Here is a trick question…
Is this (below) Bill Gates? Or is it a book ABOUT Bill Gates?
Assuming you said that it is a book ABOUT Bill Gates then well done!
Now… another trick question…
Is this (below) the Word of God? Or is it a book ABOUT the Word of God?
If you answered “that is God’s word” then I admire your loyalty and your faithfulness… but you are wrong.
YES the bible is God breathed…
All Scripture is God-breathed – 2 Timothy 3:16
and therefore it contains God’s words. But the bible is not God’s Word…
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. – John 1:1-2
Jesus Christ is the Word of God. And the bible contains God’s words. Word and words. One is capitalised and the other isn’t. The one is God and the other isn’t.
Why is this so important?
Because calling Jesus Christ “the Word” is a pointer to a very important Old Testament scripture… important because it has the power to change your life.
But the enemy has cunningly hidden this scripture by getting us all confused. He made us think the bible is the Word… in this way He stole the truth from us.
You see… this verse is very important…
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. – John 1:14
because it points to something very important in the Old Testament called “Word”…
so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. – Is 55:11
I find this interesting and stimulating.
The commonest term in the Old Testament for “word” is דבר, dābhār (also “matter” “thing”).
The important characteristic – according to God – is that when He speaks a matter/thing His matter doesn’t return to Him without having achieved the purpose for which it was sent.
It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. – Is 55:11
Now let me ask you a third trick question…
If Jesus Christ is God’s Word made flesh… and He was sent by God… and He returned to God… then… did He achieve the purpose for which He was sent?
If you answered YES, then well done.
So… if Jesus Christ achieved the purpose for which He was sent… then… we should try and discover what He was sent for… don’t you think?
For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. – 1 John 3:8
The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. – 1 John 3:8
The reason the Son of God was made manifest (visible) was to undo (destroy, loosen, and dissolve) the works the devil [has done]. – 1 John 3:8
So… it would appear that if Jesus Christ HAS returned to God… and He was the Word of God… then He must have achieved the purpose for which He was sent. Right?
So then… what if you look around you and see the works of the devil… and yet we know for sure that Jesus Christ achieved the purpose for which He was sent… how do we resolve this?
The problem is not that He didn’t achieve His purpose. The problem is that we don’t believe that He did.
For we also have had the good news proclaimed to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because they did not share the faith of those who obeyed. – Heb 4:2
The GOOD NEWS about Jesus Christ is of no use to you if you don’t believe.
When you look at the giants in your life… are you like Joshua and Caleb… do you believe Jesus Christ defeated them? Or are you like the 10 other spies and you don’t believe that God achieved His stated purpose through His Word before His Word returned to Him?
interesting! I was taught that the Bible was written by man but inspired by God. But the church believed it was as if God dictated and man recorded it.
So, when I make an argument for gay marriage, I’m bombarded with scripture proving me wrong. Then there’s the saying, “hate the sin, love the sinner.” I can’t even begin to tell you how much I hate that line. Why would God expect gays to be forever celibate just because of their sexuality? It seems cruel and un-christian like in my opinion.
I’m going to get off my soapbox now. I got excited reading your post because it confirms how I feel.
I’ve been told by many people that I need to find a church, but my ideas are too liberal for most churches. If ‘church’ is really about like-minded people gathering together than why can’t your blog site be my church?
Hi Jane E
First of all… THANK YOU. Yes. Thank you. Although you and I differ on some things you wrote about, but I still want to say you are welcome here and Im glad you are here and Im glad you feel this is church for you.
Im very very interested in how you feel that what I wrote “confirms how you feel”. I say that with a smile and with a soft heart.
I do think that scripture is God breathed, but I also think it was written down by humans. I think it is perfect, but it has errors in it. They are no doctrinal errors at all, but there are better verses and less useful verses – despite ALL of scripture being useful for teaching.
So, for example, when Noah slept with his two daughters… does that make incest ok? No of course not. So that scripture is useful for teaching but it’s not doctrine.
Last night it came to me that many people might be using this blog as a source of teaching… as if it’s church… and now you write this. I think that was God speaking to me last night, so that I can feel free to encourage you to embrace this place as a sort of “church for the unchurched”.
But I hope you try to get into some sort of real world fellowship. It’s important to meet together to be able to encourage one another.
Meantime… you can join the new email discussion list which I felt led to set up… perhaps for people just like you… who want to be in fellowship with one another.
And BTW the bible definitely does not condone homosexuality. I am not “post modern” at all. I accept the bible as it is and I don’t change it to suit my cultural expectations.
In Romans 1:24-27 because people have rejected God Paul says there are two broad judgments laid down by God. Three times in Romans 1 (vv. 24, 26, 28) Paul says God “gave them over” to sin, and three times (vv. 23, 25, 26) he says the end results were that the people “exchanged” a good thing for something sinful, which served as their punishment.
This is a good study on the topic
Im so glad you are here Jane. Im glad you are sharing your point of view. Im glad we can talk.
God bless you!
Hi Mark! I read the study on homosexuality and while i had a hard time reading some of it , I felt at peace. I haven’t been at peace for a long time, just angry, very angry about church.
I don’t remember a time when I didn’t love Jesus. I’ve always felt Him near me. I have a tender heart and I know I’m sensitive, I want the world to be a kinder, gentler place. Religion can be harsh and it’s followers rigid and narrow-minded, the thought makes me feel like I’m suffocating.
While I read I came to the realization that I’m trying to justify my sin. I have been separated from my husband for four years and for many years before it ended, my marriage was a sexless one. I feel I’m ready to start dating but I know I can’t trust myself. I don’t think I want to be married again, but I know I definitely want to have sex again. I’m not talking about being promiscuous, but the Bible does call it fornication.
Somehow, I wanted everyone to get what they want without rules and consequences and still have a relationship with Jesus.
I know this is probably more information than you care to know but I have to be honest about how I see life and how I live it. If I can’t be honest about how I’m living my life, I won’t be accountable and I want to take responsibility so I can be my best for Jesus.
Thank you, Mark. I was touched by what I read here 🙂
I think that no deep change is possible without honesty… and that means being honest with ourselves about our motives. And you are doing that. We cant be sure of the outcome, but we can set out on the journey with honesty and see where it goes.
I also want to live a life of meeting my own needs (eg sex), but still remaining safe from the hurt I previously experienced (eg not being married again) and I also want to have a relationship with God through Jesus Christ… yes I want it all too.
And society tells me that if I want it all I can have it all. But it’s lying to us.
God bless you!
Thanks Mark 🙂
Ur wc 🙂