At Work in His Word

At Work in His Word

What is God’s goal as he works in us through the Scriptures? 2 Tim. 3:17.  The goal is clear: you will be complete or mature, thoroughly equipped for every good work.  We know that God has good works for us in every stage of life.  But how can we be ready for them?  The answer is easy.  Get your nose in the Bible and get the Bible into you, relationally, so that God’s work will be done in your life.

As we enter February, there will be many new year Bible reading plans that are fading away.  Perhaps the challenge of a full work schedule, combined with dark mornings, drains the motivation to be in God’s Word.  Or maybe the second half of Exodus and Leviticus is proving too great a challenge.  Whatever the reason, many will settle into a rhythm marked more by guilt than regular enjoyment of the Bible.

It is hard to relate to a God we cannot see, hear, or touch.  And while we know that the Bible is his glorious gift of communication to us, it can often feel distant and disconnected from our everyday lives.  How can we find motivation for a relationship with God that has the Bible at the centre?

The critical issue is right in the question itself.  Do we experience the Bible in the context of a relationship?  Or have we let the relational aspect drain away, leaving the Bible as an optional tool or merely an interesting document for our fascination with religious history?

In 2 Timothy 3:14-17, Paul gives us a critical passage on the nature of Scripture.  In these verses, Paul points to the role of Scripture in our salvation and our growth to maturity.  In these verses, Paul clarifies what Scripture is and how it works in us.  Let’s look again at these verses and remind ourselves that God lovingly works in us as we are in his Word.  To put it differently, the Bible is not just a “past tense” book for our studies.  It is a “present tense” gift for our relationship with God.  God lovingly works (present tense) in us as we are in his Word and as his Word gets into us.

Entering into a relationship with God, 2 Tim. 3:14-15.  As Paul wrote to Timothy to encourage him in the challenges he would face, he wanted him to remember where his ministry all started.  It started by coming to know salvation in the first place.  Timothy had learned and came to believe in the sacred writings of Scripture from his grandmother, his mother, and Paul himself.  His Bible exposure taught him about the wonder of salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.  Without the Bible, we would only be guessing about God, and our guesswork would never have led us into a relationship with him.  God has taken the initiative in our salvation, revealing his character, plans, and great gift.  There is no relationship with God if there were no Bible.  But since there is, let us not lose the relational nature of our connection to him!

So, what is Scripture? 2 Tim. 3:16a.  “All Scripture is God-breathed.”  What a way to describe it!  It comes from the very core of God’s being.  He made sure that the authors wrote exactly what God wanted to be written.  All Scripture, every last Word, was as he intended.  On a human level, the Bible is astonishing – so many authors, different languages, different types of literature, and yet an incredibly coherent and consistent collection of documents.  But the Bible is not written just on a human level – it is “God-breathed!”  That means it is unique – no other book is in the same category.  It also means it is a loving gift – God wanted it written for his people.  It is a purposeful gift – God intended it to achieve something in us.

Based on what we know of God, what might we assume his Scriptures would do?  Would God give us a mindless distraction to pass some time?

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