B. The Two Resurrections
In the Gospel of John, Jesus states: “Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth – those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:28,29). In the last days, there will be two resurrections.
The First Resurrection
The first resurrection will be for those Christians who have already died. Then immediately following will be the taking up of those believers in Christ who are still alive. “Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air And thus we shall always be with the Lord ” (l Thess 4 : 17; see also 1 Corinthians 15:50-53). These events are all part of the first resurrection,The first resurrection will occur at Jesus Christ’s Second Coming: “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first” (1 Thess 4: 16).and will include all the saints (redeemed ones, believers) who have ever lived; this is the “resurrection of life” mentioned in John 5:29.
The Second Resurrection
The second resurrection will take place just before the Great White Throne Judgment (Rev 20:4-13). This second resurrection will be for all the rest of the dead who will be raised for the “resurrection to condemnation” (John 5:29).
C. The Judgment
Hebrews 9:27 states, “It is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.” This and other Scripture verses (Gen 3:19; 1 Cor 15:22 ; 2 Cor 5:10; Rev 20:13) make clear that there is one death, and then judgment for all.
There are no endless cycles of reincarnation , no earning the way to various levels of heaven by good behavior, no “holding places” of decision . Each person will die but once; and each person will then face judgment after his or her death.
Every person will face the almighty and all-knowing Creator God, Who will judge every life on its own merit. Just as there are two resurrections , there will be two judgments:
The Judgment of Believers in Jesus Christ
Believers in Christ will NOT be judged according to their sins. The judgment for sin that believers deserve, along with its necessary punishment, was already laid upon Christ at the Cross! Jesus Christ fulfilled the judgment and penalty for sin that should have been ours (Isa 53:5,6,10; John 5:24; 2 Cor 5:21). Repentance from sin and belief in Jesus Christ allow believers to receive this great salvation!
For the sins we commit in this life after we have come to know Christ as our Savior, we are convicted by the Holy Spirit (Rom 8:5- 13; Gal 5:16-25) and disciplined by the Lord (1 Cor 5:5; 11:32; Heb 12:7). When we repent and confess our sin to God, we are forgiven through Christ’s atoning blood – of the sins we commit (1 John 1:9).