Hebrew Roots/The original foundation/Judgment Penalties

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The word BEMA which is used for the Judgement Throne of Messiah at the end of the age, comes from a root word 'to step'. It means literally 'foot-room', and was used for a raised platform that was reached by steps. The word became used for a tribune in the law courts of Greece, one for a defendant and the other for the accuser. This word was applied to the tribunal of a Roman magistrate or ruler and this was its usage at the time of Paul. It is used here for the divine tribunal before which all mankind are to hereafter stand. (Vine's N. T. Expository Dictionary)

In the parables, Y'shua speaks of the angels going forth and first removing the wicked, together with all who offend and practice lawlessness. Then the righteous which are left shall shine forth in the kingdom. Matthew 13:43, 49; Daniel 12:2, 3


The heaviest judgment comes upon those with the greatest responsibility. The judgment is made according to the measure of light given, and he who stood in the presence of the Almighty Himself as the "anointed cherub" will incur the greatest punishment, together with those of the angels who defected with him.


1. Satan, the adversary, and his angels are "cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever." Revelation 20:10

2. The False Prophet and the Beast also will be "cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone" Revelation 19:20

3. Together with them will be all those who received the Mark of the Beast, for them there is no forgiveness, for they will have become completely possessed so as to be completely taken over by Satan. This will be a more pervasive form of possession than any human has before this experienced, and it will involve complete responsibility in worshiping Satan. In worshiping the AntiMessiah (the Beast), they will have entered into the most blasphemous union possible against God.

"If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark on his forehead or on his hand, he himself shall also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out in full strength into the cup of His indignation. He shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment ascends up for ever and ever; and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and who receives the mark of his name." Revelation 14:9-11


Their judgment is to be 'tormented' and that 'forever and ever'. This condition of being in torment is stated literally in the Greek as being "to the ages of the ages". And more intensity is decreed on those humans who take the Mark, His wrath is poured out "in full strength" and "they have no rest day or night". No respite is given them from the torment of the lake of fire.


Confirmed Unbelievers, Hypocrites and Backsliders 1. Unbelievers This category of unbelievers is those who have refused the knowledge of Yahweh in that they, by choice, do not wish to retain Him in their consciousness, but rather love unrighteousness and they have utterly rejected Him. Their hearts are manifest by their fruit. Matthew 7:15-20

"Do you not know this from of old, since man was placed on earth, that the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite is but for a moment? " The heavens will reveal his iniquity, and the earth will rise up against him. The increase of his house will depart, and his goods will flow away in the Day of His wrath. This is the portion from God for a wicked man, the heritage appointed for him by God" Job 20:4-5; 27-29

"The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God." Psalm 9:17

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness" Romans 1:18

2. Hypocrites Y'shua said, "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in."

"Therefore you will receive the greater condemnation." Matthew 23:13, 14b Hypocrites bear the responsibility of all those that they lead astray through the false image they have presented.

"How can you escape the condemnation of hell?" Matthew 23:33 Because, knowing the truth, they have lived a lie, and are held accountable for the truth they knew but did not do, because their heart was evil.

3. Backsliders Y"shua had the most to say in warning people against falling away into unrighteous living, as also did the apostles. For if we have fully known the truth, and turn away, we make void the gift of eternal life.

"For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the age to come, if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame." Hebrews 6: 4-6

and again, "For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. "For we know Him Who said, 'Vengeance is Mine, says Yahweh'. And again, 'Yahweh will judge His people'. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God." Hebrews 10:26-27; 30-31 from Deuteronomy 32:35-36

Y'shua spoke the parable of the tares in regard to the wicked who would be severed from among the righteous at the end of the age . This included all those who cause offenses and those who practice lawlessness (those insubordinate to His laws) "the tares are the sons of the wicked" Matt.13:28, 38 "the harvest is the end of the age" (verse 39) "as the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so will it be at the end of the age" (verse 40) "The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness, and will cast them into a furnace of fire. There will be weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth." Matthew 13:41-42

Note those included in this category of judgment - "the wicked" Matthew 13:49-50

"those causing offenses" Matthew 18: 6-9 "wrong done to the brethren" Matthew 25:31-46 & 1 Corinthians 3:17 "evil servant" - backslider Matthew 24:48-51 & 1 Corinthians 6: 9-10 "false prophets" Matthew 7:15-20 "false teachers & "hypocrites" Matthew 23:13-14,33 & 2 Peter 2: 1, 3 "the unrighteous" Luke 12:45-46 & Romans 2: 8 "the lawless & insubordinate" Luke 19:14-27 & 2 Peter 2: 9


The scriptures speak of the judgment of hell-fire (Gehenna) as being destruction, perishing, and complete physical, spiritual and eternal ruin. ("Fear Him who has power to destroy both body and soul in hell" [Gehenna]) Matthew 10:48

"The destruction of transgressors and of sinners shall be together and those who forsake Yahweh shall be consumed (KALAH) " Isaiah 1:28 (The verb here has the sense of 'to end' or to 'be finished'.)

Note the three categories - confirmed sinners, transgressors and those who forsake Him after knowing Him. For this, they have prepared themselves, they are "the vessels of wrath who have fitted themselves for destruction" Romans 9:22 (literal translation)

Notice the statement - "weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth" (Matt.13:42) - great remorse and anguish at their fate.

This awesome fire that will consume and annihilate the wicked is called the "second death" (Rev. 20:14; Rev. 21:8). It is the final death from which there is no resurrection! This death is the penalty of sin (Rom. 6:23). It is the death Y'shua the Messiah came to spare all of us from! As Malachi wrote: "For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: .. And you shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I do this, says Yahweh of hosts" Malachi 4: 1, 3.


"For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature those things contained in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves; which shew forth the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and between themselves their thoughts accusing or else excusing them in the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Y'shua the Messiah. . ." Romans 2:14-16

This will be a time of judgment for the nations (the Gentiles who did not know the truth of salvation in Messiah)-- but not necessarily a time of total condemnation, depending of their individual works, whether they were good or evil.

"When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats." Matthew 25:31

The dividing factor will be as to how they received His people, based on the principle which He taught His disciples that "He who receives you receives Me, and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me." Matthew 10:40

These are people who had not come into the new covenant, but will be judged according to their actions toward His people, and if they are "goats", they will incur judgment. Matthew 10:11-15; 25:45-46

Y'shua said of this time of judgment, "The men of Nineveh will rise up in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonah; and, behold, a greater than Jonah is here. The queen of the south [queen of Sheba] shall rise up in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here" Matthew 13:41-42 & Luke 11:31-32

In another place, "Then He began to upbraid the cities wherein most of His mighty works were done, because they repented not: Woe unto you, Chorazin! woe unto you, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I say unto you, it shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the Day of judgment, than for you.

"And you, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shall be brought down to Gehenna: for if the mighty works, which have been done in you, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say unto you, that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for you" Matthew 11:20-24


One generation, one people, will actually condemn another. One will be judged much more harshly and severely than another. Because the sins of some are greater than the sins of others. That is the principle Y'shua is stating here. Some will be judged and condemned, while others will receive comparatively light punishment.

Some had a greater measure of light than others and therefore had greater privilege. Therefore the greater responsibility. Not all sins are sins unto death. 1 John 5:16-17

Those who have "sinned unto death" and who have given themselves over to gross evil and wickedness, or committed the "unpardonable sin" of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, will be cast into the lake of fire (as in 'judgment on the wicked' section on pages 1 & 2). They fall into the category of those whose names were not written in the Book of Life. Revelation 20:15

But those who did not know the truth of salvation in Messiah, and who did not do works warranting the judgment of Gehenna shall remain alive in the new earth's nations, learning the ways of righteousness. Revelation 21:24, 27


1. The Unprofitable Servant Y'shua told a parable of the unprofitable servant in which He distributed talents/money to His servants. Illustrating Himself as going away on a journey and returning to receive a return from those in whom He had invested His gifts, He metes out judgment to those who did nothing with what He gave them. The unprofitable servant who did not use the 'talent' given was challenged that he could have invested it, if he was unable to do anything himself. This could have a parallel to praying or giving money into the ministry for those who either do not feel able, or who do not equip themselves to bring forth some fruit for the kingdom. Matthew 25:14-30 & Luke 19:12-26

2. The Unprepared Servant Y'shua told the parable of the Wedding feast and of the guest who came unprepared. The host of the wedding in Israel would always provide the appointed wedding garments for the guests. So there was no excuse for this guest to come into the wedding without the appropriate attire. Matthew 22: 1-14 & Luke 14:16-24 He has prepared garments of righteousness for us which we need to 'put on' so we can attend the Marriage Supper of the Lamb.

There is no excuse for not preparing oneself spiritually. Y'shua said that many who were not originally called would come into the kingdom, but "the sons of the kingdom" will not be "chosen", although they were the ones originally called. Matthew 8:10-12; 22:4,5; Luke 14:18-21

Pre-occupation with the things of this life will cause a person to lose their inheritance in the kingdom of God. Matthew 13:22 Y'shua also told the parable of the ten virgins, five of which were foolish in that they also did not prepare themselves for the Bridegroom's coming. They were 'virgins', waiting for the occasion, but, they did not have sufficient oil to light the way.

The wise virgins had a double portion of the Spirit in their lives, sufficient to go out and meet the Bridegroom when called. The others had enough for their immediate needs, but not enough to be ready for the Marriage of the Lamb. Revelation 19:7-8

By the time they had gone to get the necessary 'ministry' to fill their vessels, they were too late to be included. Matthew 25:1-13 A mediocre level of spirituality, even though without sin, will not be sufficient to enable us to meet Him as our Bridegroom.

3. The Foolish Servants Paul speaks of those who lose their reward because they have sown to the flesh, both in their own and in other's lives. Wood, hay and stubble are substances which will be consumed in the fire of His judgment. That which is centered on earthly things will not stand in the judgment and their works will be burnt. Colossians 3: 1-4; Hebrews 12:25-29

That which has been done in the the flesh and is centered in the things of this world, will not warrant a reward.


1. Y'shua said to take the talent from the unprofitable servant that he had been given (Matthew 25:28-29; Luke 19:24-26). He calls him a "wicked" and a "lazy" servant, and he is stripped of what he had received and cast into "outer darkness" but He does not condemn him to gehenna, the lake of fire. There is also "weeping and gnashing of teeth" - the unprofitable servant was not expecting to reap this judgment. Matthew 25:30

2. Y'shua said in the case of those who were unprepared, that they were excluded from the Marriage Supper and not included with His covenant people. They lose their spiritual inheritance and those without the garments are cast into outer darkness.

3. The foolish servants are saved, but, "so as by fire" - there is a purging, purifying work of judgment to be effected in their lives, so that they are not condemned with the unjust. 1 Corinthians 11:31-32

These servants who were called to the kingdom and lost their inheritance have their portion with nations in the new earth and not in the City of the Lamb, for they were unworthy.

"For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind. But be glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create: for, behold, I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy . I will rejoice in Jerusalem and joy in My people;" Isaiah 65:17-19

"And the nations of those that are saved shall walk in its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory and honour into it" Revelation 21:24

"No more shall an infant from there live but a few days, nor an old man who has not filled his days: for the child shall die an hundred years old; but the sinner being a hundred years old shall be accursed" Isaiah 65:20

"For as the new heavens and the new earth which I will make shall remain before Me, says Yahweh, so shall your descendants and your name remain. (an eternal inheritance for Israel) And it shall come to pass that from one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, all flesh shall come to worship before Me," says Yahweh. And they shall go forth and look upon the corpses of the men who have transgressed against Me. For their worm does not die, and their fire is not quenched. They shall be an abhorrence to all flesh." Isaiah 66:22-24; Revelation 22:15

"Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city." Revelation 22:14