Our family had a good friend who was skilled in sleight-of-hand magic. Our children were about 10 or 15 years old at the time and were mesmerized by the illusions he could perform. They were particularly amazed by a finger guillotine he used. He asked each of them to place their fingers in the guillotine, and then it would seem he would close it over their fingers without ever hurting them. They couldn’t figure that out.
Jesus sent seventy disciples with instructions to heal the sick and tell people the kingdom of God had come near to them (Luke 10:9). They returned in great joy and were amazed by their miraculous ability. They told the Master that “even the demons submit to us in your name,” (Luke 10:17). Jesus told them not to rejoice about their abilities. He said something else was more worthy of their happiness and amazement: their names were written in heaven (Luke 10:20).
That the disciples’ names were written in heaven was much more important than any of the miracles they had performed. But why? The people the disciples had healed would eventually get sick and die. But those who had preached the gospel could enjoy the inestimable pleasure that eternal life was waiting.
Every year people of the United States remember those who have given their lives in terrible wars to defeat tyranny and so others might live in peace. Such a memorial is important. But it is more important to realize that if a person obeys the gospel, one might enjoy eternal life in heaven.
Is your name written in heaven? If you have obeyed the gospel and are living a faithful life as a Christian, it is. If not, won’t you take some time to learn how to obey the Lord so your name will be recorded there?