Q. I’ve been a believer all my 60 years but have never understood the issue of the judgment of believers. Reading 2 Cor. 5:10 tells us there will be a judgment for deeds done, good or evil. If, when we are saved, our sins are forgiven and forgotten, how can we then be accountable for any sin/evil we commit in our Christian walk? My desire for heaven is lessened by fear that I will be punished for sin I thought would be forgiven and removed as far as the east is from the west. Does that end with salvation? Am I forgiven, but then “punished” by loss of reward?
A. 2 Cor. 5:10, like 1 Cor. 3:10-15, refers to the bema seat judgment which takes place after the rapture, so it doesn’t effect our salvation. The terms good and evil (bad) refer to whether things were done at the Lord’s direction and in His strength (good) or by us acting in our own strength (bad). Jesus said apart from Him we can do nothing of value to the Kingdom (John 15:5). We will receive rewards for things that are good but not for things that are bad. Believers can’t be punished for their sins because Jesus was already punished for them at the cross, so you have nothing to fear.