Michael Boling – Thoughts from the Theocratic Kingdom (Vol. 2): Proposition 132

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In Proposition 132, George Peters states:

“This view of the Kingdom confirmed by the Judgeship of Christ.”

In this proposition, Peters is bringing in the offices of Christ in support and confirmation of his position. It has been established (and I assume will continue to be established and elaborated upon) that Christ is the heir to the Theocratic-Davidic kingdom and its throne. As such, his other offices will also come into play. For those not familiar with the threefold office of Jesus, they are prophet, priest, and king. The office of king has been established and discussed in depth. Associated with that office is the role of Judge which Peters elaborates upon in the below observation.

The most notable observation Peters presents in Proposition 132 is the following:

“The modern usage of the words “Judge” and “Judgement” have misled many in comprehending this subject, so that some assert, as Priest, that they cannot see how the Millennial period and judgement can be blended. A reference to any concordance would explain the matter, for those words are used in a variety of ways, as in trying a cause, discerning, reckoning, as well as in ruling, governing, etc., and the meaning to be attached to the word in any particular case must be determined by the context, general analogy – in brief, by the laws controlling language, giving the preference in all cases to scriptural usage. Because “judge” is employed to designate judicial action, that is no reason for discarding the additional meanings attached to it by the Word of God. In this discussion it is sufficient to notice that Judgeship is ascribed to the Kingly, Sovereign power of God and of His Son, and that whatever of judgment there has been in the past or is going on now, or attends us at death, or at the resurrection, or in the Coming Kingdom, etc., it does not affect our line of argument, but confirms it, because all this is represented as an exertion of Divine Sovereignty. The question that we are to decide is not whether judicial action belongs to the station of a judge – this is admitted by all – but whether, when Christ is revealed as Judge, this Judgeship is not as equivalent to His Kingly rule. This we think is already conclusively proven, and therefore those writers who fail to discriminate in this particular make a serious mistake which materially concerns the interpretation of a large portion of Scripture. The Judgeship of Christ is not only perfectly consistent with the glory and blessedness of the Millennial period, but indispensably necessary to secure it. And in this connection it may be added, that the proof of Christ’s Judgeship as given by Paul, viz., Acts 17:31, “whereof He hath given assurance unto all men’ in that He hath raised Him from the dead,” is precisely the identical proof required by the covenant to show that David’s Son is to reign as “the man ordained” in the immortal manner predicted. The duration of this Judgeship is of such a nature that it cannot be predicated of moral man; whereas in His glorified humanity, never more subject to death, He is abundantly able to verify the promises relating to His Judgeship or Kingship.”

I think we can all agree that words can and do have a variety of meanings. In theological parlance, this is known as the semantic range of a word or in laymen’s terms, the range of possible meanings for a word. Of course, what a word means is defined by its immediate context, similar use in other similar contexts, and in many cases, the tense, part of speech, and common understanding of the word’s use. The latter element comes into play quite often when examining biblical terminology.

When used, the term judge brings up quite a few mental pictures. Perhaps Judge Judy is one, the idea of someone presiding over a court case. Peters rightly equates the role of the Judgeship of Christ to divine sovereignty. As King, he is able to fully execute the role of Judge over creation, both in the past, present, and future. While certain elements of how this judgeship will play out will be unfolded in salvation history, the role of judge nevertheless is constant. To reject this role as part of Christ’s offices, is to ignore the clear teaching of Scripture and to misunderstand matters such as divine sovereignty. If we are going to ascribe Kingship to Christ (and we must if we are to be in accordance with Scripture), we must also ascribe Judgeship to Christ as the roles are concomitant to one another.

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