Q. Jack, what is your take on 1 Peter 4:17? This sounds to me like judgment is going to begin with the church. Where and how is this judgment going to take place? Thanks for your time!
A. This judgment isn’t a specific event, but has been going on throughout the Church age. Whenever the Gospel has been introduced into a new area, judgment in the form of persecution has followed. In Peter’s time it was in Israel, but as the Gospel spread the persecution was always close behind. Today this persecution is most intense in China, Africa, and India where the Gospel is making a dramatic impact.
As the End of the Age approaches, persecution of Christians will grow to be a world wide phenomenon, especially after the church is gone. The Lord permits this to separate and strengthen those who are truly His own from those who are merely giving lip service to the Gospel.