Updated: Oct 11
I talk with a lot of different people about various aspects of the Catholic faith regularly. There's one thing in particular many seem to have an ignorance of, and that's the two fold judgement. We all know that when we die there will be a judgement, or at least we should know. Well, if you don't know here it is. Immediately following your death comes The Particular judgement. In an instant, your soul will be whisked before The Judgement Seat of God where you will come face to face with Jesus Himself.
Now, on one hand, how awesome is that! Your going to see God right before your very eyes. Imagine being in the presence of perfect love. It's something we should all be looking forward too. However, this is not a social visit. This is an extremely serious situation that will decide the fate of your eternal soul. It's not something to be taken lightly. Another very cool aspect of your Particular Judgement will be that you'll finally see your Guardian Angel. I for one have an awful lot to thank him for.
According to the many mystics and visionaries of the church, your Particular Judgement will be very much like an Earthly court hearing. Your Guardian angel as the defender, the devil as the prosecutor and God as The Judge. An entire account of your life, down to the most minute detail will be presented. You, in turn, will have to give an account of the good and evil done, thus allowing God to render a just judgement. Here's the weird part, should your judgement be eternal damnation, you will have such a complete understanding of how your sins offended God, that you'll be in complete agreement with that judgement.
You see, God doesn't send us to Hell, we send ourselves to Hell, due to our negligence's and offenses. God offers us endless opportunities throughout our lives to turn from our sinful ways and live a life that serves Him, not offends Him. We are in complete control of our eternal destiny.
Let's not forget about the second part. At the end of the world, every person that has ever lived will be resurrected. Jesus will come down from Heaven in triumph to render a final judgement. Now, you've already been judged, you know your fate. So this next judgement, called The General Judgement, will show the justice and mercy of God for all to see. This means that all of the things you did during your life will be on display for all to see. Oh Boy!! That could be embarrassing.
Think of all the skeletons in your closet, the ones you're hiding from the people closest in your life. They will know about all of them at The General Judgement. As it is written, we will be separated, the damned on one side, the saved on the other. We will be able to see each other and everything that we've all done. Awkward! The reason for this is to show Gods' mercy and justice. For those who've sinned against God but turned their lives around, repented and made amends for their sins, will be of the Heavenly elect. While those who refused Gods' graces and the countless opportunities to make amends, will be lost forever.
So as we continue to do the things that we know are questionable and hope we don't get caught, remember, it will all be brought to light one day. If knowing that God sees all, and that you'll have to answer to Him directly, doesn't strike fear into you not to do these things, perhaps knowing that you'll have to look your loved ones in the face, and acknowledge the things you've done behind their backs, will.
Peace, good and blessings.