The Written Word of God

The Read-through-the-Bible plan that I follow is based upon the plan created by Robert Murray McCheyne during the 19th century. In following this plan, one will read through the Old Testament once, and through the New Testament and Psalms twice in one year. Each day’s reading consists of two passages from the Old Testament, one from the New Testament, and one from either the Psalms or the Gospels. I actually use a website which has audio, so I can listen while I read (which helps an older guy keep his focus) which is found at: http://www.gnpcb.org/esv/devotions/one.year.tract/.

Today’s reading included a quote from the Old Testament prophet, Balaam. Granted, Balaam had his issues, and was eventually used by the “seed of the serpent” to lead Israel into sin. However, he said something to King Balak which included a wise principle that should be foundational in the life of all Christians. He declared in Numbers 24:13 that “if Balak should give me his house full of silver and gold, I would not be able to go beyond the word of the Lord, to do either good or bad of my own will. What the Lord speaks, that will I speak.” What a profound standard by which to live! Instead of running to and fro looking for some new understanding, or searching inside of us for some “spiritual nudging or guidance” from the Lord, we simply look to the sure and certain Word that God has given to us.

Peter, after describing the glorious experience of hearing God speak audibly on the Mount of Transfiguration, wrote that we have “something more sure, the prophetic word.” (2 Peter 1:19) Never let your experience be your spiritual guide because as someone wisely opined, “Believe only half of what you see, and nothing of what you hear.” Instead, rest in the final Word that God passed down to us, written in pen and ink for the benefit of our souls: the Holy Scriptures.

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5 Comments

  1. Branson said,

    May 15, 2009 at 1:10 PM

    This reminds me of John MacArthur’s method to determining God’s will in a situation: see that your relationship with Him is iron clad and solid. Once you are at that point, your desires are His desires, and so you simply pick. No secret spoken words or emotional nudges–just pursuing the Giver rather than the gift.

    • cliftonr said,

      May 15, 2009 at 1:15 PM

      Wow! You are quick. I barely got that posted. Yes, I have always appreciated MacArthur’s little booklet entitled, Found: God’s Will. God’s revealed will is in His Word, his decretel will is none of our business.

  2. Danny Gilliam said,

    May 15, 2009 at 1:35 PM

    I am reminded of the old expression, “Let the Word of God verify your experiences, do not use your experiences to verify the Word of God.” Any time I think of this, I am reminded of what God said to Moses as He sent him to Egypt, “This shall be the sign that I am with you, when you have brought Israel out of Egypt, you shall worship Me on this mountain.” All the plagues and visible signs weren’t Moses’s assurance of God’s presence. It was the promise of His Word that gave Moses assurance. I appreciate your posts.

  3. Brent said,

    May 15, 2009 at 2:58 PM

    This post reminded me of a conversation I had recently with someone who found their self in a particularly dangerours situation and said they heard the audible voice of God tell them: “Run!”. To which I replied, “How do you know it was the voice of God, how do you know what His voice sounds like?” The answer to that question was, “It had to be God, Satan would not have told me to run in that situation.” After we had a good laugh, the verse that came to my mind was Hebrews 1:1&2: “Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world.”

    • cliftonr said,

      May 15, 2009 at 3:49 PM

      I listen to all audible voices that tell me to “run!” ;^)


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