Have you ever written a letter you did not want anyone else to read? Have you ever written a diary entry that was for your eyes only? What would you do if you found out someone was reading your mail? What would you do if you found out someone was reading your diary?
I learned the hard way on this point. Deb and I had only been married a year. We were wrestling with something that I knew she wrote about in her diary. She wasn't talking and I needed to know what I did! She was off at work ... you get the story! The temptation was too great.
I learned a lot that day. One, don't read someone else's diary. That's a bad move! Two, I had a lot of growing up to do ... based on what was written about me!
Did you know, the diary of your life will be read publicly some day?
Read: Revelation 20
The Thousand Years
1And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key to the Abyss and holding in his hand a great chain. 2He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. 3He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time.
4I saw thrones on which were seated those who had been given authority to judge. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony for Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or his image and had not received his mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5(The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.) This is the first resurrection. 6Blessed and holy are those who have part in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him for a thousand years.
7When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison 8and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth—Gog and Magog—to gather them for battle. In number they are like the sand on the seashore. 9They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God's people, the city he loves. But fire came down from heaven and devoured them. 10And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
The Dead Are Judged
11Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no place for them. 12And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. 13The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he had done. 14Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. 15If anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.
Good news ..... you will only be judged for what you do and do not do while living on earth (v. 12). Bad news ..... you will be judged.
Bad news ... what we do is written in a book of deeds (v. 13). Good news ... there is another book, the book of Life, that trumps the book of deeds (v. 15)!
I am not sure about you but I do not like the idea that anyone is recording what I do. That is an unsettling thought. Yet here it is. There is a book, a record, of the deeds of humans on earth. This book will be opened one day. This book will be read. We will be judged by what we do.
41 "Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.' 44 "They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?' 45"He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.'
Please note, though this is true, the final judgment will be if we are in the Book of Life! That book is like the wedding invitation list. If you get in there your book of deeds will be covered. Your debt paid.
There will still be judgment. There could be loss (of rewards, crowns, glory to Christ, leadership opportunities, intensity of eternal worship) but we will be saved nonetheless (1 Cor. 3:11-15). This will be because of the saving work of our Lord Jesus Christ and our trusting him for salvation.
Live as if your diary is going to be read. Make sure you are written in the Lamb's book of life. Read "Begin a relationship with Jesus" in the About Us section if you are unsure.