X. The reasons why we should certainly look for the judgment.

Although we are ignorant of the precise time of the judgment, yet God will have us assured of the certainty of it,

First, on account of his glory, that we may be able to refute all those who regard the doctrine of a future judgment as a mere fable, and who infer from the apparent confusion which there is in the world, that God has no concern for it, or if he has, that he is unjust; for, say they, it ought to be well with the righteous, but it is not; therefore God is either not able to effect this, or he is not as good as his promise; or there is no providence. We reply to this cavil, that in the life to come a different state of things will succeed that which we now see in this life; for since it is not here well with the righteous it shall be well with them hereafter.

Secondly, God will have us know the certainty of a future judgment for our comfort, that we may be assured that hereafter we shall obtain a deliverance from the miseries of this life.

Thirdly, that we may keep ourselves in the fear of God, and in the proper discharge of our duties, so that we may be able to stand in the judgment. “Watch ye, therefore, and pray always that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.” “Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation.” (Luke 21:36. 2 Pet. 3:11.)

Fourthly, that the wicked may be stripped of every excuse, in that they have been so frequently admonished of the importance of being constantly prepared for the coming of the Son of man, so that they cannot say that they have been taken on surprise.