Most of my life I’ve kept books in the supercomputer of my brain. I think I need them to make myself good. They contain knowledge of the good and the bad, or, as I referred to it in high school “categories of cool.”
Wherever you go in this world, people keep books in their heads. They may argue about the “categories of cool,” that is the details of “the knowledge of good and evil.” Yet, they all agree that there is this thing we call “the Good” and they want to make themselves in its image.
With the books and my incessant bookkeeping, I judge myself and my neighbors. If I judge a neighbor to be “last and least,” it makes me feel better about myself . . . for a moment. But playing by the books, I end up enslaved to the books, wishing all my neighbors to Hell, hating myself, and in the end hating God.
According to God, loving my neighbors as myself is good. And to love, or not love, my neighbor as myself is to love or not love God; for whatever I do unto the last and least of these, I do unto Him. By wishing my neighbor to Hell, I wish God, myself, and all of creation to Hell. God is Love; and “none is good, but God alone.”
When I play by the books I don’t make myself Good, but evil.
I make myself a beast that consumes the Good and produces evil.
I make myself a harlot that uses Love and takes Life . . . that is, makes death. I become one of the walking dead. The Judgment you pronounce is the judgment you receive,” said Jesus.
I think the books are called “the law.”
The energy with which I play the game is called “the flesh.”
And the game is called “justifying myself.”
The law of God is Good, but when I take knowledge of the Good to justify myself, I crucify the Good and damn myself. The law of God is Love, but when I take knowledge of Love to justify myself, I crucify Love in flesh . . . and He is the Life.
In Revelation 20, John sees “the dead.” In the previous paragraph, he saw, “the living.” The dead are judged by the things written in “the books,” according to their deeds because they want to be. And then, they are thrown into the “lake of Fire and Divinity.”
“And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.” Whose name does Jesus not write in His book? Perhaps that of the person He does not know—“In that day many will say, ‘did we not do many mighty deeds in your name,’ and then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me you workers of lawlessness.’”
Jesus, the Truth, does not know the lie that is your false self; He does not know your self-righteous self, for that self is an illusion. In the presence of God, revealed on the tree that we call the cross, the “old Adam” is destroyed by Holy Fire. Perhaps, the “old man” is destroyed by Holy Fire for he is filled with Holy Fire, just as the Temple was filled with the Glory of God—who is eternal and consuming Fire.
The New Adam, your true self, is the Temple of the Living God and Body of Christ, the image of God . . . who appeared at the start of this vision as the Man on Fire.
You cannot “make” yourself love, but Love is making you—He is making you in His own image.
On Judgment Day, I suspect a voice will cry, “Peter Hiett, you gave me a cup of cold water. Enter my kingdom.” And I’ll say, “I don’t even remember that?” And He’ll say, “Exactly! For once you weren’t keeping score; you weren’t trying to be Good; you just were Good. I made you Good with my Judgment of burning Love—Grace.”
You cannot justify yourself, but you have been justified. Justification by Grace through Faith is the Judgment of God: it’s the Judgment that destroys the old man and liberates the New: the New Jerusalem coming down, the Eternal Temple of the Living God.
You don’t need to fear the Lake of Fire if you’ve already been filled with that Fire. Pray, “Lord Jesus I offer my self to you as a living sacrifice. Please baptize me with your Spirit, the Spirit of the living God, the Holy Fire.”
*Sermon discussion questions are available here: Discussion Questions: “The Books of the Dead and the Book of the Lamb