I’ve been bouncing this around in my heart and head for a while. It was stirred up in part by what God’s been doing in me lately, and in part by a couple books I’ve read recently.
There’s no doubt that God speaks through His Word on a regular basis to those who spend time in it. He speaks through various verses, passages, people, and situations. It can come at any time, pertaining to any thing, and through any way He sees fit.
But where do we draw the line when it comes to the relevance of the Bible in our lives?
Here’s the scenario: Joe Reader has just read a portion of the Bible that has real-world-application he doesn’t like. Following it would force him to drastically change certain actions and attitudes. So, instead of running his life based on what it says, he simply labels that passage as “irrelevant” and moves on.
Did you catch that? He didn’t say he believes some Scripture is true and some isn’t. No, it’s way sneakier than that. He chose to say that all Scripture is true, but there are certain parts of it he’d rather not follow.
When did we all of a sudden think that we have the authority to choose what parts of Scripture are relevant to our life and what parts AREN’T relevant?
I’m pretty sure that God’s order of events didn’t include handing us His Word and saying to us, “All right… feel free to skim through that book and weed out anything that seems a bit dicey.” When we begin to weed through Scripture, we’re saying that WE have the final say on our life, NOT God. It’s cocky, it’s arrogant, and it’s pretty much the way that our culture runs these days.
I think the huge culprit in this whole deal is the idea that following Scripture leads to a crappy, uneventful, lame, no-fun-times life that’s void of all things glorious and cool.
Think about it – God put human life into motion so that we may have relationship with Him. He LOVES us! When we royally messed up the equation (see Adam and Eve), He put His guidance and commandments -- and ultimately His Son -- in place so that we could return to the relationship-focus life was originally about. “Following His Word” equals “most fulfilling life.” Satan wants us to think, however, that “most fulfilling life” has NOTHING to do with following His Word. He puts so much effort into trying to convince us that following God’s Word equals prison. And he’s wrong. Following God’s Word doesn’t equal prison; it equals FREEDOM (2 Cor. 3:17).
So what do you do when it comes to the tough stuff in Scripture? Do you breeze right past it and choose what parts of Scripture you ignore? Or do you let the Word of God transform you?