Holy Smack-down, Batman!
Read 2 Timothy Chapter 3
2Ti 3:14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, 15 and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Yes, we are having another look at the importance of scriptures. It is vital that we spend a lot of time studying them. We will begin with verse 16. It sums up very well all the reasons we need to study, know, and meditate upon God’s holy word.
First, it is God-breathed. We truly don’t need any other reason than this one. In this day and age when there is so much false information available to us, we desperately need an irrefutable source of truth. The only place we will find it is in God’s word. He is the Author of all that is written within it.
Next, it is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness. That’s a lot of stuff we need. Without these aids in life, necessary ingredients for living a life that is productive and pleasing to God, we will have no chance of knowing how to live Godly lives. Surely we know that the world will not teach us about Godly things. In fact, the world would have us live in direct opposition to God’s will and ways. Now let’s look at some practical applications.
It is no mystery why Christians have such difficulty remaining fully committed to bible study. If we are diligent in studying His word, we are going to discover some things which make us uncomfortable. Almost every chapter in His word reveals some area of our lives which needs a course correction, or at the least some improvement. It makes us realize how far short we fall from God’s perfect will. It will require us to alter our ways to some extent, usually a great extent. Most of us don’t want to see something about ourselves which needs correction. It is too painful, and changing is much too difficult.
There was a time when I thought I was a fairly good Christian. I went to church, Sunday School, even taught Sunday School class for many years. I did bible study; some personal study and some group studies on Sunday night. But the emphasis and purpose of those studies was primarily, “What can I find in here that my class needs to hear?” Other than that, I unknowingly looked for truths which would confirm that my own life was pretty good in comparison to the lives of most Christians I know. What a jerk I was! That is not the purpose of scripture!
As I have mentioned in earlier devotions, it has only been over the past decade, more or less, that I began to study scriptures with a different purpose. I now ask God to show me what I need to learn and know, not what others need. Jeepers! The more I study and learn, the more I realize I’m a long, long way from becoming who I need to be for my Lord. Every day something pops off the page and convicts me in some area of life! The truth really does teach, rebuke, correct, and train. That is the main purpose of scripture!
There is a reason why gay Christians have revised the bible to exclude verses which speak ill of homosexuality. It is too painful for them to accept. There is a reason why some have discontinued reading the bible altogether. They know it is truth, and do not wish to be confronted by it any longer. And, this is the same reason why habitual adulterers, fornicators, liars, gluttons, the greedy, etc. spend very little time searching the scriptures.
Therefore, each of us needs to be willing to ‘face the music,’ so to speak. God has much He wants to show us; things which, according to verse 17, will thoroughly equip us for every good work. We really can’t be very effective for His kingdom unless we sit at His feet and allow Him to show us whatever He knows we need. It will hurt at times, but it will also heal. Let us continue to be faithful to open His word every day, asking Him to reveal to us what we need to know and heed. Let us meditate on every phrase, going over and over it until the truth comforts us, enlightens us, teaches us or smacks us in the mouth. Whichever it does, that is exactly what we need!
Prayer: Your word, O Lord, is our light in the darkness. It is our only reliable source of comfort, guidance, courage, and all the other attributes we need to live holy and Godly lives. Give us the courage and desire to face its truths every day, knowing that You will speak into our lives all that we need to hear and know.