The Scriptorium

You and Me and Genealogy

One great genealogy remains. Revelation 7.4-10

Gleanealogy: Forward, Ever Forward (7)

Pray Psalm 106.1-5.
Praise the LORD!
Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good!
For His mercy endures forever.
Who can utter the mighty acts of the LORD?
Who can declare all His praise?
Blessed are those who keep justice,
And he who does righteousness at all times!
Remember me, O LORD, with the favor You have toward Your people.
Oh, visit me with Your salvation,
That I may see the benefit of Your chosen ones,
That I may rejoice in the gladness of Your nation,
That I may glory with Your inheritance.

Sing joyfully Psalm 106.1-5, 48.
(Trust in Jesus: ‘Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus)
Praise the Lord!  Give thanks and praise Him!  He is good, His love endures!
More His works than can be spoken; let His praise be ever sure!
Refrain v. 48
Blessèd be our God and Savior, evermore His praise proclaim!
Let all those who know Your favor praise Your holy, glorious Name!

Lord, when You Your people favor, help me, O, remember me,
That I may Your blessings savor and in joy and glory be!
Refrain

Read Revelation 7.4-10.

Prepare.
1. Who are the people mentioned here?

2. How do they make us think about the genealogies we have considered in this series?

Meditate.
One final genealogy awaits our consideration in this series on Gleanealogy. This one is altogether unique, in that it existed even before the world was created, and has not been added to since; however, it will not be opened and read until the world as we know it comes to an end. Knowing that it exists draws God’s covenant people forward, ever forward, to the coming day of glory

Nevertheless, God knows the names of those who are written in it, for He wrote their names in it Himself (Ex. 32.32; Luke 10.20). This is the Lamb’s Book of Life, the census/genealogy of all those whom God has gathered, is gathering, and will gather to Himself to dwell forever with Him in the new heavens and new earth.

Who are these people? They include representatives from all the tribes descended from Jacob, as well as all the tribes and nations and peoples from the nations beyond Israel. They are a number greater than anyone could ever enumerate – more than the stars of the heavens, the dust of the air, or the sand of the seas (Rev. 7.4-10). These are those who labor in the Gospel, seeking the Kingdom of God and proclaiming the Good News of Jesus (Phil. 4.3). They overcome all adversity to stand firm in their confession of Christ (Rev. 3.5). They worship only the Lamb of God, and will no way give their devotion to any other creature or thing (Rev. 13.8). These are they whose works in life are their credentials and calling card – like Ezra, when he showed up in Jerusalem – showing them to be recorded in the Book of Life. They rid themselves of everything that defiles, and every abomination and every lie (Rev. 21.27). And they hold fast to every Word that proceeds from the mouth of God – omitting none, changing none, and adding nothing to them (Rev. 22.19).

A day is coming when the Book of Life will be opened, and all whose names are listed there will be read out, and they will be welcomed to and registered in the Kingdom prepared for them from before the foundation of the world.

The people who returned to Jerusalem from Babylon knew they were “on the list” to have a reservation in the land of promise. They had their pedigree. They fit the qualifications. They could trace their roots back to Abraham. Those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life know they are on that list (1 Jn. 5.13). Their pedigree is Jesus, and He is at work in and through them, bearing fruit that proves their faith and confirms their names are written in the only genealogy and census that finally matters (Matt. 7.19, 20).

Those who appear before the judgment throne of Christ, with no credentials to commend themselves, will find that their names have not been written in that ultimate list, and they will not be welcomed into the eternal City of God. We must not take for granted that our names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. Instead, we must ever show ourselves eager to be found in that great genealogy. We must do all that God commands to “make our calling and election sure” (2 Pet. 1.5-11), lest we be found to be no followers of Christ at all, but lawless and disobedient pretenders (Matt. 7.21-23).

Reflect.
1. Is it possible to know whether your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life? Explain.

2. How should believers encourage one another to make their calling and election sure (2 Pet. 1.5-11)? Why should we do this for one another?

3. Christians are not saved by works, but we’re not saved without them. Why? Which works?

There is but one Book of Life, because in it are inscribed those who are the elect, that is, those blameless in virtue, who have trodden every rugged and steep path of virtue.
Oecumenius (6th century), Commentary on the Apocalypse 20.11, 12

Thank You, Lord, that You have written my name in Your Book! Help me to prove my credentials today as I…

Pray Psalm 106.44-48.
Give thanks to God for His covenant, and for the grace He has shown you in Jesus. Pray that He will gather all those whose names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, and bring revival, renewal, and awakening in our day.

Sing Psalm 106.44-48.
Psalm 106.44-48 (Trust in Jesus: ‘Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus)
Look upon us, Lord, with favor, see us in our sore distress!
Hear our cries, with love surround us – turn again to heal and bless!
Refrain v. 48
Blessèd be our God and Savior, evermore His praise proclaim!
Let all those who know Your favor praise Your holy, glorious Name!

Save us, Lord, from every nation; gather us from all our ways.
And we to Your Name will offer glorious thanks and endless praise!
Refrain

T. M. Moore

The genealogies of Scripture reveal the heart of God in His covenant relationship with His people. To learn more about God’s covenant, order our book, I Will Be Your God, by clicking here. You can learn to sing all the psalms to familiar hymn tunes by ordering a copy of The Ailbe Psalter (click here). You can download the weekly studies in this series by clicking here.

If you value Scriptorium as a free resource for your walk with the Lord, please consider supporting our work with your gifts and offerings. You can contribute to The Fellowship by clicking the Contribute button  at the website or by sending your gift to The Fellowship of Ailbe, 360 Zephyr Road, Williston, VT 05495.

Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. All psalms for singing adapted from
The Ailbe Psalter. All quotations from Church Fathers from Ancient Christian Commentary Series, General Editor Thomas C. Oden (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2006). All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (available by clicking here).

 

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in Essex Junction, VT.
Books by T. M. Moore