Shelby G. Floyd

The Book of Life

Is your name in the Book of Life? You might say, “What book are you talking about?” Well, Face Book, of course! A lot of us are on Face Book. It is a social network, and it is interesting. It is a good way to communicate with our friends and family, especially if they are separated by some distance. My first cousin says that Face Book is like the old-time telephone party line, where everyone could listen in to someone’s conversation and find out the latest gossip. Face Book is one book we can have our name in. But that is not the book that we speak of today. We ask is your name in the “Lamb’s Book of Life?”

The Book of Physical Life

Recently, I got out my original birth certificate. It is a fancy birth certificate, listing the day of my birth at St. Francis Hospital in Beech Grove, Indiana. On the back side of it, my footprints and my thumbprints are imprinted. It said my hair was red, how much I weighed at birth, and who my father and mother were. Some of you can remember when my hair was brown and now it is white with age—red, brown and white!

I read in my daily Bible readings this week the Psalms of David. And there was a reading that jumped out and was very meaningful to me. I want to share it with you:

Psalms 139: 13-16
13 For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.

It is that last verse which I emphasize. “All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” When I look at my birth certificate, my name is in that book. But God knew how many days I would have upon this earth before I was even born. And he wrote them down in his book of the physical living. And that is amazing! And one of these days we are going to receive another certificate—our death certificate. And our names will be written in the book of those who have ceased to be on this earth. And so physically all of us who are alive today have our names recorded in the book of the physical living.

A Bunch of Everlastings

From 1965 through 1968 I preached for the Arlington church of Christ in Jacksonville, Florida. And while I was living there I visited a used bookstore. And I purchased this little green book that has water marks all over it and the title was blotted out. I took a magic marker and inscribed the title on it. The title is “A Bunch of Everlastings,” by F. W. Boreham. This book is made up of some of the favorite texts of preachers down through the centuries. I love this book and would not take anything for it. Most preachers prize their books as their most cherished possessions. The text I have chosen for our topic today was Dean Stanley’s favorite text, Revelation 21: 27!

Let me share with you the story in this book about Dean Stanley. There were two soldiers in England who boarded a train. They sat down by this gentleman and found out he was from the same town as Dean Stanley. Then they related a story to him about their visit to Westminster Abby, in London, England. As they were ready to visit the Abby it was closing for the day. As they were being turned away, Dean Stanley appeared and asked them if they could return on the next day. They were very disappointed and said that they had to leave the next day. Dean Stanley then took the keys from the regular tour guide and showed them throughout the famous building where all the notables of Great Britain were laid to rest. As they were leaving, he said, “But, after all you both may have a more enduring monument than this, for this will molder into dust and be forgotten, but if your names are written in the Lamb’s book of life, you will abide forever.”

He invited them to breakfast the next morning, paid their fares to their home, and again in bidding them goodbye he urged them to make sure that their names were written in the Lamb’s book of life. And then he added these words as they parted company, “If we never meet again on earth, we shall certainly meet in Heaven.”


That is a wonderful story. And I ask, “Is your name written in the Lamb’s book of life?” If it is not, make sure that your name is recorded in God’s book of life—the Lamb’s book of life! The expression, “the Lamb’s book of life” is found only one time in the New Testament. It is used near the end of the book of Revelation when John declared,

“Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (Revelation 21:27).

In the context in which this passage is stated, John is discussing the new Jerusalem—heaven itself. And then he describes the people who will live in that celestial city. No one will enter the celestial home unless their name is found in the book—the Lamb’s book of life. And this is what makes heaven so outstanding, because those who go there are related to the Lamb of God who gave his precious blood that we might be free from sin: “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).

And now we look at a related passage that does not use the exact expression the Lamb’s book of life, but it conveys the same idea in different wording: “All inhabitants of the earth will worship the beast—all whose names have not been written in the book of life belonging to the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world” (Revelation 13:8). Those whose names are written in the book of life will not worship the beast but will worship God in spirit and truth as we are commanded (John 4:24). When John said that the Lamb was slain from the creation of the world it means that in type, prophecy and promise, Christ was promised to be the Lamb of God that would be slain on the cross of Calvary. All the blood of bulls and goats was but a type of the blood of Christ shed on the cross at the fullness of times (Galatians 4:4-5).


After reading both of these passages of Scripture, we ask again, “Is your name written in the Lamb’s book of life?” If it is not, make it your priority to see that you have your name recorded in the registry of God’s book of life!

Copyright © 2023 Shelby G. Floyd, All Rights Reserved


Shelby G. Floyd, Minister, Heartland Church of Christ, 1693 West Main Street, Greenwood, Indiana 46142

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