When most Christians hear the word, “judgment”, they immediately conjure up images of God’s wrath falling upon the Earth with a great outpouring of fire and brimstone; or, maybe something in terms of a severe punishment brought upon an evildoer who has wronged them.

But actually, this is not judgment. This is punishment weighed upon a guilty individual or nation AFTER a judgment is rendered.

In a normal court of law (especially in America), there is a judge and a jury. In other countries, there might be a single magistrate, king or dictator that serves as both judge and jury. In either case, an alleged wrongdoer must go before the court in order to be judged. And this action of judgment usually involves both the accused and the accuser PLEADING for their case.

That’s what judgment is: the action of “pleas” being heard in a court setting and then guilt or innocence being applied to the accused.

So, in that sense, judgment is a GOOD thing! The process administers justice.

In fact, in America, the symbol of “justice” is a blindfolded lady holding a pair of scales in her hand. It indicates that, in its perfect form, evidence is to be “weighed” and judgment is to be rendered equally (without bias) to all individuals regardless of race, religion, creed or sex. In other words, if applied correctly, judgment should be “righteous”!

Well, God IS a RIGHTEOUS judge! And He applies justice as both judge and jury without partiality and in total integrity, truthfulness and perfection. He even acts as His own lawyer pleading His own case! And through it all, He never makes a mistake!

It brings to mind an interesting judgment of a king which took place in the days of Daniel:

“Belshazzar the king made a great feast to a thousand of his lords, and drank wine before the thousand. Then they brought the golden vessels that were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem … They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone.” (Daniel 5:1,3-4)

“In the same hour came forth fingers of a man’s hand, and wrote over against the candlestick upon the plaster of the wall of the king’s palace: and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote.” (Daniel 5:5)

“And this is the writing that was written, MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN.” (Daniel 5:25)

“Then the king’s countenance was changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his loins were loosed, and his knees smote one against another.” (Daniel 5:6)

Can you see this man … this king … coming under judgment with such fear and trembling that his knees were knocking together?

“It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” (Hebrews 10:31)

And he hasn’t even been told what his “crime” is yet!

“Then was Daniel brought in before the king. And the king spake and said unto Daniel … I have even heard of thee … that thou canst make interpretations, and dissolve doubts: now if thou canst read the writing, and make known to me the interpretation thereof, thou shalt be clothed with scarlet, and have a chain of gold about thy neck, and shalt be the third ruler in the kingdom.” (Daniel 5:13-14,16)

“Then Daniel answered and said before the king, Let thy gifts be to thyself, and give thy rewards to another; yet I will read the writing unto the king, and make known to him the interpretation.” (Daniel 5:17)

As a side note, the church would be further along today in maturity and spiritual health had they not sought after modern-day celebrity prophets and apostles (so-called) to give them a “prophetic word” or “lay hands on them” or provide them with musical, smoke-filled entertainment that has been substituted for a true time of worship. Oh, that all of those ministers would have had the mindset of Daniel! Instead, the modern-day “pop” church is full of ravenous wolves whose only object is to shine forth in prideful prophesies and pseudo-miracles for the earthly rewards of fame and fortune! But that’s another subject.

Back to Daniel who said to the king of Babylon:

“O thou king, the most high God gave Nebuchadnezzar thy father a kingdom, and majesty, and glory, and honour … But when his heart was lifted up, and his mind hardened in pride, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and they took his glory from him: And he was driven from the sons of men; and his heart was made like the beasts, and his dwelling was with the wild asses: they fed him with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven; till he knew that the most high God ruled in the kingdom of men, and that he appointeth over it whomsoever he will.” (Daniel 5:18,20-21)

After speaking this, Daniel reveals Belshazzar’s crime to him:

“And thou his son, O Belshazzar, hast not humbled thine heart, though thou knewest all this; But hast lifted up thyself against the Lord of heaven; and they have brought the vessels of his house before thee, and thou, and thy lords, thy wives, and thy concubines, have drunk wine in them; and thou hast praised the gods of silver, and gold, of brass, iron, wood, and stone, which see not, nor hear, nor know: and the God in whose hand thy breath is, and whose are all thy ways, hast thou not glorified” (Daniel 5:22-23)

Now comes the righteous judgment (i.e. decision & sentence) handed down by God through Daniel’s interpretation of the message on the wall recorded in Daniel 5:26-28.

MENE:  God hath numbered thy kingdom, and finished it.

TEKEL:  Thou art WEIGHED in the BALANCES, and art found wanting.

PERES:  Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.

And here comes the punishment (i.e. the carrying out of the sentence), meted out by God Himself:

“In that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain. And Darius the Median took the kingdom, being about threescore and two years old.” (Daniel 5:30-31)

In our present day, we are surrounded by evil and evildoers seemingly wreaking havoc upon the Earth at will, with absolutely no justice being served at all … let alone punishment. As Christians, many of us cry unto the Lord daily for Him to punish (even slay) the wicked from among us!

But this author would submit that maybe this is a time of ongoing judgment (in the best sense of the term), rather than of punishment! The Preacher said:

“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven” (Ecclesiastes 3:1)

The Preacher also knew that…

“…whatsoever God doeth, it shall be forever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it, that men should fear before him.” (Ecclesiastes 3:14)

And lest we get on a high horse for being a Christian during this season, let’s remember Peter’s admonishment to the Body:

“For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?” (1Peter 4:17)

All that being said, this author believes that the world (including the church) is now in a season of judgment; but, believing also that “pleading” is an essential part of that judgment process! Without it, there can be no “weighing of the balances”.

It’s as though God is saying to all peoples of the Earth during this time in particular:

“Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Isaiah 1:18)

So let’s examine this:

There are many Christians who attend City Council meetings that are “pleading” right now with those in authority to turn their ears to the truth when making regulations and policies that will affect their community.

Parents are now flooding PTA and School Board meetings “pleading” and reasoning with those who have the power to remove pornographic books from their grammar and elementary school libraries. They are desperately pleading with those officials to stop the “grooming” of their children by known pedophiles, drag queens and the LGBTQ community.

Believe or not, there are still righteous individuals who have not yet lost their sense of integrity who are pleading with their colleagues in all branches and levels of government (Federal, State, Local) to hear and act upon factual and reasonable arguments rather than emotional biases that stem from hatred and false accusations about those with whom they disagree.

It’s not about winning or losing in some political arena at this point. It’s about God PLEADING with those who are acting contrary to the love that He has for them! If you like, He’s giving them every opportunity to REPENT!

Because, as we’ve heard from the Preacher:

“…whatsoever God doeth, it shall be forever”!

When the “pleading” season is over (and it will be) and the balances are finally weighed, there’s only sentencing and punishment that remain for those who have blatantly continued in their stubbornness … even as Belshazzar continued in his own way though he knew the outcome of his own father’s actions.

“Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.” (Romans 1:32)

And here’s the deal … which is happening as we speak:

Only God knows the hearts of those with whom He is dealing. And every individual is on their own “timetable” with God. With some, God is showing great longsuffering and mercy. With others, there reaches a point where God weighs them in the balance and finds them “wanting”; because, His “spirit shall not always strive with man”. (Genesis 6:3)

Those that are found “wanting” face a horrible punishment IN THIS LIFE! And it is happening even now.

“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness” (Romans 1:18)

“Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse” (Romans 1:19-20)

“Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.” (Romans 1:21,25)

“Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts … for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another” (Romans 1:24,26-27)

“And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge (which is exactly what is happening today), God GAVE THEM OVER TO A REPROBATE MIND”! (Romans 1:28)

Once an individual has been given over to a reprobate mind, he becomes INCAPABALE of hearing (let alone agreeing with) the Truth!

Now you can maybe understand why, when you witness those who are so vile, no matter what anyone says to them, they stop their ears from hearing and either just ridicule the speaker (as was done to a retired Federal judge recently speaking at Stanford University) … or even worse … attack the individual and, by so doing, cause great physical harm or even death!

And the perpetrators of such crimes seem to have absolutely NO CONSCIENCE or REGRET in doing so! In fact, they’ll brag about their lawlessness!

The newsreels are full of such videos!

Unless the Lord in His sovereign Will grants the world a new season of repentance and renewal, this season of pleading God’s cause to the world will become dimmer until, finally, midnight comes with the revealing of the man of sin.

At that time, the man of sin will perform the works of Satan…

“… with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness IN them that PERISH; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.” (2Thessalonians 2:9-10)

“And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” (2Thessalonians 2:11-12)

This is so horrible and permanent, no wonder God is pleading so intently right now through those of us He has prepared for “such a time as this” (Esther 4:14).

So, let us make use of this “season” as the Holy Spirit pleads through us (within and without the Church) to repent and seek His face … working the works of Him who has sent us “while it is still day”; because, “the night cometh, when no man can work.” (John 9:4)