So that a man shall say, Verily there is a reward for the righteous: verily he is a God that judgeth in the earth.
For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.
He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.
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Full text of The Settling Day
A farmer, who prided himself on being an atheist, wrote to the editor of a newspaper:
Sir, I have been trying an experiment. I have a field of corn which I plowed on Sunday, I planted it on Sunday, I did the cultivating on Sunday, I gathered the crop on Sunday, and on Sunday I hauled it into my barn. And I find that I have more corn per acre than has been gathered by any of my neighbors during this October.
The farmer’s sneer is obvious. By deliberately choosing to do all the work connected with his cornfield on the Lord’s Day, he had challenged God to express disapproval by giving him a disappointing result. Instead, he had reaped an exceptionally good crop.
A Crucial Footnote
But the editor of the paper drew attention to one overlooked fact in a footnote:
God does not always settle His accounts in October.
This helps explain the present prosperity of many who defy the holy Word of God. The truth is that the present world and the life of the individual on earth aren’t adequate for the display of divine righteousness. God does not always settle His accounts in October!
He sometimes meets sin with His obvious displeasure and gives those who obey Him a quick reward for their faithfulness. But this is by no means always the case. The conclusion to draw is, not that God is indifferent to sin and that His government of men is a sham, but that the reckoning day is future.
The Scriptures give repeated testimony that a judgment day is coming when “God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil” (Ecclesiastes 12:14). Every seeming injustice will be set right, “so that a man shall say, Verily, there is a reward for the righteous: verily He is a God that judgeth in the earth” (Psalm 58:11).
I am not assuming that, like the farmer, you have any wish to challenge or defy God. But does the judgment day scare you? Remember, there will be no mercy but strict justice. Sins that demand punishment will then certainly be punished.
God must and will judge your sins. Does this concern you? Are you prepared to face God’s just judgment and punishment for them?
God offers you an alternate. In love He sent His Son into the world, so that He could take your place and be punished for your sins. He offers His Son as your substitute. He came and died for you. He suffered to pay for the sins of each one who trusts in Him as their Saviour. Have you accepted Him as your substitute? If you have, you no longer face judgment.
What good news! How good to know that God has acted. He has Himself provided the needed sacrifice and has dealt with our sins on the ground of it. The only way to personally benefit from God’s plan is to receive it by faith in Christ as applicable in all its glorious results to oneself. “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life” (John 3:36). And such a one will never come into judgment.
Other than this great redemption plan, there is no hope for anyone. Sooner or later every unrepentant sinner will be broken by God. The settling day will come.
God “hath appointed a day, in the which He will judge the world in righteousness” (Acts 17:31).