BEFORE THE THRONE- The Book of Life and The Books of Works
For I am jealous for you with godly jealousy. For I have betrothed you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he who comes preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or if you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted—you may well put up with it! 2 Corinthians 11:2-4
*all scriptures are taken from the NKJV, unless otherwise stated
It’s such an amazing thing how much of a twist away from the true gospel of Christ the church and Christianity as a whole has experienced over time. And as the Apostle Paul warned, how much off track the church has moved away from the simplicity of the gospel of Christ and has bended the knees to strange teachings and doctrines which undermine the very authority of the Christ Who they claim to represent.
From “men of God” who have suddenly taken the positions of “gods of men” over God’s people and then call themselves shepherds of the Lord’s flock, and people hail them for it, to those who think God belongs to them, and thus without them no other man can move a finger.
Then you wonder why many Christians really behave like sheep with no inner reasoning with the Holy Spirit of God, who is the Teacher sent to show and teach us all things. And like it is written, the Holy Spirit who is our teacher is mandated to glorify Jesus the Christ. So how did we get to the point in our walk that attention is now spent on men, rather than on Christ; and how did we move from the simplicity of His gospel to the complexity of the chase after rhemas and all? The things of God are deep, but His expressions on earth often come in simplicity, so that the humble heart will access them. Take for example the gospel of salvation by belief in the heart and by confession of the mouth. It doesn’t make any sense for the natural mind (which is naturally proud) to both understand and believe that the sins of, let’s say, a murderer can be forgiven by him just sincerely believing in his heart and confessing with his mouth that Jesus is Lord of his life. But that’s the picture of the simplicity of God and depth of it. God is simply deep and deeply simple.
The Simplicity of the Gospel of Christ
The derailment from the simplicity of the gospel of Christ, which Paul warned that many will fall for, is so prominent in this age of the end time, where men in the name of deeper revelations and rhemas have created man made philosophies, clothed them in spiritual terms, and by which many have been burdened and discouraged. It’s easy to see people struggle trying to understand the “heavy revelation” being shared instead of enjoying the sweet fellowship that is found in the simplicity of the gospel of Christ expressed by the Holy Spirit of God. Certainly, there is deep comfort in knowing that the Holy Spirit Who the Father sent to us is not the Spirit of burden and confusion, but the Spirit of comfort, love, gentleness and the peace that comes from knowing God the Father.
Christianity and church has become a competitive market where traders are the “servants of God” selling deep revelations and the customers are the “sheep” buying confusion in the name of new rhemas. God is simply deep and deeply simply. Man in his craze to decipher the simplicity of the mind of God, created religion as a bridge for connection and by that disconnected from the very God they seek to connect to. For the reality is this, anyone or anything that takes away the heart of men from the central figure who is Christ, is nothing but corruption.
Deeper things of God
The Lord Jesus kindly shared with us in John 17, that eternal life is to know God and the Christ He sent. Meaning the things of God are true and are opened to everyone who is willing to believe in Him who was sent. There certainly are deep things of God which birth life in men and which open up new realities of God to men. Of this truth I am eternally grateful, for my heart seeks to know also the deeper things hidden in God. However, there is an issue with attention shifting from the simplicity of the gospel of the kingdom of Christ, which was revealed by the death and resurrection of Christ and moving towards the seeking of rhema and revelations, which in themselves are confusion if sought for outside the revelation of the word of God. The Word of God here is not the book, but Christ. (See Rev 19:13.)
The Book of Life
I had times and seasons of confusion in my earlier days of faith about God’s thoughts concerning living in eternity, how God judges the sinners who don’t receive Christ as savior according to scriptures. And then the case of what really happens to believers when they die. These questions, over time, left me with more questions, which caused more confusion than clarity. However, when the Spirit of God started showing me a few things that tied up the strands of thoughts and meditations, it made a big bang of sense in my heart.
The Book of Life of the Lamb of God who was slain from before the foundation of the world was published with names in it already. Those who by the mercy and grace of God were elected to be heirs of the inheritance with Christ in God. Such names are already in the Book of Life of the Lamb. It is a mystery to me how God did this, and I don’t have any explanation for it. It appears to me, from the various strands of scriptures that point to this reality that God knows from before the foundation of the world, those whose names will be in the book of life and those whose names will not be. Just like Jacob and Esau. By the grace of election and adoption, God chose Jacob and by same election didn’t choose Esau. In fact, He professes His love for Jacob but His hatred for Esau, even though Esau was still given a chance at walking with God in order to have an inheritance with Him. But just like God knew that Esau would blow his opportunity while Jacob would walk in it, in the same way both those whose names are in the Book of Life and whose names are not, are already known of God (Acts 15:18.) Everyone is given a chance at the Book of Life. So God knows, from before time, those who will be saved as heirs of promise and those who will be “condemned” as children of the bond woman. I used condemned in quotes, because there is a little clause to consider in this narrative of eternal condemnation. I will talk about that later.
The Lord said in John 3:18 “He who believes in Him (Christ) is not condemned, but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” These words of Christ instantly put a separation between those who will be saved and those who will blatantly refuse the Lordship of Christ and thereby be condemned. Meaning he who believed in Christ unto salvation of his soul was able to do so because God from before time has allowed it to be so. For the Lord Jesus said, “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.” John 6:44.
It’s a lot of strands to put together, but with accurate meditations, it will make sense. For I strongly believe God really does things by numbers. For concerning the souls of the martyrs of Christ at the altar of the throne of God, they were told to rest until the numbers of those who will be killed like them is complete. (See Revelation 6:11) And concerning the coming in of the Gentiles, reference to the fullness of those was also made. In essence, what the believer, heir of salvation, co-heirs with Christ, who have been brought in by the choice and grace of God through adoption are striving for in their daily walk of faith with God, is not how to have their names in the Book of Life, no, it’s written already. What they strive for each day is how to know, understand and live out daily on earth (though in its limited form until Christ comes and we are changed) the reality of their names in the Book of Life and how that life of Christ works in them. It puts clarity to the words of Christ when He said in John 17:3 “Eternal life is to know God and the Christ He sent”, basically right here on earth. Meaning when a man by the mercy of God begins to live out on the earth the reality of the life of God written in the Book of Life concerning him, he already is living out eternity or eternal life here on earth. It looks simple enough I guess. However, a man whose name is written in the Book of Life must also take heed to overcome and keep his garment clean, for we are dealing with the God who also said “he who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments, and I will not blot his name from the Book of Life; but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels”. (Revelation 3:5)
You know what that means in real time? It means Christ has the authority and the power to remove any name from the Book of Life. By this singular scripture, we know that names are already in the Book of Life. Well, it’s His Book of Life. He holds the key and the pen to it. And that also simply means, let he who thinks he stands, or who think he has his name in the Book of Life take heed lest he falls or his name be blotted out. Talk about how God humbles us all. Take note of this, everyone whose name is in the Lamb’s Book of Life, has an eternal reality. That eternal reality manifests a part of God. That part of God given to a man has a name and an expression on earth, which in turn creates a lifestyle of faith for him who is given such expression. The beauty is this, when a man lives out on the earth the lifestyle that matches his eternal reality, he is truly alive. For example, Abraham is called the father of faith both on earth and in heaven. For we see his pattern and lifestyle of faith lived out in his tent on earth and also as him whose bosom welcomes in Paradise those who have finished their walk of faith on earth. (See Luke 16:22-24)
I believe that God’s judgment in a sense is not against the unbelievers. They, the unbelievers, are by the words of Christ already condemned and thus already judged. The actual judgment before the throne of Christ really is about those whose names are written in the Book of Life. In this case however, it’s not their eternal life in the Book of the Life of Christ that is being judged, but their works in the books of works. (Revelation 20:12.)
The books of works
The amazing Apostle Paul admonishes us in I Corinthians 3:11-15 saying “For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.”
There is a lot revealed in these scriptures and how that the judgment seat of Christ is for the works of the believers and not the life of the unbelievers who are already judged and condemned by the words of Christ. Meaning the unbeliever doesn’t need to be judged by Christ. They have been judged by their own choices of not believing in Christ and thus condemned. It’s quite simple. The books of works are real and recording all our daily choices, patterns of faith, decisions, obedience and disobedience to the leadings of the Spirit and the various things we encounter daily while on earth. The Book of Life is for the Life of Christ and the books of works are for rewards that are like wages for working the works of God. And concerning the works of God, see what the Lord says “Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.” John 6:29.
The simplicity of love, compassion, faith, charity through faith, kindness, goodness etc. that we give and also receive in our daily walk of faith count in the books of works and they will accrue for rewards in eternity. And as the scripture puts it, “If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.”
So anyone can go about defiling their bodies and claiming liberty of Spirit. The books of works are recording and the rewards will either be a loss or a gain.
How must we now live?
The simplicity of Christ is simple indeed, but not stupid. It is a meticulous adherence to the mind of God by the Spirit, through faith. It is not a burden that often makes rhema and revelation seekers look stressed and burdened. Not at all. For the Book of Life and the books of works work together for our heirdom in God and eternal rewards with Christ. In other words, let us live our daily lives of faith in the simplicity of heart, knowing that there is the Book of Life with our names in it, there is God who can blot out a name from the Book of Life, there are the books of works where things are recorded daily and then also consider that the clock is ticking.
In conclusion, I said that I was going to talk about the reality of eternal condemnation. This, as spoken by Christ, has a little clause or maybe just some hidden mysteries around it. For it seems to me that the Lake of Fire has the ability to purify a condemned sinner and thus bring them back to God even in death. For the fire that consumes also purifies unto cleanliness. I do not understand, neither do I subscribe to the Catholic concept of purgatory, but as the Lord said concerning the fires of hell, “For everyone will be seasoned with fire, and every sacrifice will be seasoned with salt.” (Emphasis mine) Selah. But if you have clearer thoughts about this particular subject of eternal condemnation and which you want to share, please write a comment below or write me directly through the contact form.
From your brother.