The books all men need to be concerned with … yes, there’s more than one but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
You may have noticed in the post what the books you read reveal … on Saturday that the Bible was conspicuously absent from my list of books read in 2013. Of course that’s because I didn’t finish it in 2013 not because I didn’t read it …
And while I could possibly finish the work of reading the Bible in a year … when does the Bible truly finish doing the work of God IN and through me?
Let’s see … how could we begin our Bible study? Well, if you were a king of Israel, God commanded that you shall write for yourself a personal copy on a scroll … I’ll let you read his instructions yourself …
Now it shall come about when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, he shall write for himself a copy of this law on a scroll in the presence of the Levitical priests. It shall be with him and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the LORD his God, by carefully observing all the words of this law and these statutes, that his heart may not be lifted up above his countrymen and that he may not turn aside from the commandment, to the right or the left, so that he and his sons may continue long in his kingdom in the midst of Israel. Deuteronomy 17:18-20 (NASB)
Did you notice the king had to make his copy in the presence of the Levitical priests? Remember that … and look at what God promised.
“Behold, days are coming,” declares the LORD, “when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah, not like the covenant which I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband to them,” declares the LORD. “But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the LORD, “I will put My law within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares the LORD, “for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.” Jeremiah 31:31-34 (NASB)
Sounds like a neat trick … but how will it work? No doubt the Levitical priests were with the king as he made his copy so they could teach him … who is going to teach us the Scripture?
All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16 (NASB)
Inspired by God … through the Holy Spirit (see 2 Peter 1:21)
Have you ever been reading Scripture you have read many times before only to suddenly see and understand something you have never seen or understood before? Consider …
For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12 (NASB)
A two-edged sword … but who is wielding it? The Holy Spirit!
And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Ephesians 6:17 (NASB)
OK, the word of God is inspired by God through the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit wields the word of God as a sword in shaping and transforming us. And unlike the king who had the Levitical priest to teach him, we have the Holy Spirit to teach us (see 1 John 2:27) … the fulfillment of what God promised in Jeremiah 31 above.
But … but … this does not mean we are without responsibility … we must spend time in the word of God … the words of Christ … those words must be committed to heard … they must abide IN us. We must be sensitive not only to the conviction and leading of the Holy Spirit but also listen and learn from the teaching of the Holy Spirit.
Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Colossians 3:16 (NASB)
If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. John 15:7 (NASB)
That pretty much wraps up this post on the Bible …
Oh yes … I opened with the teaser that there was more than one book that men need to be concerned with … obviously the first one is the Bible but there is a second book as well …
‘He who overcomes will thus be clothed in white garments; and I will not erase his name from the book of life, and I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’ Revelation 3:5-6 (NASB)
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. Ephesians 1:3-4 (NASB) – see the connection to the book of life in Revelation 17:8
The books all men need to be concerned with …