End Of The Road 

Revelation 20:12
“And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books.”

Have you ever heard someone say, “All roads lead to God”?  While it is not true, according to Jesus Himself, that all roads lead to heaven, it is true, all roads lead to God. Whatever road you choose to travel in this life, it ultimately ends at the throne of God. John explains that he saw every person who had ever lived, the good, the bad, and the ugly, all standing before the throne of God and awaiting judgment for sin. There is no road you can travel that will not ultimately lead to the throne of God. Even those who stubbornly resist the Spirit of God and refuse to accept Him, will stand before this throne, along with those who refuse to believe He even exists. There is no way of escaping the throne, but there is a way of avoiding judgment.

John records that a book was opened which contained a list of all the sins that each person had ever committed. One sin is enough to condemn, and every sin is recorded. However, there is a second book; the Book of Life, which contains the names of all who have received Christ and His forgiveness of sin. Those whose names are in the Book of Life have had all the charges against them erased. Paul put it like this,

Colossians 2:14 “. . . having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.

The most important decision you will ever make is the one regarding Jesus. If you choose to accept Him as Savior and Lord, your sins will be forgiven and you will be excluded from judgment. If you choose to reject Him, for whatever reason, you are left in your sin. One day you will stand before the throne of God and the book of deeds will be opened, read, and you will be sentenced. It seems like a pretty straightforward decision. Joshua put it like this;

Joshua 24:15 “And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”

Pastor Jim

 

Guilty As Charged 

Ezra 4:15
“That search may be made in the book of the records of your fathers. And you will find in the book of the records and know that this city is a rebellious city, harmful to kings and provinces, and that they have incited sedition within the city in former times, for which cause this city was destroyed.”

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The enemies of Israel wrote to the king of Persia encouraging him to look through the record books regarding Israel’s past. They claimed these books would reveal that Israel had been rebellious before, and if allowed to continue, they would prove to be rebellious once again. A few things strike me as I consider this text.

First, the enemies of Israel were correct. Israel had failed in the past. Seventy years earlier, Jeremiah warned the nation that Babylon was coming and they should surrender and allow themselves to be taken captive. Instead of heeding the Word of God, they rebelled and this rebellion was now coming back to haunt them. We need to be careful. Sin always has consequences even if it takes years for them to revel themselves. Had Israel obeyed, the enemies would have no charges against them.

Second, a record book of all Israel’s wrongs was kept in the library of the king. All their past failures and sins were stored up in a book and they are now being found guilty. Jesus explained that the same is true of us.

Matthew 12:36 “But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.”
The word “account” is a translation of the Greek word “logos.” The concept is that the words we speak are recorded in a ledger and that ledger will be read on the final day of judgment.

Revelation 20:12 “And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books.”

This should frighten all of us. All our sinful acts, both small and great, are recorded in a book and that book will be used to testify against us in the court of heaven. Secret sins that you thought were hidden or forgotten will be held up to witness of your guilt before God. We know that one sin is enough to condemn us in heaven’s court and we know that we are guilty of far more than one sin.

Fortunately, the story does not end here. Revelation 20 speaks of another book called life. In this book is recorded all who have trusted in Christ, and by doing so have had their sins washed and forgiven. Paul explained that when we trust Christ, the handwriting of requirements that were against us are wiped out. Once our names are found in the book of life, all the charges kept in the other book are erased.

If you have received Christ, you do not need to fear eternal punishment for your sins. If you have not yet believed in Him, do so right now. Don’t wait until it is too late.

Pastor Jim