Q. I’ve read in several places that the only ones at the Great White Throne judgment (Rev. 20:11-15) will be all of the “unsaved” dead throughout time. But I have always had a question about that. If the church is judged at the Bema Seat (to receive awards), when are the OT saints judged? Also, what about the people that live through the tribulation and go into the millennium to repopulate the Earth? When do those people and their descendants get judged? Will those that trust in Christ for salvation during the millennium receive sinless eternal bodies like the “Church” will receive at the rapture? If these people will not be present at the Great White Throne judgment, then why would Jesus even bother opening the Lamb’s Book of Life? If only those whose names are not written in the Book at present, why would He even need to check?
A. In the Old Testament, believers were separated from unbelievers at death just like they are in the New. The Lord’s teaching on Lazarus and the Rich Man describes this. (Luke 16:19-31). According to Daniel 12:1-2 believing OT Jews will receive resurrection bodies at the end of the Great Tribulation. Tribulation survivors will be judged in the Sheep and Goat judgment with believers going into the Kingdom and non-believers taken to the place prepared for the devil and his angels. (Matt. 25:31-46) This judgment is also mentioned in Joel 3:1-3.
The Bible doesn’t give us any information concerning the disposition of millennial believers. Unbelievers of all ages willl be resurrected for judgment at the end of the Millennium.
The Lamb’s Book of Life is different from the Book of Life referred to in Rev. 20:12. Every person’s name can be found there, and as Rev. 20:12 explains it will be used to judge the dead according to their works. This is a record God has kept from the beginning of time, and according to Jewish tradition, is updated every year at Yom Kippur.