I like that word.
Both the noun and the verb forms.
Pastor Tom has been teaching through the Sermon on the Mount and has recently covered the topic of materialism. This post won’t even begin to scratch the surface of such thought-provoking conviction. But it will address something else I’ve been convicted about of late.
What do I really treasure in life?
Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Matthew 6:19-21 ESV)
Where does the eternal, holy Word of God rank in my daily priority list?
The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple; the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes; the fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; the rules of the LORD are true, and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward. (Psalm 19:7-11 ESV)
There are so many passages that speak of the importance of God’s perfect Word. (See 2 Timothy 3:16-17!)
Two convicting examples have drawn my mind back to the life-giving, hope-bearing Truth of the Bible.
- The countless martyrs who willingly gave their lives (often sacrificing their families & friends) to preserve the Bible in written form for future generations to hold dear. (See Fox’s Book of Martyrs)
- The story of a paralyzed man who hungered for the Word of God, spending himself, using every ounce of energy to carefully take in the precious words of his Creator & Redeemer. (I get a little weepy when I read this account. I wish so much that this man could enjoy the Bible with his sight. I also realize what a fool I am for squandering so much time that could be spent reading the Bible with my own working eyes.)
We should all have the passion for reading God’s Word of the man in this story. Evangelist Robert L. Sumner, in his book The Wonder of the Word of God, tells of a man in Kansas City who was severely injured in an explosion. His face was badly disfigured, and he lost his eyesight as well as both hands. He had just become a Christian when the accident happened, and one of his greatest disappointments was that he could no longer read the Bible. Then he heard about a lady in England who read braille with her lips. Hoping to do the same, he sent for some books of the Bible in braille. But he discovered that the nerve endings in his lips had been too badly damaged to distinguish the characters. One day, as he brought one of the braille pages to his lips, his tongue happened to touch a few of the raised characters and he could feel them. Like a flash he thought, “I can read the Bible using my tongue.” At the time Robert Sumner wrote his book, the man had read through the entire Bible four times. If he can do that, can you discipline yourself to read the Bible? (p. 35, from Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life by Donald S. Whitney)
I’m reminded of a powerful modern hymn that preaches the same message – God’s Word is something worth dying for & embracing to the very end.
Martyrs’ blood stains each page
they have died for this faith
hear them cry through the years
oh, heed these words and hold them dear.
Ancient words ever true
Changing me changing you
We have come with open hearts
O let the ancient words impart
[“Ancient Words”- Integrity’s Hosanna! Music | Lynn DeShazo]