Revelation 20:11-15 Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. 12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. 13 And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. 14 Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. 15 And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.
Our text describes the most fearful judgment, the Great White Throne judgment. The judge is the Creator God. The judge uses two books to determine the future of each person that stands before Him. The first book is the book of the person’s life that is a record of all that the person did during his lifetime. The second book is the Book of Life or also called the Lamb’s Book of Life in Revelation 21:27. The Book of Life is a record of all the people that repented of their sins and believed the gospel. The people whose names are written in the Book of Life are pardoned from all their sins. Revelation 20:15 makes it very clear through the grammar used that no one in this judgment has his name written in the Book of Life.
The people standing before God in the Great White Throne judgment will be judged according to what they did during their lifetime. There are no redo’s or second chances. If only one sin, according to James 2:10, is recorded in a person’s book, he is guilty and will receive the penalty of the second death, which is being thrown into the Lake of Fire where he will experience torment eternally (Matthew 25:46). Death and Hades are also cast into the Lake of Fire. Hades is the place where all who die without having repented of their sins and believed the gospel will wait in torment until the final judgment (Luke 16:19-31 note that in verse 23 some translate the Greek, “Hades”, as “hell”).
Our response to this text of eternal judgment is to help people know Jesus and the pardon He offers all who repent and believe the gospel (Mark 1:15; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4; Romans 10:9). Every believer has been given the primary assignment of helping as many people as will listen to turn to Jesus and be saved from their sins.