Our God is a God of Justice. His Justice requires reward for good and punishment for evil. Thankfully, Jesus came and paid with His Life for our sins and evil. Jesus suffered the punishment that we Christians deserve. Praise His Name! If we are Christians and have obeyed His Word, we do not have to fear punishment for our sins and shortcomings, “for all have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
But what about those who have not had the opportunity to hear the Good News, the Gospel? What about the Polynesian living in the South Pacific in 500 A.D., centuries before Christian missionaries came to that area?
I believe the answer is found in The Revelation 20:11-15. Here we find that the dead who were buried (death), the dead whose bodies were lost at sea (the sea) and those who disobeyed the Lord before the time of Jesus (Hades) are all judged. Those who rejected the Lord before Jesus are in a “place of torment” or Hades (Luke 16:28). The scripture in The Revelation points out that all will be judged. “The dead were judged according to what they have done as recorded in the books.” (Revelation 20:12).
I do not believe that God placed this sentence in His Word gratuitously. I believe that it is there because the Lord means it. Because of the grace and justice of our Lord, I believe that the mythical Polynesian will be judged according to his deeds. If he intuitively obeyed the natural laws of God (against murder, theft, lying, adultery, et cetera) and if he did not worship another god and attribute the wonders of the God’s Creation to some idol of wood or stone, I think that our gracious Lord would not punish him for not knowing of the saving Grace of Jesus. I also believe that the knowledge of good and evil and of a supernatural Creator is intuitive in mankind. This is what Paul expresses in Romans 2:14-16.
Do not think, if you are not a believing Christian, that you can escape the Judgement of God “by being a good person”. You have probably heard the Gospel. If you have heard of the Forgiveness for Sins through Jesus, if you have heard of the Free Gift of Salvation, you are responsible for the decision that you make regarding that great forgiveness. “From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded” (Luke 12:48). God allows us to make choices of our own free will. God is Just.
If you are a Christian, the Word says that you will not take part in this dreadful last judgement. The Church will take part in the first resurrection, of which Jesus was the firstfruits. The second resurrection is what is described in The Revelation 20:11-15. “Blessed and holy are those who have part in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them.” (Revelation 20:6). “The lake of fire is the second death.” (Revelation 20:14).
I thank the Lord for His great Mercy and for Jesus. May His Name be praised forever.