For God will bring every deed into judgment,
including every hidden thing,
whether it is good or evil. (NIV)
The whole idea of judgement may cause us to shrink in fear. But when we see judgement as putting things right, as acting justly, we get a different idea. If God did not promise to finally judge the world, we would have no guarantee that justice would finally be done. We might assume that evildoers got away with evil, that good does not ultimately triumph, that an ‘anything goes’ mentality continues forever.
God has promised to put right that which is wrong, to restore his originally good world to how it should be. God cares about right and wrong, about justice. And so the inevitability of judgement. All that threatens to destroy his good creation, all that rebels against his right to rule his creation, is judged and eliminated.
That may sound harsh, but what is God to do? He will not override our humanity so as to force us to be good or force us into his family. He will not shrug his shoulders and let evil triumph and decline to show justice. He is a good and just God and will not allow evil and injustice to finally win.
But then he is a God of mercy who invites all who naturally rebel against him to come back to him. Jesus is the means by which he does this. Jesus has endured the judgement and absorbed the evil. In relationship with him, we avoid condemnation. So God is committed to ensuring justice and also committed to saving unjust people. The judge is also a Saviour.