The question in the title of this study may sound like a dumb question to some Christians but to other Christians, it is a very sincere and valid question when you understand what they are actually asking. Some Christians wonder WHY there will be a DAY of Judgment if people are already PRE-judged so to speak the very moment that people die? In other words, the question that some Christians are asking is WHY do the souls of Christians go UP to heaven and the souls of the unsaved go DOWN to hell the very moment that a person dies when the actual Day of Judgment is not UNTIL the resurrection? To say this another way, it seems unfair to those who are asking this question for God to condemn the unsaved to the lake of fire BEFORE the day of the TRIAL or before the Day of Judgment.

The sound Biblical answer to this question is that the word “judgment” has more than just one meaning. And one of the meanings of the Greek word translated as the word judgment in Revelation 20: means PUNISHMENT. So the great white throne Day of Judgment is the Day of PUNISHMENT for the wicked sinners. In other words, it will be the day of EXECUTING the PUNISHMENT in the lake of fire.

Hell is NOT the lake of fire. Hell, from the time of the cross to the final Day of Judgment at the end of the 1000 year reign of Jesus, is the holding place for the wicked dead in the lower parts of the earth to await their resurrection.  And for the wicked dead in hell, on their day resurrection, it will be their Day of Judgment, or more specifically, it will be their day of PUNISHMENT in the lake of fire. The book of life will be opened and if their name is not found then their WORKS will be shown to them that they are worthy of the second death. Let us read some verses of Scripture so you can see this truth that Judgment sometimes meant PUNISHMENT straight from the Bible for yourself.

Ezekiel 30:19.  

“Thus will I execute judgments in Egypt: and they shall know that I am the LORD.”

Lamentations 4:6.  

“For the punishment of the iniquity of the daughter of my people is greater than the punishment of the sin of Sodom, that was overthrown as in a moment, and no hands stayed on her.”

Jude 1:5-7.  

“I will, therefore, put you in remembrance, though you once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. 

6.  And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day

7.  Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”

Psalm 119:84.  

“How many are the days of thy servant? when will you execute judgment on them that persecute me?”


To execute upon them the judgment written: this honor have all his saints. Praise you the LORD.”

Revelation 6:9.  

“And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: 

10.  And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, do you not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? 

11.  And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellow-servants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.” 

Revelation 20:4.  

“And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.” 

Jeremiah 23:5.  

“Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.”

2 Thessalonians 1:6.  

“Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; 

7.  And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, 

8.  In flaming fire taking vengeance on them, that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: 

9.  Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;” 

Micah 7:9.  

“I will bear the indignation of the LORD because I have sinned against him, until he pleads my cause, and execute judgment for me: he will bring me forth to the light, and I shall behold his righteousness.”

As you can see from the verses you just read that the word “judgment” can also mean the actual executing of the PUNISHMENT that is already WRITTEN in the Scriptures. The Bible teaches us that TODAY is the day of salvation. This means that our lives IN this PRESENT world are our TRIAL and our WORKS is the EVIDENCE that will either be for us to set us free or to condemn us to the second death in the lake of fire.

Jesus said that IF we CONTINUE in his word we will know the truth and the TRUTH will make us FREE. And the context is speaking about being free from sin. It is the SIN that condemns a person. But those of us who are IN Jesus Christ are NOT condemned because we have been given God’s GIFT of RIGHTEOUSNESS. And every time we confess of sins we are made PERFECT in the eyes of Almighty God. NOT because of our own works of righteousness but because of the righteousness of Jesus.

So then, the WORKS that we will be judged by is whether or not we are IN Jesus Christ to be cleansed of all our unrighteousness. We must REMAIN in Jesus in two ways. God’s best for us is that we overcome sin so that we do not sin anymore. And for most Christians that is a process that sometimes takes a lifetime to figure out how to accomplish that task. The second way is to always repent and confess our sins so that the blood of Jesus will cleanse us from all our unrighteousness.

Now, the purpose of this study is to answer the question or more specifically to answer the ARGUMENT given by Christians who believe that EVERYONE will eventually be saved. They argue that it makes no sense to them that people are PRE-judged BEFORE the Day of Judgment. But what they have failed to see is that our lives that we are living in this present world are our TRIAL so to speak. In other words, we are being JUDGED by every choice we make every moment of every day.

Jesus said in John 3:18 that we are condemned ALREADY until we BELIEVE.

John 3:18. 

“He that believes on him is NOT condemned: BUT he that believes NOT is condemned already, BECAUSE he has NOT believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

To say this another way, Almighty God CONCLUDED EVERYONE to be under sin and, therefore, CONDEMNED so that he could show his MERCY and his GRACE to make salvation EASY and EQUAL for every single person. Please read the following two verses of Scripture.

Romans 11:32.  

“For God has CONCLUDED them all in unbelief, THAT he might have MERCY upon ALL.”

That means that every single Jew was CUT OFF or THRUST OUT of the kingdom of God so that God could show his mercy to the Gentiles and to the Jews by establishing a NEW and a BETTER covenant in the shed blood of his Messiah, Jesus. And NOW, under the New Covenant, there is only one way to enter into the Kingdom of God. You MUST be BORN-AGAIN to become God’s WORKMANSHIP and NOT our own workmanship.

Galatians 3:22.  

But the Scripture has CONCLUDED all under sin, THAT the PROMISEBY FAITH of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.

The PROMISE is the gift of the empowerment of the Holy Spirit, the GIFT of RIGHTEOUSNESS, the gift of GRACE, the gift of God' MERCY, the longsuffering of God, the promises in God’s word, and everything we need to be PERFECT in the eyes of Almighty God so that he can give us eternal life in the world to come. But God does not FORCE anyone to believe and the Bible is very CLEAR on the matter that TODAY is the day of Salvation. So after a person DIES physically then today comes to an END. That means that at the point of death a person is either saved or they are not saved. There is NO praying for the dead. There is NO baptism for the dead. There is NO purgatory for the dead. There is NO so-called purging of sin in the lake of fire for the dead. There is NO HOPE for the dead IF they died while living in a lifestyle of sin.

For further study on this subject of WHY not everyone will be saved please read all the studies under the heading >>>WILL EVERYONE BE SAVED?<<<

Thanks for reading and may God bless you richly as you continue to seek the TRUTH of the WHOLE word of Almighty God.

Your brother in our Lord Jesus Christ.

Brother Mark.