Friday, September 25, 2009

You gotta read this book

"These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates." - Deuteronomy 6:6-9

The Bible is not just another good book. It is God breathed, God inspired, and God's love letter to His people. But why then is it so easy to pick up a novel, and sometimes so difficult to find time for devotions? Even for a book addict like me, who can always find time to read, I feel a small battle being waged within me when it comes to sit down with the Word. That fact alone tips me off that there is power behind the Word that the enemy wants to keep me from tapping into.

When we read God's book something very powerful and miraculous happens....We actually breathe in the BREATH OF GOD. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16)

It is our sustanance, Jesus referred to it as food, food that we cannot live without, that means we must ingest it, let it fill us up!

And the tempter came and said to Him, "If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread." 4 But He answered and said, "It is written, 'Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.'" (Matthew 4:3-4)

It is our compass, our guide, our light in the darkness for when all other lights go out. Try going somewhere you've never been before without a map or GPS! Every day brings new challenges, new territories and we need God's word to face these situations in the clear light of Scripture.

Thy word is a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path (Psalm 119:105)

With all the other voices clamoring for attention in our world today, we need to hear the voice of God to counteract them. We need this reminder again and again, because the other competing voices around us are never silent! We forget it if we don't hear it often enough. Even more important that "hearing it" is "doing what it says." That is the challenge!

"For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like." James 1:23

It actually performs a work in us, it works on us from the inside out!

"When you received from us the word of God"s message [literally, "the word of hearing of God"], you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe." 1 Thessalonians 2:13

And also, it is not the word of man, but the Word of God....This is important, so many times I have heard that the Bible is "open to an individual's interpretation" It says what it means and it means what it says. What part of "Thou shalt not," "Flee from," and "Do this," do we not understand?

Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet's own interpretation (2 Peter 1:20)

Last but not least, God has the last word, always!

The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever (Isaiah 40:8)

A great idea is buying one on CD.I finally did this a few years ago. Commuting 40 minutes twice a day, I go though whole books in no time at all. So many times I have heard a verse and went back to look it up later. I also don't get quite as mad at other drivers!

It also comes with a guarantee; (and you won't find this kind of promise in the self-help section of Barnes and Noble); if you do what it says, you will live forever!

See that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father. And this is what he promised us—even eternal life. (1 John 2:24,25)

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