devotions

We Read Scripture to Get to Know the Author.

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Don’t limit your reading of Scripture to an intellectual exercise! 
It can be a dynamic exchange of life with your Father.

When we pick up our Bible, we hold in our hands a very precious commodity. The word 'Bible' itself is simply a translation from the Greek 'biblios', literally 'book'. The Book! The Book of all books to be sure. Inspired by God, men throughout history wrote down truths that God wanted us to know. Effectively, the Bible is the mind of God communicated to the mind of man.

The Bible reveals God to us through the Person and Work of Jesus. By observing Jesus in Scripture, we learn that God is our Father Who has adopted us into His forever family. I prefer to call the Bible “Father’s Word” because not only is it the mind of God to the mind of man, it is also the heart of God to the heart of man.

The Bible is written to each of us as if we were the only one on the planet. When you read it, imagine He's pulled you up onto his lap, and he's telling you the important things you desperately need to know... things about Himself, about ourselves, and the world we live in.

 In Philippians 3, Paul says he had learned that all the other wonderful things in this world are rubbish compared to knowing Him. I believe with all my heart that statement gives an important clue how we are to read Scripture. We are to read this book differently than we read other books. When we read the Bible, we read it to get to know the author.

Let me state it plainly. We have been trained to read books to learn what is in the book, but that is not how we are to read the Bible. Think back to when you were in school. You read a chapter in the history textbook - why? To learn what was in the book in order to score a good grade on the text. And after the test, you promptly forgot what you read as you plunged into reading the next chapter so you could take another test. And so it was for the Math book and the Science book and the Sociology book. 

Did you ever read the Math, Science, or Sociology book to get to know the author? Absolutely not! That was not the stated goal. The stated goal was to read the book to know what was in the book.

Put simply, we should be having a conversation with Father as we read, building and enjoying the relationship we share. As you read the Bible, I recommend you pray, thanking Father for what you've read and asking Him to explain it so you can understand it better. Though knowledge is important - Hosea says without it we are destroyed - the relationship we gain from that knowledge is far more important. God died, so that we could have a relationship with Him.

Don’t limit your reading of Scripture to an intellectual exercise! 
It can be a dynamic exchange of life with your Father.

I hope this insight inspires you to open the Bible more often and enjoy a wonderful conversation with the One Who loves you so much.

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Where We Should Fix Our Eyes

In the many years that I have studied the Bible, I have loved reading the letters of Paul because he ministers to my mind. He provides me with truth.

In the many years that I have studied the Bible, I have loved reading the letters of Paul because he ministers to my mind. He provides me with truth.

Did you know that the only New Testament writer that uses the term “anti-Christ” is the Apostle John? As I have meditated on that, I have come to the conclusion that is as it should be. John was the one known as the beloved Apostle. John was the one who laid his head on Jesus' breast at the Last Supper. John was the only one at the cross. John was the one Jesus entrusted his earthly mother too when he was about to die.

In the many years that I have studied the Bible, I have loved reading the letters of Paul because he ministers to my mind. He provides me with truth. But I have loved reading the letters of John because he ministers to my heart. So I find it fitting that the one who was so in love with Jesus, should be the one who recognizes that which is not of Jesus, that which is “against” Jesus, which is what the word “anti” means. 

I believe this speaks volumes to where we should fix our eyes. Ours is not to be concerned with identifying or searching out what is wrong, but rather to so be devoted to Jesus that anything contrary to Him will be readily identifiable. The one whom Jesus loved, he is the one who saw that which was not of Jesus. Let it be so with us, may we see Jesus so intensely, that all that is anti-Jesus will be readily identifiable in our hearts and minds.

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Don't Drive Too Quickly

If you race through the book of Philippians, you will see this wonderful truth in c. 4:19 that our God will supply all our need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus

If you race through the book of Philippians, you will see this wonderful truth in c. 4:19 that our God will supply all our need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus

It is a good thing to read through the Bible. It is a better thing to work slowly through the Bible. If I could illustrate it. You could drive the Yellowstone Park and be amazed. But if you hiked through Yellowstone you would be overwhelmed. When you race through the park you miss so much, but when you journey slowly you have the potential to discover so much more. 

If you race through the book of Philippians, you will see this wonderful truth in c. 4:19 that our God will supply all our need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. But you might not “see” how INCREDIBLY  WONDERFUL this declaration really is! Do not drive your car through this verse, walk very slowly through it with me.

Did you see it?

He said that He would meet our needs “according to His riches” – OH MY GOODNESS! The awe and wonder of his choice of words in that statement is overwhelming! 

Note that he did NOT say that God is going to provide for us “out of” His riches. As an illustration, if a millionaire decided to give you a gift “out of” his riches, he could give you a dollar, or even just a nickel and that would be giving “out of” his riches. That, however, is NOT what Paul said. He said God gives us “according to” His riches. So if a millionaire gave a gift to us “according to” His riches, he would be giving us a million dollars.

Do you see the difference?

What an incredible statement of how much the Father wants to do on our behalf as we journey through this world with our faith in Him. He wants to provide for us “according to” the riches of His glory in Christ Jesus. He wants to give us Himself. Oh the wonder of all that He longs to be to us, but we could have missed the wonder if we drove too quickly through this verse. Never read the Bible casually my friend, read it intently and stand in awe of the God Who loves and cares for you so very much that He would provide for you “according to” all that He Himself is. 

WOW!

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Father's Word

My Father wants to talk to me, to guide me, to share His   heart   with   me, Father to son, God to man, Lover to beloved.

My Father wants to talk to me, to guide me, to share His heart with me, Father to son, God to man, Lover to beloved.

Some call it the "Bible". The word is simply a transliteration of the Greek word "biblos," which means book. Others call it the "Scriptures," a word that means sacred writings. I prefer to call it "Father's Word". I like that.

My Father wants to talk to me, to guide me, to share His heart with me,
Father to son, God to man, Lover to beloved. 
Father's Word.

The supreme purpose behind Father's word to me is to lead me to an intimate dependence and experience with "His Word" the Lord Jesus Christ, by and through the presence of the Spirit of Christ, the Holy Spirit dwelling in me.

I love Father's word for leading me to the Living Word - Jesus. I fear though, that there are some these days who in their finding the "Living Word - Jesus", are neglecting Father's word - the Bible - that was written for us, to us, to lead us to the "Living Word - Jesus"

I fear sometimes that we become so smart, that we fail to remain teachable and humble and students of Father's word so we can know the Living Word - Jesus.

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