Getting Ready for the BIG TEST

Few of us enjoy tests. I am supposed to be on spring break right now. I am supposed to be enjoying a little time of mental relaxation, unbending my tired mind so that future studies will be more effective. But instead, I am thinking about the upcoming microbiology test. It kind of hangs over my head, and is there in the back of my mind. Even when I try to think of other things, it won’t go away. I feel stress because I don’t want to fail….because I know I need to study more….because I want to pass the test, and I don’t want to retake the course. This stress can have the positive effective of helping me decide what is important and what is a waste of time. Simply put, it can help me prepare. The other day one of my professors reminded the class what was going to be on the exam. He told us what would be covered and what kind of questions would be on the test.

As I sat here and reflected on this I thought of several things that Jesus said. Right now I am thinking about a little test with small consequences, but he spoke of a test of much greater import: the judgment day. If people don’t enjoy thinking about midterms, they certainly don’t want to think about a day when they will stand before their maker. But I can’t help but see an interesting connection. I could ignore all those nagging thoughts about an upcoming test on malaria and fungi, and then fail the test when it came because I failed to prepare. Ignoring the upcoming test would be academic suicide. Ignoring the judgment day is spiritual suicide. Like my microbiology professor, Jesus has given us some advance warning about what is going to be on the big test. So I thought I would share a few of the things that Jesus has given us about the coming judgment:

John 5: 26-28 “For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man. Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice.”

Matthew 12:35-37 “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things. But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”

John 3:16-17, 36 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”

Revelation 20:11-15 “Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.”

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