This is an answer to a sincere friend of mine question that he posed after some series of intelligent and unaggressive discussion. I found it quiet intelligent question that needs immediate attention. *Would be edited later.
I just enjoyed a constructive discussion with a very intelligent Swiss educated Ghanaian Theologian on the subject of possible scenario after death. He cited the following passages to build a case:
“Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done.” Revelation 22:12; “For God will bring every deed into judgment….” Ecclesistes 12: 14
What I don’t understand is that why does it say in 1 Corinthians 13:5 that Love- and God is the ultimate Love according to Christian theology- is not easily angered and in addition keeps no record of wrongs; this is it takes no account of the evil done to it. Now, I’m confused. What follows is that why does God demand we keep no record of wrong done to us and yet spends His whole day recording our bad deeds in some book he intends to us against us some day when we appear before His judgement throne? Sounds like double standard to me.
This is a very critical and thoughtful question. But before I tackle your question, on your issue of confusion, it does happen daily when we want to reach heights in our quest to know. Seeking for knowledge is one of the stressful adventure a man can go through “For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief.” Ecclesiastes 1: 18. It is additionally a fact that knowledge shall keep on increasing (both good and bad) Daniel 12: 4.
As for philosophers who daily seek answers, they end up in billions of questions as a reward to one answer. Moreover, the upward phases of dispensations shape our thinking and therefore effects our culture. If this generation decides to wash away sports from the society, the next generation would have to study our sports today to make them think otherwise. We may believe something today and tomorrow we might be wrong since material knowledge evolves.
To make a comparative link to the knowledge of the Bible, as I said in our discussion, theology posses questions that we believe that God has already given an answer. So it is however the task of theology to search for these answers to arrive at the TRUTH. And this truth, though we must search for, is given by inspiration. This is because, our carnal mind cannot simply understand the words of the Almighty. But the good news is that, Truth is searchable and findable, “AND YE SHALL KNOW THE TRUTH, AND THE TRUTH SHALL MAKE YOU FREE“. John 8: 32.
This does not mean that Truth shall be like a basket in your mind. But to know truth can also mean the ability to identify it when seen or heard. So it is like a key planted in your mind because your mind has been touched by the Divine. Make no mistake that you confuse this with scientific truth. The same principle applies there. Scientists do discover truth. In other words, the answer was already there and they discovered it.
Now in an attempt to answer your question;
1. We are sinners and it doesn’t need some records to remind God about this tag. (1 John 1:8)
2. God forgives sin and cleanses if we confess. And He remembers them no longer. 1 John 1: 9.
3. Sin by its nature exposes us to destructions: “The soul who sins is the one who will die…” Ezekiel 18: 20.
Now am coming to the issue of recording sins…In fact it it not written anywhere in the Bible that God records our sins. How can God record sins of the already condemned? When a person is condemned to die, will his later deeds, like slapping a police man or insulting the judge be written to be tried again? Absolutely no! That is the human condition. We are already sinners and condemned. It has been been the grace of God that we can reach out to Heaven.
David said, “If you, O LORD, kept a RECORD of sins, O Lord, who could stand?” (Psalm 130.3). The answer is clear, no one…
But the good news is that, “with you there is forgiveness” (Psalm 130.4).
Sure there are books in Heaven, but those books are records about the lives of the righteous (1) The book of life (Re. 20:12; Lk. 10:20). (2) The book of remembrance (Mal. 3:16).
The book of life contains the names of those who asked for forgiveness and they were forgiven and washed from their sins.
So how will God identify the wicked, like the bad politicians and hypocritical pastors, very simple theological equation:
The book of life = names of saints
Name not found = condemned
“And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” (Rev.20:12-15)
Now the choice rest with all of us. Our deeds and works shall appear before the judgment seat of God. As we have grace to ask for forgiveness, what are we waiting for?
By the way only the unjust who is afraid of judgment. To the righteous, it is a time for salvation.