The Word of God

John 1:1 “ In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. ”

2 Timothy 3:16-17 “ All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. ”

Such is the claim of the Bible: this book, printed in more than half a billion copies since the invention of printing, states that its content deserves the greatest attention because its author is none other than God Himself. Could such a statement be believable?

II Peter 1:19-21 “ And so we have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts. But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one's own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God. ”

Forty authors participated in the writing of the 66 books of the Bible, a work which spans 1500 years. Most of these authors, whom lived in different times and places, never became acquainted; nevertheless, this collection of 66 books presents a remarkable unity. Such harmony reveals the presence of a common inspiration: God.

I Thessalonians 2:10-13 “ You are witnesses, and so is God, how devoutly and uprightly and blamelessly we behaved toward you believers; just as you know how we were exhorting and encouraging and imploring each one of you as a father would his own children, so that you may walk in a manner worthy of the God who calls you into His own kingdom and glory. And for this reason we also constantly thank God that when you received from us the word of God's message, you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe.

The apostle Paul, writing to the people of Thessalonica, strongly confirms the divine inspiration of the Scriptures. The Bible is not simply a book speaking to us about God; it is God speaking to us through this book! It is like a recorder making us hear the voice of God.

Psalm 119:160 “ All your words are true; all your righteous laws are eternal. ” Jesus Christ Himself asserted the divine inspiration of the Scriptures. He attributed superhuman authority to them, using them to refute error and to repel the Tempter.

« It is written » said Jesus, quoting from the Scriptures. Christ’s example constitutes for us an invaluable guarantee of the divine inspiration of the Bible.

I Peter 1:22-25 “ Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. For, ‘All men are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord stands forever.’ And this is the word that was preached to you.

John 10:31-36 “ Again the Jews picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus said to them, I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which of these do you stone me? We are not stoning you for any of these, replied the Jews, but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God. Jesus answered them, is it not written in your Law, I have said you are gods? If he called them gods, to whom the word of God came-- and the Scripture cannot be broken-- what about the one whom the Father set apart as his very own and sent into the world? Why then do you accuse me of blasphemy because I said, I am God's Son? ”

Despite centuries of attacks, tribulations, and attempted destruction, the Bible remains unshakeable, unchanged, as several archaeological discoveries reveal. God has personally made sure that the message of the Bible was protected throughout the ages.

Romans 1:16-17 “ I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: The righteous will live by faith. ”

The transforming power of the Bible’s message, hidden but still effective, testifies to the Scriptures’ divine inspiration. We encourage you to experience this power through these lessons: every sincere heart will feel the indisputable influence coming from the study of this Book.

Jeremiah 23:25-29 “ I have heard what the prophets say who prophesy lies in my name. They say, 'I had a dream! I had a dream!' How long will this continue in the hearts of these lying prophets, who prophesy the delusions of their own minds? They think the dreams they tell one another will make my people forget my name, just as their fathers forgot my name through Baal worship. Let the prophet who has a dream tell his dream, but let the one who has my word speak it faithfully. For what has straw to do with grain? declares the LORD. Is not my word like fire, declares the LORD, and like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces? ”

Hebrews 4:9-12 “ There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God's rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience. For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. ”

Our next lessons will clearly demonstrate those Scriptural properties.

How does the word manifest itself in our lives?

A. Psalm 119:105 “ Your word is a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path. ” To adopt the Bible as our guide on the path of life is the most important decision that we can make in the course of our lifetime. We will see that life is strewn with pitfalls, but also that the Scriptures can teach us how to bypass many of those pitfalls, increasing our peace and happiness.

B. Romans 10:17 “… faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ. ”

Faith doesn’t just appear out of nowhere; its source is in the hearing of the Word of Christ.

C. John 17:17-19 “ Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world. For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified. ”

The Word, when read and studied daily, is the sinner’s sanctifying agent. It cleans our minds of the world’s impurities.

II Peter 1:16-21 “ We did not follow cleverly invented stories when we told you about the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty. For he received honor and glory from God the Father when the voice came to him from the Majestic Glory, saying, this is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. We ourselves heard this voice that came from heaven when we were with him on the sacred mountain. And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet's own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. ”

Note how the apostle Peter highly recommends the reliability of Scripture as the only guide we can trust.

Ephesians 6:11,17 “ Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. (...) Take (...) the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. ”

The apostle Paul, describing the armor we need to fight the devil, lists several defensive weapons: the shield of faith, the breastplate of righteousness, the helmet of salvation, etc. He ends the list with the only offensive weapon: the sword, which is the Word of God. Our fighting ability will be directly affected by how often we « train » with our sword.

Jeremiah 6:10 “ To whom shall I speak and give warning, That they may hear? Behold, their ears are closed, and they cannot listen. Behold, the word of the LORD has become a reproach to them; they have no delight in it. ”

Unfortunately, not everyone enjoys studying God’s word. Some think that the Bible is a boring book, while others believe that no one can understand it, that it is interpreted without rhyme or reason.

I Corinthians 2:12-16 “ We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man's judgment: ‘For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?’ But we have the mind of Christ. ”

First of all, our frame of mind can make all the difference. Do we really wish to deepen our knowledge of the Scriptures, or do we approach the Bible with a spirit of opposition or hostility?

Proverbs 28:5 “ Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the Lord understand all things. ”

Our understanding of God's message depends partly on the sincerity of our heart in our search for truth. As a famous proverb says, “ there is none so deaf as he who will not hear. ” Nothing will be understood by those who don’t wish to understand.

Second essential point: we must recognize that we need God’s help to understand the message contained in His book. There is no one better than the author of a book to explain its content! If we leave God out, and try to understand the Bible on our own, our human efforts will surely fail us.

Psalm 119:18 “ Open You my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of Your law. ”

Luke 24:39-49 “ Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have. When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet. And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, Do you have anything here to eat? They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate it in their presence. He said to them, This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms. Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. He told them, this is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high. ”

Now we can better understand the importance of beginning and ending each lesson with a prayer. It is essential to rely on God’s Spirit who will enlighten us while we go through the pages of the Bible.

Acts 17:11 “ [The Jews from Berea] were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether those things were so. ”

God invites us to adopt His Word as our supreme rule of faith, our criterion of truth, our infallible standard. Don’t trust either our word or any other individual’s. We must always verify for ourselves whether the teachings presented to us are in accordance with the Scriptures.

Romans 15:4 “ For whatever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope. ”

Far from being a boring book, the Bible can give real meaning to our life here on earth. The answers it gives to fundamental questions bring hope back to its students. We will soon discover why the friends of the Bible are overflowing with hope in a world which sinks into despair.

Matthew 4:4 “ [Jesus] answered and said, ‘It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’”

May God guide us while we study His Word.
"Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near" Matthew 4:17