|The Hebrew month of “Elul” comes in late summer and is a month of repentance leading up to the Feast of Trumpets (Rosh Hashanah; See Leviticus 23) and the solemn Holy Days at the start of the following month (Tishrei).
According to Jewish tradition, God opens the Book of Life and judges the world during this season. That’s why it’s taken as a time for repentance; during which time additional prayers are offered.
This year I visited Jerusalem in late summer and heard Orthodox Jews rising early to pray and then continuing through the night, trying to prepare their hearts. From the Day of Trumpets until the tenth of the month, Orthodox prayers grow in intensity during the ten “days of awe” until they reach a climax on Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement). On that day, according to Jewish tradition, the Book of Life is closed for the year (Leviticus 23:27). It’s customary to greet one another with the saying G’mar Chatimah Tovah – “May you be inscribed (in the Book of Life) for good.” The expanded meaning is, “May God look at your heart and find you to be truly repentant and changed. May He grant you this coming year and seal you in the Book of Life.”
Let’s see the progressive understanding of the Book of Life throughout the Word:
Moses in Exodus 32:32-33 said, “‘Alas, this people has committed a great sin, and they have made a god of gold for themselves. But now, if You will, forgive their sin—and if not, please blot me out from Your book which You have written!’ The Lord said to Moses, ‘Whoever has sinned against Me, I will blot him out of My book.’”
“Now at that time Michael, the great prince who stands guard over the sons of your people, will arise. And there will be a time of distress such as never occurred since there was a nation until that time; and at that time your people, everyone who is found written in the book, will be rescued.” (Daniel 12:1)
“Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord gave attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the Lord and who esteem His name.” (Malachi 3:16)
Yeshua in Luke 10:20 says, “Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are recorded in heaven.”
“But you have come to Mount Zion… the heavenly Jerusalem… and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect.” (Hebrews 12:22-23)
“He who overcomes… I will not erase his name from the book of life, and I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels.” (Revelation 3:5)
“And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:15)
“… and nothing unclean, and no one who practices abomination and lying, shall ever come into it, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.” (Revelation 21:27)
I am compelled to come before God in intercession on behalf of my people asking that their eyes be opened to the One who has already made provision for their eternal salvation; that they may be sealed, written in the Lamb’s book of life.