2010-07-15 - No Escape
Rev 20:11-15 Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat upon it, from whose presence earth and heaven fled away, and no place was found for them. 12 And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds. 13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead which were in them; and they were judged, every one of them according to their deeds. 14 Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire This is the second death, the lake of fire. 15 And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. (NASB)
The dead are called to judgement at the end of time.
They are called from the everywhere. It is interesting that the sea is specifically mentioned here. Even those who are buried or lost at sea who will be physically completely eroded into pieces so small we would say they were completely gone. Even their bones would become soft and be literally eroded to their component bits. Yet here God calls them to judgement. They will stand before Him no doubt in numbers beyond our desire to count sadly.
Many argue that this reconstruction is impossible. How can someone be completely reconstituted when parts of their bodies were no doubt eaten by fish? There are many assumptions in that question. The One that created everything "ex nihilo", literally "out of nothing" (Is this the big bang? Possibly. Something for another time.) is capable of re-creating the missing pieces and finding all the scattered elements and putting them all back together. We are dealing with omnipotence - all-powerful. In our minds a omnipotence is a complete wild card capable of things we can't even conceive, and the human mind is an amazing creation in itself.
These are judged by their works which are contained in the other books which are opened. Their names are not found in the one book that is named, the book of life. If their names were found in the book of life the searching would have stopped there. I would not want to be judged by my deeds. I have done many good things, but I am not perfect - far far from it. I know my heart well enough to know I desperately need a Savior (Jer 17:9-10). I would not stand before God in my own strength and not be judged. I will thankfully be hidden behind my Lord who will tell the Father my sins are covered by His sacrifice. All the Father will see is Christ. I will stand before Jesus for my failures, but not for my eternal life by His grace and mercy.
When all have been given their moment before the court, even death and Hades will be judged. They will forever be put away (Isa 25:8, Rev 21:4).
For those who believe they will simply merge with the elements and disappear into the mists of time, God is the author of time and space itself. He created it and will dissolve it one day. He lives outside it. He knows the end from the beginning. He knows our thoughts before we do. He knows the number of our days before the first one takes place.
There is one way of escape. God the Father has made that way for us through His Son, Jesus. If you want to know more about a personal relationship with Jesus, how your name can be written in the book of life, it is no secret. Please speak to your Pastor or ask one of us - Geoff (GKragen@aol.com), Adam (firstname.lastname@example.org), Jan (email@example.com), Lisa (firstname.lastname@example.org) or myself, and well be glad to help you.
Grace & Peace,