The Eternal Word
“Your word, O Lord, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens.” (Psalm 119:89)
Best sold, least read, worst understood. That, sadly, sums up the Bible. To many it is a book for buying for christenings or weddings, but one that is just full of genealogies and “thou shalt not's.” Such thinking couldn’t be further from the truth! For this book is nothing less than the eternal Word of God, relevant in every generation.
This is why it’s good to read the Bible – not so we become walking encyclopaedias of Bible facts, but so that we can know God, His ways and His promises. For the Bible is not like any other book; it is the “God–breathed” word (2 Timothy 3:16). That is, it is not people’s attempts to describe God or recount their experiences of Him; it is the very “breath” of God, breathed into the writers by the God’s Spirit, so that what they wrote was exactly what God wanted written. And this is why it can be trusted and is still so relevant for today.
The writer of Psalm 119 was certainly a believer in God’s Word. The psalm is beautifully constructed, each stanza beginning with the successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet. But not only is it beautifully written, it is passionately written. This writer was passionate about Scripture! This is reflected in the wide range of terms he uses to describe it: law (used 45 times), statutes (23 times), precepts (21 times), decrees (22 times), commands (22 times), word(s) (30 times), promise(s) (13 times). Clearly, he loved God’s word! But it was not a love of it for its own sake; he had experienced how it revealed God’s heart to him and how transforming it was as he applied it in everyday life.
The Bible is not a book for meditation by recluses or analysis by academics; it is God’s eternal Word, given to reveal Him and to change us. Set your heart to let it do its work in your life today.
“For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. For, 'All men are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord stands for ever.' ” (1 Peter 1:23-25)
Copyright © 2017 Martin Manser and Mike Beaumont
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