How did American Christendom survive and thrive in the 18th, 19th, and parts of the 20th Centuries without Christian bookstores such as LifeWay and Family Christian? Thank goodness for these outlets because obviously the American Church is so much stronger for it.
For those of you who do not know me as well, that was a little bit of sarcasm. This is not an attack on Christian bookstore; they’ve received plenty of my money. But is it possible that we have too much information? Have we made the Bible just part of our discipleship training and not the focus?
I think so yes. Why is that?
Well Bro Dave I’ve read the Bible through so many times that now I like to concentrate on exegetical and expositional works about the Bible, to give me a deeper understanding.
Yeah, I did too once and one thing I learned getting a bachelors degree in biblical studies and a masters in theological studies is that no matter what I read, write, or learn, I always end up back to the Bible.
And beloved…that is a good thing.
So much of what we are looking for in many of these supplementary resources can be found in God’s Word. If we will read and heed His precepts then we will find “Your Best Life Now” and “Become A Better You” instead of having our heads filled with mush from some false teacher.
Quick Bible quiz; outside of Jesus who was the wisest man in the Bible? Yep, King Solomon. Here’s what he had to say about God’s word:
“He who heeds the word wisely will find good, and whoever trusts in the LORD, happy is he.” (Proverbs 16:20)
Any questions? Have a good day!
Seriously, Solomon took just eighteen words to explain what you need a whole bookstore to amass all the books written on finding wisdom and living a happy life. Remember yesterday’s word from Proverbs?
“He who despises the word will be destroyed, but he who fears the commandment will be rewarded.” (Proverbs 13:13)
Solomon needed only seventeen words to come up with that nugget of wisdom and truth.
Plain and simple we are spending too much time reading whatever and not enough time reading the Bible, I first and foremost am guilty.
We run around looking for the keys to life and just in the Books of Psalms and Proverbs we have already seen more than we’ve probably seen in months if not years. It is because we are trusting in the wrong things; we trust in the things of this world, including learned men who are blessed with biblical knowledge and wisdom. And almost to a man and woman they will tell you to pick up your Bibles and read!
Solomon was wise but he had a pretty smart daddy too who said this about trusting God and not man:
“Blessed is that man who makes the LORD his trust, and does not respect the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.” (Psalm 40:4)
In whom do you trust and hope? Is it you? Is it him or her? Is it your radio or television show on Christian broadcasting? Is it the Lord?
“Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, and whose hope is the LORD.” (Jeremiah 17:7)
Beloved I am feeling overly burdened for yours and my spiritual health because we are not imbibing in God’s Holy Word nearly enough. Why do I settle for the stale crackers and lukewarm water of this world when I can have the Bread of Life and Living Water just by spending time in the Word of Life? I’m talking about Jesus and His Word; remember how John started out his gospel?
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.” (John 1:1-5)
Let me challenge you, as I was challenged, with this long quote from the 19 Century Scottish missionary to South Africa Robert Moffat, who perfectly encapsulates all that I am struggling to get across. May this spark a holy fire in our hearts and ravishing hunger for God’s Word:
“It was only yesterday, after laying down the Bible, that I wondered what kind of mind I would have had if I had not the Book of God, the Book containing the astounding idea of ‘from everlasting to everlasting,’ the development of all that is worth knowing…One would think, that as I have critically and, I think, devoutly read and examined every verse, every word in the Bible, some a score of times over, I should not require to open the pages of that unspeakable blessed Book. Alas, for the human memory! I read the Bible today with the same feeling I ever did, like the hungry when seeking food, the thirsty when seeking drink, the bewildered when seeking counsel and the mourner when seeking comfort. Don’t you believe all this? For alas, I read it sometimes as a formal thing, though my heart condemns me afterwards…I am yet astonished at my own ignorance of the Bible!”
Me too Brother Moffat…me too.
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Copyright © 2009 David Jeffers