN" the coming of Christ He will sit on the throne of His glory (His judgment seat) to reward the saints AND judge the nations -- judge the saints AND individuals (Gk) of the nations at the same time.


      "So that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness BEFORE our God and Father IN the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ WITH all His saints," I Thess 3:13.
  1. Before the throne of God. Christ will present His bride (the elect covenant people) before the Father's throne AFTER He has judged and rewarded them. God has committed this judgment to Christ, John 5:22. Christ will not present the saints before the Father UNTIL He judged and rewarded them. It will be proper protocol for Christ to present the saints in full dress, in their Sunday best, fully rewarded, properly ranked, polished, shining, PERFECT before the Father. This will require Christ to judge and reward the saints PRIOR to presenting them before the throne of God for His blessings. In fact, we will shortly see that Christ will confess the faithful saved and deny the unfaithful saved in the presence of the Father and the angels when He comes in glory, Mt 10:32-33; Lk 12:8-9; Rev 3:5; Mk 8:38; Lk 9:26; II Cor 5:10; Rom 14:10; Dan 7:9-10; et al.

  2. Blameless in holiness. Christ will present His bride blameless in holiness before the Father's throne in His coming. The current ministry of Christ through the Holy Spirit and through His intercessory work is to sanctify the bride in order to present her to Himself blameless in holiness, "unblamable and unreproveable," Col 1:22; Eph 5:26-27. This again makes it imperative that Christ judge and reward the saints PRIOR to presenting them before (in the presence of) the Father IN HOLINESS WITHOUT REBUKE.

  3. In His coming (parousia). Christ will present His bride before the Father in His coming. The emphasis here is on the "presence" of Christ. This will not be done in heaven with the heavens closed and Christ absent (apousia) from the earth -- the opposite of present (Parousia). It must be done with the heavens standing open with Christ, the saints, the throne of God, and the angels all in view, in order for it to be in Christ's parousia.

    This judgment of many, many hundreds of millions (even billions) of saved people is done before the throne of God and before many, many hundreds of millions of angels. This does not at all describe an earthly Jerusalem bound judgment. It will necessarily be in the heavens. It will necessarily be viewed by heaven and earth and even by those in hell, Mt 26:64; Mk 14:62; Rev 1:7, plus the devil and his angels. Again, this will be done IN the sphere (within the process, within the time frame) of Christ's coming, not BEFORE nor AFTER, but IN the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. See Rev 7:9-17 and 15:1-4 below.

  4. With all His saints. Christ will present His bride blameless in holiness before the Father in His parousia with all His saints. Christ must be present in the air in the vicinity of the earth, but still before the throne of God with heaven standing open, and all within the framework of Christ's coming with His saints.


      "Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless IN the coming (parousia) of our Lord Jesus Christ," I Thess 5:23.
  1. Sanctify you wholly or completely. An additional feature applicable to all these verses is that this requires a special resurrection of the faithful saved, which special (quality) resurrection constitutes a reward, Phil 3:11 (7-14,21); I Cor 15:1-2; Rom 8:17,23-25; Lk 16:9-12; et al.

  2. Body, psyche, and spirit. The concern of this verse includes the whole person of each individual in the bride of Christ, each covenant person. The whole person quantitatively is sanctified qualitatively. This requires the judgment seat of Christ prior to the saints being presented before the Father, because the whole person is presented before the Father unrebukeable in holiness.

  3. Preserved blameless. The faithful covenant people (the bride of Christ, found only in true local churches in this age) will be preserved and presented blameless in the entirety of each individual before Christ and the Father within the sphere of the coming of Christ.

  4. In the coming (parousia) of our Lord Jesus Christ. The saints will be preserved and presented before the Father in the coming of Christ. This will be brought to pass in the framework of the coming (presence) with all His saints, not before or after His coming. We must include the revelation, the glory coming, the thief coming, and the body presence all in the same single phase return of Christ. See "IN THE LAST TRUMP" along with this book.


      "And now, little children, abide in Him, that when He appears (phaino, shines) we may have confidence and not be put to shame FROM (apo) Him IN His coming (parousia)," I John 2:28.
  1. The judgment seat of Christ. This verse requires the judgment seat of Christ where it will be determined whether we have complied with the requirement of abiding in Christ.

  2. Abiding in Christ. The bride of Christ will be make up of the faithful covenant people who abide in Christ, i.e., in a true local church in this age, Gal 3:27-29; I John 2:28. We abide or remain in Christ by abiding in His love, which we do by keeping His commandments, John 15:1-11.

  3. When He shall appear. The word translated "appear" means to be manifested, signifying a public, open appearance of Christ, His glory coming, His revelation when every eye shall see Him. Every eye will see Christ and His angels descend from the throne of God bringing the disembodied spirits of the dead saints, I Thess 4:13--5:9. They will see the throne of Christ's glory set up in mid-heaven, Mt 25:31-32. They will see the saints glorified, ascend into the air and stand before the throne of Christ and be judged, I Thess 4:13-18; 2:19-20; 3:13; I John 2:28.

  4. Put to shame from Christ. Those who have NOT remained or continued in Christ (a true church) will be put to shame FROM Christ -- not be ashamed before Christ, but put to shame from Christ. The unfaithful saved will be left among the nations or cast into that outer darkness among the nations when Christ returns and sits on His judgment seat.

  5. In His coming. This refers to the judgment seat of Christ which will take place in the air (in mid-heaven) when Christ sits on the throne of His glory in view of all the earth, and while the heaven is still standing open and the throne of God is still quite visible. Let it be emphasized that the judgment seat of Christ will take place in the body presence (parousia) of Christ, which must therefore be in the observable vicinity of the earth, that it will be public for it is in the manifestation of Christ (I John 2:28), and it will be in the open heaven before the throne of God, I Thess 3:13.


      32 "Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven.
      33 But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven."
Mt 10:32-33.
      "8 Also I say to you, whoever confesses Me before men, him the Son of Man also will confess before the angels of God.
      9 "But he who denies Me before men will be denied before the angels of God,"
Lk 12:8-9.
      5 "He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments, and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life; but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels," Rev 3:5.
  1. Christ will confess the faithful saved and deny the unfaithful saved while sitting on His throne -- His judgment seat. Precisely how this will be done is not clear. The unfaithful saved are represented as being left on the earth in some passages when Christ return, (Mt 24:36-41; Lk 17:30-36; I Thess 4:13-18). While other passages address the unfaithful saved being put to shame FROM the Lord into outer darkness when Christ returns, Mt 22:11-13; 25:14-30; I John 2:28; Rev 2:22. Still these and many other passages (many of them) state that the unfaithful saved must endure the plagues or vials of God's wrath and other bitter features of God's wrath on the earth immediately after Christ returns, Rev 22:18; 18:4; 16:15; 3:10; Lk 21:34-36; 12:46-48; Mt 24:36-51; 18:1-35.

  2. Christ will confess the faithful saved and deny the unfaithful saved before (in the presence of) the Father. This will be done evidently while the heavens are standing open, in view of every intelligent creature in the heavens, on earth, and in hell. Again, the judgment seat of Christ will evidently be in the open heaven in the near vicinity of the earth.

  3. Christ will confess the faithful saved and deny the unfaithful saved before (in the presence of) the angels. At least every saint (covenant person) appears to have one or more guardian or ministering angels, Heb 1:14; Mt 18:10; Acts 12:15; Dan 12:12; Rev 1:20; 2:1. It appears that in view of this ordained ministry of the angels and their immense interest in the same, Christ will make this confession and denial before the angels at the same time He does so before the throne of God.


      14 "Now Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about these men also, saying, "Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints,
      15 To execute judgment on all, to convict all who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him," Jude 14:15.
  1. Christ comes with the saints TO JUDGE. This is a judgment scene, not of the saints being judged but of them judging others. Christ and the saints have been given authority by the court of heaven to take the kingdom from the Antichrist and his forces and to possess the kingdom, Dan 7:18, 22, 26-27; Rev 11:15. Christ and the saints have been given authority by the Father through the court of heaven to execute God's wrath upon the Antichrist, upon his forces, and upon the inhabitants of the nations for the 1335 days of Dan 12:12.

  2. The saints are judged and rewarded FIRST. We can rightly judge that the saints will themselves be judged and rewarded before they judge others. This also says the saints are judged in the open heavens BEFORE they descend with Christ to execute this order of the court of heaven.

  3. The unfaithful saved will be ruled over by the faithful saved. The faithful saved are NOW qualifying to be adopted into Christ's firstborn sonship to be joint heirs together with Him, Rom 8:17-30; Heb 12:23; James 1:18; Rev 14:1-5; 2:26-27; Ex 4:22-23; Gen 27:27-37. See also the many, many references to the firstborn, birthright, firstling, firstfruits, and firstripe. All these refer to the firstborn sonship of Christ for which we are qualifying in this life.