Back to the Bible!
The key – the secret, if you will – to consistent Christian living is feeding upon and being saturated with the Word of God. “Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly,” says Paul (Col. 3:16). That “Word” has come to us in various forms. In the Gospels we have the spoken words of our Lord, carefully recorded for us by His followers. In other portions of the Bible we have what He caused to be written, under His guidance. It matters not. It is all His Word, and it is all to “dwell in us.”
I have never seen a Spirit-filled Christian who is not also filled with His Word. He treasures the Word of God more than the words of men. He would rather read the Bible than read Spurgeon or Calvin or Luther. He does not neglect the wisdom of men but places all of his weight upon the sacred Word of God. Demas had to choose between the world and Paul, and today we must choose between the love of the world and the love of the Word.
What many churches need today is a big farewell party at which they tell the world “Goodbye.” Our Lord spoke about the wise man who built upon the rock, and Paul declares that no other foundation can be laid than is laid in Christ Jesus. Either we hide in the Rock of Ages or we shall cry for rocks and mountains to hide us when the storms of life assail.
How easy it is for us to fall into the snare of placing men’s words above God’s Word. We who were predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son go about preferring the example of others to the Perfect Model. Our Lord was careful again and again to stress all-out devotion to Him. We are complete only in Him. The simpler our faith, the better. The very fact that we are so taken up with listening to what men say about the Word of God may mean that we are ever learning and never able to come to the truth.
Dear pastors and elders, isn’t it time to return to the Bible? Isn’t it time to toss all our manuals and study guides and expensive Sunday School materials written about the Bible and get back to the Bible itself? God expects us to use our limited financial resources responsibly. Use the surplus to give to missions, to the poor, or to the suffering.
This is the age of the study help. There are more of them than ever before. Meanwhile we neglect the only Source that can satisfy our thirst. Why must we prefer broken cisterns when we can drink, receive by faith, and believe (Mark 11:24)!
“Ho, everyone who is thirsty, come to the waters!” (Isa. 55:1).
October 13, 2005
David Alan Black is the editor of www.daveblackonline.com.