What is the "Great White Throne Judgment"?

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What is the "Great White Throne Judgment"?

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While it is a phrase that doesn’t actually occur in the Scripture, “the Great White Throne Judgment” has become a way to describe this time (which is described in Revelation 20:11-15 Revelation 20:11-15 [11] And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. [12] And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. [13] And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. [14] And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. [15] And whoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.
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) where the Being who is judging those who stand before Him is described as occupying a Great White Throne.

When Christ returns to earth to begin his 1,000-year reign, those "who are His" at His coming (those who know, obey and follow Him now), and those who have died in the faith will be changed into spirit and will reign with Christ for 1,000 years (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 [13] But I would not have you to be ignorant, brothers, concerning them which are asleep, that you sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. [14] For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. [15] For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain to the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. [16] For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: [17] Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. [18] Why comfort one another with these words.
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, 1 Corinthians 15:50-52 1 Corinthians 15:50-52 [50] Now this I say, brothers, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither does corruption inherit incorruption. [51] Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, [52] In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
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, Revelation 20:4-6 Revelation 20:4-6 [4] And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to 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 on their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. [5] But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. [6] Blessed and holy is he that has part in the first resurrection: on such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.
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). This is referred to as the first resurrection.

Revelation 20:12-13 Revelation 20:12-13 [12] And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. [13] And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.
American King James Version×
describes the events of a second resurrection, or a general resurrection of the dead. At this time, all of those individuals who have ever lived but did not understand, or never had the opportunity to know Jesus Christ—or the teachings of God—will be resurrected to physical life and have a lifetime to learn.

They will get the opportunity they never had to learn the way of God.

As they live their lifetime, God is watching. His kings and priests are teaching and helping these individuals to understand. During this time, and even now, Jesus Christ keeps a “book of life” which is referenced in Revelation 21:27 Revelation 21:27And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defiles, neither whatever works abomination, or makes a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life.
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and numerous other locations, which contain the names of those individuals who will receive eternal life. Those whose names are blotted out will receive eternal death (Revelation 3:5 Revelation 3:5He that overcomes, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.
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, Exodus 32:31-32 Exodus 32:31-32 [31] And Moses returned to the LORD, and said, Oh, this people have sinned a great sin, and have made them gods of gold. [32] Yet now, if you will forgive their sin--; and if not, blot me, I pray you, out of your book which you have written.
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).

This Book of Life is opened during the time of the Great White Throne Judgment, and those individuals will ultimately stand before God as their lives are weighed and measured in accordance with the standard of Scripture. Figuratively, God will sort the sheep from the goats (Matthew 25:31-34 Matthew 25:31-34 [31] When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit on the throne of his glory: [32] And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats: [33] And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. [34] Then shall the King say to them on his right hand, Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
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).

Those who listen and follow the Shepherd’s voice in their life will receive eternal life in the Kingdom of God, whereas those who do not will be permanently destroyed in the Lake of Fire. A merciful and loving end for those who are unwilling to be a part of the Kingdom of God.

The Great White Throne Judgment is represented by the final of God’s festivals in his Holy Day plan, the Eighth Day. You can read more about the Eighth Day and its significance to the plan of God and man’s ultimate destiny here.