1. JUDGED BY WRITTEN RECORDS
a. How does the first angel of Revelation announce the judgment, and what occurs in heaven at this time? Revelation 14:6, 7; Daniel 7:9, 10.
“Day by day the record of your words, your actions, and your influence is being made in the books of heaven.”—That I May Know Him, p. 234.
“God knows every thought, every purpose, every plan, every motive. The books of heaven record the sins that would have been committed had there been opportunity. God will bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing. . . . God has a perfect photograph of every man’s character, and this photograph He compares with His law. He reveals to man the defects that mar his life, and calls upon him to repent and turn from sin.”—The Signs of the Times, July 31, 1901.
“Let us individually consider what is the record made in the books of heaven concerning our life and character, and our attitude toward God. . . . Let us examine our past life and see if we have given evidence of our love for Jesus by seeking to be like Him, and by working, as He worked, to save those for whom He died.”—Lift Him Up, p. 325.
2. THOSE UNITED TO CHRIST ARE INCLUDED
a. What happens in heaven once a person professes to serve Christ? Luke 10:20 (last part); Philippians 4:3 (last part).
“When we become children of God, our names are written in the Lamb’s book of life, and they remain there until the time of the investigative judgment. Then the name of every individual will be called, and his record examined.”—In Heavenly Places, p. 360.
“The black man’s name is written in the book of life beside the white man’s. All are one in Christ.”—Selected Messages, bk. 2, p. 342.
“Your name may be kept so pure that it cannot justly be connected with anything dishonest or unrighteous, but will be respected by all the good and pure, and it may be written in the Lamb’s book of life, to be immortalized among the holy angels.”—God’s Amazing Grace, p. 111.
b. Why is it vital to be truly led by the Holy Spirit? Romans 8:14.
“The Spirit of God, with its vivifying power, must be in every human agent, that every spiritual muscle and sinew may be in exercise. Without the Holy Spirit, without the breath of God, there is torpidity of conscience, loss of spiritual life. Many who are without spiritual life have their names on the church records, but they are not written in the Lamb’s book of life. They may be joined to the church, but they are not united to the Lord. They may be diligent in the performance of a certain set of duties, and may be regarded as living men; but many are among those who have ‘a name that thou livest, and art dead.’ ”—SDA Bible Commentary [E. G. White Comments], vol. 4, p. 1166.
“We are not saved as a sect; no denominational name has any virtue to bring us into favor with God. We are saved individually as believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. And ‘by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.’ We may have our names recorded on the books of the most spiritual of the churches, and yet we may not belong to Christ, and our names may not be written on the Lamb’s book of life.”—The Review and Herald, February 10, 1891.
“Let church members bear in mind that the fact that their names are registered on the church books will not save them. They must show themselves approved of God, workmen that need not be ashamed. Day by day they are to build their characters in accordance with Christ’s directions. They are to abide in Him, constantly exercising faith in Him.”—Testimonies, vol. 9, p. 48.
3. PRECISE RECORDS
a. While our names may have been registered in the Lamb’s book of life, what else is being meticulously recorded? Proverbs 15:3.
“All your acts, however secret you may think they have been, are open to your heavenly Father. Nothing is hidden, nothing covered. All your acts and the motives which prompt them are open to His sight. He has full knowledge of all your words and thoughts.”—Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 82.
“Remember, your character is being daguerreotyped [photographed] by the great Master Artist in the record books of heaven, as minutely as the face is reproduced upon the polished plate of the artist. What do the books of heaven say in your case? Are you conforming your character to the Pattern, Jesus Christ? Are you washing your robes of character and making them white in the blood of the Lamb?”—Testimonies on Sexual Behavior, Adultery, and Divorce, p. 62.
“If we would be overcomers, we must search our hearts to be sure that we are not cherishing anything that is offensive to God. If we are, we cannot wear the white raiment that is here promised. If we would stand before God in the white linen, which is the righteousness of the saints, we must now do the work of overcoming.”—Historical Sketches, p. 138.
b. What is God’s plan in this work? Revelation 11:1.
“The grand judgment is taking place, and has been going on for some time. Now the Lord says, Measure the temple and the worshipers thereof. Remember when you are walking the streets about your business, God is measuring you; when you are attending your household duties, when you engage in conversation, God is measuring you. . . .
“When we are doing our work remember there is One that is watching the spirit in which we are doing it. Shall we not bring the Saviour into our everyday lives, into our secular work and domestic duties? Then in the name of God we want to leave behind everything that is not necessary, all gossiping or unprofitable visiting, and present ourselves as servants of the living God.”—The SDA Bible Commentary [E. G. White Comments], vol. 7, p. 972.
4. BLOTTING OUT
a. Although our names may have been entered into the Book of Life, what is still possible? Psalm 69:28. What is God’s desire for us? Philippians 2:14, 15.
“Time is fast hastening on, and every work will soon be brought into judgment, and either our sins or our names will be blotted out of the Book of Life.”—Sons and Daughters of God, p. 49.
“You cannot consent to profess the truth and not live it; you have ever admired a life consistent with profession. I was shown a book in which was written your name with many others. Against your name was a black blot. You were looking upon this and saying: ‘It can never be effaced.’ Jesus held His wounded hand above it and said: ‘My blood alone can efface it. If thou wilt from henceforth choose the path of humble obedience, and rely solely upon the merits of My blood to cover thy past transgressions, I will blot out thy transgressions, and cover thy sins. But if you choose the path of transgressors you must reap the transgressor’s reward. The wages of sin is death.’
“I saw evil angels surrounding you seeking to divert your mind from Christ, causing you to look upon God as a God of justice and to lose sight of the love, compassion, and mercy of a crucified Saviour who will save to the uttermost all that come unto Him. Said the angel: ‘If any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.’ ”—Testimonies, vol. 1, pp. 543, 544.
“If we would be true lights in the world, we must manifest the loving, compassionate spirit of Christ. To love as Christ loved means that we must practice self-control. It means that we must show unselfishness at all times and in all places.”—My Life Today, p. 80.
b. What privilege do we have as Christians, and what responsibility goes along with this privilege? 1 John 3:1–3.
“Well may you ask, ‘Is my name written there?’ It is registered in that book of life if you have a character that is pure and holy like the character of Christ. Faith in the truth alone will not save us. We must be like Christ if we shall one day see Him as He is.”—Testimonies on Sexual Behavior, Adultery, and Divorce, p. 134.
5. PROMISES TO THE OVERCOMER
a. What is in the book of remembrance? Malachi 3:16; Nehemiah 13:14.
“In the book of God’s remembrance every deed of righteousness is immortalized. There every temptation resisted, every evil overcome, every word of tender pity expressed, is faithfully chronicled. And every act of sacrifice, every suffering and sorrow endured for Christ’s sake, is recorded.”—The Great Controversy, p. 481.
b. In summary, what should we ever keep in mind? Revelation 3:5; Matthew 10:32.
“In order to confess Christ, we must have Him to confess. No one can truly confess Christ unless the mind and spirit of Christ are in him. . . . It is possible with our lips to confess Christ yet in our works deny Him. The fruits of the Spirit manifested in the life are a confession of Him. If we have forsaken all for Christ, our lives will be humble, our conversation heavenly, our conduct blameless. The powerful, purifying influence of truth in the soul, and the character of Christ exemplified in the life, are a confession of Him.”—Testimonies, vol. 1, pp. 303, 304.
“Whose names will not be blotted out of the book of life? Only the names of those who have loved God with all the powers of their being, and their neighbors as themselves.”—Historical Sketches, p. 138.
PERSONAL REVIEW QUESTIONS
1. How do we know that the evidence in the Judgment is just and true?
2. How does our accountability to God go way beyond church membership?
3. Why and how are we being measured right now?
4. Compare what is blotted out in those who will be lost vs. those saved.
5. What should be our main concern on a daily basis?