In my last article, The Investigative Judgment, I stated that it pays to have an open mind concerning the actual meaning of the 2300 days prophecy. I can see the value of the 2300 days prophecy when it comes to predicting the first advent of Jesus Christ, but the significance of the year 1844 leaves many unanswered questions in my mind. But the main point of the article was to focus on the meaning of the judgment in relation to the gospel of Jesus Christ. The point of all scripture is to make us wise unto salvation.
“But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus” (2 Timothy 3:14-14, KJV).
Many Adventists believe that the sanctuary message, along with the day of atonement (judgment) represent the core message of Adventism. This is correct only if the doctrine is interpreted in the light of the free gift of salvation that is guaranteed to those who trust in the merits of our crucified savior–Jesus Christ. I also said that gospel Adventism takes nothing away from the traditional doctrines of Adventism, rather the gospel gives them life and meaning apart from the fear based focus on perfectionism.
The sanctuary message represents the entire plan of salvation including the day of judgment. To be certain, All of Christendom agrees that Christians face a future day of judgment:
“For 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” (2 Corinthians 5:10, KJV).
The judgment is a central pillar of Christianity, because it establishes the necessity of the gospel. Either we will appear before God clothed in our naked and filthy human righteousness or we will appear before God clothed in the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ. The righteousness of Christ covers our imperfections and is the only way for human beings to be declared perfect before a Holy God.
The doctrine of judgment points us directly to the need to be justified by the person and work of Jesus Christ. Without the judgment, there is no need for the plan of salvation and the gospel of Jesus Christ. Genuine Christians look to the judgment with confidence that they already have the final verdict–“Righteous by Faith in the Blood of Jesus”.
Jesus said clearly: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life” (John 5: 24, KJV).