Thursday, June 19, 2008

Bible Come Alive

Yesterday I received this email from Karen Lucci. I had quoted her on the meaning of “good” according to Scripture. She replied,

“I perceive that the art of thriving is a continual process. Seasons and conditions continue to change, but our focus must be on our Savior who leads us through. If I remember correctly the root word for "lead" in the 23rd Psalm means to "twinkle". There always is a twinkling light to show the way, no matter how dark the territory. Blessings, Karen”

For many years I drudged through Bible study as a necessary duty. Now that I have a meaningful relationship in Christ I fight for time to dive into Bible study. I cannot explain this change clearly. But I will share with you the wise words of some Bible scholars expounding on the work of Holy Spirit in Bible understanding.

J.L. Packer says….
The Spirit is not given to make Bible study needless, but to make it effective. But without the Spirit’s help there can be no grasp of the message of Scripture, no conviction of the truth of Scripture, and no faith in the God of Scripture. Without the Spirit, nothing is possible but spiritual blindness and unbelief.

It follows that the Christian must approach the study of Scripture in humble dependence on the Holy Spirit, sure that he can learn from it nothing of spiritual significance unless he is taught of God. Confidence in one’s own powers of discernment is an effective barrier to spiritual understanding. The self-confidence of nineteenth-century critical scholarship was reflected in its slogan that the Bible must be read like any other book; but the Bible is more than a merely human book, and understanding it involves more than appreciating its merely human characteristics. God’s book does not yield up its secrets to those who will not be taught of the Spirit. Our God-given textbook is a closed book till our God-given Teacher opens it to us.

Full message available here: J.L. Packer

Betty Miller wrote…..
Generally, revelation on difficult issues will come to us little by little, as we continue to seek the Lord and have an open heart. As we read more of His word, we gain a bigger picture of His heart and purposes. Our "spiritual vocabulary" is increased. As our "vocabulary" is expanded, we find that it becomes increasingly easier to understand God's Word. As you regularly apply the following principles to your Bible study, you will find that knowledge and wisdom will come easily to you. The Holy Spirit wants to share the treasures of God's Word with those who esteem Him. However, these treasures will never be grasped by one who is determined to fly through the Bible in a superficial manner. God hides His greatest treasures from those who would misuse them, or who are not willing to seek Him for them. He does this both to protect His Word, and to protect the shallow seeker from receiving truth they are not ready to act upon.

The most important principle to remember in studying God's Word is that it can only be understood with the help of the Holy Spirit. Those who approach the Bible without the Holy Spirit to teach them, may gain some insight into their lives, but will receive no life-changing revelation. There are cultists and atheists who know the Bible better than many Christians. Why are some able to read of God's Word, and yet bear no fruit in their lives? The answer is simple: Because, they are not open to the Holy Spirit's guidance as they read the Word.

Therefore, it is absolutely crucial that we acknowledge the presence of the Holy Spirit and ask Him to lead us into all truth and to make the mysteries of God's Word known to our spirit.
"A scorner seeketh wisdom, and findeth it not: but knowledge is easy unto him that understandeth" (Proverbs 14:6)

"Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto you." (John 16:13-14).

"But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned" (1 Corinthians 2:10-14).

"Principles of Interpretation".(Adapted from the "Prove All Things" Workbook by Betty Miller)
Web address for this message:

My opinion of much of my pain and failure comes from relying on my own reasoning or only reaching out to others for help without seeking God’s Word and relying on Holy Spirit. The culture of America implies that everything is flexible and adaptable. I seek a good thriving life and if there are no sure standards, how can anyone ever know what to do? The Bible is that standard that never leads me astray.

My thriving is dependent on Jesus Christ and Apostle John said this about Him….
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made. In Him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood.” John 1: 1-5

Today we began with speaking of God leading us. Karen explained that the Hebrew meaning of “lead” is twinkle. In the “darkness” of our day may we seek and see God as He leads us in many ways, but a main way in shining His Word in and through our lives.


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© 2008 Kay Martin

Thrive In Christ

Who I Am In Christ by Neil Anderson

For several months we will center on this book to pursue Thriving in our Christian journey.

Neil challenges us with: "Do you know who you are in God's eyes? We are no longer products of our past. We are primarily products of Christ's work on the cross. Who we are determines what we do.

You are not who you are in Christ because of the things you have done, you are in Christ because of what He has done. He died and rose again so that you and I could live in the FREEDOM of His love."

That's just the introduction. More to follow.