SO THAT THE MAN OF GOD MAY BE ADEQUATE: hina artios e (3SPAS) ho tou theou anthropos: (Ps 119:97, 98, 99, 119:100; 1Ti 6:11)
Other translations - fully qualified (ALT), fitted (YLT), perfect (KJV), complete (Wuest), preparing us in every way (NLT), competent (NAB), fully qualified (TEV), capable (NET) complete and proficient (Amp) Note that many of the Bible versions use vocabulary that emphasizes the thoroughness or completeness of the equipping; thoroughly (NIV), fully (NJB), complete (ASV, RSV, NKJV, Wuest), perfect (KJV)
Click for Illustrations and Quotes Related to the Word of God.
So that (2443) (hina) is a preposition expressing purpose (see discussion of terms of purpose) when used with the subjunctive mood as in this verse. The fact that "all Scripture is profitable" is now shown by its effect to on the "man of God". Every time you encounter a "so that" (or sometimes simply a clause beginning with "that") ask yourself what the writer is explaining or what had to transpire for him to come to this conclusion (always practice interrogating the passage with the 5W'S & H)
Adequate (739) (artios from root ar- which indicates appropriateness, suitability, usefulness, aptitude) means to be fit, complete, qualified for a function, sufficient, completely qualified and thus proficient in the sense of being able to meet all demands and to perform some function. Artios has reference to special aptitude for given uses. The man of God who is taught, reproved, corrected and trained by the Word of God is capable of doing everything he (or she) is called to do (cf. notes on Colossians 2:10).
NIDNTT notes that...
artios and its derivatives come from the root ar- which indicates appropriateness, suitability, usefulness, aptitude (cf. artyo, to arrange, season; artyno, to put in order; Lat. aptare, adaptare, congruere). Artios accordingly means suitable, appropriate, fitting a situation or requirements; hence also respectively, normal, perfect, sound in physical, intellectual, moral and religious respects. In mathematics it is used to describe what is straight and to denote even numbers (as opposed to perissos, odd numbers).
Of particular importance are those passages in which artios and its derivatives are used in connexion with the preparation and equipment of the believer and the church, for the service of God and their fellow-men. The adj. artios occurs only at 2Ti 3:17, together with the perfect pass. participle exertismenos. In the OT scriptures the church of the New Testament has an indispensable, God-given guide to living, through which the man of God may achieve an appropriate state, viz. be equipped for every work of love: “so that the man who belongs to God may be efficient and equipped for good work of every kind” (NEB). Artios here does not imply perfection, as was originally thought, doubtless because of the variant reading teleios, perfect, in Codex D. Rather it refers to the state of being equipped for a delegated task... The terms artios and katartismos thus have not so much a qualitative meaning as a functional one. (Brown, Colin, Editor. New International Dictionary of NT Theology. 1986. Zondervan)
The TDNT adds that artios in secular Greek meant
Elsewhere it means a. “suitable” or “adapted” for something; b. “right,” “faultless,” “normal,” “meeting demands" c. “evenness” in mathematics"...At 2Ti 3:17 artios is used in sense b. to denote what is right or proper, and more particularly what is becoming to a Christian, obviously with a moral accent, as shown by what follows. At 2Ti 3:17 exartizo means to bring to a suitable state for Christian moral action. It is used in Acts 21:5 in the secular sense of “to end as prescribed. (Kittel, G., Friedrich, G., & Bromiley, G. W. Theological Dictionary of the New Testament. Eerdmans)
Vincent adds that artios speaks of
a mutual, symmetrical adjustment of all that goes to make a man: a harmonious combination of different qualities and powers
Artios properly signifies an integer or whole number in arithmetic, to which nothing needs to be added to make it complete. This word describes those persons who are complete, capable and proficient in everything they are called to be or do. When you're packing to go on a trip you have everything you need for the journey and you're ready to go! You are ready for the WORK of God once you have been trained by WORD of God!
Trench - If we ask ourselves under what special aspects completeness is contemplated in artios, it would be safe to answer that it is not as the presence only of all the parts which are necessary for that completeness, but involves further the adaptation and aptitude of these parts for the ends which they were designed to serve. The man of God, St. Paul would say (2Ti 3:17), should be furnished and accomplished with all which is necessary for the carrying out of the work to which he is appointed. (See Trench's discussion of 2 other synonyms in Synonyms of the New Testament)
Theological Lexicon of the New Testament...
The biblical hapax (single use) of artios, rather rare in the Koine Greek and unknown in the papyri, literally means “adapted” or “well equipped, in proportion, fitting together perfectly.” It is also used for intact faculties as well as for speech that is appropriate for a given situation. In medicine, artios is used for the newborn whose whole body is well put-together and for vertebrae that are well aligned. Ambidextrous athletes have equal force and aptitude to strike with each arm (Philostratus, Gym. 41). This adjective is also known to signify “even” (Epictetus 1.28.3); as Philo comments, “four is a number that is even, complete, full.” The ensemble of external goods, body, and soul constitutes “a good that is balanced and truly complete” (Philo, Worse Attacks Better 7; cf. Marcus Aurelius 1.16.31: artion kai aēttēton psychēn). So artios in 2Ti 3:17 means that the minister of the gospel has “all that is necessary,” an adequate equipping, after digesting the word of God—as the end of the verse makes clear. (Spicq, C., & Ernest, J. D. 1994. Theological lexicon of the New Testament Volume 2:18. Peabody, MA.: Hendrickson.)
Comment: Note that Spicq says the man of God is adequately equipped "after digesting the Word of God." Don't read over that statement too quickly! What is the verb Spicq uses? Is it "reads" the Word? No, it's digests the Word. What a great word picture for Webster says to digest means to " to convert (food) into absorbable form; to take into the mind or memory; especially : to assimilate mentally." Beloved, this begs the question applicable to all of us -- am I truly eating the Word or am I just snacking on it? Am I really "chewing" the Word (meditation) that I might be able to absorb (spiritually) the Word, so that the Holy Spirit might be enabled to use to to renew my mind, change my thinking, empower my decisions and choice, etc? Now take a moment and ponder Jesus' words in Mt 4:4.
How is it that the godly man or woman can be made full adequate and equipped? One answer is seen in 2Pe 1:3 - Do you really believe this statement by Peter? Even more practical -- does your life show it... in the time you devote to devouring the Word of Truth, the Word of Life?... in your Spirit controlled/empowered obedience to the Word?
EQUIPPED: exertismenos (RPPMSN): (2Ti 2:21; Neh 2:18; Acts 9:36; 2Cor 9:8; Ep 2:10; Titus 2:14; 3:1; Heb 10:24)
Other translations - furnished completely (ASV), trained and made ready (BBE), fully fitted (Darby), completely prepared (GWT), thoroughly furnished (KJV), perfectly equipped (WNT), thoroughly equipped (ISV), well fitted and thoroughly equipped (Amp).
Equipped (1822) (exartizo from ek = out or used to intensive meaning + artios = fit, complete, capable from root ar- which indicates appropriateness, suitability, usefulness, aptitude) means to completely outfit, fully furnish, fully equip or supply.
Exartizo was used of a wagon or rescue boat which was completely outfitted or of a machine sold in good condition and capable of performing the service expected of it.
Exartizo was used in secular Greek writings to describe documents, a wagon or a rescue boat, all of which were completely outfitted and needing nothing. Exartizo in one secular Greek described a machine that was sold in good condition or in other words was capable of performing the service expected of it! Now think of the man or woman of God as that "machine", made capable of performing the work it was created to carry out (Ep 2:10-note) and which is the perfect fulfillment of Jesus' exhortation to...
Let your light shine (aorist imperative = Command to carry this out effectively. Do it now. Don't delay!) before men in such a way that they may see your good works (God works = supernatural works, Jn 15:5 works), and glorify (give a proper opinion of) your Father who is in heaven. (Mt 5:16-note)
Comment: How will His works in and through you give a proper opinion? Because His works are supernatural works which give testimony to the supernatural God. Remember lighthouses work better when they shine brightly than when they sound off loudly. How is your "lighthouse" shining lately?
The famous missionary Hudson Taylor who was equipped and used by God in His "good (God) work" of opening inland China to the gospel echoed Paul's words in his declaration...
Depend upon it.
done in God's way,
will never lack God's supply.
The only other use of exartizo is in Acts 21:5 where it conveys the sense of accomplishing the days, finishing the time (the seven days) during which they had to remain for the cargo to be unloaded and for other business. Thus Luke writes...
And when it came about that our days there were ended, we departed and started on our journey, while they all, with wives and children, escorted us until we were out of the city. And after kneeling down on the beach and praying, we said farewell to one another.
Exartizo and its root, ártios, appears redundant but actually convey a subtle nuance. Paul states that inspired Scripture can make the man of God ártios, competent, proficient, adept or capable. This is followed by a subordinate clause containing the perfect passive participle of exartízo which is not simply an intensive form of ártios, as though Paul were saying, "that the man of God may be competent having been made very competent."
Rather exartízo means to equip, outfit, furnish. The sentence therefore can be read “that the man of God may be competent because he has been equipped [outfitted, furnished]”.
The perfect tense speaks of the abiding condition. There is to be no lack of proportion and balance in any area of the "man of God." The sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit taking His Holy Word and applying it to our hearts, transforming and renewing our minds will make us holy and wholly fit and furnished for this relatively brief sojourn in this present evil age.
Have you ever said, “I wish my life were more effective for Jesus Christ”? If so, what have you done to prepare yourself? Bible study is a primary means to becoming an effective servant of Jesus Christ. (1Pe 2:1, 2-see notes 1P 2:1; 2:2)
Matthew Henry - If we consult the Scripture, which was given by inspiration of God, and follow its directions, we shall be made men of God, perfect, and thoroughly furnished to every good work.
What does it mean to be adequate, equipped?...think of a painter going to job without tools, paint, ladder, etc. Or think of trying to put together a bicycle, a swing set, etc. without having all of the parts!
FOR EVERY GOOD WORK: pros pan ergon agathon: (Titus 2:7; 3:8; Numbers 25:13; Acts 9:36; Ephesians 2:10; 1 Timothy 2:10; 6:18; Hebrews 10:24; 1 Peter 2:12)
THE GOOD WORD
LEADS TO GOOD WORKS
Every good work - AKA "every God work"! See related study on good deeds - see also Scriptures on good deeds) Neh. 2:18; Jn. 10:33; Phil 1:6; Col. 1:10; 2Thess. 2:17; 1Ti 5:10; 2Ti 2:21; 3:17, Mt. 5:16; Jn 10:32; Ep 2:10; 1Ti 2:10; 5:10; 6:18, Neh. 6:19; Jn. 5:29; Titus 2:7, 14; 3:8, 14; He 10:24; 1Pe 2:12
Good (18) (agathos [word study]) is used to describe any quality, thing, or person that may be approved as useful, profitable or benefiting others. Think about a fruit tree -- It is not even conscious of the bearing process. Believers are to be like fruit trees, yielding to the Spirit, allowing Him to bear His supernatural fruit (eg, love, joy, etc - Ga 5:22-note, Ga 5:23-note) in the good works. This supernatural fruit bearing happens when we are obedient to His will (disclosed in His Word), walking in a manner worthy of our calling (see related topic - Ro 16:26= Obedience of Faith discussed in Romans 16:26).
Agathos refers to that which has the proper characteristics or performing the expected function in a fully satisfactory way. The only works that are acceptable by God as agathos works are those initiated by and energized by God Himself (Php 2:13NLT-note) in vessels of "honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work." (2Ti 2:21-note) These works are built upon the foundation of Jesus Christ and so remain after testing their quality with fire, This man or woman of God "shall receive a reward" (1Co 3:11, 12, 13, 14, cf Jn 15:5, 1Co 4:5, 2Cor 5:10; Col 3:10, 11, 12, 13,1 4, 15, 16-notes on Col 3:10, 11, 12-16, Torrey's Topic Good Works ). In other words, the Word of God furnishes and equips a believer so that he can live a life that pleases God and do the work God wants him to do (Eph 2:10-note). The better we know the Word, the better we are able to live and work for God.
Vincent adds that "Any writing which can produce such profitable results ("good works") vindicates itself as inspired of God. It is to be noted that the test of the divine inspiration of Scripture is here placed in its practical usefulness. "
Lenski - The Scripture is thus absolutely incomparable; no other book, library, or anything else in the world is able to make a lost sinner wise for salvation; no other scripture, since it lacks inspiration of God, whatever profit it may otherwise afford, is profitable for these ends: teaching us the true saving facts—refuting the lies and the delusions that deny these facts —restoring the sinner or fallen Christian to an upright position—educating, training, disciplining one in genuine righteousness.
Matthew Henry exhorts all men and women of God - O that we may love our Bibles more, and keep closer to them than ever! and then shall we find the benefit and advantage designed thereby, and shall at last attain the happiness therein promised and assured to us.
John MacArthur has these wise words - One cannot help wondering why so many evangelical pastors of our day, like many Christians throughout history, have lost sight of that foundational truth. Every church, everywhere and in every time, should be totally committed to preaching, teaching, and implementing the Word, thereby pleasing and exalting the gracious and sovereign God who has revealed it. Through the convincing and convicting power of the Holy Spirit, Scripture is God’s own provision for every spiritual truth and moral principle that men need to be saved, to be equipped to live righteously in this present life and to hear one day in the life to come “Well done, good and faithful servant...enter into the joy of your Master?” (Mt 25:21)
Application of God's Word to our life takes place
as you are confronted with the truth and
you respond to that truth in obedience.
Ultimately, the goal of personal Bible study is a transformed life and a deep and abiding relationship with Jesus Christ. Once you know what the passage means, you are responsible to put it into practice in your own life. Application begins with belief which then results in being and doing. In fact if we say we "believe" and yet we never "do", this faith is dead faith (James 2:14-note, James 2:17-note)
The purpose of Bible study is not just to understand doctrines or to be able to defend the faith, as important as these things are. The ultimate purpose is the equipping of the believers who read it. It is the Word of God that equips God’s people to do the work of God.
Christ, an example of -John 10:32; Acts 10:38
Good fruits -James 3:17
Fruits meet for repentance -Matthew 3:8
Fruits of righteousness -Philippians 1:11
Works and labors of love -Hebrews 6:10
Are by Jesus Christ to the glory and praise of God -Php 1:11
They alone, who abide in Christ can perform -Jn 15:4,5
Wrought by God in us -Isaiah 26:12; Philippians 2:13
The Scripture designed to lead us to -2Ti 3:16,17; James 1:25
To be performed in Christ’s name -Col 3:17
Heavenly wisdom is full of -Jas 3:17
Justification unattainable by -Romans 3:20; Galatians 2:16
Salvation unattainable by -Ephesians 2:8,9; 2 Timothy 1:9; Titus 3:5
Created in Christ to -Ephesians 2:10
Exhorted to put on -Colossians 3:12, 13, 14
Are full of -Acts 9:36
Are zealous of -Titus 2:14
Should be furnished to all -2Timothy 3:17
Should be rich in -1 Timothy 6:18
Should be careful to maintain -Titus 3:8,14
Should be established in -2Thessalonians 2:17
Should be fruitful in -Colossians 1:10
Should be perfect in -Hebrews 13:21
Should be prepared to all -2 Timothy 2:21
Should abound to all -2 Corinthians 9:8
Should be ready to all -Titus 3:1
Should manifest, with meekness -James 3:13
Should provoke each other -Hebrews 10:24
Should avoid ostentation in -Matthew 6:1-18
Bring to the light their -John 3:21
Followed into rest by their -Revelation 14:13
Holy women should manifest -1 Timothy 2:10; 5:10
God remembers -Nehemiah 13:14; Hebrews 6:9,10
Shall be brought into the judgment -Eccl 12:14; 2Corinthians 5:10
In the judgment, will be an evidence of faith -Mt 25:34-40; Jas 2:14-20
Be patterns of -Titus 2:7
Exhort to -1 Timothy 6:17,18; Titus 3:1,8,14
God is glorified by -John 15:8
Designed to lead others to glorify God -Matthew 5:16; 1 Peter 2:12
A blessing attends -James 1:25
The wicked reprobate to -Titus 1:16
Illustrated -John 15:5
ILLUSTRATIONS AND QUOTES
RELATED TO THE WORD
Warning: Inductive Bible study can be habit-forming. Putting the principles into practice can cause loss of anxiety, decreased appetite for lying, cheating, stealing, hating and "symptoms" of growing sensations of love, peace, joy, compassion.
Pictures of What the Word of God does
(1) Sword - Ep 6:17, He 4:12
(2) Critic, Judge - He 4:12
(3) Lamp, light - Isa 5:20, Isa 50:10, 11, Ps 36:9, Ps 119:105, 130, Pr 6:23
(4) Mirror - 2Cor 3:18, Jas 1:22, 23, 24, 25
(5) Rain, Snow, Water - Isa 55:10,11, Jer 17:5, 6, 7, 8, Ep 5:26
(6) Food, Bread - Job 23:12, Jer 15:16, Ezek 2:8, 3:1, 2, 3
(7) Gold and Silver - Ps 19:10, Ps 119:127, Pr 8:10, 11, 8:19
(8) Fire - Jer 23:29, 20:9
(9) Hammer - Jer 23:29, 2Co 10:3,4,5, Acts 20:32
(10) Seed - Mk 4:14, Mk 4:26, 27, 28, Col 1:5, 6,7
(11) Honey, Honeycomb - Ps 19:10, Ps 119:103, Ps 81:16, Pr 24:13, Ezek 3:1, 2, 3
(For detailed discussion of these pictures see The Word-Filled Life - Developing the Mind of Christ by Hampton Keathley III)
Leave not off reading the Bible till you find your hearts warmed. Let it not only inform you but inflame you. -- Thomas Watson
Inductive Bible study is meant not merely to inform but to transform. (see Romans 12:2-note)
Men do not reject the Bible because it contradicts itself, but because it contradicts them. - E. Paul Hovey
The old covenant is revealed in the New, and the New Covenant is veiled in the Old. - Augustine
The new is in the old contained, and the Old is in the New explained. - Graham Scroggie
The family Bible is more often used to adorn coffee tables or press flowers than it is to feed souls and discipline lives. - Charles Colson
The Old Testament altar points to the New Testament cross.
The Bible is meant to be bread for daily use, not cake for special occasions. (Deut 8:3, Mt 4:4)
The Bible is the best "TV guide". (Ps 101:3) (Spurgeon on Ps 101:3)
When you open your Bible, ask the Author to open your heart. (Ps 119:18, Luke 24:45, Eph 1:17-note; Eph 1:18-note)
If a Christian is careless in Bible reading, he will care less about Christian living.
To understand the Word of God, rely on the Spirit of God.
You can't enjoy the harmony of Scripture if you play just one note of truth. (Acts 20:27)
To hear God speak, read the Bible carefully and study it prayerfully.
Backsliders begin with dusty Bibles and end with filthy garments. - Spurgeon (See article on Backsliding)
We cannot bear fruit without the water of God's Word. (Luke 8:15)
The highest goal of learning is to know God. (John 17:3)
After captivating an audience at Yale University, the late novelist Ayn Rand was asked by a reporter, “Whats wrong with the modern world?” Without a moment’s hesitation she replied, “Never before has the world been so desperately asking for answers to crucial questions, and never before has the world been so frantically committed to the idea that no answers are possible. To paraphrase the Bible, the modern attitude is, ‘Father, forgive us, for we know not what we are doing—and please don’t tell us.’” That’s very perceptive for an acknowledged agnostic. (See interesting diagram of various views) Many of us want a word from God, but we don’t want the Word of God. We know enough to own a Bible but not enough for the Bible to own us. We pay the Bible lip service, but we fail to give it “life service.” In a world where the only absolute is that there are no absolutes, there is little room left for the authoritative Word of God as revealed in the Bible.
When we look into the mirror of God's Word, we see ourselves more clearly. (James 1:23,24, 25 - note)
A text taken out of context becomes a pretext.
Let God's Word fill your mind, rule your heart, and guide your tongue. (see Colossians 3:16-note, Eph 5:18-note; Eph 5:19-note;Eph 5:20-note)
The Bible: The more you read it, the more you love it; the more you love it, the more you read it.
The best protection against Satan's lies is to know God's truth. (see Ephesians 6:14-note)
Like a compass, the Bible always points you in the right direction. (Deut 28:13,14, Joshua 1:7-9-note)
Those who only sample the Bible never acquire a taste for it. (Jer 15:16-note, Job 23:12-note, Ps 19:10-note)
While other books inform, and some few reform, this one book transforms. -- A. T. Pierson
Other books were given for our information—the Bible was given for our transformation.
If you're too busy to read the Bible, you're too busy.
As A W Tozer put it "Whatever keeps me from my Bible is my enemy, however harmless it may appear to me."
God feeds the birds, but He doesn't throw the food into their nests.
We lose the joy of living in the present when we worry about the future. And we lose the joy of living for the future when we focus on the present.
Opening your Bible can be a real eye-opener.
A well-read Bible is a sign of a well-fed soul.
The Bible breaks hard hearts and heals broken hearts.
A Bible that's falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn't.
Sin will keep you from the Bible or the Bible will keep you from sin.
It's better to live one verse of the Bible than to recite an entire chapter.
The Bible: read it through, work it out, pass it on!
The jewel of the Word should not hang in our ears, but be locked up in a believing heart. -- William Jenkyn
The Word is both a glass to show us the spots of our soul and a laver to wash them away. -- Puritan Thomas Watson
One proof of the inspiration of the Bible is that it has withstood so much poor preaching. - A. T. Robertson
It is impossible to practice godliness without a constant, consistent and balanced intake of the Word of God in our lives. -- Jerry Bridges
The Bible is none other than the voice of him that sitteth upon the throne. Every book of it, every chapter of it, every syllable of it, every letter of it, is the direct utterance of the Most High. -- John William Burgon
Apply yourself to the Scriptures and the Scriptures to yourself.
The Bible is alive, it speaks to me; it has feet, it runs after me; it has hands, it lays hold on me. - Martin Luther
Reading the Bible without meditating on it is like eating without chewing. (Ps 119:15, 23,27, 48, 78, 97, 99, 148)
God speaks through His Word--take time to listen.
The value of the Bible is not knowing it, but obeying it.
When you have read the Bible, you will know it is the Word of God, because you will have found it the key to your own heart, your own happiness and your own duty. -- Woodrow Wilson
It is not the Word hidden in the head but in the heart that keeps us from sin. - Vance Havner
A Bible in hand is worth two on the shelf.
A Red Letter Bible is fine, but one that is Read is far better!
When the Bible becomes a part of you, you'll be less likely to come apart.
The Bible is simple enough for a child to read and too deep for a scholar to master.
A Bible that has frayed edges usually has an owner that doesn't.
The best thing to do with the Bible is to know it in the head, stow it in the heart, sow it in the world, and show it in the life.
Devout meditation on the Word is more important to soul-health even than prayer. It is more needful for you to hear God's words than that God should hear yours, though the one will always lead to the other. -- F. B. Meyer
The Christian is bred by the Word and he must be fed by it. --William Gurnall
The best way for Christians to grow is to eat the Bread of Life.
The Word of God is the candle without which faith cannot see to do its work.
The true Christian church is the work of the Word communicated by every available means. -- Martin Luther
The Bible is like a compass—it always points the believer in the right direction.
The Bible is like the ocean. You can wade in it, feed from it, live on it--or drown in it. But those who take the time to learn its truths and practice them will be changed forever.
With God's Word as your map and His Spirit as your compass, you're sure to stay on course.
When you study the Bible "hit or miss," you MISS more than you HIT.
When the Word of God dwells in you, the love of Christ shines through you.
Beware! Error often rides to its deadly work on the back of truth! --Spurgeon (2Cor 11:13,14, 15)
Spiritual growth requires the meat of God's Word. (see Hebrews 5:14-note, 1 Peter 2:2-note)
Be diligent in your study of the Word of God. Then, instead of falling into error, you will stand firmly on the truth.
Study the Bible to be wise; believe it to be safe; practise it to be holy.
The Word of the Lord is a light to guide you, a counsellor to counsel you, a comforter to comfort you, a staff to support you, a sword to defend you, and a physician to cure you. The Word is a mine to enrich you, a robe to clothe you, and a crown to crown you. - Thomas Brooks
Your life will run smoother if you go by "The Book."
If we want our life to run well, even through stormy situations and rough circumstances, we must take the time to study the "Owner's Manual."
Many people store the Bible on the shelf instead of in their heart.
Some people make the Bible say what they want to hear
To be a healthy Christian, don't treat the Bible as snack food.
A well-read Bible is the companion of a well-fed believer.
We must approach God's Word as if our lives depended on it--because they do.
If your life depended on knowing the Bible, how long would you last?
We must align ourselves with the Bible, never the Bible with ourselves.
The branches of growing trees not only reach higher, but their roots grow deeper. It's impossible for a strong tree to have high branches without having deep roots. It would become top-heavy and topple over in the wind." The same is true with Christians. It's impossible for us to grow in the Lord without entwining our roots around His Word and deepening our life in His commands." - Joni Eraeckson Tada
The roots of stability come from being grounded in God's Word.
Bible study demands pondering deeply on a short passage, like a cow chewing her cud. It is better to read a little and ponder a lot than to read a lot and ponder a little.
Unless God's Word illumine the way, the whole life of men is wrapped in darkness and mist, so that they cannot but miserably stray. -- John Calvin
Hold fast to the Bible as the sheet-anchor of our liberties; write its precepts on your hearts and practise them in your lives. To the influence of this book we are indebted for the progress made in true civilization, and to this we must look for our guide in the future. Ulysses S. Grant
D L Moody -
- The Scriptures were not given for our information, but for our transformation
- The Bible will keep you from sin, or sin will keep you from the Bible.
- I know the Bible is inspired because it inspires me.
- The study of God’s Word brings peace to the heart. In it, we find a light for every darkness, life in death, the promise of our Lord’s return, and the assurance of everlasting glory.
- There’s no better book with which to defend the Bible than the Bible itself.
- I never saw a useful Christian who was not a student of the Bible.
The Bible is like a telescope. If a man looks through his telescope, then he sees worlds beyond: but if he looks at his telescope, then he does not see anything but that. The Bible is a thing to be looked through, to see that which is beyond; but most people only look at it; and so they see only the dead letter.” Phillips Brooks
The Bible was not written to satisfy your curiosity, but to make you conform to Christ’s image. Not to make you a smarter sinner, but to make you like the Savior. Not to fill your head with a collection of biblical facts, but to transform your life.” --Howard Hendricks in Living by the Book
It has been said that the Bible is so deep that theologians cannot touch the bottom, yet so shallow that babes cannot drown.
J. I. Packer once said that "If I were the devil, one of my first aims would be to stop folk from digging into the Bible."
In the midst of that period of intellectual history called The Enlightenment, a philosophy known as deism was sweeping Europe. In the midst of this development, the famous skeptic, Voltaire, proclaimed that within 25 years, the Bible would be forgotten and Christianity would be a thing of the past. However, 40 years after Voltaire’s death in 1778, the Bible and other Christian literature were being printed in what had once been Voltaire’s own house!
My rule for Christian living is this: anything that dims my vision of Christ, or takes away my taste for Bible study, or cramps my prayer life, or makes Christian work difficult is wrong for me, and I must, as a Christian, turn away from it. - Dr. Wilbur Chapman
The Bible is God’s chart for you to steer by, to keep you from the bottom of the sea, and to show you where the harbor is, and how to reach it without running on rocks or bars. -Henry Ward Beecher
Sow a thought, and you reap an act;
Sow an act, and you reap a habit;
Sow a habit, and you reap a character;
Sow a character, and you reap a destiny.
- Samuel Smiles
Leave not off reading the Bible till you find your hearts warmed… Let it not only inform you, but inflame you. - Thomas Watson
Never let good books take the place of the Bible. Drink from the Well, not from the streams that flow from the Well . -- Amy Carmichael
Gipsy Smith told of a man who said he had received no inspiration from the Bible although he had “gone through it several times.”
“Let it go through you once,” replied Smith, “then you will tell a different story!”
Salad Bar Christianity - 2 Timothy 3:16 - When it's time to choose a place to eat, I like to dine at a buffet restaurant. This gives me the freedom to choose the kinds of foods that I enjoy and that are compatible with my physician's strict diet. Buffets allow me to eat as much as I like of one particular dish and stay away from those that are unhealthy. Buffets are also great places to take the family. Kids can load up on macaroni and cheese, while grownups can dig into their favorite salads and casseroles. While a buffet is a wonderful place to enjoy a meal, it is a terrible approach to faith. Yet, some Christians approach Christianity in this way. They treat the Bible like a smorgasbord, filling up on passages that appeal to their tastes, and staying clear of those that they don't particularly enjoy. One conservative commentator appropriately named this condition, "Salad-bar Christianity." When the Apostle Paul wrote his letter to young Timothy, he warned against this fickle faith. He said, "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness." (2 Timothy 3:16) Picking and choosing your spiritual diet will stunt your growth because it makes feelings the guide to right and wrong rather than the truth of God's Word. And we all know how fickle our feelings can be. They are as unpredictable as the changing weather patterns. It is healthier to take in all of God's Word, even those parts that leave a bitter taste in our mouths. The mature Christian heeds all of God's counsel. The immature Christian heeds only that which suits his fancy. (James Scudder - Living Water)
The Bible is not in a class. It constitutes a class by itself. (Emile Cailliet).
What the brush is to the artist in painting a picture, what the hammer is to the carpenter in driving a nail, what water is to the laundress in washing clothes, so the Bible is to God in saving souls. (Donald Grey Barnhouse).
Why will people go astray when they have this blessed Book to guide them? (Michael Faraday).
The Bible—has had more written about it—than has been written about the twenty greatest classics of world literature combined. (Wilbur Smith).
I have known ninety-five of the world's great men in my time, and of these, eighty-seven were followers of the Bible. The Bible is stamped with a Specialty of Origin, and an immeasurable distance separates it from all competitors. (W. E. Gladstone)
The vigor of our spiritual life will be in exact proportion to the place held by the Bible in our life and thoughts. I solemnly state this from the experience of 54 years. The first 3 years after conversion I neglected the word of God. Since I began to search it diligently the blessing has been wonderful. Great has been the blessing from consecutive, diligent, daily study. I look upon it as a lost day when I have not had a good time over the word of God. (George Mueller)
Sorry and Glad - A man was out walking in the desert when a voice said to him, "Pick up some pebbles and put them in your pocket, and tomorrow you will be both sorry and glad." The man obeyed. He stooped down and picked up a handful of pebbles and put them in his pocket. The next morning he reached into his pocket and found diamonds and rubies and emeralds. And he was both glad and sorry. Glad that he had taken some—sorry that he hadn't taken more.
And so it is with God's word.
God's Miracle Book
The Bible is referred to in many different ways. We speak of it as God's Word, the Good Book, the Holy Scriptures, and the Sword of the Spirit. It is also known as the Book of books and the Living Word. Some call it simply THE Book, for nothing else seems necessary. It stands alone, towering above all other writings.
Of the many titles given to the Bible, however, the one that is the most appropriate is God's Miracle Book.
This is true for a number of reasons:
1. It is miraculous in its origin—coming to us by divine inspiration.
2. It is miraculous in its durability—outlasting the opposition of its critics and surviving the attempts of its enemies to exterminate it.
3. It is miraculous in its results—transforming the lives of those who read and believe it.
4. It is miraculous in its harmony—agreeing in all its parts, even though written over a period of 1600 years by about 40 different authors.
5. It is miraculous in its message—telling of many occasions when God supernaturally intervened in the affairs of men to accomplish his redemptive purposes.
6. It is miraculous in its preservation—maintaining its accuracy and reliability down through the centuries.
Yes, the Bible is God's Miracle Book!
Do You Read Scripture Like Mr. Holmes or like Dr. Watson?
Holmes: “You see, but you do not observe. The distinction is clear. For example, you have frequently seen the steps which lead up from the hall to this room.”
Holmes: “How often?”
Watson: “Well, some hundreds of times.”
Holmes: “Then how many are there?”
Watson: “How many? I don’t know.”
Holmes: “Quite so! You have not observed. And yet you have seen. That is just my point. Now, I know that there are seventeen steps, because I have both seen and observed” (“A Scandal in Bohemia” in The Complete Sherlock Holmes. New York: Doubleday, 1927)
Beloved, let us diligently seek to be "spiritual Sherlocks" (cp 2Ti 2:15 - note) who not only read our Scriptures daily (as part of our devotional and/or read thru the Bible in a year programs), but also make time to truly observe the Scriptures in order that we might then be able to "do" them (proving ourselves "doers of the Word" Jas 1:22 - note) empowered by God's Spirit and His always sufficient supply of amazing grace.
So let me ask you again: Do you read the Scriptures like Dr Watson or like Sherlock Holmes? Do you mechanically read a section in the morning as part of your routine devotional and walk away without having truly observed what the Author is saying? If this is often your experience, then inductive study is for you and will revolutionize your time in God's Word. As Howard Hendricks writes "Personal Bible study is the Christian's lifeline. It is never optional; always essential."
John Wycliffe - You and I have an English Bible in our possession largely because of a man named John Wycliffe. He was known not only as a builder, producing the first English text of the Bible, but also as a fighter. What a leader! When he died, his enemies burned him at the stake and took the ashes of his body and sprinkled them over the Thames River in London. "Forever, we're rid of Wycliffe!" his enemies must have thought. They were wrong. The product of his labors, the English Bible, is with us today because he did more than fight. He stayed at the task.
Recommendation - If you are largely ignorant of this great man John Wycliffe to whom every believer owes a great debt of gratitude, you might watch one of the videos (including full movies) that are available on the web. Click here for a listing. For example - The Morning Star of the Reformation (Well done 28 minute video); John Wycliffe Morning Star; Full Movie of his life;
The Dead Sea Scrolls - A recent archaeological report in the science magazine Discovery contained amazing findings about the Old Testament. Before the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls in 1947, the oldest Hebrew manuscripts dated about A.D. 900. The Dead Sea Scrolls, in startling agreement with the Masoretic text, dated to about 150 B.C. But now archaeologists have discovered a pair of tiny silver scrolls that date back to about 600 B.C.! While digging at the site of a 5th-century church in Jerusalem, researchers found a Roman legionnaires' cemetery. Exploring still deeper, they found a small burial cave containing the scrolls. Very carefully, less than a hundredth of an inch at a time, the scrolls were unrolled. On each of them appeared an excerpt from the book of Numbers that included the word Jehovah. And these scrolls date back to the days before the exile to Babylon, earlier than liberal scholars supposed that the Pentateuch had even been written
We've Lost Our Ability to Fend for Food - If you've ever been to Yellowstone National Park, you were probably given a piece of paper by a ranger at the park entrance. On it in big letters was the warning "Do Not Feed the Bears." You no sooner drive into the heart of the park, however, than you see people feeding the bears. When I first saw this I asked a ranger about it. "Sir," he answered, "you have only a small part of the picture." He described how the park service personnel in the fall and winter have to carry away the bodies of dead bears—bears who have lost their ability to fend for food. That's what's happening to us.
Dr. Howard Hendricks once asked a group of businessmen, "If you didn’t know any more about your business or profession than you know about Christianity after the same number of years of exposure, what would happen?" One man replied “They’d ship me!” He was right. The reason God can’t use you more than He wants to may well be that you are not prepared. Maybe you’ve attended church for years, but you’ve never really got into the Bible so that it could get into you. You were not yet a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work. (2Ti 2:21-note). You must not just be under the Word (sound Biblical preaching and teaching) but not in the Word that you can than be trained in righteousness.
Constant and Unchangeable - Yes, the Bible gives to man the guidance he needs because it is God's unchanging Word—good for every age and every generation. I once read about a musician who went to see his aged music teacher. During the visit, the elderly mentor struck a tuning fork and said. "That is 'A.'" Just then, from the floor above came the voice of a singer. "She sings sharp," said the old teacher. He paused for a moment, then lifted the tuning fork again. The second time he struck it he said, "But this 'A'—always has been, always will be—440 vibrations per second. It will be the same 5,000 years from now." And that's the way it is with the Word of God: it is constant and unchangeable.
Shake the Bible - Luther said he studied his Bible as he gathered apples. First he shook the whole tree, that the ripest might fall; then he shook each limb, and when he had shaken each limb, he shook each branch, and after each branch, every twig; and then he looked under every leaf. Search the Bible as a whole, shaking the whole tree. Read it rapidly, as you would any other book. Then shake every limb—study book after book. Then shake every branch, giving attention to the chapters when they do not break the sense. Then shake each twig, by a careful study of the paragraphs and sentences. And you will be rewarded if you will look under each leaf, by searching the meaning of the words.
They Love the Feel of the Leather - Louis L'Amour, famed writer of novels about the American West, wrote a short story that described a man who liked books. The man was noticed acting suspiciously as he perused the shelves in a library. He took down a leather-bound copy of Shakespeare's King Lear and ran his fingers gently over the cover. He opened the book and felt the pages. Suddenly he tucked it under his coat and bolted out the door. Someone who had been watching him ran after the thief and stopped him. The man willingly surrendered the book. Then he explained. All his life he had loved books, but he had never learned to read. So he would come to the library just to hold books. He loved the way they felt in his hands. That's why he had stolen Shakespeare. Some people are like that with their Bibles. They enjoy the feel of the leather as they carry them to church. They love the smell of the pages. But they never read them. What a shame!
Never Turn-off God's Saving Message - A former park ranger at Yellowstone National Park tells the story of a ranger leading a group of hikers to a fire lookout. The ranger was so intent on telling the hikers about the flowers and animals that he considered the messages on his two-way radio distracting, so he switched it off. Nearing the tower, the ranger was met by a nearly breathless lookout, who asked why he hadn't responded to the messages on his radio. A grizzly bear had been seen stalking the group, and the authorities were trying to warn them of the danger. Any time we tune out the messages God has sent us, we put at peril not only ourselves, but also those around us. How important it is that we never turn off God's saving communication!
I Can Read the Bible Using My Tongue - A man in Kansas City was severely injured in an explosion. Evangelist Robert L. Summer tells about him in his book The Wonder of the Word of God. The victim's face was badly disfigured, and he lost his eyesight as well as both hands. He was just a new Christian, and one of his greatest disappointments was that he could no longer read the Bible. Then he heard about a lady in England who read braille with her lips. Hoping to do the same, he sent for some books of the Bible in braille. Much to his dismay, however, he discovered that the nerve endings in his lips had been destroyed by the explosion. One day, as he brought one of the braille pages to his lips, his tongue happened to touch a few of the raised characters and he could feel them. Like a flash he thought, I can read the Bible using my tongue. At the time Robert Sumner wrote his book, the man had "read" through the entire Bible four times.
Did you know—
• That the longest verse in the Bible is Esther 8:9 (91 words)?
• That the shortest verse in the Bible is John 11:35 (2 words)?
• That the NIV has two "shortest" verses: John 11:35 and 1 Thessalonians 5:17 (2 words each)?
• That there are 1189 chapters in the Bible?
• That there are 31,102 verses in the Bible? 7957 of these are in the New Testament, and 23,145 are in the Old Testament.
• That the RSV has one more verse than the KJV? The extra verse is 3 John 1:15
• That the longest word in the Bible is Jonathelemrechokim? It occurs in the title of Psalm 56
• That there are 790,704 words in the Bible, but only 12,775 different words?
• That there are 180,392 words in the New Testament and 610,312 words in the Old Testament?
• That in the RSV, Exodus 22:4 is printed between Exodus 22:1 and Exodus 22:2?
(Unless otherwise noted, all facts relate to the King James Version)
John Bunyan on Reading God's Word - John Bunyan wrote his immortal allegory Pilgrim's Progress after mastering the Scriptures and sensing that God had spoken to him again and again through its pages. He said, "Although you may have no commentaries at hand, continue to read the Word and pray; for a little from God is better than a great deal received from a man. Too many are content to listen to what comes from men's mouths, without searching and kneeling before God to know the real truth. That which we receive directly from the Lord through the study of His Word is from the 'minting house' itself. Even old truths are new if they come to us with the smell of heaven upon them."
Profitable (2 Timothy 3:16-17) - All Scripture is profitable! Knowing this, we cheat ourselves when we do not access every book, every truth, every verse, and every page of our Bibles for the promises and commands God has for us. Because every verse of Scripture is inspired by God and gainful to us, we should not pick and choose which verses we will read and study. We should not claim verses we like and ignore those that convict us! If we are to become mature disciples of Jesus, we must allow every Scripture to speak to us and teach us what God desires us to learn. Scripture enables us to evaluate the soundness of doctrines that are being taught. Scripture ought to be the basis for any reproof or correction we bring to another. If you are not firmly grounded in God's Word, you will be bombarded with an assortment of doctrines, lifestyles, and behaviors, and you will have no means to evaluate whether or not they are of God. You cannot develop a righteous life apart from God's Word. Righteousness must be cultivated. As you fill your mind with the words of God, and as you obey His instructions, He will guide you in the ways of righteousness. Scripture will equip you for any good work God calls you to do. If you feel inadequate for a task God has given you, search the Scriptures, for within them you will find the wisdom you need to carry out His assignment. Allow the Word of God to permeate, guide, and enrich your life. (Henry Blackabye - Experiencing God Day by Day)
H. P. Barker has a graphic illustration emphasizing the importance of both knowing and doing the Bible’s truths...
As I looked out into the garden one day, I saw three things. First, I saw a butterfly. The butterfly was beautiful, and it would alight on a flower and then it would flutter to another flower and then to another, and only for a second or two it would sit and it would move on. It would touch as many lovely blossoms as it could, but derived absolutely no benefit from it.
Then I watched a little longer out my window and there came a botanist. And the botanist had a big notebook under his arm and a great big magnifying glass. The botanist would lean over a certain flower and he would look for a long time and then he would write notes in his notebook. He was there for hours writing notes, closed them, stuck them under his arm, tucked his magnifying glass in his pocket and walked away.
The third thing I noticed was a bee, just a little bee. But the bee would light on a flower and it would sink down deep into the flower and it would extract all the nectar and pollen that it could carry. It went in empty every time and came out full (A. Naismith, 1200 Notes, Quotes and Anecdotes [Chicago: Moody, 1962], p. 15.)
Comment: Don't be like the butterfly flitting from one Bible study [preacher, devotional, commentary, etc] to another, but failing to personally apply what you learn. Neither are you to be "Bible botanists" (even good inductive students), who laboriously observe the Biblical text and derive accurate interpretation but fail to apply these truths. Instead, we need to be Bible "bees", using inductive study to go deep into the Scriptures obtaining its divine nectar and then allowing God's "nectar" to change us. And when we do, like the bee, we will find that we never go away from God's Word empty.
With Compliments of the Author (2 Peter 1:21) - The story is told about a young boy named Timothy who was planning to give his grandmother a Bible for Christmas. He wanted to write something special on the flyleaf but wasn't sure what to say. So he decided to copy what he had seen in a book his father had received from a friend.
Christmas morning came and Grandmother opened her gift. She was not only pleased to receive the Bible, but she was amused by the inscription Timothy had put in it. It read: "To Grandma, with compliments of the author."
Even though that boy was unaware of it, he had suggested a unique fact about the Bible. It came to us from its Author -- God. The apostle Paul wrote, "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God" (2 Ti 3:16). And in today's Bible reading Peter said, "Holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit" (2 Pet. 1:21-note). That makes the Bible the most valuable and desirable of all books.
Knowing who wrote a book often determines whether we'll pick it up and read it. The Bible, with its divine origin, not only ought to be read, but it demands our respect, our trust, and our obedience. It comes "with compliments of the Author." - R W De Haan
Your thoughts are here, my God,
Expressed in words divine,
The utterance of heavenly lips
In every sacred line.
The Bible is a gift from the Author -- God.
Study the Bible to be wise.
Believe it to be safe
Practice it to be holy.
The Staff of Life - The Bible isn’t just another great book. It is God’s Word, given by God to tell us about Himself. Peter declared, “We did not follow cunningly devised fables . . . for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:16, 21). Paul stressed, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16). I have known many outstanding leaders who made the Bible their guide. Businessman Herbert J. Taylor, former president of Rotary International, told me he began each day by reading the Sermon on the Mount aloud. Let the Bible be your firm foundation. Let it be the staff of life that nourishes your soul. Let it be the sword of the Spirit that cuts away sin. Many years ago I heard these words: “Sin will keep you from God’s Word—or God’s Word will keep you from sin!” - Billy Graham
William Tyndale's First English New Testament - William Tyndale's first English New Testament, finished in 1525, had to be printed outside of England and then smuggled back inside barrels of flour and bolts of cloth. Catholic bishop Tunstall of London bought up most of Tyndale's first edition in order to stamp out Tyndale's "heresy" but the proceeds financed new editions!
God's Word Is His Love Letter to Us - A childhood accident caused poet Elizabeth Barrett to lead a life of semi-invalidism before she married Robert Browning in 1846. There's more to the story. In her youth, Elizabeth had been watched over by her tyrannical father. When she and Robert were married, their wedding was held in secret because of her father's disapproval. After the wedding the Brownings sailed for Italy, where they lived for the rest of their lives. But even though her parents had disowned her, Elizabeth never gave up on the relationship. Almost weekly she wrote them letters. Not once did they reply. After 10 years, she received a large box in the mail. Inside, Elizabeth found all of her letters; not one had been opened! Today those letters are among the most beautiful in classical English literature. Had her parents only read a few of them, their relationship with Elizabeth might have been restored. In a very real sense, God's Word is his love letter to us. Nothing has the power to free us from destructive behavior and revitalize our relationship with him like his Word.
The Quarry of the Holy Scriptures in Inexhaustible - Charles Spurgeon is well known in modern church history for his many contributions to Christian preaching and literature. In his lifetime he produced 135 books, edited 28 others, and contributed many more shorter writings to the church. In spite of his thorough studies, however, he once said, "The quarry of the Holy Scriptures in inexhaustible. I seem hardly to have begun to labor in it; but the selection of the next block, and the consideration as to how to work it into form, are matters not so easy as some think."
Only God's Word Produces Spiritual Life - F.F. Bruce noted the following about the Bible: "The word of human beings however wise in substance or eloquent in expression cannot produce spiritual life; this is the prerogative of the Word of God."
The Gideons - Once upon a rainy night a couple of travelling salesmen—Sam Hill and John Nicholson—seeking a place to sleep in Boscobel, Wisconsin learned that there was but one room available in the only local hotel. So they agreed to share room number 19 that night. When one asked permission from the other to keep his light on so that he could read his Bible, a discussion ensued about the dearth of religious reading material available. Then and there was born the Gideons, the purpose of which was to place a Bible in every hotel room in the United States. That was ninety-two years ago, and today the Gideons supply Bibles in 60 languages to hotel rooms in 149 countries. The Boscobel Hotel is now 125 years old, been vacant for years, and it's for sale. But one thing more: In March of 1960 Senator John Kennedy was campaigning in Wisconsin. Passing through Boscobel, he asked for a place to rest and freshen up. Of course the town had only one hotel, so Senator Kennedy and his wife, Jacquelyn, were assigned to historic room 19. History records that their son John was born precisely nine months later.
The Transforming Power of the Word of God - Though accounts of the demise of Fletcher Christian vary, the outcome of the Bounty mutineers is well known. After nine mutineers, twelve Tahitian women and six Tahitian men put ashore on Pitcairn Island in 1790, jealousy, treachery, drunkenness and murder took over. Ten years later, only two white men survived, surrounded by native women and half-breed offspring. When one of them died in 1800, he was the first man on the island to die a natural death. When the sole remaining mutineer was discovered in 1808, it was found that he had at one point discovered a Bible. By reading it and teaching it to others, he had instituted a simple, pious little community with no jail, no whiskey, no crime, and no laziness. Such is the transforming power of the Word of God.
What Does It Really Mean ? - Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. –Psalm 119:105
A father was telling his son the Bible story about Lot. He said, "God was going to destroy the city of Sodom, so He warned Lot to take his wife and flee. But when Lot's wife looked back, she turned into a pillar of salt." Puzzled, the boy asked, "What happened to the flea?" This humorous misunderstanding points out a deeper problem some of us have with the words of the Bible. Although we believe that every word of Scripture is inspired, this doesn't mean we should take every word literally regardless of its context. Some people seem to do this and thereby miss the true meaning of many Bible passages. The Bible is filled with images–word pictures we call similes and metaphors. The book of James gives us a classic example, calling the tongue "a fire" (James 3:6). We know it doesn't mean that we have a literal flame in our mouth. Jesus used figurative language too. He said, "If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out" (Mt. 5:29-note). What He meant, of course, is that we should take strong measures to keep ourselves from sin. We need to listen carefully to what God is saying in His Word so we can put it into practice. His Word is a "lamp" for our feet and a "light" for our path (Ps. 119:105). –D J De Haan
HOW TO STUDY THE BIBLE
Observation: What does the context say?
Interpretation: What does the text mean?
Application: What does it mean to your life?
A text taken out of context becomes a pretext.
Quote, Misquote - You have heard that it was said, "An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth." --Mt 5:38-note In the opening chapter of Tom Sawyer, Mark Twain presents an interesting conversation that reflects human nature. Tom tries to persuade his friend Huck to join him in his plans to form a band of robbers and to take captives much like pirates used to do. Huck asks Tom what pirates do with the captives they take, and Tom answers, "Ransom them." "Ransom? What's that?" asks Huck. "I don't know. But that's what they do. I seen it in books; and so of course that's what we got to do," explains Tom. "Do you want to go doing different from what's in the books, and get things all muddled up?" This dialog represents a way of thinking that's not much different from what Jesus encountered. The people were also quoting and repeating things they had found in a book--the Old Testament. But they were merely mouthing words. The ideas had been separated from the spirit of the original revelation. By misapplying Mosaic principles of conduct, the people were justifying their sinful attitudes and actions (Mt. 5:27-42-see notes). This should be a reminder to us. When we quote the Bible, let's be sure we understand its meaning and context. Then we won't get things "all muddled up." --M R De Haan II (Ibid)
When reading God's Word, take special care
To find the rich treasures hidden there;
Give thought to each line, each precept hear,
Then practice it well with godly fear. --Anon.
A text taken out of context can be a dangerous pretext.
The Bible Is of Vital Importance in Teaching Freedom - It was the late Lowell Thomas, well-known news commentator, who once said, "The Bible is of vital importance in teaching freedom; dictators fear the Bible and for good reason—it inspired the Magna Carta and the Declaration of Independence!" It was John Adams, a member of the original committee that drew up our Declaration of Independence, who wrote these words in a letter to Thomas Jefferson in 1813, "The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity!" It was our own Continental Congress that voted to spend $300,000 on September 11, 1777, to buy Bibles to be distributed throughout the 13 original colonies!
The Bible as a Decorative Badge of Christianity - History tells us that when Crowfoot, the chief of the Blackfoot nation in southern Alberta, gave the Canadian Pacific Railway permission to lay track from Medicine Hat to Calgary, he was given in exchange a lifetime railroad pass. Reportedly, Crowfoot put the pass in a leather pouch and wore it around his neck for the rest of his life—but he never once availed himself of the rights and privileges it spelled out. What a tragedy it is when Christians do the same thing with the Word of God, using it as a decorative badge of Christianity, but never availing themselves of the wealth of access to God's thoughts it affords.
Biblical Quotations? - Many people don't know what the Bible really says. It's good to check up on our knowledge. For example, which of the following are biblical quotations?
1. "Cleanliness is next to godliness."
2. "God helps those who help themselves."
3. "An honest confession is good for the soul."
4. "We are as prone to sin as sparks fly upward."
5. "Money is the root of all evil."
6. "Honesty is the best policy."
The answer? While some of these statements are truisms, none of them, as quoted, are found in the Bible! So before you quote the Bible, make sure it is in the Bible.
Finding God in the Bible - Her mother was startled to find seven-year-old Karen going through a new Bible storybook and circling the word God where ever it appeared on the page. Stifling her urge to reprimand the child for defacing the book, the mother quietly asked, "Why are you doing that?" Karen answered matter-of-factly, "So that I will know where to find God when I need Him." Actually, Karen may have the right idea. In times of need it would be helpful to know where to look in the Bible to find the Lord's help.
The Bible: an Inexaustibel Mine - Former president John Quincy Adams once said, ""I have for many years made it a practice to read through the Bible once a year. My custom is to read four or five chapters every morning immediately after rising from my bed. It employs about an hour of my time, and seems to me the most suitable manner of beginning the day. In what light soever we regard the Bible, whether with reference to revelation, to history, or to morality, it is an invaluable and inexhaustible mine of knowledge and virtue."
Dead Sea Squirrels - I home school my children and one day we talked about how the Bible used to be written on scrolls. When my husband came home, my 4-year-old daughter told him, "The Bible used to be written on squirrels!" —Linda S., Jacksonville, Florida, Christian Parenting Today, (September/October '99).
Blow Up, Dry Up, or Grow Up - If you have the Spirit without the Word, you blow up. If you have the Word without the Spirit, you dry up. If you have both the Word and the Spirit, you grow up. —Don Lyon, Leadership, Vol. 5, no. 1
Statistic: Bible and Values
• Percentage of Americans who believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God: 80
• Percentage who believe there is no one set of values that is right: 48
—U.S. News & World Report, 4/4/94. "To Verify," Leadership.
Word of God Corrects - Use the Right Standard - The best way to show a stick is crooked is not to argue about it or spend time denouncing it, but to lay a straight stick alongside it.
The Word of God - The Bible is chock-full of verses attesting to its inspiration, authority, infallibility, and usefulness. Perhaps the best New Testament texts on this subject are 2 Timothy 3:16 and 2 Peter 1:21. The latter says, in effect, that no passage in the Bible came about by a prophet’s own origination, but the writers of Scripture spoke as they were moved (borne along) by the Holy Spirit. The former verse tells us that all Scripture is inspired (breathed out) by God and therefore of immense usefulness in our lives.
Notice the chapter/verse location 2 Timothy 3:16. There’s a remarkable correspondence between John 3:16 and 2 Timothy 3:16. The two verses have more in common than their “street address” of 316.
• John 3:16 talks about the Savior, and 2 Timothy 3:16 talks about the Scriptures. These two entities comprise the two greatest gifts ever bestowed on humanity.
• Both are called “The Word.”
• One is the living Word, and the other is the written Word.
• Both are utterly unique. Jesus is like no other person the world has ever seen, and the Bible is like no other book the world has ever read.
• Jesus was both fully human and fully divine. He came down from heaven yet made His appearance through the instrumentality of a human being who was overshadowed by the Holy Spirit. The Scriptures are both fully human and fully divine. They came down from heaven yet were given through the instrumentality of human beings who were borne along by the Holy Spirit.
• Just as the Savior was without sin, the Scriptures are without error.
• Just as the Savior has a dual nature, the Scriptures have a double nature.
• The Savior is the God-Man, and the Scriptures are from both God and man.
• The Savior came to save us, and the Scriptures were given to tell us how to be saved.
• The Bible is Jesus in print, and Jesus is the personification and fulfillment of the Scriptures. And so these 3:16s are twin verses about the Savior and the Scriptures.
The Great “3:16s” of the New Testament
• Luke 3:16—The Baptism of the Holy Spirit
• 1 Corinthians 3:16—The Holy Spirit’s Indwelling
• Ephesians 3:16—The Holy Spirit’s Strengthening
• Colossians 3:16—The Imbedded Word
• 2 Thessalonians 3:16—The All-Encompassing Peace of God
• 1 Timothy 3:16—The Uniqueness of Christ
• 1 John 3:16—The Power of Love
• Revelation 3:16—The Danger of Lukewarm Love
Inspiration... is the determining influence exercised by the Holy Spirit on the writers of the Old and New Testament in order that they might proclaim and set down in an exact and authentic way the message as received from God. —René Pach (Rob Morgan - 100 Bible Verses Everyone Should Know By Heart - Recommended)
How precious is the Book divine,
By inspiration giv’n!
Bright as a lamp its doctrines shine,
To guide our souls to heav’n.
Its light, descending from above,
Our gloomy world to cheer,
Displays a Saviour’s boundless love,
And brings His glories near.
It shows to man his wand’ring ways,
And where his feet have trod;
And brings to view the matchless grace
Of a forgiving God.
This lamp thro’ all the dreary night
Of life shall guide our way,
Till we behold the clearer light
Of an eternal day.
God's Unchanging Word - Early in my life I had some doubts about whether or not the Bible was really God’s Word. But one night in 1949, I knelt before a stump in the woods of Forest Home, California, opened my Bible, and said, “O God, there are many things in this Book I do not understand. But by faith I accept it—from Genesis to Revelation—as Your Word.” By God’s grace that settled the issue for me once and for all. From that moment on, I have never had a single doubt that the Bible is God’s Word. When I quote Scripture, I know I am quoting the very Word of God. This confidence in God’s Word not only gives authority to one’s ministry; it provides a solid foundation for one’s life. We who trust in God’s Word aren’t living according to what someone says about the Bible or some human philosophy. We are basing our faith, our ministry, even our life itself on God’s unchanging truth as it is presented in His unchanging Word. Is God’s Word the foundation of your life? - Billy Graham
What Does God Say? - I knew a man from India who got hold of a New Testament, was converted and started to preach, but he had no background at all. That is, he started from scratch. He did not have a Greek Orthodox or Roman Catholic or Protestant background. He just started from the beginning. He didn’t know anything about churches. He testified, “What I did when I had a problem in the church was to go straight to the New Testament and settle it. I let the New Testament tell me what I was to do.” The result was that God greatly blessed him and his work in the land of India. This is what I would like to see in our church—the New Testament order of letting Scripture decide matters. When it comes to a question—any question—what does the Word of God say? All belief and practices should be tested by the Word; no copying unscriptural church methods. We should let the Word of God decide. - A W Tozer
The Importance of Studying ALL of the Scripture - Researchers studying eye movement during normal conversation have found that sustaining eye contact for any length of time is difficult, if not impossible. Special cameras reveal that what appears to be a steady gaze at someone is actually a series of rapid scans of the face. Eye movement is essential because the nerves in the eye need a constant change of stimulation if we are to see properly. Studies show that if we look at the same spot continuously, the rest of our visual field will go blank. We can experience a similar problem in our study of the Word of God. If we "stare" exclusively at certain biblical truths while excluding other important doctrines, our spiritual vision will begin to blur out. Some people, for instance, tend to look only at the love of God, or the wrath of God, or evangelism, or church growth, or the end times, or the devil, or sin. No matter what particular truth we are interested in, we need to be careful lest we lose our perspective. The Bible tells us that "all Scripture is given by inspiration of God" (2 Ti 3:16) and is profitable for our spiritual development. Only as we see the big picture—how the many biblical doctrines fit together—will we avoid staring at some truths and becoming blind to others. —M R De Haan (Our Daily Bread)
God's Word was given for our good
And we are to obey;
Not choose the parts that we like best,
Then live in our own way. —Hess
You can't enjoy the harmony of Scripture
if you play just one note of truth.
Fully Equipped - All Scripture is given by inspiration of God . . . that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. —2 Timothy 3:16-17
Karl Elsener, a Swiss designer of surgical equipment in the 19th century, worked for years on perfecting a military knife. Today his Swiss Army Knife is associated with excellence in blades and a variety of utilities. One model includes knife blades, a saw, scissors, a magnifying glass, a can opener, a screwdriver, a ruler, a toothpick, a writing pen, and more—all in one knife! If you are out camping in the wild, this one item can certainly make you feel equipped for survival. We need something to equip us to survive spiritually in this sinful world. God has given us His Word, a kind of spiritual knife for the soul. Paul writes: “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16-17). The word translated equipped means to “furnish or fit completely.” How does the Bible equip us for life’s journey? It provides spiritual truth in doctrine; reproof in showing our imperfections; correction by revealing our sinful failures; and instruction in living a righteous life. There’s not a more valuable tool than God’s Word to make us fully equipped for spiritual survival and personal growth.
Lord, thank You for equipping us with Your inspired Word. You’ve given us the tools we need to live for You. Help us to take time to read it and to follow what You tell us. Amen. - Dennis Fisher
The Bible contains the nutrients we need for a healthy soul.
The God-Breathed Book - All scripture is given by inspiration of God. (2 Timothy 3:16). We do not worship the Bible for that would be bibliolatry, but it is the only authorized textbook of our faith. Jesus said, "The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life" and those words are recorded only in the Bible. The Book is God-breathed and when we explore that Book we feel, as Dr. J. B. Phillips puts it, like one wiring an old house where the power has not been cut off. Some get a charge, some a shock, for it is wired from heaven! - Vance Havner
Does the Bible Work? ( 2 Timothy 3:16-17) Dave Hunt, in his latest book, An Urgent Call to a Serious Faith, says that Christians have stopped looking to God's Word for the answers and are instead looking in other places. "We are plagued by 'yes, but' syndrome. Isn't the Bible God's inerrant Word? Yes, but... I've tried it and it doesn't work. Don't we have the leading of the Holy Spirit, and Christ indwelling to guide and empower us? Yes, but... and silence...." Hunt continues this thought, "Like Adam and Eve, mankind still flees the voice of God, clothes itself with the makeshift garments of new theories no better than fragile leaves, and hides behind the trees of its latest excuses for unbelief and rebellion." Dave Hunt's assessment is right on target. It seems that today we have tossed out the counsel of God's Word as irrelevant and are searching for solutions elsewhere. The same God that stopped the mouths of lions for Daniel, comforted Job in distress, delivered a son to Abraham, gave courage to Peter at Pentecost, and filled Paul with joy in prison is now being labeled as "out-dated" and "old-fashioned." I may be in the minority, but I believe the principles in the Bible apply to the Christian life in the 21st century. The problem is not with the Bible, but in the hearts of men and women who refuse to follow God for answers to life. (James Scudder - Living Water)
Those that claim the Bible doesn't work
have never actually tried to use it
Adrian Rogers - When we get this Book written over a period of 1,600 years, employing forty different authors from all walks of life writing in three different languages, it comes together to make one beautiful temple of God's truth. Nothing needs to be added or taken away or embellished. There it stands—one Book! We can't say that it just happened. No thinking person would honestly say it was an accident. No! The unity of the Bible is one of the most wonderful proofs of the inspiration of God's Word—that all Scripture is given by inspiration of God....In addition to the frontal attack against the Bible from those who deny it, and in addition to the rear attack by those who substitute their experience for the Word of God, there is an attack from the flank by people who want to replace it or prop it up with psychology, philosophy, and other things—as if the Bible is not good enough on its own. But, friend, the Bible is true. If you're looking for truth, you can be sure to find it there. As it says in 2 Timothy 3:16, the Bible is inspired—"God-breathed"—verifying its authority in the trustworthy name of God.
Our Daily Bread - One spring day, Jordan began asking questions about Jesus' resurrection as his mom was taking him to preschool. Realizing he thought Jesus was rising from the dead for the first time this Easter, she tried to correct him. She pulled the car over and told him all about Jesus' death and resurrection. She concluded, "Jesus rose from the dead a long time ago, and now He wants to live in our hearts." But Jordan still didn't understand.
Unsure how she could make it any clearer, she said, "How about if we stop by the bookstore? I saw some books about Easter when I was there last week. We'll get one and read through it together." With a wisdom beyond his years, Jordan responded, "Can't we just read the Bible?"
Jordan's idea was right. Commentaries and books about the Bible are helpful tools. But they should never be used as a substitute for God's revelation of Himself—His Word. No other book has been given to us "by inspiration of God" (2Timothy 3:16). As author Eugene Peterson says, "God's voice [is] speaking to us, inviting, promising, blessing, confronting, commanding, healing."
Let's follow Jordan's idea and go first to the ultimate source of truth—the Bible. —Anne Cetas (Our Daily Bread, Copyright RBC Ministries, Grand Rapids, MI. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved)
Exhaustless store of treasured gems
Within this Book I hold;
And as I read, it comes alive,
New treasures to unfold.
Go to the Bible for your
protection, correction, and direction.
Let's Read It - After 30 years as a pastor, a New Jersey minister concluded, “The Bible is the best-selling, least-read, and least-understood book.” In his view, “Biblical illiteracy is rampant.”
George Gallup, the foremost religion pollster in the US, agrees: “We revere the Bible,” he says, “but we don’t read it.” In a recent survey, 64 percent of those questioned said they were too busy to read the Bible. The average household has three Bibles but less than half the people in the US can name the first book in the Old Testament. One survey found that 12 percent of its Christian respondents identified Noah’s wife as Joan of Arc!
The solution? Read the Bible! Join me in a commitment to read the entire Bible through in the coming year. It will take about 15 minutes a day to follow the reading guide in this booklet. Are we too busy for that?
The goal is not information, but transformation. Someone summarized 2 Timothy 3:16 by saying: “God’s Word shows us which road to take (doctrine). It tells us when we get off track (reproof); how to get back on (correction); and how to stay on (instruction in righteousness).”
God’s Word is a precious gift. So let’s read it through this coming year. - David MacCasland
If you've never read the Bible through,
There's a special joy awaiting you:
You could start the new year out just right
Walking with the Lord and in His light.
The Bible: The more you read it, the more you love it;
The more you love it, the more you read it.
A Map And A Compass- Read: 2 Timothy 3:10-17)
All Scripture is . . . profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness. —2 Timothy 3:16
I was driving on the outskirts of Orlando, searching for the little town of Zellwood. I had carefully located it on the map, but I discovered that I was on an unfamiliar road. A glance at the compass attached to my windshield, however, assured me that I was headed in the right direction and would eventually cross the highway leading to Zellwood.
The Bible and the work of God’s Holy Spirit are like a map and a compass. The Bible is our map. Paul assured Timothy that Scripture lays out the route of sound doctrine and righteousness (2 Tim. 3:16). But where is the compass in this passage?
The compass is the work of the Holy Spirit in Paul’s “manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, love, perseverance” (vv.10,14). Because Timothy carefully followed Paul’s Spirit-led example, he didn’t lose his way.
Perhaps Bible reading, prayer, and Sunday worship were once part of your childhood, but you no longer practice them. Now you are wandering and don’t know what to believe. Look to the map and compass again! Read the Bible and recall the life of parents, ministers, or friends who walked with Christ. Follow their example and soon you’ll be back on the right course. - Dennis J. De Haan
With God's Word as your map and His Spirit as your compass,
you're sure to stay on course.
Eye Contact - Read: 2 Timothy 3:10-17
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable. —2 Timothy 3:16
Researchers studying eye movement during normal conversation have found that sustaining eye contact for any length of time is difficult, if not impossible. Special cameras reveal that what appears to be a steady gaze at someone is actually a series of rapid scans of the face. Eye movement is essential because the nerves in the eye need a constant change of stimulation if we are to see properly. Studies show that if we look at the same spot continuously, the rest of our visual field will go blank.
We can experience a similar problem in our study of the Word of God. If we “stare” exclusively at certain biblical truths while excluding other important doctrines, our spiritual vision will begin to blur out. Some people, for instance, tend to look only at the love of God, or the wrath of God, or evangelism, or church growth, or the endtimes, or the devil, or sin. No matter what particular truth we are interested in, we need to be careful lest we lose our perspective.
The Bible tells us that “all Scripture is given by inspiration of God” (2 Tim. 3:16) and is profitable for our spiritual development. Only as we see the big picture—how the many biblical doctrines fit together—will we avoid staring at some truths and becoming blind to others.- Mart DeHaan
God's Word was given for our good
And we are to obey;
Not choose the parts that we like best,
Then live in our own way.
You can't enjoy the harmony of Scripture
If you play just one note of truth.
Hearing God - Read: 2 Peter 1:16-21
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God. —2 Timothy 3:16
The first morning I heard the mockingbird practicing his bagful of imitations outside my window, I was thrilled by the beauty of his songs. Gradually, however, I began to take this early morning songster for granted. One day as I awoke, it dawned on me that I no longer appreciated my regular visitor. It wasn’t the mockingbird’s fault. He was still there. His beautiful song hadn’t changed, but I was no longer listening for it.
As believers in Christ, we may have a similar experience hearing God speak to us in His Word. When we are first saved, the Scriptures, with their soul-stirring instruction and vital spiritual food, are deeply satisfying. As time goes on, however, we routinely read those same portions over and over in a manner that no longer speaks to us. Our spiritual senses grow dull and lethargic, and God’s exhilarating Word becomes commonplace to us. But then, what joy we feel when a passage reveals an exciting truth, and once again we “hear” the Lord!
Are you reading the Scriptures out of a tired sense of duty? Or do you still possess the fresh expectancy you had when you first believed? Today, when you read God’s Word, listen closely for His voice. - Richard DeHaan
I scanned the Scriptures thoughtlessly—
My haste had closed my ear;
Then prayerfully I read once more—
This time my heart could hear.
Without a heart for God,
we cannot hear his word.
A Book For Every Need - Read: Psalm 119:137-144
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God. —2 Timothy 3:16
When a co-worker gave me a brochure he had received by mail, I looked at it and thought, This can’t be true. No book can do what this promises. The pamphlet was advertising a book containing 853 letters for “every conceivable personal and business need.”
Whether that book can deliver on its claims, I don’t know. I didn’t buy it. But the advertisement made me stop and think about another book that makes a similar promise.
Second Timothy 3:16-17 states, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” That’s quite an advertisement! The apostle Paul was saying that God gave us the Bible to teach us about Himself, to give us practical instructions on how to live, and to equip us completely with everything we need to know in order to live a godly life on this earth.
The Bible delivers on its promises. I know, because I bought it, I’ve been reading it, and I’m trying to live by it. It covers all aspects of life. Its pages contain essential truths, instructions, and teachings. It alone is the book for every need. Have you read it lately? - Dave Branon
The Bible gives us all we need
To live our lives for God each day;
But it won't help if we don't read
And follow what its pages say.
The Bible: The more you read it, the more you love it;
The more you love it, the more you read it.
A Harmless Diversion? - Read: 2 Timothy 3:10-17
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God. —2 Timothy 3:16
Internationally acclaimed novelist Thomas Mann wrote a whole series of books on Joseph, the person who is the focus of Genesis 37 through 50. So we know that Mann had more than a superficial acquaintance with the Bible.
Yet his biographer records that on Christmas in 1940, Mann read aloud from the Bible for the “general amusement” of his family. At one point he said, “This book is a harmless diversion, exactly what I need.”
We may wonder why the family was amused and what Mann meant by calling God’s holy Word “a harmless diversion.” While the Bible does contain humor, its message speaks about matters that are deeply serious and of eternal importance.
Because it is the Word of God and therefore the Word of Truth, the Bible is to be read with reverence. Its timeless teachings should elicit a response of gratitude and obedience, but certainly not amusement.
How do you and I read Scripture? As a harmless diversion, like a piece of pulp fiction? Or do we read it as a priceless source of light and hope that daily demands our concentrated, prayerful attention? - Vernon C. Grounds
The Bible’s truth is exactly what we need.
Read the Bible as if God were speaking to you.
God's Tool Kit - Read: 2 Timothy 3:13-17
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, . . . that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. —2 Timothy 3:16-17
A friend of mine is a gifted handyman, but for years he was unable to develop his gifts. The reason was simple: He lacked the right tools. So for his birthday I gave him a tool kit that opens like a large book, containing the basic tools a handyman needs. As he examined each tool, his eyes shone with anticipation. After completing his next job, my friend told me excitedly, “There’s nothing more satisfying than having the right tools for the job.” Then, applying that thought to his spiritual life, he added, “I know where I can find the right tool for every job—in the Bible!”
The apostle Paul, a tentmaker by trade and a “master builder” in God’s kingdom (1 Corinthians 3:10), knew he needed the right spiritual tools. He understood that the most practical tool kit for meeting spiritual needs is the Word of God. In 2 Timothy 3, he declared that all Scripture is God-inspired (v.16). It’s indispensable for teaching, rebuking, correcting, training, and equipping believers for every good work.
Open and use God’s “tool kit” every day. Experience the deep satisfaction of finding in it the right tool for each spiritual task you have to do. It’s the tool kit that has all you need. Just use it! - Joanie Yoder
You cannot be successful as a worker
Unless you have the tools to fit your trade;
And you cannot be effective as God's servant
Until God's holy Word you have surveyed. —Hess
The Bible has all we need to know,
so we can do all God wants us to do.
Melvin Worthington gives us a wonderful lesson entitled "The Wonderful Word" based on 2 Timothy 3:14, 15, 16, 17...
The Bible is an amazing book, a living book. It provides information which can be found in no other book.
1. The Nature of the Bible (2Ti 3:16; Ps 119:9, 10, 11; 1Pe 1:20, 21). The attributes which make the Bible a unique book include its author, authority, accuracy, adequacy, appeal, and agenda.
2. The Need for the Bible (1Pe 1:23, 24, 25; Jas 1:18; Jn 5:24). The Bible addresses all the needs of the human being. It is essential for life, likeness, liberty, light, and labor.
3. The Nourishment from the Bible (1Pe 2:2). The Bible reveals and regulates the development God planned, the diet God provided, the disposition God prescribed, and the diadem God promised.
4. The Neglect of the Bible (1Co 3:1, 2). Neglect of the Bible leads to dullness, drifting, disobedience, despising, denouncing, and departing from the Lord.
Christians need to peruse, ponder, and pray over the Scriptures. This takes time, thought, toil, and tenacity. We need to pray—Father help me hear, heed, hold, honor, and herald the Word of God.