Word of God vs. Satan’s lies – a ‘toon

Photo credit Mike Waters

Video of the week – Abandoned by God

God s way my way

John MacArthur: 1 Corinthians 1 „Men, by wisdom knew not God.” Human wisdom, just on its own doesn’t get there. Then you add that the god of this world blinded the minds of them that do not believe and you’ve got a compounding blindness. And then you add the fact that they are blinded by virtue of the sweeping, dominating elements of their culture.

It’s always about truth. Always. From the garden, it started out as a war on truth. God says, „You eat the fruit, you die”. Satan says, „No you won’t. You shall not surely die”. There it is. Adam and Eve believed Satan. They thought God was lying to them. That started the truth war, it’s going on today. It’s always about the truth. Simple, this happens when you suppress the truth.   What truth? Real truth, as Francis Schaeffer used to say, ‘The true truth”.

Biblical truth, you suppress this, it’s where you go. You take the word of God out of the place of supremacy, and you suppress the truth. Deny its truth, deny its veracity, deny its authenticity, deny it’s inerrancy, deny it’s inspiration, deny it’s sufficiency… Deny it’s clarity- that’s the latest one- that nobody really knows what the Bible means anyways, „It’s a wonderful book, God gave it to us, but, we really don’t know what it really means”. That’s convenient.

Only in the modern world do we not get it. We go back to God. The massive first cause of everything. That’s in the fabric of being human. You know you have to work hard for a couple of hundred years to convince a society that that’s nonsense (belief in the Bible) and that what makes sense is that nobody x nothing + everything. And though it doesn’t make sense, it works in a totally immoral culture because if there’s no Creator, there’s no judge.

So, reason is the first thing that shows you God. The second is morality, which is built into the fabric of all of us and has to be cultivated to the point that a society of people  reason that they don’t need God, and their sense of morality has been totally perverted.

God only wants one thing out of a nation. Listen, and believe this book (the Bible). There’s only one solution and that’s the truth. The truth by which God saves, God sanctifies. And, if this nation will respond and listen to His truth, God will open the floodgates and we might be the greatest recovery story in history. But, there’s no other way, than that „people listen to Me, and walk in my ways”.  But, it’s not gonna happen if there is famine of the word of God. Pray, that the word, as Paul said, would have free course and that it would run with all its power across this land.
Many thanks to Gabi Bogdan for this video.

James MacDonald on myths attacking the church

(Photo via http://eric-carpenter.blogspot.com/

Over at http://www.churchleaders.com they have posted one of Pastor MacDonald’s posts on 4 myths that he describes as „messages crafted for itching ears that damn the souls of men„. Read the entire article here- http://www.churchleaders.com/pastors

  1. The Word of God is not sufficient. The Word of God does not have all of the answers that people need for the complex problems of the 21st-century man. Instead of the message of the Word of God, we need psychology—literally, the study of the soul. Any contributions from psychology have not seriously upgraded what God calls “all things pertaining to life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3). If you have a problem, a burden or a struggle, the answer is not found by running away from God’s Word and going to a counselor, month after month, who never opens the Word of God, who never prays with you or who is not ministering in the power of God’s Spirit.
  2. The word of God is not sophisticated. If you really want to reach people—boomers, Gen-Xers, post-moderns—you need a more sophisticated hook than the Word of God.
  3. The word of God is not settled. The Word is still emerging—the message is still changing. My brother sent me an email about a church that’s attempting to adjust the biblical teaching on the role of women. The rationale they give for explaining away the clear teaching of Scripture is folks like us take a static approach to God’s Word, “but we take a redemptive approach,” they say.My brother wondered what that meant. In essence, they are claiming: “Don’t think the Bible always means the same thing through all of the centuries. We believe the Bible means different things to different people. Centuries ago it meant one thing, but now to modern, more sophisticated culture it means this.”As soon as I hear that, I want to throw up, because that message confirms people in their sin and gives them misguided authority to sin against their own conscience. All around us are those who have adopted the “redemptive” approach to studying the Bible.My greatest concern isn’t even about the role of women—we celebrate women leaders in our church in every area except those restricted by Scripture. My burden, however, is not women preachers, but the perversities in society that are standing in line behind that comparatively innocent issue, waiting to say: “Oh, beautiful! We get to take the parts of the Scripture that are an affront to our perversity and dismiss them as no longer relevant.”It’s the idea that the Word of God is not settled, when it is—that the Bible needs updating, when it doesn’t.
  4. The word of God is not sure or reliable. Christ is not unique, and His unique message is to be rejected in a world of pluralism.We live in a day where the name that is not welcomed is the Name that is above every name.As the God of this age heightens His attack upon this world in these last days, the dividing lines are becoming incredibly clear. I believe with all of my heart that in the days to come, to cross that finish line, it is going to cost us more than it has ever cost us before.It is going to cost us relationships when we continue to proclaim, “Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). We trumpet the message of Jesus, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except by Me” (John 14:6). To those who do not have the Spirit of God within them, the Scripture says, we are the aroma of death, 2 Corinthians 2:16.  People are not kind to those who become a stench in their nostrils.What should we do? Spend all of our time attacking error? Some of that is needed, no doubt. But Paul’s exhortation to Timothy has a lot more to do with actually continuing in his own biblical ministry and being deterred by others.

    photo via pastorequip.com
    2 Timothy 4:3-5

    For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths. But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

Read the entire article here- http://www.churchleaders.com/pastors

Good advice on how to deal with Bible difficulties

Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties, Gleason L. Archer, 1982, p15-17 via http://www.bible.ca/b-alleged-bible-contradictions-refuted.htm.

In dealing with Bible problems of any kind, whether in factual or in doctrinal matters, it is well to follow appropriate guidelines in determining the solution. This is most easily done by those who have carefully and prayerfully studied the Bible over a number of years and have consistently and faithfully memorized Scripture. Some guidelines are as follows:

  1. Be fully persuaded in your own mind that an adequate explanation exists, even though you have not yet found it. The aerodynamic engineer may not under-stand how a bumble bee can fly; yet he trusts that there must be an adequate explanation for its fine performance since, as a matter of fact, it does fly! Even so we may have complete confidence that the divine Author preserved the human author of each book of the Bible from error or mistake as he wrote down the original manuscript of the sacred text.
  2. Avoid the fallacy of shifting from one a priori to its opposite every time an apparent problem arises. The Bible is either the inerrant Word of God or else it is an imperfect record by fallible men. Once we have come into agreement with Jesus that the Scripture is completely trustworthy and authoritative, then it is out of the question for us to shift over to the opposite assumption, that the Bible is only the errant record of fallible men as they wrote about God. If the Bible is truly the Word of God, as Jesus said, then it must be treated with respect, trust, and complete obedience. Unlike all other books known to man, the Scriptures come to us from God; and in them we confront the ever-living, ever-present God (2 Tim. 3:16-17). When we are unable to understand God’s ways or are unable to comprehend His words, we must bow before Him in humility and patiently wait for Him to clear up the difficulty or to deliver us from our trials as He sees fit. There is very little that God will long withhold from the surrendered heart and mind of a true believer.
  3. Carefully study the context and framework of the verse in which the problem arises until you gain some idea of what the verse is intended to mean within its own setting. It may be necessary to study the entire book in which the verse occurs, carefully noting how each key term is used in other passages. Compare Scripture with Scripture, especially all those passages in other parts of the Bible that deal with the same subject or doctrine.
  4. Remember, no interpretation of Scripture is valid that is not based on careful exegesis, that is, on wholehearted commitment to determining what the ancient author meant by the words he used. This is accomplished by a painstaking study of the key words, as defined in the dictionaries (Hebrew and Greek) and as used in parallel passages. Research also the specific meaning of these words in idiomatic phrases as observed in other parts of the Bible. Consider how confused a foreigner must be when lie reacts in a daily American newspaper: „The prospectors made a strike yesterday up in the mountains.” „The union went on strike this morning.” „The batter made his third strike and was called out by the umpire.” „Strike up with the Star Spangled Banner.” „The fisherman got a good strike in the middle of the lake.” Presumably each of these completely different uses of the same word go back to the same parent and have the same etymology. But complete confusion may result from misunderstanding how the speaker meant the word to be used. Bear in mind that inerrancy involves acceptance of and belief in whatever the biblical author meant by the words he used. If he meant what he said in a literal way, it is wrong to take it figuratively; but if he meant what he said in a figurative way, it is wrong to take it literally. So we must engage in careful exegesis in order to find out what he meant in the light of contemporary conditions and usage. That takes hard work. Intuition or snap judgment may catch one up in a web of fallacy and subjective bias. This often results in heresy that hinders the cause of the Lord one professes to serve.
  5. In the case of parallel passages, the only method that can be justified is harmonization. That is to say, all the testimonies of the various witnesses are to be taken as trustworthy reports of what was said and done in their presence, even though they may have viewed the transaction from a slightly different perspective. When we sort them out, line them up, and put them together, we gain a fuller understanding of the event than we would obtain from any one testimony taken individually. But as with any properly conducted inquiry in a court of law, the judge and jury are expected to receive each witness’s testimony as true when viewed from his own perspective-unless, of course, he is exposed as an untrustworthy liar. Only injustice would be served by any other assumption-as, for example, that each witness is assumed to be untruthful unless his testimony is corroborated from outside sources. (This, of course, is the assumption made by opponents of the inerrancy of Scripture, and it leads them to totally false results.)
  6. Consult the best commentaries available, especially those written by Evangelical scholars who believe in the integrity of Scripture. A good 90 percent of the problems will be dealt with in good commentaries (see Bibliography). Good Bible dictionaries and encyclopedias may clear up many perplexities. An analytical concordance will help establish word usage (e.g., Strong’s, Young’s).
  7. Many Bible difficulties result from a minor error on the part of a copyist in the transmission of the text. In the Old Testament such transmissional errors may have resulted from a poor reading of the vowels; Hebrew was originally written in consonants only, and the vowel signs were not added until a thousand years after the completion of the Old Testament canon. But there are also some consonants that are easily confused because they look so much alike (e.g., [d, daleth] and 1 [r, resh] or ” [y, yod] and 1 [w, waw]). Besides that, some words are preserved in a very old spelling susceptible of misunderstanding by later Hebrew copyists. In other words, only a resort to textual criticism and its analysis of the most frequent types of confusion and mistake can clear up the difficulty (for bibliography on this, cf. Introduction). This takes in confusion of numerals also, where statistical errors are found in our present text of Scripture (e.g., 2 Kings 18:13).
  8. Whenever historical accounts of the Bible are called in question on the basis of alleged disagreement with the findings of archaeology or the testimony of ancient non-Hebrew documents, always remember that the Bible is itself an archaeological document of the highest caliber. It is simply crass bias for critics to hold that whenever a pagan record disagrees with the biblical account, it must be the Hebrew author that was in error. Pagan kings practiced self-laudatory propaganda, just as their modern counterparts do; and it is incredibly naive to suppose that simply because a statement was written in Assyrian cuneiform or Egyptian hieroglyphics it was more trustworthy and factual than the Word of God composed in Hebrew. No other ancient document in the B.C. period affords so many clear proofs of accuracy and integrity as does the Old Testament; so it is a violation of the rules of evidence to assume that the Bible statement is wrong every time it disagrees with a secular inscription or manuscript of some sort. Of all the documents known to man, only the Hebrew-Greek Scriptures have certified their accuracy and divine authority by a pattern of prediction and fulfillment completely beyond the capabilities of man and possible only for God.

Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties, Gleason L. Archer, 1982, p15-17

Read the entire article here –

http://www.bible.ca/b-alleged-bible-contradictions-refuted.htm. The site also offers a chart which resolves the alleged contradictions of:

  1. Why Mary didn’t know what had happened to Jesus’ body when she left the tomb.
  2. It is impossible to assume that Mary had left the group early.
  3. The Gospel of John contradicts the other three.

Betrayed with a Kiss – Eric Ludy

There is a conspiracy in our midst to undermine our confidence in the Word of God. This message was preached after Rob Bell’s trailer for his new book „Love wins” debuted.

God doesn’t stutter. He knows what He is saying and it is up to us to get our ridiculous post modern junk out of the way, the cultural entrap pings, the social sensibilities, the political correctness out of the way so we can allow God just to speak straight to us. He says it and He means it. And He’s meant it for 6,000 years ever since it began. He knows what He’s doing  and He’s not caught off guard with our culture. 

The enemy deserves a litlle credit: The brilliance of sneaking liberal thinking into the modern conservative church. The Satanic agenda to undermine the church today is not dead. The entire next generation of Christian leadership is being defined by men such as Donald Miller, Rob Bell and Brian MacLaren. The collegiates are buying their books in droves.

The entire message is transcribed below the video published on Jun 6, 2012 by :

Betrayed with a Kiss – The conspiracy of the modern prophet by Eric Ludy

Eric Ludy is Pastor of the Ellerslie Church in Windsor, Colorado. You can visit his website here http://ericludy.com/Home.html

Luke 22:46-49

“Why are you sleeping?” he asked them. “Get up and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.”47 While he was still speaking a crowd came up, and the man who was called Judas, one of the Twelve, was leading them. He approached Jesus to kiss him, 48 but Jesus asked him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?” 49 When Jesus’ followers saw what was going to happen, they said, “Lord, should we strike with our swords?”

Ezekiel 22:23-31

23 Again the word of the Lord came to me: 24 “Son of man, say to the land, ‘You are a land that has not been cleansed or rained on in the day of wrath.’ 25 There is a conspiracy of her princes within her like a roaring liontearing its prey; they devour people, take treasures and precious things and make many widows within her. 26 Her priests do violence to my law and profane my holy things; they do not distinguish between the holy and the common; they teach that there is no difference between the unclean and the clean; and they shut their eyes to the keeping of my Sabbaths, so that I am profaned among them. 27 Her officials within her are like wolves tearing their prey; they shed blood and kill people to make unjust gain. 28 Her prophets whitewash these deeds for them by false visions and lying divinations. They say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says’—when the Lord has not spoken.29 The people of the land practice extortion and commit robbery; they oppress the poor and needy and mistreat the foreigner, denying them justice.

30 “I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one.31 So I will pour out my wrath on them and consume them with my fiery anger, bringing down on their own heads all they have done, declares the Sovereign Lord.

(1) The Word of God IS the Word of God

  • The Word of God IS the Word of God. Today a version of „Did God really say?” permeates the churches. The word of God didn’t come about accidentally; it was not voted on in 300 A.D. – it was understood by the Church for those 300 years. Everyone knew it. They formalized it? Why? Because it was under SIEGE. The basis of our belief is that the Word of God cannot lie! It cannot lie! Note 1 Thessalonians 2:13- And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as a human word, as it is in truth, the word of God, which is indeed at work in you who believe. Hebrews 6:18 – …it is impossible for God to lie” Numbers 23:19- God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?  If you believe the Word of God is the word of men, your foundations will fail you. But, if you want to build upon a rock, then you take God at His Word. The Word of God is the Word of God and the Word of God is as God is: It cannot lie. Therefore, when you have those foundation points, you are not shaken.

The appeal of the open mind

  • Discusses closed mind, narrow mind and open mind. The appeal of the open mind is that it appears more reasonable, more generous, more accepting, more hospitable, more socially-correct. An open mind is a „door open” policy. Everyone of us is predisposed to the „open mind” option.
  • Definition of Closed Mind– A mind that ignorantly and belligerently dismisses and excludes actual facts from having any say in the formation of his/her reality. A mind not open to reasonable discussion, not open for the business of discussing truth. (This is a fantastic environment for cults to foster.
  • Definition of Narrow Mind – a mind that strictly filters all fact and information through an individual’s or small group of individual’s small finite human worldview and experience. A mind unable to break out of traditional, religious and/or cultural moorings to accept  that truth is bigger than what can be comprehended by a singular person or closed off group of people.
  • Definition of Open Mind – A mind that is reasonable and judicious with facts, desirous to learn, accepting of all, ever-ready to consider new and novel thoughts, a mind hospitable to all notions whether true or false. A mind open to anything and everything, eager to chew on ideas never before considered.
  • The Christian OptionThe Canon Mind – not to be narrow minded, not to be closed minded nor open minded (even though it sounds terrible to say we are not open minded. We are open minded to one thing: To God. And, how are we open minded to God? To His Word.) We are seemingly closed to the world. But, it is God’s worldview and He know more than everyone else. He’s the one that created the heavens and the earth. Don’t you think His world view is a pretty good one to reason through? If you’re going to have a filter, that’s a bout a good as one as you’re going to get. That’s Christianity: It’s fidelity and faithfulness to One. I do not have an open marriage, for instance. I have a marriage that is closed off to any other invasive force; anything else that would try to get in, I don’t share and say, „Come on in”. I am exclusive to my wife. You would say, „That’s good”. That’s right, and that’s what it means to be exclusive to Jesus Christ. His Word is our guide and anything that would tend to contradict it, undermine it is kept outside the house. It might sound closed and it might sound narrow, actually it’s life and life abundant.
  • Canon Mind – A mind given wholly to God, implicitly trusting God’s definition of reality, exclusively devoted to God’s opinion and command, closed to all thoughts, ideas, or philosophies that would lead the mind to another take on reality. The Canon Mind is a mind built on God’s Word as if it were in fact the Word of God. The Canon Mind is built upon the rock-like conviction that God’s Word is the perfect revelation of Fact, it cannot lie and is 100% Truth and the Canon Mind knows that God intends for His Word to be comprehended by His saints, understood by His saints, and lived out by His saints. The Canon Mind is not open to any thought, notion, or definition of reality that is not 100% concurrent with the Revelation of God’s Word. IF IT DOESN’T ALIGN WITH THE WORD OF GOD, IT’S OUT. (Acts 17:11)

Nooma videos and post-modern mush

  • Repainting the Christian faith – The videos repaint Truthby leveraging the confidence gained to sink the Church into error and the questioning of biblical authority. The enemy has been behind this exact process since the beginning
  • The gush of post-modern mush- A pseudo-intellectualism that roosts high above the Bible, looking down with a compassionate gaze upon the notions of the „archaic” text. Post-modernism has overtaken the church of Jesus Christ today. It does not demand logic. As a result you can have 2 contradictory thoughts coexist and that is why these men can literally undermine something by saying, „Well, I don’t know that I believe the virgin birth, but I esteem the virgin birth because I am an orthodox Christian”. What? How in the world can you say both things? Well, it’s a pseudo-intellectualism which means it’s fake intellectualism. These guys think they’re smart. They’re above the Bible, looking down, as if they can survey and tweak it however they choose, but they have a „compassionate” gaze saying, „Oh, this poor thing; this Bible’s gone through such hard times, it’s so misunderstood today… the poor text of Scripture. You know, God means well, but I think He needs me to help Him along, in this generation- to sort of clarify His heart.” And so, as a result, they take a position of „above” the Word of God with a „compassionate” gaze  to help along the „limping, archaic” text.

Your position on the Word defines your response to the Word

  • Above it – If you’re above the word, it defines how you respond to it: You critique, correct, and contour it to meet your sensibilities. „I understand our culture God, and I realize You make some harsh statements about homosexuality here, but I don’t think you realize what You’re getting yourself into. If You want to be attractive to anyone in this culture You can’t take that hard line. The way You talk about women here is very misunderstood in our culture so we’re gonna have to gender neutralize this Bible because this is going to offend women.
  • Equal to it – Esteem it as good, treat it as friend, bask in its kind phrases, but ignore its call to give up all. It’s just a buddy. Buddies can’t command you what to do. Buddies can encourage you and do nice things for you. If you’re equal with the Bible, it does not have lordship over your life.
  • Below it – Believe it with unquestioning fervor, reckon it with unwavering Faith, and bend to it with loyal, worshipful devotion.
  • Most people, when they see that list say, „Man, I don’t like this word „control”. I don’t like this, that sounds cult like. Ok, so God’s running a cult. Call Christianity whatever you want, but, God rules in Christianity. God bought our bodies with the price of His blood and we have unyielding devotion unto our God. Unreticent, unequivocal, we give ourselves to our God. We say, „Take us, have us because You’re right, if You say You bought us and if You say that we must be mastered by someone, either sin or You, I choose You”.

Bizarre conclusion of those roosting above

  • The uncrucified conclusions of fleshly reasoning.
  • Brickianity. Rob Bell brings out this notion of brickianity. He says’ „Those who create a hard line fact out of truth, out of the Word of God”, he calls brickianity. It’s hard, always a wall and resistance. He says, „But we want to reason,we want to bring out new thought, no brick wall in front of us”. And he mocks it and offers something different.
  • Bell: Truth stretches, it’s springy. That truth is far more, instead of being all hard and unmoving, truth is springy, like the springs of a trampoline. This is what he says in his book „Velvet Elvis”. Whoever jumps on it (trampoline) depending on their weight, defines how deep the springs stretch. So springs stretch, or truth stretches to fit you, your unique needs, your unique demands. How Bell proposes this, is he goes back and uses a lot of rabbinical types of things, always talking about Hebrew and Jewish culture and as a result it sounds very believable because he sounds like he knows more about it than „I” do. So there’s a statement where Jesus says to the disciples that He has given them the keys to the kingdom and what they loose will be loosed in heaven and what they bind on earth will be bound in heaven and so of course since none of us have a clue as to what that means, he (Bell) injects his opinion. His opinion is, „Did God really say?” That’s one big key he is sticking in the lock right here.
  • The Keys to the Kingdom– Bell proposes: God has given us the keys of the Kingdom, us as a church. And, in every generation we are responsible to take that key and to stick it in the text of Scripture and to turn it so we can make Scripture malleable to our current generation. We can change Scripture to mean what it needs to mean, today, so that Christianity will be effective. Is that our end goal? Our end goal is the glory of Jesus Christ, implicit trust in Jesus Christ. He has His children. Is the Word of God changeable? Does the Word of God alter?
  • Evolution of truth– They believe, Brian MacLaren presses this one heavily, that truth is constantly changing, so therefore we need to realize that God is always adapting His truth to meet the current culture in which we are. Of course, you believe in evolution. That’s a basic understanding now. Right? Because it’s been taught in the school system your entire life. So, because we now believe evolutionism as fact, we can also understand that God evolves and HIs Word evolves. I mean some of these things were written thousands of years ago. You’re actually going to believe (chuckle, chuckle) that it’s accurate and reasonable and effective for today? Without us being able to consider the fact that culture has changed? See, God is love and that hasn’t changed, but how He expresses His love is now new today.
  • God A and God B. I choose God B. Brian MacLaren actually has a line in his book „Generous Orthodoxy” where he describes 2 Gods: God A and God B. For God A he describes all these characteristics that are very distasteful: God is judgmental, God is a God of wrath, God is a disciplinarian; and then he describes God B: Kind, loving, patient, gentle. Ahh, I love God B. He says, „I choose God B”. Mr MacLaren, you don’t have a choice who God is. You have no business attempting to define God, God already defined HImself. Whether you like it or not, He is who He is; whether you believe He is or not. Our opinions on the issues of God mean diddly squat in heaven. We either adapt to who God is or we find ourselves in a very miserable place some day in the future. God is right, let every man be a liar, who would attempt to defy the realities of our God.
  • I personally couldn’t serve a God who would do that. Brian MacLaren spends a lot of time talking about the Old Testament and says if God hasn’t changed then we have a serious problem because how are we to explain all these terrible things that God did in the Old Testament? He wiped out entire people groups. If we can’t say our God has changed, how can we be Christians? How can we represent this? Somewhere down the line, God  is who He is, whether we like it or not and we submit to Him, even if He was a bad God. Why? Because He is God and He gets what He is after.  There is also a layering fact. He is revealed in the Word of God as being perfect, upright, good, perfect in His judgement, perfect in His mercies. So, whatever God is being defined here in the Old Testament,  (by the way He is the same God yesterday, today and forever) isn’t altered. So, if you don’t like Him in the Old testament, you’re not gonna like Him now, or in the future. Same God. You don’t change Him. He changes you.
  • The open mind is a more Honest and Humble mind –  these men are very humble in their approach. They will say, „I don’t know that I’m right, but here’s what I think on the matter. And it’s very studious, glasses on the nose and it’s very gentle and caring. Let’s enter into conversation here. I don’t know if I’m right, it’s just my thoughts. Yeah, their thoughts are one big „Did God really say?” „And, did God really say that also?”  We have a serpent in sheep’s clothing and it’s very dangerous.

What we believe

  • The Open Record– 1 John 5:10 10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. God gave us a record: „This is fact. I cannot lie. I am giving you a record”. Do you believe it? If you don’t, you’re calling God a liar. 1 John 1:10 –If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us
  • The return of the Canon Mind– We have a choice, but it’s not a matter of who we will bow down to, but when. You may not like the fact that „every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord”, but, it’s gonna happen. You see, God is gonna get what He came to that cross to purchase and we can stand in defiance of that and cheat God and come above Him and say, „I don’t like Your method”. Who are we to challenge God’s method? Who are we? Even the cherubim, who can rule entire worlds single handedly, and move like lightning and when they speak, their voice sounds like mighty. rushing waters. They have a brilliance that is at least a million times yours, and even they submit to God and do only that which God is doing. Who are we, that we would critique the Son of God, that we would critique His Word? Philippians 2:9-11 –  Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Where is the flaw? Is it in God or is it in us? Is God flawed? Where does the problem lie? You don’t like God’s method, you don’t like how things have turned out. Hey, there’s sickness and dying and disease in the world, God’s responsible: I couldn’t serve a God like that. Where’s the flaw? Is it in God or is it in us? Job 33:12-13- Behold, in this thou art not just: I will answer thee, that God is greater than man13 Why dost thou strive against him? for he giveth not account of any of his matters. Remember Job has gone through some rather difficult times, come Job 33. His life has been completely brought low. His wife had said, „Curse God and die”, instead he fell down and worshipped. However, Job still struggled because he continued to defend his righteousness. He said, „Look, look, I’ve lived right. This is not appropriate behavior for God to wield against me, and Eliphaz rises up and answers, „that God is greater than man, why do thou strive against Him?”. Listen to this argument: Job 34:10,12- 37:23-24 – Therefore hearken unto me ye men of understanding: far be it from God, that he should do wickedness; and from the Almighty, that he should commit iniquity. 12 Yea, surely God will not do wickedly, neither will the Almighty pervert judgment. Ch. 37  23 Touching the Almighty, we cannot find him out: he is excellent in power, and in judgment, and in plenty of justice: he will not afflict. 24 Men do therefore fear him: he respecteth not any that are wise of heart.
  • Is it our position to question God, to question His ways? Do you remember God coming down and speaking to Job? Job 38:1-8; 16-18; 22-23; 31; 34-37; 41 Job 40:2; 8-14 – Here’s the streamline from these texts: „Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind and said, „Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Gird up now thy loins like a man; for I will demand of thee, and answer thou  me. Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare, if thou hast understanding, who has laid the measures thereof, if thou knows? Or who hath stretched the line upon it?… Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? Or who laid the cornerstone thereof ; when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy? Or who shut up the seas with doors, when it brake forth, as if it had issued out of the womb? … Hast thou entered unto the springs of the sea? Or hast thou walked in the search of the depth? Have the gates of death been opened unto thee? Or hast thou seen the doors of the shadow of death?… Hast thou perceived the breadth of the earth? Declare if thou knows it all… Hast thou entered into the treasures of the snow? Or hast thou seen the treasures of the hail which I have reserved against the time of trouble, against the day of battle and war? … Canst thou bind the sweet influences of Pleaides, or loose the bands of Orion?… Canst thou lift up thy voice to the clouds, that abundance of waters may cover thee?… Canst thou send lightnings, that they may go and say unto thee, here we are? Who hath put wisdom in the inward parts? Or who hath given understanding to the heart? Who can number the clouds in wisdom? Or who can stay the bottles of heaven? Who provides for the raven his food? When his young ones cry unto God, they wander for lack of meat… shall he that contends with the Almighty instruct him? He that reproves God, let him answer it… wilt thou also disannul my judgment? Wilt thou condemn Me, that thou may be righteous? Hast thou an arm like God? Or canst thou thunder with a voice like Him? Deck thyself now with majesty and excellency; and array thyself with glory and beauty. Cast about the rage of thy wrath; and behold everyone that is proud, and abase him… Look on everyone that is proud, and bring him low, and tread down the wicked in their place. Hide them in the dust together, and bind their faces in secret. Then will I also confess unto thee that thine own right hand can save thee.
  • „I’m right God, You’re the one who is wrong. You defend your righteousness and condemn God? How dare you.The fact that this is even allowed in the Christian world, not on the liberal side; it’s always been there Conservative, Bible believing churches have now began to imbibe in this poison. „Demonstrate your beauty and glory- array yourself like God!” Then He will acknowledge that you can save yourself with your own righteousness. Do it, try it. We can’t. He are humbled before the realities that He is God and we are not.
  • Is truth evolving? Does God adapt to the culture, to the political correctness of our times? Malachi 3:6 – For I am the Lord, I change not, therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed. Do you know what God is actually saying here? It’s not just that he doesn’t change. You want to know why you’re not consumed? „Cause I don’t change. I keep my covenant. You want to know why you’re still alive right now? Because I change not!”  Hebrews 13:8- Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, and today and forever. By the way Jesus Christ IS the Word of God. Do you know who created the heavens and the earth? The Word of God; Jesus has always been around. He didn’t just come into existence 2000 years ago. He is God. James 1:17- Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the father of lights, with whom there is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. Matthew 5:18-  For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. The Word of God is stable, the Word of God isn’t going anywhere. The Word of God is right; we build our life upon it as the builder upon a foundation, upon a stone.
  • Is this all about our choice, our wishes, our sensibilities? Do we define God’s nature? Do we define the way we want life with God to be? What kind of Christianity do you want? How would you like your God to be? What kind of church would you like to go to? Is it on your terms? That’s a good question because, somehow we’ve begun to believe that it is (on our terms). But, that isn’t Christianity. Christianity is on God’s terms and God’s terms have been revealed in His Word, and we submit to it. We come below it, we say, „You are right; change me to fit You. Alter me, if I’m wrong, tell me so I can please You by being as I ought to be in You. So the question is: Is it about our choice? John 15:16- You have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you„. You have hope because your God chose you. It has nothing to do with your choice. It has to do with His choice. He has chosen you and given you an opportunity’ take it. 1 John 4:19- We love Him, because He first loved us. He is the initiator, He is the wise one here. He stirs in us, it’s called prevenient grace. He moves inside our soul and warms us and suddenly our eyes can begin to see and: Behold the realities of the living God! We are living in death. There is nothing inside of you that would ever be attracted to God Almighty controlling your life, nothing! There are some of you that have walked from death to life, where now you see God and you’ve yielded your life to Him and now you’re happy. Where’d that come from? It came from God. Do you critique God? Do you choose God? Is it us declaring what we want or is it God declaring; I want you? 1 John 4:10- Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
  • Is truth springy? Does truth adapt and flex around us, or are we supposed to flex and adapt around God? Is truth adapting to your body weight, to your personal baggage in your life? Do you have a real difficult life and does truth stretch to meet you in an extra special way? God meets us all in the exact point where He needs us to be met: He meets us at the cross. All of us, same way, because our issues are all the same. They have different nuances, different names to it, it’s all the same- we have a problem and that is, we are controlled by the flesh, we are controlled by the principle of sin and we cannot get out. Is truth springy? Rob Bell can call Christianity brickianity, oh a stiff religionist. I don’t like a stiff religionist anymore than Rob Bell does. I want believers living and vibrant. However, we stand upon something very stiff and it is not movable, it does not stretch- depending on who we are. It is called the rock and it does not change to adapt to our sensibilities. We change our sensibilities around it. You want to climb on the rock? You climb on the rock that has always been, for 6000 years, and it’s never changed. God does not change. Deuteronomy 32:4- He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he. 2 Samuel 22:2-3; 32, 47; 23:3- And he said, The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence. 32 For who is God, save the Lord? and who is a rock, save our God? 47 The Lord liveth; and blessed be my rock; and exalted be the God of the rock of my salvation. The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God. God is a rock, well, that’s good news because when you come inside of a rock, you’re safe because a rock doesn’t pick up and move. It’s stationary, it doesn’t alter and things can’t get through a rock. You’re secure in a rock because it doesn’t change.
  • The rock of Israel spoke to me– John 1:1-4, 14- In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was GodThe same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.In him was life; and the life was the light of men. 14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. God spoke. It was made flesh. The Word, the very annunciation, the very expression, the very nature of God, which is what a Word is. Matthew 7:24-25-  Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. 1 Corinthians 10:4-  And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ. Jesus is the law of God made flesh. He is the histories of Israel made flesh. He is the Proverbs of God made flesh, all the prophecies, all the sacrifices, the Temple, the Sabbath, the rest made flesh. He is the full annunciation of God made flesh. He’s the rock upon which we stand and upon which we build. The text and the person, inerrant, without flaw and I say: Church of Jesus Christ, fix your feet upon Jesus and forsake that voice that says, „Did He really say?” „Yes, HE DID! And we will not be moved. When the winds and the rains come against us we will not build upon sand. Sand is a rock that has been beaten into small pieces and then the pieces that are wanted are taken. You have a foundation, but it is unstable because it is not Jesus. It is the parts of God that you esteemed, according to your own sensibilities you’ve built for yourself a foundation of your own accord, your own wit and wisdom and it will fail you.
  • What is the proper response of the believer? Job 42:1-3, 5-6- Then Job answered the Lord, and said, I know that thou canst do every thing, and that no thought can be withholden from thee. Who is he that hideth counsel without knowledge? therefore have I uttered that I understood not; things too wonderful for me, which I knew not.  I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee. Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes. It’s not just the hearing of the ear to behold the Living God. When you know God, you know that He is able to keep our feet from falling. You know that this God is able to construct a revelation and then observe the revelation for all time. Is this too hard for God? Because we have a lot of voices that are saying, „How in the world is that supposed to work? Can you read any other piece of literature that has been stable and unaltered for thousands of years? No, you can’t. Can you? It’s because it’s(any other literature) not supernatural. We are talking about the Word of God.
  • He will overcome when He is judged. Romans 3:4- God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judgedWhat if people don’t believe that God is able? What if they don’t believe that He is who He says He is? Will that make the merit and the legacy and the ability of God neutralized? If there was a tribunal setup, and we attempted to condemn God, He will be justified at such a tribunal and we will end up being nullified and we will end ub being found to be the idiot in the scene.

  • Shall we strike with the sword? Luke 22:46-49- And said unto them, Why sleep ye? rise and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. 47 And while he yet spake, behold a multitude, and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near unto Jesus to kiss him. 48 But Jesus said unto him, Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss? 49 When they which were about him saw what would follow, they said unto him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword?  What I have described to you is the leaders in the church of Jesus Christ today, and I have only given you a little snapshot, have leaned in to kiss the cheek of Jesus Christ. And, it looks so tender, and so many of us feel like we are having a difficult time in how to respond to this, because, well, they seem to really love Jesus. Do you see the multitude? Do you see they’re betraying the Son of Man into the hands of the sinners? But we are dull in our sense. Why? Because we are sleeping. We have not been alert in this time. The church of Jesus Christ has been in a slumber. Awaken us, Lord Jesus! So that we can see, as the Son of Man has been betrayed afresh into the hands of sinners. I have a message that I teach this year on translation, this is where I talk about biblical pedigree. The history of the Word of God , men and women have died to preserve dots and tittles. And in one generation, ours, they are overhauling the entirety of the Bible. The entirety! Men and women, for generations have died to preserve every last word. The entire Jewish nation, for thousands of years, preserved the Word of God saying: We will die rather than you altering one word. And, in our generation- altering the whole thing. We are sleeping. This is our watch and the wolves are in the sheep pen. I know they look like sheep; we need to mark them and we need to understand how this battle works. So we are turning to our God right now and we’re saying, „Lord, shall we strike with the sword? Our battle is not against Rob Bell, Brian MacLaren, Donald Miller and others, our battle isn’t against the,. it’s against who is puppeteering them. They could be genuine. They might not know what they are doing, however, the enemy does know what he is doing because it is his business to do this. „Did God really say that? Can we really be certain about this? It’s always undermining the certainty, the rock like substance of Jesus Christ. When you mess with the text of Scripture, you mess with the Person, Jesus Christ. You cannot mess with a text of Scripture without implying Jesus Christ, who is the Word become flesh. In some diminishing way, you are hurting Jesus. Rob Bell says he believes the virgin birth, however, he goes through this whole process of creating the argument that could be used for someone who doesn’t believe the virgin birth. It is so calculated and so dangerous because he is literally sponsoring doubt in the virgin birth. You know, if you don’t believe the virgin birth, this is no small thing. You know that the canonicity of Jesus is called into question? If Jesus is not proven to be the perfect match with all the prophecies of the Old Testament, in perfect harmony, he could be stoned as a false prophet? You remove the virgin birth, you remove the integrity of the Messiahship of Jesus Christ. We don’t mess with these things. Someone may not know what they are doing to the Word of God today. That doesn’t mean we stand by and say, „Well, at least they are sincere”. We still must get to them and say, „That’s dangerous. That’s that voice. Don’t heed that voice.” The appeal of the open mind is strong. This book that’s about to come out „Love Wins”, It’s universalism. It’s a direct question to the integrity of the Scripture  on the point of hell and judgement. Do you think I’m a huge fan of people going to hell? I’d love to change these things according to my sensibilities. God speaks and He doesn’t stutter. It’s our job to believe Him. It’s that simple. We may not fully understand it, but we believe it. Why would you believe that? Because God said it. God cannot lie, it’s His Word. We have Canon MindsMinds that are groomed by the Words of God and not by social sensibilities. You may be a bit offended by God, you better come to God and make that right because God cannot do wickedness, He is upright in all matter, He does not afflict, He is perfect in His judgment. Our God will be justified in the end. You may not understand how all this drama works, but don’t listen to the enemies take on it. The enemy is always questioning the person of God and His motives. What was he saying to Eve? „Look at God, He’s trying to rule you with an iron hand. You don’t need to submit to that. Eat of this fruit. He doesn’t want you to know that you will be as He is.” That’s the bait of the serpent. Don’t follow it. It’s self exaltation that he’s after because he knows when you yourself are imprisoned in the power of sin, but he knows when self is debased, Jesus Christ can gain access to what He purchased on that cross. This is about dying to self, not exalting self, not preserving self, not about self esteem, but self denial so that jesus Christ can gain what is rightfully His. I’m one of the happiest guys you’ll ever know because I agree with the Word of God. It doesn’t make me miserable, it makes me happy. I love Jesus! I love serving God, I trust implicitly His character and He is good! And every question that can be laid at Him, any accusation, He will overcome all judgment when laid at His feet, every last one. We are gonna bow our knee. Let’s bend it now. we are gonna confess that He is Lord, let’s confess it now. And let HIm rescue us, let Him change us, let Him purge us, let Him purify us, let Him set our feet upon a rock that is strong, fill us with love, joy , peace, faithfulness, gentleness and control to live this life as we ought to.

(via) Adrian Martin – Uploaded by
from http://www.ellerslie.com – May we be unashamed of the Gospel – Romans 1:16

How do you pray God’s word?

Read more:http://www.allaboutprayer.org/how-to-pray-gods-word-faq.htm#ixzz1taYHP06n

Can you teach me how to pray God’s Word?

Jesus taught us how to pray God’s Word through His example. When praying the “The Lord’s Prayer” (Matthew 6:9-13), Jesus used direct quotes of Scripture. When Jesus was tempted in the wilderness during His forty days and nights of fasting, He quoted Scripture (Matthew 4:4, 7).

Much of King David’s Psalms were prayers using Old Testament Scripture. God answered King David straightaway and considered David His friend. If your heart’s desire is to be known of God, as David was, use the Psalms in your prayer life. Watch what God will do on your behalf!

Praying Scripture gives us authority over Satan, as Christ prayed against him. This method of prayer is helpful in extending one’s aloneness time with God, creating an intimate relationship with the Creator. When we are at a loss for words on how to pray in any situation we face, praying Scripture helps us to pray in a way that is pleasing to God.

The following are two examples of how to pray God’s Word:

“I command you–be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9).

Thank You, Lord for being with me wherever I go. I will be strong, brave, and encouraged. I will not be afraid or dismayed. I will pray, and go, and do Your will. I thank You, Heavenly Father. Amen.

„I am leaving you with a gift – peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give isn’t like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid” (John 14:27).

Thank You, Lord Jesus, for the peace that You give. I accept this peace, so my heart will not be troubled with the affairs of this world. I thank You, Heavenly Father. Amen.

Read more:http://www.allaboutprayer.org/how-to-pray-gods-word-faq.htm#ixzz1taYHP06n

Christian Doctrine 2 – Revelation: God Speaks

Lecture by Mark Driscoll. Last week we considered who God is. This week we will consider what God has revealed to His creation. God in His grace has given us an option greater than speculation. It is only through His revelation that we can even begin to know who God is and understand His purposes.

General Revelation: The personal act of God by which He makes Himself known through His creation, providence and conscience to humanity in general so that they might come into relationship with Him. (Ps 19:1-4, Ps 98:8-10, Rom1:19-21)

Special Revelation: The personal acts of God by which He makes Himself known by His redemptive word-work to many people son that they might come into relationship with Him. (2 Tim 3:16, Heb 1:1)

Theology: Let us begin our discussion with the revelation of God..

How is the inspiration of Scripture verified by the following:
The teachings of Jesus?
Prophecy?
Self verification and consistency?
What does it mean that the Word of God is sufficient?
What part did God play in special revelation?
What part did the human authors play in special revelation?
Explain the difference between interpretation and application.
What characteristics of God give us confidence in the cannon of Scripture?

Implications: consider now, the implications of God revelation to our daily lives.

Give an example of general revelation in your life and how God used it to reveal Himself to you?
How has God revealed Himself to you through Scripture in the past week?
How does faith in the Word of God effect how you live your life today?
What does it mean to submit to the Authority of Scripture to you personally?
In what areas of your life have you resisted the Bibles Authority?
Give an example of where you see the Word of God living and active today.

Prayer: Reflect on the truth of God’s Word, and who it reveals Him to be. Meditate on the grace of God that He would reveal Himself to us is such a tangible way as Scripture.

Pray for wisdom and understanding of the revelation of God in my daily Bible study.
Pray that the word of God would be living and active in my life.
Pray for a desire to know God through his Word.
Pray for those you know who have yet to believe that God’s revelation would penetrate their hearts.

In a rut? God’s path is clearly marked…

by Ronnie Lowe (via) GospelTeacher.org

When it rains, you may find yourself traveling down some back country road in “ruts” that are several inches deep. How did these ruts get there? Were they not left by other travelers who preceded you?

It seems that no matter how hard we try to stay out of the ruts, we invariably fall in. In life, we have the same problem. No matter how hard we try, we often fall into a “rut” of one kind or another. Perhaps we have stopped studying as we should, or maybe we have begun to forsake the assemblies. Once we get in a bad rut, whether one on a muddy road or in life, it is difficult to work our way out. On some roads we often must wait till the rut ends in order to escape. But on the road of life we must make the rut end and begin living the way God instructs us. With the help of God and diligence on our part, this can be done.

Sometimes the only way to travel down some roads is to get in a good rut and stay in it till we get to the end of the road. Christ has left us with a path to follow, and we must stay in it to arrive at our destination safe and secure (1 Peter 2:21). Sometimes that path may seem to be heading in a direction we do not want to travel. It will lead us over high mountains and through deep valleys, but if we remain in the path, there will be a great reward awaiting us at the end of our journey.

We all get in a rut from time to time. We need to be sure that the rut we are in will lead us to the desired destination. What a shame it would be to follow a path all our life, only to arrive at the wrong destination. God’s path is clearly marked in His written word, the Bible. Let us therefore diligently follow that path all the days of our life and enjoy the reward at the conclusion of our journey.

A.W.Tozer on John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word… (a must read!)

John 1:1

The Word Became Flesh

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

An intelligent plain man, untaught in the truths of Christianity, coming upon this text, would likely conclude that John meant to teach that it is the nature of God to speak, to communicate His thoughts to others. And he would be right. A word is a medium by which thoughts are expressed, and the application of the term to the Eternal Son leads us to believe that self-expression is inherent in the Godhead, that God is forever seeking to speak Himself out to His creation. The whole Bible supports the idea. God is speaking. Not God spoke, but God is speaking. He is by His nature continuously articulate. He fills the world with His speaking Voice.

One of the great realities with which we have to deal is the Voice of God in His world. The briefest and only satisfying cosmogony is this: “He spake and it was done.” The why of natural law is the living Voice of God immanent in His creation. And this word of God which brought all worlds into being cannot be understood to mean the Bible, for it is not a written or printed word at all, but the expression of the will of God spoken into the structure of all things. This word of God is the breath of God filling the world with living potentiality. The Voice of God is the most powerful force in nature, indeed the only force in nature, for all energy is here only because the power-filled Word is being spoken.

The Bible is the written word of God, and because it is written it is confined and limited by the necessities of ink and paper and leather. The Voice of God, however, is alive and free as the sovereign God is free. “The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” The life is in the speaking words. God’s word in the Bible can have power only because it corresponds to God’s word in the universe. It is the present Voice which makes the written Word all-powerful. Otherwise it would lie locked in slumber within the covers of a book.

We take a low and primitive view of things when we conceive of God at the creation coming into physical contact with things, shaping and fitting and building like a carpenter. The Bible teaches otherwise: “By the word of the Lord were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. . . . For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast.” “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God.” Again we must remember that God is referring here not to His written Word, but to His speaking Voice. His world-filling Voice is meant, that Voice which antedates the Bible by uncounted centuries, that Voice which has not been silent since the dawn of creation, but is sounding still throughout the full far reaches of the universe.

The Word of God is quick and powerful. In the beginning He spoke to nothing, and it became something. Chaos heard it and became order; darkness heard it and became light. “And God said — and it was so.” These twin phrases, as cause and effect, occur throughout the Genesis story of the creation. The said accounts for the so. The so is the said put into the Continuous present.

That God is here and that He is speaking — these truths are back of all other Bible truths; without them there could be no revelation at all. God did not write a book and send it by messenger to be read at a distance by unaided minds. He spoke a Book and lives in His spoken words, constantly speaking His words and causing the power of them to persist across the years. God breathed on clay and it became a man; He breathes on men and they become clay. “Return ye children of men,” was the word spoken at the Fall by which God decreed the death of every man, and no added word has He needed to speak. The sad procession of mankind across the face of the earth from birth to the grave is proof that His original Word was enough.

We have not given sufficient attention to that deep utterance in the Book of John, “That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.” Shift the punctuation around as we will and the truth is still there: the Word of God affects the hearts of all men as light in the soul. In the hearts of all men the light shines, the Word sounds, and there is no escaping them. Something like this would of necessity be so if God is alive and in His world. And John says that it is so. Even those persons who have never heard of the Bible have still been preached to with sufficient clarity to remove every excuse from their hearts forever. “Which show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing Witness, and their thoughts the mean while either accusing or else excusing one another.” “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.”

This universal Voice of God was by the ancient Hebrews often called Wisdom, and was said to be everywhere sounding and searching throughout the earth, seeking some response from the Sons of men. The eighth chapter of the Book of Proverbs begins, “Doth not wisdom cry? and understanding put forth her voice?” The writer then pictures wisdom as a beautiful woman standing “in the top of the high places, by the way in the places of the paths.” She sounds her voice from every quarter so that no one may miss hearing it. “Unto you, O men, I call; and my voice is to the sons of men.” Then she pleads for the simple and the foolish to give ear to her words. It is spiritual response for which this Wisdom of God is pleading, a response which she has always sought and is but rarely able to secure. The tragedy is that our eternal welfare depends upon our hearing, and we have trained our ears not to hear.

This universal Voice has ever sounded, and it has often troubled men even when they did not understand the source of their fears. Could it be that this Voice distilling like a living mist upon the hearts of men has been the undiscovered cause of the troubled conscience and the longing for immortality confessed by millions since the dawn of recorded history? We need not fear to face up to this. The speaking Voice is a fact. How men have reacted to it is for any observer to note.

When God spoke out of heaven to our Lord, self-centered men who heard it explained it by natural causes: they said, “It thundered.” This habit of explaining the Voice by appeals to natural law is at the very root of modern science. In the living breathing cosmos there is a mysterious Something, too wonderful, too awful for any mind to understand. The believing man does not claim to understand. He falls to his knees and whispers, “God.” The man of earth kneels also, but not to worship. He kneels to examine, to search, to find the cause and the how of things. Just now we happen to be living in a secular age. Our thought habits are those of the scientist, not those of the worshipper. We are more likely to explain than to adore. “It thundered,” we exclaim, and go our earthly way. But still the Voice sounds and searches. The order and life of the world depend upon that Voice, but men are mostly too busy or too stubborn to give attention.

Every one of us has had experiences which we have not been able to explain: a sudden sense of loneliness, or a feeling of wonder or awe in the face of the universal vastness. Or we have had a fleeting visitation of light like an illumination from some other sun, giving us in a quick flash an assurance that we are from another world, that our origins are divine. What we saw there, or felt, or heard, may have been contrary to all that we had been taught in the schools and at wide variance with all our former beliefs and opinions. We were forced to suspend our acquired doubts while, for a moment, the clouds were rolled back and we saw and heard for ourselves. Explain such things as we will, I think we have not been fair to the facts until we allow at least the possibility that such experiences may arise from the Presence of God in the world and His persistent effort to communicate with mankind. Let us not dismiss such a hypothesis too flippantly.

It is my own belief (and here I shall not feel bad if no one follows me) that every good and beautiful thing which man has produced in the world has been the result of his faulty and sin-blocked response to the creative Voice sounding over the earth. The moral philosophers who dreamed their high dreams of virtue, the religious thinkers who speculated about God and immortality, the poets and artists who created out of common stuff pure and lasting beauty: how can we explain them? It is not enough to say simply, “It was genius.” What then is genius? Could it be that a genius is a man haunted by the speaking Voice, laboring and striving like one possessed to achieve ends which he only vaguely understands? That the great man may have missed God in his labors, that he may even have spoken or written against God does not destroy the idea I am advancing. God’s redemptive revelation in the Holy Scriptures is necessary to saving faith and peace with God. Faith in a risen Saviour is necessary if the vague stirrings toward immortality are to bring us to restful and satisfying communion with God. To me this is a plausible explanation of all that is best out of Christ. But you can be a good Christian and not accept my thesis.

The Voice of God is a friendly Voice. No one need fear to listen to it unless he has already made up his mind to resist it. The blood of Jesus has covered not only the human race but all creation as well. “And having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.” We may safely preach a friendly Heaven. The heavens as well as the earth are filled with the good will of Him that dwelt in the bush. The perfect blood of atonement secures this forever.

Whoever will listen will hear the speaking Heaven. This is definitely not the hour when men take kindly to an exhortation to listen, for listening is not today a part of popular religion. We are at the opposite end of the pole from there. Religion has accepted the monstrous heresy that noise, size, activity and bluster make a man dear to God. But we may take heart. To a people caught in the tempest of the last great conflict God says, “Be still, and know that I am God,” and still He says it, as if He means to tell us that our strength and safety lie not in noise but in silence.

It is important that we get still to wait on God. And it is best that we get alone, preferably with our Bible outspread before us. Then if we will we may draw near to God and begin to hear Him speak to us in our hearts. I think for the average person the progression will be something like this: First a sound as of a Presence walking in the garden. Then a voice, more intelligible, but still far from clear. Then the happy moment when the Spirit begins to illuminate the Scriptures, and that which had been only a sound, or at best a voice, now becomes an intelligible word, warm and intimate and clear as the word of a dear friend. Then will come life and light, and best of all, ability to see and rest in and embrace Jesus Christ as Saviour and Lord and All.

The Bible will never be a living Book to us until we are convinced that God is articulate in His universe. To jump from a dead, impersonal world to a dogmatic Bible is too much for most people. They may admit that they should accept the Bible as the Word of God, and they may try to think of it as such, but they find it impossible to believe that the words there on the page are actually for them. A man may say, “These words are addressed to me,” and yet in his heart not feel and know that they are. He is the victim of a divided psychology. He tries to think of God as mute everywhere else and vocal only in a book.

I believe that much of our religious unbelief is due to a wrong conception of and a wrong feeling for the Scriptures of Truth. A silent God suddenly began to speak in a book and when the book was finished lapsed back into silence again forever. Now we read the book as the record of what God said when He was for a brief time in a speaking mood. With notions like that in our heads how can we believe? The facts are that God is not silent, has never been silent. It is the nature of God to speak. The second Person of the Holy Trinity is called the Word. The Bible is the inevitable outcome of God’s continuous speech. It is the infallible declaration of His mind for us put into our familiar human words.

I think a new world will arise out of the religious mists when we approach our Bible with the idea that it is not only a book which was once spoken, but a book which is now speaking. The prophets habitually said, “Thus saith the Lord.” They meant their hearers to understand that God’s speaking is in the continuous present. We may use the past tense properly to indicate that at a certain time a certain word of God was spoken, but a word of God once spoken continues to be spoken, as a child once born continues to be alive, or a world once created continues to exist. And those are but imperfect illustrations, for children die and worlds burn out, but the Word of our God endureth forever.

If you would follow on to know the Lord, come at once to the open Bible expecting it to speak to you. Do not come with the notion that it is a thing which you may push around at your convenience. It is more than a thing; it is a voice, a word, the very Word of the living God.

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