Thursday, April 12, 2018

The Beauty of God's Word

We have just navigated through a very meaningful Easter Season. I loved it all. I so enjoy walking through these significant seasons with my church family. I love to see how God works in your lives and mine as we journey together.

We read through John’s Gospel this Easter. Wow! What a powerful expression of the Jesus Story. John certainly offers a fresh perspective on Jesus. You know you are in for a ride when you read his opening sentence: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.Again --- Wow!

We have just begun to read the book of Genesis together as a church family. Notice how it begins, “In the beginning . . .” As the author of Genesis (we think Moses) looked back into pre-history, he decides to just start at the beginning. There in the far reaches of eternity past --- we find God. He is present. In fact, He just is!

In the opening page of the Bible, we read of God, His Spirit, and His Word. The Spirit of God was hovering (Genesis 1:2) and then the Word of God began to express the will of God (Genesis 1:3). God said!God’s Word.

God’s Word is powerful. As He communicates – beauty emerged. All of creation came into existence by and through the authority of the Word of God. God’s Word would eventually find its greatest expression in the truth shared by John, “The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us” (John 1:15). Again --- Wow!

God’s Word is powerful and beautiful. His Word is the revelation of His character, His intention, His will, and His way. God knows best. When He reveals Himself through His Word, He is always right. His Word gives shape and definition to reality. His Word gives life. His Word endures. “The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever” (Isaiah 40:8).

The Bible is the record of God’s Word. It is the inspired expression of God through human instruments (2 Peter 1:20-21; 2 Timothy 3:16-17). God’s Word is life-shaping and life-giving (Hebrews 4:12). The Apostle Paul admonished Timothy, the pastor of the church at Ephesus, to “preach the Word” (2 Timothy 4:2).

God’s Word is authoritative for our lives. It is not always popular. We live in a day when many people struggle with authority in general. It just doesn’t “seem” to fit the spirit of our age to assert that God’s Word still holds its “place” in our society. So often, we are tempted to bend the Word of God to fit or match our sentiments. When we do that, the Word of God loses its beauty. In fact, it becomes our wordinstead of God’s Word.

Our world is filled with challenging issues that clamor for true and deep answers. It is so easy to allow the spirit of the age to dominate the conversation and shape perspective. I would encourage all of us as followers of Jesus to consider the beauty and richness of God’s Word. Even when God’s Word contradicts what we feel. Even when God’s Word is counter to the prevailing view.

Certainly, God’s Word has be read, analyzed, studied, and interpreted by every generation of God’s people. Thankfully, there are trusted methods to be implemented in a fashion that honors true historical and critical research. And – our interpretive method can be honest and not given to dishonest, contortionist, mental gymnastics that do not accurately reflect the true meaning of the text. Usually, we resort to the latter when God’s Word challenges the climate of the day.

Let’s honor God by honoring His Word. His Word is His breath! It is the intimate expression of His will and His way. As we read, study, reflect, meditate, interpret, and apply God’s Word to our lives---may the beauty of God’s revelation be on display in and through us!

God has given us His Word to make us “wise for salvation through faith in Jesus Christ” (2 Timothy 3:15). May my life and yours reflect the wisdom that is only found in the eternal, beautiful, and powerful . . . Word of God!