In today's world we have what can best be described as a "spiritual marketplace." In addition to the Christian faith as well as the other major religions of the world, we have numerous splinter groups, misguided cults, and New Age groups of every color and stripe.
In such an environment where so many spiritual options are available to genuine seekers of the light, it is important that we, as Christians, keep ourselves saturated with scripture. Doing so will not only protect us from the works and schemes of the enemy, but will also help us to grow more deeply in our walk with God. Charles Stanley speaks to this issue clearly:
"Those who don't read their Bible are subject to what Paul describes as 'every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting'" (Eph. 4:14).
I can personally attest to the value of immersing oneself in scripture when confronted with the realities of the postmodern world in which we now live. Over the course of many years, I have not only studied, but delved deeply into numerous religions and spiritual paths. I can honestly say that I profited from this effort. It allowed me to see at some depth what other people believed and devoted their lives to.
Further, every religion contains some degree of truth and has valuable teachings. To deny this is to be spiritually near-sighted. Some of these truths have helped me in many ways, including deepening my daily walk with Christ.
With that said, however, there is always a danger lurking in the shadows when we explore new and exotic teachings. As Paul says, we may get sidetracked by "every wind of doctrine." I know from personal exploration that many ideas sound great but, when followed to their logical conclusion, are nothing but empty rabbit holes.
I find the following words by Charles Stanley to be, as usual, right on target:
"As many times as I have read my entire Bible, I still have new insights into God's Word every time I sit down to read it. The Bible is always fresh; it never grows stale. Often I find that God leads me to read a particular passage just when I need it the most. He reminds me of what I already know so that I will be able to use His truth in a very specific way in the hours or days ahead.The wonder of God's Word is that you can never understand it fully. God's Word holds countless layers of insight and meaning and it is applicable in unique ways to an infinite number of situations. The more you grow in your relationship with God, the more insights you have into His character and into the way in which God operates. You have a growing understanding of who you are created to be and called to be."
One of the greatest benefits of immersing ourselves in scripture comes from the discovery that the Bible is not so much about us as it is about God. The Bible, from cover to cover, is an unfolding of God's Great Story. It is a story of redemption, recovery, restoration, renewal, revival whatever "R" word you might want to choose. In addition, it is a story of the bringing of God's kingdom down from the spiritual realm and assisting with its manifestation here in the physical realm.
What is more amazing is the fact that each of us, no matter who we are, where we come from, or where we have been is an integral part of that great story. Each of us has a role to play in God's great plan of redemption and revival. Our job is to discover that role and then play it to its fullest. That's why we here at LifeBrook put so much stress on the notion of becoming the optimal version of yourself for the glory of God and the benefit of others. By becoming the absolute best that we can be, we are better equipped to do what God planned for us to do. He has called us to a great work and has equipped us to accomplish that work.
Recognizing that we have a purpose to fulfill in God's larger, more magnificent story results in several important insights. First of all, it should give us a sense of humility in that we see that it is indeed "God's Story," not ours. He is the director, the producer, even the scriptwriter. Our part is to find out what role we are to play and to play it well. Second, realizing we are a part of God's Great Story gives life a new perspective and deepens our sense of meaning and purpose. This awareness has a healing quality to it in that we feel connected to a purpose much larger than our own desires.
Many of us make the mistake of underestimating the significance and the power of the Bible when it comes to personal transformation in general and renewing the mind in particular. Both the Old Testament and the New Testament are filled with scriptures that, when planted into the fertile soil of our subconscious mind, can eventually take root and grow. As this process takes place, we find that our perspective on certain things begins to change, always for the better. It is this reason, as well as many others described above that I encourage you to never dismiss scripture as a major tool in your spiritual arsenal. It is truly the breath of the Holy Spirit and can be of great benefit when used properly.
(c) L.D. Turner 2008/All Rights Reserved
Dwight Turner is founder of LifeBrook Communications, a ministry which produces and publishes web content on a variety of faith-based themes. LifeBrook may be viewed at:
All material: (c) L.D. Turner/All Rights Reserved
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