the case may demand. Furthermore, the "judge" of a beauty contest does not condemn or damn
of the contestants who fail to receive the highest recognition. He merely renders a "verdict" as towhom, in his estimation, is "the fairest of them all"! In keeping with these principles the Hebrew wordMISHPAT indicates merely the rendering of a judicial verdict or decision, favorable or unfavorable, asthe case may warrant. The Psalmist spoke of this when he said, "For promotion cometh neither fromthe east, nor from the west, nor from the south. But GOD IS THE JUDGE: He putteth down one, andsetteth up another" (Ps. 75:6-7). The positive aspect of judgment, the rendering of a
verdict,is implored of the Lord by David in Ps. 43:1-2: "JUDGE ME, O God, and plead my cause against anungodly nation: for Thou art the God of my strength."The word "judgment," moreover, signifies even more than the rendering of a verdict. It includes theidea of a
, as well as the decision based upon that trial. And this is true not only in the Englishword judgment, but also of the Greek word it translates in the New Testament. In the Greek NewTestament there are a number of terms used in connection with the judgments of God. Each is basedon the "KRI" stem of "KRINO" meaning "I judge." There is the word KRISIS from which we derive our English word "crisis" and which carries basically the same meaning as our English word "crisis." Itdenotes an experience and time of crucial testing, and has reference to the experience oneundergoes out of which a decision, or judgment, is made KRIMA relates to the condemnation of the
. KRIT'ES and KRIT'IKOS ("critical" in English) both speak of the judge and his decision, whileyet another Greek word, KRIT'ERION, refers to the basis for his decision or sentence (as "criterion" inEnglish).
PAST TIMES OF JUDGMENT
The first great judgment (trial and sentence) was at the beginning, in Eden, when the whole humanrace, as represented in its head, Adam, stood on trial before God. The result of that trial was theverdict - Guilty, disobedient, his sin being worthy of punishment and correction; and the penaltyinflicted was death - "Dying thou shalt die" (Gen. 2:17, margin). And so it is that "In Adam ALL DIE" (ICor. 15:21-22). Most have never thought of this as a JUDGMENT DAY for mankind, but such it was,for there was a trial, a sentencing, and the sentence was, and is, as we all know, fully carried out.That trial time in Eden was the world's FIRST JUDGMENT DAY, and the decision of the Judge hasever since been enforced. Again we read, "The wrath of God IS REVEALED from heaven against allunrighteousness of men" (Rom. 1:18). This wrath of God which is revealed against the ungodliness of men may be seen in every funeral procession. Every tomb and every grave stone is a witness to it.Dread diseases such as syphilis, gonorrhea, herpes and aids are a part of it. It is felt in every acheand pain, in every tragedy and sorrow, in every frustration and torment, in the ignorance, poverty, andfear men experience daily - all of which are the results of the first trial and sentence - the righteoussentence of God, that we are unworthy of the life and blessings originally provided for man whenobedient and walking in union with God. But, praise the Lord! mankind is to be recovered from thesentence of that first trial, for the penalty was not to be inflicted forever, only until the Redeemer should come and offer Himself as one sacrifice for ALL. And so it is written of Jesus: "Now we knowthat this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of THE WORLD" (Jn. 4:42). "The bread which I will give isMy flesh, which I give FOR THE LIFE OF THE WORLD" (Jn. 6:51). "God sent not His Son into THEWORLD to condemn THE WORLD; but that THE WORLD through Him might be saved" (Jn. 3:17)."And He is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of THE WHOLEWORLD" (I Jn. 2:2). "God was in Christ, reconciling THE WORLD unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation" (II Cor. 5:19)."Therefore
by the offence of one JUDGMENT CAME UPON ALL MEN to condemnation;
by the righteousness of One THE FREE GIFT CAME UPON ALL MEN unto justification of life" (Rom.5:18). Thus we see the scope of man's first judgment and the provision for his release from thepenalty inflicted. Bless His name!