Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today- December 19, 2010
“Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.” Acts 17:11
Even the message of respected Bible teachers needs to be validated by Scripture. This validation affirms them and causes the recipient to cultivate good habits of study. The process of Scriptural validation is as much for the hearer as it is for the speaker. A submitted student of Scripture is not trying to poke holes in an argument with a condescending attitude. If this is the case, he has missed the point of searching the Scripture for truth.
The reason you seek to validate a message from Scripture is for edification and evangelism. You are not the Scripture police. Rather, your knowledge of Scripture becomes an invitation for others to discover truth. Deep down they desire the truth about God and the truth about themselves. So, do not be sloppy with your stewardship of Scriptural knowledge. Use your reservoir of truth prayerfully and with humility.
Yes, challenge teachers, but do it in the spirit of a fellow learner and for their edification.
Also, make sure that your Scriptural understanding is constantly engaging outsiders in meaningful conversation. There’s no need to talk down to or to be intimidated by another’s self-centered worldview. Rather, with patience and care listen intently. Bring them back to the person of Jesus. Paint for them a scriptural portrait of Jesus that cannot be denied.
It is accurate and true because it is validated by Scripture. Scripture can hold its own—it just needs to be exposed. Remember that many are walking in darkness. They need a gradual illumination of Scripture like a developing photo in a dark room. Watch the chemical reaction of questions and convictions bring about a clearer understanding as the picture of truth continues to develop. Do not rush the process, and do not be timid as well.
Indeed, lead people to read and validate the Scripture for themselves. As a result, evangelism and edification will explode from its pages. The shrapnel of truth will lodge in their heads and hearts. God changes lives through Scripture’s validation.
Lastly, allow Scripture to validate your worldview. Do not take for granted what is presented as truth in your everyday life. For instance, your faith is not to be compartmentalized. Instead, your faith should weave throughout the fabric of your life. It is not a wise or accurate worldview that locks your faith away, only to be released on Sunday. This is an insult to God.
Compartmentalization of your faith prostitutes your faith. Therefore, validate all of your beliefs and behaviors by Scripture. What you believe about money, marriage, work, parenting, relationships, government, business, international affairs, social issues and church all require a consistent worldview. If there is inconsistency, your behavior becomes erratic.
Culture and feelings may validate your beliefs and behavior rather than Scripture. This lazy living is reactionary and ridiculous to God. Therefore, start today to filter your faith through Scripture. Validate your actions or lack of actions by Scripture. Then your life will become different. Others will take notice. You will become a lightning rod for evangelism and edification—a person of noble character!
Taken from Dose 31 of the 90-day devotional book Infusion.
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