Read: Matthew 25:31-33
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left.
Remember those final exams in school? Sometimes the final exam in college would account for 50% of the final grade. Today, my company evaluates my performance based on a variety of factors related to my day to day work with healthcare professionals in my year-end review. If you own a business, you likely evaluate your performance by revenue or profits as well.
In the final verses of this section from Matthew, Jesus describes the final judgment of the world. He uses a picture of sheep and goats and then addresses the sheep –
“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me” (Matthew 25:34-40).
The final exam for the goats didn’t go so well –
“Then he will answer them, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life”(Matthew 25:45-46).
If you have a few minutes, read the entire parable from Matthew 25:31-46. Ask yourself, why did Jesus tell this story to us? How should we respond as individuals?