Bible Passage: Revelation 20:10-15
HANDOUT FOR SERMON: THE BOOK OF LIFE-WHY DID GOD TELL US ABOUT IT? April 23rd, 2022, Manchester, TN. 9:30 am service
INTRODUCTION: The Bible is full of word pictures and imagery. God often uses these to help understand things better. Jesus’ teaching was full of imagery or symbolism. He presented Himself as a Shepherd, a Sower, a Bridegroom, a Door, a Cornerstone, a Vine, Light, Bread and Water.
One of the first and great imagery that God presents to us is “The Tree of Life” in the garden of Eden (Genesis 2:9 & 3:22-24). God uses this imagery again in Proverbs 11:30, 13:12, 15:4 and Revelation 2:7 & 22:2, 14 & 19. The term “Tree of Life” is referenced in all of these passages.
Illustration: A Diary. What is a diary? A book to record events or where observations are kept daily. It is a daily record of personal activities, reflections or feelings. Maybe the “Book of Life” is sort of God’s journal or diary of specific things. Is there any information in the Bible to help us understand why God has a “Book of Life”?
1.THE BOOK OF LIFE- Revelation 20:10-15.
General information about the book of Revelation. This book initially was written to the first Christians. They were living under very difficult circumstances. Revelation 1:3 speaks of the blessed people that had been obeying Christ. This book is filled with prophecy, prophetic messaging and visions designed to make a dramatic impact on the first century Christians (but also for us today). The message of Revelation should be taken seriously but not always taken literally. Picture language – with its’ symbols, images and figures it can convey literal truths and describe literal events.
Read: Revelation 20:10-15 Let us slowly paint a mental picture of this imagery. Take note that there were “books” opened before God and then another book was opened that was that “Book of Life.” v.12 Mankind were judged by the things written in the “Books.” If one’s name was not in the “Book of Life” that individual was cast into the lake of fire, v.15.
Other passages in Revelation: Revelation 3:5, 13:8, 17:8, 20:15 & 21:27 Read these.
Read: John 14: 1-3, John 10:10-16 The Father’s house- Jesus prepares a place for His disciple. Jesus wants His disciples where He is. Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Jesus. Jesus is the Good Shepherd of the good sheep (John 10:11). He knows His sheep and He is known by His sheep and His sheep hear His voice (v.16) and follow Him.
- REFERENCES TO THE “BOOK OF LIFE” OR “GOD’S BOOK” IN THE OLD TESTAMENT. There are several passages that mention or allude to the “Book of Life” or God having a book. Scripture: Exodus 32:31-33 “My Book”, Daniel 12:1 “written in the Book” Psalm 69:27-28 “the Book of Life”, Psalm 130:3 “His heavenly books”, Malachi 3:16 “A book of remembrance.”
- BIBLE VERSES THAT MENTION MANKINDS DEEDS OR ACTIONS AND BEING HELD ACCOUNTABLE. Scripture: 2 Corinthians 5:10. Ecclesiastes 12:13-14, Ephesians 6;8, Colossians 3;25, 1 Timothy 6:19 God speaks about accountability and being judged by His standard. In fact, we ALL must appear before the judgment seat of Christ to receive according to what we have done.
- WHY WOULD GOD TELL US ABOUT THE BOOK OF LIFE AND USE SUCH IMAGERY?
- God doesn’t want us to worry or be anxious.
- God wants us to listen to Him and go to Him for help no matter what.
- God must become our “rock”, “our anchor”, “our peace.”
- God wants us to feel secure! Easy in mind.
- God is our father; we are His children and children long for security.
- God has a book, a Book of Life, where He writes the names of those who are His children.
- In that book are those who “overcame” Revelation 2:7
- 1 Corinthians 8:6 Finding security in God (the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.)
Define secure: The word means free from danger and attack. Free from risk of loss; safe. Free from the risk of being intercepted or listened to by unauthorized persons. If you feel secure then you are confident and dependable (firm foundation). Remember the God you trust in and serve. He is all powerful! He is caring and loving! God is provisional. Psalm 68:5 “Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in His holy habitation. James 1:17 “Every good and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.” John 14:6 “I am the way, and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
Scripture: Psalm 23:1-6, Psalm 91:1-16, Proverbs 18:10, Revelation 21:4, Hebrews 5:8-9. Matthew 7:21 “one who does the will of my Father” 2 Timothy 2:15 “not ashamed”, Romans 8:1 “no condemnation for those in Christ”, Luke 9:23-24 “deny self, follow Jesus, lose your life and save it, John 3:16, 1 Corinthians 9:27 “need to discipline yourself, lest you be disqualified.”
CONCLUSION: The “Book of Life” assures us that God knows His true followers. He keeps and protects them during their earthly journey and in the judgment. He will bring them home to Him. Luke 10:20 tells us to rejoice because your names are recorded in heaven. Philippians 4:3 speaks of fellow workers whose names are in the Book of Life. Hebrews 12:22-23 speaks of the Church of the firstborn who are enrolled in Heaven.