The Etiquette of the Particular Judgment

Dear Sophia,

I’ve always wondered how one should present themselves to the Lord after death, when we undergo the Particular Judgment. On our knees, like in church? Prostrate, like a worm? Any advice appreciated.




An excellent question!  The Lord cannot have a conversation with you if you are flat on your belly with your mouth in the dirt, even if it is heavenly soil. Kneeling does show respect, and seems expressly called for at the Last Judgment. Standing is referenced too, but it is not clear to me whether this is referring to the Last or the Particular Judgment:

You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat.

Romans 14:10

What does the Word say?

In the story of the Prodigal Son, the Father runs to embrace his penitent son on his return. While paintings of the scene depict the son kneeling, with the father leaning down, it makes for an awkward embrace. Try holding that position for any length of time.


Now, little children, abide in Him, so that when He appears, we may have confidence and not shrink away from Him in shame at His coming.

1 John 2:28


Permit the children to come to Me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all.

Luke 18:17

He is the Kingdom, and you are to receive him like a little child.

A father runs to children who have been away on a long and dangerous journey. Little children run to the father they have missed for so long. They embrace.



By Richard Cosway (public domain)

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