1 Corinthians 15:50-57
From the Confessions: The Chief Articles of Faith in the Augsburg Confession
Concerning Christ's Return for Judgment
Lutherans also teach that on the Last Day (John 6:40) of the world, Christ will appear for judgment, and will raise all the dead. He will give eternal life and everlasting joys to the faithful and elect, but will condemn unbelievers and the demons to the hell of eternal punishment.
They condemn the fanatics, who think that those condemned with the demons will not suffer punishment. They also condemn those who are now spreading certain Jewish opinions, that before the resurrection of the dead the godly shall take possession of a kingdom of the world, the ungodly being conquered.
Pulling It Together
Again, the theme of the Reformers in Wittenberg was faith. The standard of salvation and eternal life for Lutherans is always faith in God, not the lack of it nor of a reward for good works. On the Day of the Lord, Christ will return to judge both the living and all who have ever lived. Believers will be set apart for the eternal joys of heaven with God. Unbelievers will be condemned to an eternity of torment and separation from God. Only those who call upon the name of the Lord will be saved from this damnation (Joel 2:32).
Contrary to what was being taught by some in the days of Luther (and is now being taught among even some Lutherans), Lutheran Christians do not believe that unbelievers will be saved along with the righteous. They also do not teach that an earthly, Christian kingdom will be established before Christ's return. The Lord's “kingdom is not of this world” (John 18:36).
Prayer: Praise and honor is due to you, O Lord, for your just judgments. Amen.
Come, Lord Jesus answers the many questions that arise when modern readers look into the book of Revelation. In this book readers will come to understand the first-century context in which Revelation was written—and readers will join the holy choir in looking forward to the fulfillment of God's plan, offering our own invitation: "Come, Lord Jesus."