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1 Peter 4:17: For It Is Time For Judgment To Begin At The Household Of God; And If It Begins With Us, What Will Be The Outcome For Those Who Do Not Obey The Gospel Of God?

1 Peter 4:17
[17] For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? (ESV)

As humans, who struggle with our sinful nature, we tend to err in two areas; our view of the church and our view of those outside the church. God seems to have a much more extreme view of things than we do. Instead of adjusting our view to God's we tend to diminish the view of both the church and the unsaved world to match our view of things.

Peter talks about it being time for judgment to begin at the household of God. He is not referring to condemnation of believers. He is not speaking of eternal judgment in the fires of hell. Those who belong to the household of God are spared from such judgment. He is talking about the purging and purifying of the church, typically by means of suffering, to make her holy and more effective for kingdom work.

We like to think we are good enough. We make a grave mistake when we forget that God's standard is perfect holiness. He has a righteous standard that is not altered by our sin. He remains holy. He wants us to be more like him. Part of being made more like him means that we are often placed in the furnace of affliction, so that we can become a more perfect vessel for God's glory.

For those who do not obey the gospel things will not go well. Yes, believers in Jesus Christ suffer, but with a purpose. God is making us into something beautiful because he loves us. The sinner who rejects Christ, continues in their sinful rebellion against God, and disobeys the gospel will suffer eternally. Their sin is that offensive. God wants holiness for the church, and eternal punishment for those not in the church.

What is God doing in your life that is unpleasant. It is not without purpose. Trust him. He wants a pure and holy church, and he loves you. If you are still in disobedience to the gospel, repent, and place your faith in Jesus Christ.