Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Matthew 25:32

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

All nations - Literally, all the nations - all the Gentile world; the Jews are necessarily included, but they were spoken of in a particular manner in the preceding chapter.

He shall separate them - Set each kind apart by themselves.

As a shepherd divideth, etc. - It does not appear that sheep and goats were ever penned or housed together, though they might feed in the same pasture; yet even this was not done but in separate flocks; so Virgil, Eclog. vii. v. 2.

Compulerantque greges Corydon et Thyrsis in unum;

Thyrsis Oves, Corydon distentas lacte


"Thyrsis and Corydon drove their flocks together:

Thyrsin his sheep; and Corydon his goats, their udders distended with milk."

These two shepherds had distinct flocks, which fed in the same pasture, but separately; and they are only now driven together, for the convenience of the two shepherds, during the time of their musical contest.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

And before him … - At his coming to judgment the world will be burned up, 2 Peter 3:10, 2 Peter 3:12; Revelation 20:11. The dead in Christ that is, all true Christians - will be raised up from their graves, 1 Thessalonians 4:16. The living will be changed - i. e., will be made like the glorified bodies of those that are raised from the dead, 1 Corinthians 15:52-54; 1 Thessalonians 4:17. All the wicked will rise and come forth to judgment, John 5:28-29; Daniel 12:2; Matthew 13:41-42; Revelation 20:13. Then shall the world be judged, the righteous saved, and the wicked punished.

And he shall separate … - Shall determine respecting their character, and shall appoint them their doom accordingly.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
This is a description of the last judgment. It is as an explanation of the former parables. There is a judgment to come, in which every man shall be sentenced to a state of everlasting happiness, or misery. Christ shall come, not only in the glory of his Father, but in his own glory, as Mediator. The wicked and godly here dwell together, in the same cities, churches, families, and are not always to be known the one from the other; such are the weaknesses of saints, such the hypocrisies of sinners; and death takes both: but in that day they will be parted for ever. Jesus Christ is the great Shepherd; he will shortly distinguish between those that are his, and those that are not. All other distinctions will be done away; but the great one between saints and sinners, holy and unholy, will remain for ever. The happiness the saints shall possess is very great. It is a kingdom; the most valuable possession on earth; yet this is but a faint resemblance of the blessed state of the saints in heaven. It is a kingdom prepared. The Father provided it for them in the greatness of his wisdom and power; the Son purchased it for them; and the blessed Spirit, in preparing them for the kingdom, is preparing it for them. It is prepared for them: it is in all points adapted to the new nature of a sanctified soul. It is prepared from the foundation of the world. This happiness was for the saints, and they for it, from all eternity. They shall come and inherit it. What we inherit is not got by ourselves. It is God that makes heirs of heaven. We are not to suppose that acts of bounty will entitle to eternal happiness. Good works done for God's sake, through Jesus Christ, are here noticed as marking the character of believers made holy by the Spirit of Christ, and as the effects of grace bestowed on those who do them. The wicked in this world were often called to come to Christ for life and rest, but they turned from his calls; and justly are those bid to depart from Christ, that would not come to him. Condemned sinners will in vain offer excuses. The punishment of the wicked will be an everlasting punishment; their state cannot be altered. Thus life and death, good and evil, the blessing and the curse, are set before us, that we may choose our way, and as our way so shall our end be.
Ellen G. White
Maranatha, 292.4

“And before him shall be gathered all nations.” The very One who died for man is to judge him in the last day: for the Father “hath committed all judgment unto the Son: ... and hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.” What a day that will be, when those who rejected Christ will look upon Him whom their sins have pierced. Mar 292.4

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Ellen G. White
Medical Ministry, 133-5

Whatever work we do, we are to do it for Christ. There are many kinds of temporal work to be done for God. An unbeliever would do this work mechanically, for the wages he receives. He does not know the joy of cooperation with the Master Worker. There is no spirituality in the work of him who serves self. Common motives, common aspirations, common inspirations, a desire to be thought clever by men, rule in his life. Such a one may receive praise from men, but not from God. Those who are truly united with Christ do not work for the wages they receive. Laborers together with God, they do not strive to exalt self. MM 133.1

In the last great day decisions will be made that will be a surprise to many. Human judgment will have no place in the decisions then made. Christ can and will judge every case; for all judgment has been committed to Him by the Father. He will estimate service by that which is invisible to men. The most secret things lie open to His all-seeing eye. When the Judge of all men shall make His investigation, many of those whom human estimation has placed first will be placed last, and those who have been put in the lowest place by men will be taken out of the ranks and made first.—The Review and Herald, July 31, 1900. MM 133.2

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Ellen G. White
The Ministry of Healing, 205-7

“Ye have the poor with you always,” Christ said, “and whensoever ye will ye may do them good.” “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” Mark 14:7; James 1:27. MH 205.1

In placing among them the helpless and the poor, to be dependent upon their care, Christ tests His professed followers. By our love and service for His needy children we prove the genuineness of our love for Him. To neglect them is to declare ourselves false disciples, strangers to Christ and His love. MH 205.2

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Ellen G. White
The Desire of Ages, 637-41

This chapter is based on Matthew 25:31-46.

“When the Son of man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then shall He sit upon the throne of His glory: and before Him shall be gathered all nations: and He shall separate them one from another.” Thus Christ on the Mount of Olives pictured to His disciples the scene of the great judgment day. And He represented its decision as turning upon one point. When the nations are gathered before Him, there will be but two classes, and their eternal destiny will be determined by what they have done or have neglected to do for Him in the person of the poor and the suffering. DA 637.1

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