An Importance of Knowing Scripture

January 12, 2019

 

God communicates to us in a variety of ways. One such way is the sudden and instant recollection of scripture. I believe that in certain instances it is obvious that it is God telling us something, while it is subtler at other times. This morning was one of the obvious times for me.

 

Different from memorizing scripture passages with the carnal mind, I believe the spiritual mind absorbs the word of God that is read or heard. Through the process of reading and re-reading bible passages and books, my spirit comes to know the word of God. Because the word is within my spirit, Holy Spirit can draw it up to my conscious mind at any time. Whether for counsel or a need for wisdom, the word is in my spirit and available to my soul as I am led through life by Holy Spirit.

 

These thoughts led me to a question. Do I believe scripture is the word of God? Here are my beliefs on the matter:

·        I believe the principles revealed in scripture are of God

·        I believe the stories in scripture are from God and are of various types: historical, parable, example, etc.

·        I believe scripture is inspired by God

·        I believe scripture is the baseline for all truth

·        I believe there is additional truth beyond scripture

o   I believe all additional truth will not contradict the truth of scripture

So, to answer, yes, I believe that scripture in its original form is the word of God. Our English translations and paraphrases all have issues of some sort, which is why I seek to learn principles of God rather than memorize exact words. I guess I like the pictures. What is God trying to show me. I believe it is more important to learn the truths, principles, and teachings of scripture, than it is to memorize scripture word for word. Memorization gives no assurance of learning the truths. Learning the truths will naturally employ the words of scripture, or a paraphrase of those words.

 

A study of bibles is a revelation in itself. Here are some observations:

·        Some are better translations than others

·        Some are paraphrases to begin with

·        The bias of the author or authors is often evident

·        Certain words are omitted from some versions

·        The original language meaning is not always adequately conveyed

·        The original mindset, thought process, or style of the culture is not easily carried over into English and the western mindset

 

In order to live a holy life that is pleasing to God, I believe I need to continually learn the deeper truths and principles of scripture. This is necessary for greater spiritual maturity. This is necessary for greater intimacy with God. As a disciple, I need to know scripture to have the mind of Christ on matters.

 

But we have the mind of Christ.

1 Corinthians 2:16b

 

“No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.”

John 15:15

 

We begin our walk with Christ as servants and we learn obedience to the ways of God. We may not always have understanding which is kind of like memorizing the words of scripture without learning the lesson behind it. We progress to becoming friends with Christ, walking in obedience because of our understanding of scripture and the ways of God. This is not complete understanding but having enough understanding for this relationship. The growth continues until we are ready to be presented to Father as sons and daughters of God. Our understanding continues to deepen, and we learn to co-labor with God.

 

God speaks to us through scripture and we learn about God and about God’s plans and His ways of doing things. We also learn about the promises He gives us and His expectations of us; the conditions for such promises.

 

Holy Spirit will help us recall what we have learned and experienced.

 

“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.”

John 14:26

 

This morning as I awoke, Holy Spirit brought the following two scriptures to my remembrance; this is how God spoke to me.

 

And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, He departed and went out to a desolate place, and there He prayed.

Mark 1:35

 

as was His custom,

Luke 4:16b

 

It is my custom to drop off my wife at work and then go to the Upper Room to pray and seek God. On her days off, I may or may not sleep in a little later than my customary prayer time. Today is a day off from work for her. We were out visiting family last night and got home around midnight and went to sleep soon after we arrived home.

 

I awoke early this morning, around 6:15 AM. I took a moment to deliberate in my mind whether I should arise or sleep in. I asked God what He desired of me. Immediately, in a flash, without any thought on my part, my mind had a portion of scripture filling it.

 

And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, He departed and went out to a desolate place, and there He prayed.

Mark 1:35

 

 

It was certainly still dark out being 90 minutes before sunrise. My next thought was to wonder if Jesus did this every day or if the scripture referred to an isolated incident. Again, in a moment of time, God replied, “As was His custom.” I knew in my spirit that God was telling me that the first portion of scripture was the standard operating procedure of Jesus.

 

I then had a recollection of the number of times over the past year, in writing, teaching, and preaching, that I have used the phrase, “Jesus, my example.” Holy Spirit was basically challenging me with this recollection. I had to decide if I was going to follow the example of Christ. I arrived at the Upper Room at 6:45 AM, while it was still dark out, sunrise being at 7:49 today.

 

This may seem to be a small, insignificant occurrence, but big things have small beginnings. Hearing God is important for the believer. To have understanding is important for the disciple. To have the mind of Christ is important for the sons and daughters of God; the joint heirs with Christ.

 

I once desired to be known by God as a good and faithful servant. I then desired to be known as a friend of Jesus and God. I then desired to be known as a son of God. I now desire to be known as a joint heir with Christ and a co-laborer with God.

 

The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs – heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with Him in order that we may also be glorified with Him.

Romans 8:16-17

 

Rising early to go to a desolate place and pray, as Jesus, my example, did, is to suffer with Him. To some it is a small thing and to some it is a big thing. I see it as an honorable thing and an opportunity to co-labor with God as I pray for my city and for those whom I love.

 

For we are God’s fellow workers. You are God’s field, God’s building. According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it. Let each one take care how he builds upon it.

1 Corinthians 3:9-10

 

I look to Jesus, my example, as the foundation upon which I build my existence and all that is involved in it. I began with, and progress with, Him and His ways. He navigated this life perfectly in the eyes of Father. Why should I, or would I, seek to do anything differently than He did?

 

Jesus, my example.