August 28, 2019
The Joy Of Seeing Satan Topple And Our Names Written In Heaven
As I was working on a presentation of the importance of spreading the Gospel of the Kingdom [and the authority that comes with entering the Kingdom], my path through Scripture ended at one of my favorite passages.
It is Luke 10:1-21, and begins with the 70 [or 72, depending on the version of your Bible] disciples being sent out to do "kingdom work". Remember, there were more than just the Twelve Disciples who followed Jesus and received His teachings and witnessed His demonstrations of the power of God. These 70 were sent out ahead of Jesus to every town He was about to enter. He gives them a crash course on how to walk in the authority He is lending them in order to see the Kingdom of God appear on the earth. [No one has yet received the Holy Spirit, so Jesus lends them His power and authority to teach them how to become laborers in God's harvest of souls].
When they return, the Bible says they were ecstatic with joy, telling Him, “Lord, even the demons obeyed us when we commanded them in Your Name!” And here's the part of this passage that makes my spirit shout in victory ... Jesus responds by saying, “While you were ministering, I watched Satan topple until he fell suddenly from heaven like lightning to the ground. Now you understand that I have imparted to you all My authority to trample over his kingdom. You will trample upon every demon before you and overcome every power Satan possesses. Absolutely nothing will be able to harm you as you walk in this authority."
Here's what the Holy Spirit is sharing with me: After Satan and his rebellious hordes were kicked out of the third heaven [where God dwells on His throne], they are conducting their spiritual war with God's heavenly army from the second heaven. [They are also attacking the children of God here on earth]. But every time a Believer follows Jesus's command in Luke 10:9 to "heal the sick, and tell them all, ‘God’s kingdom realm has arrived and is now within your reach!’", it causes Satan to topple from his throne of darkness. A victory over a physical, emotional, or spiritual sickness has been won! That's the spiritual mechanics that were taking place then, and the same thing happens today! We have His authority to trample on every demon and overcome every satanic power. Nothing can defeat us. Satan loses a battle, and Jesus watches it and rejoices!
But here's another interesting consequence of our obedience: in Luke 10:21, Jesus says, "However, your real source of joy isn’t merely that these spirits submit to your authority, but that your names are written in the journals of heaven and that you belong to God’s kingdom. This is the true source of your authority.”
I am aware that there is more than one book in Heaven in which the stories of our lives are written, but I was curious as to how many there are and what they are. I would like to reference a 2012 blog post on the HorizonWatcher website for this important information. We know that God is omnipotent and knows all, but we are also told in the Bible that there are books that keep track of what is going on down here on Earth.
To begin, there is the Book of the Living. The Book of the Living records the destinies of all humans on Earth. Psalm 139:16 tells us "You saw who You created me to be before I became me! Before I’d ever seen the light of day, the number of days You planned for me were already recorded in Your book." The Book of the Living also contains the details of each infant before it was formed in the womb. I imagine this includes height, color of eyes, boy or girl. And Revelation 3:12 says that when we return home to the Heavenly Kingdom, God will write upon us our new name. Perhaps that name is also included among the details listed in the Book of the Living.
The Book of Life contains the names of those who repent of their sins and trust God for their salvation. When Christ became the High Priest in the heavenly temple and was positioned as the mediator between God and man, this heavenly book was named the Lamb's Book of Life after Christ, who was called the Lamb of God. To enter the eternal kingdom of heaven, a person's name must be in this book. And we know that Jesus told us in order to enter the kingdom, we must be "Born Again", or Saved. The controversy comes with whether one believes a name can be removed from the Book of Life. In response to persecution by proud and arrogant leaders [perhaps both secular and religious], the psalmist in Psalms 69:28 cries out for justice: "Leave them out of your list of the living! Blot them out of your book of life! Never name them as your own!" We know that Jesus proclaims, "no one has the power to snatch believers from My hands", but the question remains: Can they remove themselves by unrighteous and evil acts? For that answer, we will have to wait for Eternity to come.
Did you know there is a Book of Tears? In the time of Christ, it was a Roman custom to have small tear bottles used to collect the tears of men and women at a funeral. Tears were collected and placed in these small bottles, sealed, and placed in tombs as a sign of respect for the deceased. Psalm 56:8 says, "You have taken account of my wanderings; [You have] put my tears in Your bottle. Are they not recorded in Your book?" This is such a lovely reminder that God watches over our every step and is mindful of each tear we shed.
Now let's consider the Book of Remembrance. For a person's name to be recorded in the Book of Remembrance, that person must be a giver [tithe], must fear God, and must be a witness of His name. In the Book of Acts, Chapter 10, verse 4, we see an example of how one man was remembered by God. Cornelius was giving charity for the needy. He feared God and was in prayer at the time of an angelic visitation. His prayers and giving record came up before God and the Lord honored this man with a special family blessing as a result of his faithfulness! If you have ever wondered how God keeps up with your tithes, offerings, and charity to the poor, they are recorded in this Book of Remembrance in heaven. "Cornelius clearly saw in a vision an angel of God who had come to him and said, “Cornelius!” Cornelius was frightened and stared intently at him and said, “What is it, lord (sir)?” And the angel said to him, “Your prayers and gifts of charity have ascended as a memorial offering before God [an offering made in remembrance of His past blessings]."
Finally, there is the Book of Rewards. This book is probably the least recognized by religious Christians, yet it will be the most important when they stand before the Lord. There are records in heaven of our deeds and works that are done [for God and His Kingdom] while we live on Earth. And perhaps even more sobering is the fact that there are records of the words we have spoken. We will be judged whether we are worthy to receive rewards, based on our actions and motives and hearts. For those who do good deeds, but their motives and heart conditions are self-serving, they will have to be content with the rewards they received while on earth.
Taking all this into account, I love reading Jesus's praise for the Father after the 70 Disciples have returned. He has seen Satan topple and his rule over a person's life defeated. He rejoices with the Disciples that their names are being recorded in Heaven. But the Bible says in Luke 10:21 that He is "overflowing with the Holy Spirit’s anointing of joy, exclaiming, “Father, thank You, for You are Lord Supreme over heaven and earth! You have hidden the great revelation of this authority from those who are proud, those wise in their own eyes, and You have shared it with these who humbled themselves. Yes, Father. This is what pleases Your heart and the very way You’ve chosen to extend Your kingdom: to give to those who become like trusting children."
As we step into our Kingdom identities, may we all see Satan topple; may our service be worthy to have our names be written in the Books in Heaven; and may we always remain humble like a trusting child. We, too, thank You, Father, for You have given Your authority to those who Seek, first, the Kingdom of God and Your Righteousness. We thank you for this powerful revelation and Your favor in receiving it. We take our responsibilities seriously.
Revelation 20:12 "And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. "