God’s Word You Have
“BLESSED IS the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take it to heart what is written in it, because the time is near” (Revelation 1: 3, NIV).
Many of us have the Bible which is the Word of God. We have it translated from Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic, the original languages in which the 66 books of the Bible were written, and translated into hundreds of languages of the world including Ghanaian languages.
Children of God are encouraged to have the Bible so that we can study it, know and do the will of God. Consequently, many Christians, particularly those who are educated, have bought copies of the Bible. We have it in different versions including the King James Version (KJV), New International Version (NIV), English Standard Version (NIV) and New Living Translation (NLT).
While some believers put their Bible under pillows others put theirs on tables, in their cars, offices or shops. These are all good things to do. Each Christian must own the Bible. Some Christian leaders advise that we buy and keep the Bible in the paper-based format rather than have it on phones, ipads or computers.
However, we need to clearly understand what it means for a Christian to have the Word of God. The Word of God you TRULY have is not the one printed in a book, phone or ipad. A Christian who holds the Bible in his or her hand does not necessarily have the Word of God. It may seem they have God's Word; people may see them carrying it, but they may not sincerely have it.
So, what does it mean to have the Word of God? To have the Word of God is to have it printed on the table of your heart. In other words, it is to have God's living Word dwelling in the spirit of your mind. The amount of God's Word in your heart is the size of your spirit in God. And to have God's Word living in you and you living in the Word is to be a Christian.
God's Word was not written down by holy men of God for our knowledge alone, but more importantly for our obedience. Everybody can read and study the Word of God, but only those who live it become Christ-like. Those who study it without acting, living or doing what it teaches only become philosophers. This is the situation many who claim to have the Bible find themselves in. They can quote verses of Scripture, but do not sincerely trust and obey God.
Now, how does someone become a medical doctor, accountant or lawyer? People become who they are largely by what they study, read, know and practise over time. We are what we read, know and do. We are the knowledge we have acquired, because what you read, study and know influences us naturally.
People spend sleepless nights to study and read books for many years to become medical doctors, lawyers, journalists and other professionals, but thousands of Christians have no time to read and study the Bible. We do not realize that we are made Christians by having the Word of God in us and us in it.
Let me put it this way: we are made Christians by having Christ in us and He having us in Himself. God's Word in us is Christ in us. We do not become Christians by mere mental assent, but having the Word of Christ indwell us. Remember that Christ Jesus and the Word of God are one.
“He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God” (Revelation 19: 13). “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God” (John 1: 1- 3).
The person being talked about in these two verses of Scripture is the Lord Jesus Christ. A question one may want to ask is how one receives Christ. To understand this question is to understand how people become Christians.
People become Christians by hearing and receiving the Word of God specifically the message of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ into their hearts which lead them to believe in Jesus Christ before they are sealed with the promised Holy Spirit.
“In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit” (Ephesians 1: 13- 14). “The word is near you, in your mouth and your heart' (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim)” (Romans 10: 8).
But these are not all that it takes to be made a genuine Christian. There is also the need for sincere repentance, forgiveness, confession of the Lordship of Christ Jesus and baptism after believing. When a person hears the Word of faith (the Word of God) preached to him by an anointed preacher, the Word is received in the heart and the seed of Christ begins to form in him by the Spirit of God (Galatians 4: 19).
And the more such a person hears and receives the anointed message in his heart, the more Christ increases and becomes real to him. And when you have Christ in you, you receive knowledge of the hope of glory. Obviously, when the Word of God dwells in you richly, you begin to see yourself telling others about the love of Christ for the salvation of their souls.
From James Quansah, Kumasi
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