The Westminster Shorter Catechism: Question Two.

Q. 2. What rule hath God given to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him?
A. The Word of God, which is contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, is the only rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him.

Question Two of the catechism tells the Christian where he can find direction in glorifying and enjoying God. This direction is not to be found within in one’s inner feelings or desires, but within the Scriptures themselves. God, in His Word (The Bible), has given to us everything that we need that pertains to “life and godliness.” (2 Peter 1:3-4)

God has given man His Law to show him what is righteousness and what is sin; what is right and what is wrong; what one should do and what one should refrain from doing. This moral law has been summarized in the ten statements that are called “The Ten Commandments.” The first four of these commands speak of the way in which people should relate to God, and the last six speak of the way in which people should relate to each other. These commands are unchanging. It was sin to commit adultery during the time of Moses, and it is sin today, and it will be sin tomorrow, no matter what the culture in which one lives believes. It was sin not to remember the Sabbath Day in the time of Moses, it is sin today, and it will be sin tomorrow, no matter what the culture in which one lives believes. This is true of every one of those ten commands given in Exodus 20.

Man, however, can not keep God’s Law. He was born “dead in trespasses and sins” and is by nature “a child of wrath.” (Ephesians 2) Therefore, he is not able to glorify nor enjoy God as he was created to do. That is why God has not just given man His Law, but He has also given him His Gospel:

Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, 2 and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you- unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. 6 Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. 8 Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me. 9 For I am the least of the apostles, unworthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. 10 But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. (1 Corinthians 15:1-10)

It is only through God’s grace that man is able to glorify and enjoy Him. Christ has kept God’s Law on His elect’s behalf, and it is through faith in Him, that His righteousness is accredited to man’s account. As Paul says in Romans 5:17, “If, because of one man’s [Adam’s] trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.” The Scriptures tells us that it is through resting in what Christ has done for man that he is finally able to do what he was created to do, “glorify and enjoy God.”

By the way, there is at least one other truth that one can glean from this catechism question: it is both the Old and New Testaments that are God’s Word. Don’t ignore the Old Testament. It consists of thirty-nine books that all point to Christ as the only way of salvation. Remember what Jesus did for the two men traveling the road to Emmaus on the day of His Resurrection:

25 And he [Jesus] said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself. (Luke 24:25-27)

Don’t rob yourself of the blessing that comes from discovering the truth of God’s grace through Christ found in the Old Testament.

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