How important is the Bible to you? How does it influence the way you live? How well do you know what it says? How much time do you give to hearing it taught? How successful are you at applying its teachings?
The way you answer those questions will reveal a lot about your relationship with God. The Bible is called God’s Word because it is literally God speaking to us, revealing himself to us and giving us the truth to live by. So, spending time reading and studying the Bible enables us to know God in a deeper way.
Warning – the Bible is a dangerous book to read. It can cause you great discomfort when it convicts you about attitudes and behaviours that you need to change.
“The Word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart, nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” Hebrews 4:12-13
The purpose of godly conviction is not to discourage us but to prompt us to change our ways to line up with God’s teachings. I get why people don’t spend a lot of time in God’s Word – it can make you feel uncomfortable. But by ignoring the Bible we miss out on God’s favour shown to those who intentionally internalize God’s Word.
“Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the Lord and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers.” Psalm 1:1-3
We continue our series from Nehemiah this Sunday. I want you to think about what I have written here about the importance that the Bible must play in your life to know how to live and be in God’s ongoing favour. Nehemiah and the people had rebuilt the wall around Jerusalem in record time despite the odds and opposition. That was indeed cause for celebration which they did with thanksgiving.
However, Nehemiah knew that building physical structures isn’t what’s most important to God – building people to be whole and godly is the great mission you and I have been called by Christ to do. Nehemiah did just that. The first order of business was to re-establish their lives on the foundation of God’s Word. Read Nehemiah 8:1-18 and see how the people were impacted by God’s Word in conviction, confession and celebration and think about what that looks like for us today.
See you Sunday….