The old saints used to speak of reading the scriptures on their knees…Not so much a physical posture but a spiritual one.
How we need that attitude today.
This holy Book is the written word of God graciously given to men for their temporal and eternal good.
It’s a spiritual book energised by the power of the Almighty. He can open it or close it as He determines. Those who draw near to Holy Writ with light-hearted irreverence will never be able to grasp the infinite wisdom of God despite how wise they may think they are. The foolishly frivolous approach to God’s sacred truths only increases the judgement on such as would handle this Book with such carnal fearlessness. Those who approach with a joyful trembling have all the treasures of the Divine wisdom, which has been sanctioned for men, revealed.
The Bible is primarily a Book designed with divine genius to draw worship from the heart of God’s creatures.
It is possible to read it as a textbook. But that falls far short of its ultimate aim.
Historians may well discover interesting facts of ancient history but its future history is what inspires the worshipper.
It’s not primarily a Book that shows us ‘what’ but vastly more crucial it reveals ‘Who’.
The facts are to draw us to the Father.
The accounts of the ways of men are to highlight the ways of God.
The scientific, historical and doctrinal realities of the written word point to the Creator of them all.
I and all God’s twice born children love this Book.
Yet some, by subtle and dangerous deception, go beyond what is written and make the written revelation of Yahweh the focus of their worship rather than the signpost that points us to Who we worship.
It is possible to read and study these Holy Words and yet miss the One they speak of.
Of course the Pharisees are only the best known of those who have done so.
Jesus’ rebuke that they study the writings and yet refuse to come to the One who is written about is still pertinent today.
Men who argue over their supposed views of doctrinal perfection and miss the One that doctrine elevates are falling short of God’s intent. Doctrine is important, hugely so, but doctrine without the Spirit of God illuminating and enlivening is just dead words with no reality behind them.
Consider that even the ancient adversarial serpent known as satan knows the word of God…in a fashion. He will even use out of context verses to attempt to derail God’s children. He even attempted that with the Only Begotten.
But yet he doesn’t know the word. The Holy Spirit has not shone divine light on the word for him and He does not do so for others also.
Many an atheist is more acquainted with the scriptures than some believers, and yet they come to the Book for ammunition not illumination.
Many a cultist knows the words but they come for their heresies verification and not God-birthed revelation.
And many in the church hold up their doctrinal purity as a weapon against those who only know the reality of sins forgiven and eternal life granted.
When a mans understanding of scripture is purely academic, he denies the scripture itself which is clearly portrayed by Christ as Spirit and life. A mans mind under the guidance of the Spirit of God takes him on a wonder-filled and exhilarating journey. A mind that is simply impressed with its own wisdom will inevitably lead to a spiritual dead-end.
The examples of this are far too many to list.
The denial of the gifts of the Holy Spirit for the church today.
The refusal to believe in the guidance of the Spirit for God’s adopted children.
The doctrinal fortresses that people build refusing entry to other valid scriptural views.
The exaltation of the Book of wonders while ignoring the wonders of which it speaks.
The ancient scriptures are not written primarily for scholars although there is much to be discovered.
They are not ordained to provide facts to entertain the bored.
The saying that a preacher’s place is in the study and not in the office is partially true. More importantly every believers place is in the secret place of adoration.
Men have done and will continue to use the word of God to defend their views.
Some have gone to God’s book to promote oppression of those created in His image.
Many have done and still do contort scripture to satisfy their lust for power or wealth.
Some have twisted the word of God to instigate rebellion against the God of the word.
To them it remains a closed Book. Mere words on a page. The glories of the God of glory remain hidden, no matter what creed they confess.
But to those who come to the Holy book with humble simplicity of heart, with adoration for the One who would entrust frail men with such a treasure, the Book is opened. Light radiates from its pages, illuminating formerly darkened hearts, releasing insight to reverently inquiring minds and bringing health to spirits, bodies, families and nations.
It’s a Book without peer, writings with no historical comparison, scribed truths that remain relevant for all eternity… but it is to be read on our knees.