“And you, Capernaum, who are exalted to heaven, will be brought down to Hades; for if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say to you that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment than for you.”
Last time we discussed the Great White Throne Judgment ( Revelation 20:11-12 ), pictured by the Eighth Day—also called the Last Great Day. Jesus Christ’s warning to the people of Capernaum brings this day of judgment to life with some specific examples.
Our article “Resurrections: What Are They?” describes this passage:
“Jesus Christ described this day of judgment as a time when people of different nations and time periods would rise together, and He said that it would be more tolerable for those who had not heard His message or seen His signs ( Matthew 11:21-24 ; 12:41-42 ). He said those hearing Him were more accountable even than the people of wicked Sodom: ‘For if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say to you that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment than for you’ (Matthew 11:23-24).
“What did He mean, ‘more tolerable’? If this time of judgment was only a time of sentencing, and all receive the same penalty as sinners—eternal death ( Romans 6:23 )—then ‘more tolerable’ doesn’t make sense. But the concept of judgment in the Bible is broader than just condemnation. In fact, Christians are being judged now ( 1 Peter 4:17 ), so it is a process and it can have a positive outcome. And every human being will be judged ( Hebrews 9:27 ). So being judged doesn’t always refer to being condemned.”
For more on this judgment, see our article on the resurrections.