Because the very idea of life, our life, captivates us, it possesses marketing value and appears in aphorisms. Thus the soap opera title, “One Life to Live” or the maxim, “You only have one life.”
We do get only one shot it. How long can we keep hold of it? None of us knows for certain.
Life, however, does have one certainty. Our life will fall into one of three possibilities. While two of the three possibilities are horrific, the good news is we can choose! Neither fate nor random chance will determine which possibility will be ours.
“And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne. Then books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. … Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire” (Revelation 20:12,15).
It might be that our name was never written in the Lamb’s book of life because we never chose to rely upon Christ and his blood.
Earlier in Revelation we encounter the claim, “the one who overcomes will be dressed in white … I will never erase his name from the book of life, but will acknowledge his name before my Father and before his angels” (Revelation 3:5).
Since this was written to Christians, the message is clear. If they were to become unfaithful their names would be blotted out from the book of life. It might be that our name was in the book, but because we gave up on Christ it has been removed.
The third possibility is that our name is still in the book on the day of judgment.
Which possibility our life faces is no mystery. If we have relied upon Christ by dying with him and being raised with him in baptism through our faith in the power of God, our name is written in the Lamb’s book of those purchased for God. Those who remain faithful to Christ; their names remain in the book of life.
Don’t fixate on the negative; focus on the positive. We have one life. We can determine where it ends up.
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