Have you ever asked someone what they believe about God, the Bible, or other Spiritual matters and gotten the response, “Let me go ask my pastor”? Or maybe you’ve given that response. After all, Ephesians chapter 4 tells us that the Lord has given gifts to certain members of His Body, teaching being one of them. There are 66 books in the Bible with 783,137 words (King James version) so it’s understandable why many feel that it’s best to let the Pastor of their church be the one to handle the tough questions. That, however, isn’t the plan that God had in mind.
1 Corinthians 2:9-12
9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.
11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.
12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.
God doesn’t require that you have a degree. He doesn’t require that you have a title. He doesn’t care what church you go to. His only requirement is that you have His Holy Spirit. No man can know the things of God. Only the Spirit of God can. But you can have the Spirit of God if you just have faith. Faith in the fact that Christ died on the cross to pay for your sins. The moment you trust Him you are sealed with the Holy Spirit.
13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
The instructions in 2 Timothy 2:15 are pretty clear, “study to shew thyself approved”. God wouldn’t have given us His Word if He didn’t intend us to use it. Be approved. Be more noble like the Bereans were, searching the scriptures daily.
Acts 17:10-11 10 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. 11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
To learn more about your role in understanding the deep things of God join us for our weekly Bible Study.
If we had to pick one person to model our Christian life after, who would it be? The obvious, and popular, answer would be Jesus Christ. After all, “He knew no sin” (2 Cor. 5:21). But it’s for that exact reason that it wouldn’t make sense to use Jesus as our pattern. Jesus said, “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30). 1 Timothy 3:16 describes Jesus in the following, “God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.” Jesus was God and “[God’s] way is perfect” (2 Sam. 22:31). Jesus was perfect, however, we all descended from Adam (man) and therefore have all sinned.
12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:
Instead we have a more fitting pattern to follow. One who was well known for his sinful ways. The Apostle Paul.
1 Timothy 1:12-16
12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;
13 Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.
14 And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.
15 This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.
16 Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.
That’s not to exalt the Apostle Paul above Jesus in any way. Paul was a man, just like us. However, as you can see above he was the man who Jesus appointed as our pattern. Paul was “zealous toward God” prior to his conversion (Acts 22:3) and his faith never wavered thereafter. Let’s be like Paul and put on the “breastplate of faith”.
1 Thessalonians 5:8-10
8 But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.
9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.
To learn more about the pattern for your Christian walk join us for our weekly Bible Study.
Wednesdays - 5:30pm in the Rhinelander Goodwill Community Room