Wednesday 22 June 2011 -- #218
On Reading The Scriptures
With regard to reading the word of God, there seems to me to be two points : the reading it as affecting the conscience and heart in direct testimony from God ; and reading it to acquire the knowledge of His mind.
The great thing is, to receive His mind in it, by the Spirit. Never to attempt putting senses on it, however nice they may appear, but to see what the Holy Ghost really designed in the passage. Not to invent probable senses, but to seek to ascertain by His teaching what God's mind in the passage is; and we may reckon on His love in helping His dear children.
It is of much importance to look at it as God's word; and not merely as a subject matter to exercise our thoughts about; but rather to bow to, and receive thoughts from, waiting actually on Him, and seeking directly from Him to be taught.
-- Crumbs for the Lord's Little Ones (1853)
Saved and Stuck!
"Now we did not receive the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is from God, in order that we might know the things freely given to us by God" (I Corinthians 2:12). What power there is in this wonderful verse. Most translations get it right, so it is the believing of the truth that is critical not the words in which it is couched. This has been a favorite verse of mine for decades and I'd like it to be a favorite of yours also.
"But as it is written: Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor the mind imagined, the things God has prepared for those who love Him. But God has revealed them to us by his Spirit" (verse 9-10a). God has prepared them, and God has revealed them to us! So if you love Him you know what God has prepared for you -- health, wealth, and happiness -- in the spiritual realm right now and then shown forth in the material world. And if you're not sure, just thank God for the resident spirit within opening your eyes to His Word -- especially that part of the Word addressed to the Church age, Romans to Philemon.
Then in verse 12 the Word plainly states that the reason God placed His spirit within us was "that we might know the things freely given to us by God." Only the truth you "know" will set you free (John 8:32). The things God has prepared and revealed have cost us nothing but believing faith, for God gave them freely. "Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe." So why keep praying for things? Why not thank God for them "as if you have them," for you do spiritually and you absolutely shall materially? Now you've taken the stress out of the situation and spoken a word of faith by your prayer of thanksgiving.
Now perhaps you can understand why Paul said in verse 2, "I deliberately kept it plain and simple: first Jesus and who he is; then Jesus and what he did--Jesus crucified" (Message Bible). And millions of Christians are still stuck there! And thousands of churches only preach salvation and just a few Christians get a glimpse now and then of a fuller life, an exchanged life. Yes, Christ crucified is where we have to start but not where we are to remain. "We, of course, have plenty of wisdom to pass on to you once you get your feet on firm spiritual ground..." (verse 6, Message). In Paul's letters we are encouraged to grow in grace, to go on to maturity.
Are you saved and stuck, or saved and struck by the greatness of a loving Father who only wants the best for you in every aspect of your earthly walk?
-- Peter Wade
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