The Book of Life

The Book of Life

Text: Exodus 32:15-35

I.         There are songs we sing over and over. Perhaps too often because we don’t give enough thought to what we are saying to one another.

            A.        There is a song in our books, number 418, that is titled “Lord, I Care Not for Riches”

                        1.         It expresses what ought to be important in our lives.

                        2.         It is not worldly success and wealth, it is surety of reaching heaven.

                        3.         We know that our many sins would keep us out if it was not for our Savior, Jesus.

                        4.         His sacrifice and his promise is enough to give us confidence.

                        5.         It is for the beauty of heaven that we long, and so the all important question is “Is my name written there, on the page white and fair? In the book of Thy kingdom, is my name written there?

            B.        Have you given much thought to the book?

II.        In the Book of Life

            A.        A reason for joy when we are found in it

                        1.         In Luke 10, Jesus sends out 70 disciples to prepare the way for his coming - Luke 10:1

                        2.         They would be his personal representatives - Luke 10:16

                        3.         After fulfilling their duty, the disciples excitedly return - Luke 10:17

                        4.         Jesus acknowledges that they have made a great impact and have been given great authority - Luke 10:18-19

                        5.         But even this isn’t as important - Luke 10:20

                        6.         It doesn’t matter what authority you have or the impact you have in the world. The one true thing to treasure is whether your name is recorded in heaven.

            B.        Where is it recorded? In the book of life - Philippians 4:3

                        1.         How did Paul know that his fellow laborers were in the book of life? Did he peek?

                        2.         Perhaps God told him, but such is not indicated.

                        3.         No, what Paul knew about his companions was the work that they were doing - Matthew 7:16-20

                        4.         It is not a guessing game, it is a result of committed obedience - I John 2:3-5

            C.        How are names are written - Hebrews 12:23

                        1.         Those who are in the church are those whose names are written in heaven.

                        2.         Of course, it is the individuals whose names are therein written.

                        3.         It is the Lord who adds people to His church - Acts 2:46-47

                        4.         How? By their obedience to His commands - Acts 2:38-39

III.       Removed from the Book of Life

            A.        But the writing is not permanent; it can be removed

            B.        When Moses came down from the mountain with the stone tablets, he found the people committing idolatry and other sins.

                        1.         He was so upset, he broke the stone tablets and punished the people.

                        2.         Still, he approached God to ask Him to forgive them, but if He would not, Moses asked that he not be saved either - Exodus 32:30-32

                        3.         God told Moses, no - Exodus 32:33

                        4.         But notice the important point, even if a person is written in the book, his name can be removed if he sins.

            C.        The church in Sardis received a warning - Revelation 3:1-5

                        1.         Some were not living as they ought.

                        2.         If they did not repent of their sins, their names would be removed.

            D.        This should not be surprising.

                        1.         Sin separates us from God - Isa 59:1-2

                        2.         It brings about death - Romans 6:23

                        3.         Those not in the book of life suffer the second death - Revelation 20:14-15

IV.      Judged by the Book of Life

            A.        Revelation 20:11-15 gives a picture of Judgment

            B.        Books were opened before the Judge

                        1.         It is probably referring to the Old and New Covenant, where each would be judged by the Covenant he lived under

                        2.         Today our standard is the words of Christ, his new Covenant - John 12:48

                        3.         We are judged by the gospel - Romans 2:12-16

            C.        But there was also another book opened, the book of life

                        1.         Those not found in the book were cast into the lake of fire

V.        God wants people saved - II Peter 3:9

            A.        That means that He wants their names in the book of life

            B.        Only then can there be an entrance into heaven - Revelation 21:27

            C.        Or as Jesus said - Matthew 7:21

            D.        That is my job and the job of every gospel preacher is to see that your name is in that book.

                        1.         How? By teaching what the Lord demands of you.

                        2.         To listen to His Word, believe it, change your life, confess His name, and be baptized to wash away your sins.

            E.        The job of every elder is to see that your name remains in that book, that it is not blotted out by disobedience.

            F.        Because if your name isn’t there, on the page white and fair, there will be no joy for you at judgment