We are now in an important 10-day period known as the Days of Awe (Yamim Nora’im), which started this week with Rosh HaShanah (Head of the Year) and will end next Wednesday night with the close of Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement). A more common name for this 10-day period is Aseret Yemei Teshuvah (10 Days of Repentance).
Traditionally, Rosh HaShanah, also known as Yom Teruah, is a day of judgment when God opens His book, examines our deeds and decides who will live, who will die, who will have a good life and who will have one filled with troubles.
While it is believed that God makes His decree on Rosh HaShanah, that decree is not sealed in the Book of Life until Yom Kippur.
During these Days of Awe, we repent of our sins of the past year, ever mindful that God is a righteous judge; all His ways are just and true. He will reward the righteous and not allow the wicked to go unpunished.
“Surely there is a reward for the righteous; surely there is a God who judges on earth.” (Psalm 58:11)
The concept of the Book of Life and its connection to judgment is entirely Scriptural. The Bible, in fact, contains many references to the Book of Life. The Hebrew Prophet Daniel wrote that “everyone whose name is found written in the book will be delivered.” (Daniel 12:1)
We also see references to this in the Brit Chadashah (New Testament): “He that overcomes… I will never blot his name out of the Book of Life.” (Revelation 3:5)
“Anyone not found written in the Book of Life was thrown into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:15)
May your family, loved ones and the Jewish People be found written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.