I believe that it is important that we call ourselves back to the Bible. Today all over the world, the Bible has been relegated to a second position. Now this is sad. You could go into a lot of churches today and take the Bible out and they would never miss it, but I'm glad today that we are a people of the Book, that we read the Book, that we preach the Book, that we teach the Book, that we believe the Book and that we, by Godís grace, live by the Book.
Now unity is good. I love unity. I read in Psalm 133, "Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!" I believe in unity, but not if it means we must compromise Godís Word!
Love is grand. I read in I Corinthians 13:13, "Now abideth faith, hope," and "charity (or love)", and "the greatest of these is" love. · Peace is a glorious thing. I read in Romans 12:18, as much as is possible, "live peaceably" among "all men".
Let me say it again, I believe that unity is necessary. I believe that love is necessary. I believe that peace is important and necessary. But, ladies and gentlemen, unity, love, and peace without the truth is an empty shell.
It's a fake. It's a farce. We must have the truth. Jesus said, "Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." That means without the truth man is in bondage.
I. Godís Word is a Living Book.
A. Note: Hebrews 4:12
"For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart."
1. God's Word knows what we are thinking about today
2. What we are planning and proposing.
3. God's word reads our hearts today.
B. Note: 2 Tim. 3:16
All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
C. Note: 2 Peter 1:21
"For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost."
D. The Bible is as old as time and new as tomorrow.
1. As sure as night follows day and day follows night, God still lives and the Bible is right.
2. It's a living Book ... It's alive.
3. Men spend their lifetimes searching the world for truth, and overlook the very source of their quest.
II. Godís Word Moves Freely.
A. Note: 2 Thessalonians 3:1
"Finally, brethren, pray for us, that the word of the Lord may have free course, and be glorified, even as it is with you:"
B. In the 147th Psalm at verse 15, the Bible says, "...His word runneth very swiftly."
1. It's like lightning, the Word of God is not bound.
2. God's servant may be bound, God's servant may be restricted, God's servant may be restrained, but the Word of God runs freely.
3. Note: II Timothy 2:9
"Wherein I suffer trouble, as an evil doer, even unto bonds; but the word of God is not bound."
C. The servant of God may be restricted, but the Word of God is not bound.
1. This wonderful book has:
a. Climbed every mountain.
b. Crossed every ocean.
c. Sailed every sea.
d. Made its way across every desert.
e. It has been in the grave, in the dungeon, and in prison.
2. But, thank God, it still lives as the living Word of God that moves swiftly in our hearts and in our lives.
3. Bloody Mary, in her reign of terror, confiscated all the Bibles in England.
a. She had all the Bibles burned.
b. She thought she had destroyed the Bible, but, thank God, I have one this morning
c. You see, destroying a Bible, taking the book and burning it or slicing it up, or destroying it in some way, does not destroy the Word of God.
d. It doesn't destroy the Bible any more than if I took every picture there is of you and destroyed all your pictures that would not mean that I would destroy you as a person.
e. So men may destroy all the Bibles, but they cannot destroy the Word of God because it moves swiftly and it is indestructible.
In the Nineteenth Century, Voltaire, the noted French philosopher and atheist said, "One hundred years from now, there will be no Bibles. I have gone through the forests," he said, "and I have cut down all the trees of revelation." Well, strangely enough, the very room where he spoke those words is today a distribution center for the Word of God from which Bibles are sent all over the world.
By the way, in 1932, they gathered all of Voltaire's works together and sold them for eleven cents. And on the same day in December of 1932, one manuscript of the Word of God sold for $500,000.
4. God's Word is alive! and God's Word moves freely.
III. God's Word Glorified.
A. We do not worship the Bible.
1. We worship the blessed subject of the Bible.
2. This book, this library of 66 books brought together by the Holy Spirit, has as its subject matter the Lord Jesus Christ.
3. His blood stains every page.
4. His hand print is on every verse.
5. All the Bible is Jesus.
6. He is the Living Word.
7. This is the written Word.
8. It is the only thing that God elevated above His name!
"I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name." (Psa 138:2)
B. Godís Word is the Supreme authority.
1. There is no appeal beyond the Scripture.
2. There is no higher source of authority than the Word of God.
3. There can be edicts given, laws passed, or proclamations made, but there is no appeal beyond -- there is no authority higher--than the Word of God.
4. There is no appeal beyond this Word!
a. The rich man in hell learned that.
b. He asked Abraham to send Lazarus to his father's house because he had five brothers and didnít want to see them go to hell.
c. "Then he said, I pray thee there- fore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my fatherís house: For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment." (Luke 16:27-28)
d. "Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them." (Luke 16:29)
e. If men will not believe this wonderful, inspired, infallible, inerrant Word of God, they will not believe even if one were to rise from the dead!
f. There is no hope for men and women who do not believe this Word -- It is the final authority.
We need to get back to the Word of God. Some books inform, and some books reform, but only the Bible will transform. Let's get back to the Book, back to the basics, back to preaching the Word, back to honoring the Bible. Give God's Word the place that He gave it. He magnified lt above all His name
IV. Godís Word Separates.
A. Godís Word must be used to separate good men from evil men.
1. In verse two Paul said not all men have the faith.
a. God uses good men to do good things.
b. Satan uses evil men to do evil things.
c. But here's a tragedy, some good people allow Satan to use them to oppose the work of Christ.
2. The apostle Peter allowed the devil to use him to oppose the work of Christ.
a. When Jesus said, "Who do men say that I am," and they began to answer, and then he said, "Whom do ye say that I am" and Peter said, "You are the Son of the living God." cf Mt. 16:13; 16
b. He was right on target with that answer, but note v21-23
c. Can you imagine this happening?
d. Peter, taking the Son of God and rebuking Him...
e. Christ rebukes him as Satan, because it was the spirit of anti- christ.
B. Peter isnít alone...many times good people get in the place where they allow themselves to be used to oppose the work of Christ.
1. Good people get upset and leave the church ... they oppose the work of Christ.
2. Good people give up and quit serving ... they oppose the work of Christ.
3. Good people get into financial problems and quit tithing (or never begin) ... they oppose the work of Christ.
4. Good people believe the lies of the world and the devil rather than trusting the precious Word of God ... they oppose the work of Christ.
5. God's Word must be used to separate good from evil.
Godís Word is alive! It will move freely. It is the supreme authority in our lives. It will separate good from evil. God's Word must be used to do God's work. It is foolish for us to try to do the work of God without the Word of God. Note Paulís confidence in the believers at Thessalonica. "And we have confidence ... that ye both do and will do the things which we command you." Can that be said of us? Have we put our faith in the Christ of the Bible? Trusting in His shed blood on Calvary for our salvation? Are we living by the Book? Is it the supreme authority in our lives? Or are we opposing the work of Christ by our failure to obey Him?