Sunday, September 23, 2007

Captive to the Word of God

An excerpt of chapter five "Scripture" from Desiring God by John Piper
"But are we to pursue this joy like Christian Hedonists? Are we to throw the kindling of God's Word every day on the fire of joy? Indeed, we are! Not only every day, but day and night: "Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord and on his law he meditates day and night" (Psalm 1: 1-2). This delight is the very design of our Lord in speaking to us: "These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you and your joy may be full"(John 15: 11) . Not to pursue our joy every day in the Word of God is an abandonment of the revealed will of God. It is sin."
If this is true, that not pursuing joy every day in the Word of God and thereby abandoning the revealed will of God is sin, many of us need to repent. I think we need to take the Word of God more seriously. The 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith does a great job of describing the necessity of the Word of God and gives reason for us to praise God for the written record of God's revelation of Himself to man.
"The Holy Scripture is the only sufficient, certain, and infallible rule of all saving knowledge, faith, and obedience, although the light of nature, and the works of creation and providence do so far manifest the goodness, wisdom, and power of God, as to leave men inexcusable; yet are they not sufficient to give that knowledge of God and his will which is necessary unto salvation." - From the 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith, Chapter 1: Of the Holy Scriptures
We must see as believers the importance of spending time in the scriptures, every day. That we may grow in our knowledge of God and also that we might delight in the Lord as He has commanded us to do. Let us not see the scriptures of little importance, if we do we find no value in the labors and suffering of saints who esteemed the scriptures and were willing to give their life for the scriptures.

Let us not forget men like Martin Luther, who said

"Since, then, Your Majesty and Your Lordships desire a simple reply, I will answer without horns and without teeth. Unless I am convicted by Scripture and plain reason-I do not accept the authority of popes and councils, for they have contradicted each other-my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not recant anything, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. Here I stand, I cannot do otherwise. God help me."
Luther knew the scriptures and that they were of high importance. He translated the Word of God and made it possible for the common man at that time to have. We have the scriptures available to us, let's praise God that He's revealed himself, his promises, and the work of Christ in the scriptures and for the saints who have labored to make scripture available to people in their own language.

Let's pursue our joy in God through reading the Word and not see the Bible as unimportant and insignificant. Let's not abandon the Word, but continue as the saints did reading and studying scripture and making it available to those who do not have the Word of God in their own language.

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