Thursday, May 9, 2024

Orange Moon Thursday, May 9, 2024 "Our Most Well Worn Volume"

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…

(A repeat from 2009)

"Our Most Well Worn Volume"

   "As long as we own a Bible and are free to read it, it must occupy among all other books our primary and most frequent attention.  Nobody will ever express God's truth as well as did the prophets and apostles, whose words the Holy Spirit perfectly inspired."

     Imagine a scenario in which, God forbid, all Christian books are banned.  We are left with only a Bible that must keep hidden, and brought out to read only in secrecy (we do well in this moment to pray for brothers and sisters in the world who actually live under such tyranny).

     Would our walk with God suffer? The answer to this question is interesting.  Certainly, the loss of all material other than Scripture would challenge us because God has ordained teachers to help inform and illuminate His trusting children (Ephesians 4:11). He gifts certain people to keenly understand, interpret, and communicate the truths of the Bible, whereby God blesses the body of Christ through those with such calling.  "Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?" (I Corinthians 3:5).

    On the other hand, being left with only a Bible could also serve as blessing.  Many believers far more emphasize Christian literature than Scripture.   Much Biblical illiteracy results, and often results in babes who can spiritually feed only on the pre-digested thoughts of others.  Again, good teachers serve as God's purposed gift to us. However, if their words or writings supersede the actual Word of God, the gift becomes a diversion from the heart of reality.  "Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God" (Romans 10:17).

    The God-led teacher hopes that his words lead readers to THE Word. He seeks to focus all attention on the Lord Jesus Christ and the Scriptures that serve as His lamp: "Search the Scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of Me" (John 5:39). The truly called teacher encourages feasting upon Scripture, and viewing all other spiritual literature as escorts to the Scriptural table, preparing hearts and minds to partake of the living Word, Christ, as revealed in the written Word, the Bible. He loves nothing more than the image of a reader laying aside his book in order to sink his heart into God's book.  Moreover, he fears any possibility of his words distracting others from the only One he believes to be worthy of all honor and attention.  The God-ordained teacher looks at his own hands, sees them unmarked by the prints of nails, and mourns if he suspects an ounce of his readers' devotion  points in his direction.  "Not unto us, o Lord, not unto us, but unto Thy name give glory, for Thy mercy and Thy truth's sake!" (Psalm 115:1).

     Most who read this live in nations and cultures where Christian literature is freely allowed. Let us give thanks, and avail ourselves of the gift. However, as long as we own a Bible and are free to read it, it must occupy our primary attention.  Nobody will ever express God's truth as well as did the prophets and apostles, whose words the Holy Spirit perfectly inspired.  Moreover, the Author comes with His Book, as the saying goes, teaching the humble, trusting seeker by igniting ink and paper with spirit and truth.  The Bible's existence also rests upon the blood of the prophets, the apostles, countless saints through the generations, and most of all, the Lord Jesus Himself.  We honor them and glorify Him when we make the Scriptures our most well worn volume.  Yes, the truth is that if we had only the Word of God to read and to study, "the unsearchable riches of Christ" would be far more than enough to fill us with abundant spiritual overflow (Ephesians 3:8).

"Thy Word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of my heart."
(Jeremiah 15:16)
"Every Word of God is pure."
(Proverbs 30:5)

Weekly Memory Verse
   Walk in the Spirit and ye shall not fulfill the lusts of the flesh." 
(Galatians 5:16)


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