These days I am continually amazed by the grace of God. He gave me the gift of salvation by grace through faith. I can’t boast about it because I did nothing to obtain it. It is His gift to me.
I have not always been amazed. For many years as a Christian I thought I had it pretty good. I looked around me and thought to myself, “I’m a pretty good Christian.” I was pretty busy looking at specks in others’ eyes while ignoring the Lincoln Logs accumulating in my own.
The old saying is that “pride cometh before the fall.” I praise God for all the ways He can humble me. Just when my head starts to enlarge He can poke it like a pin into a helium-filled balloon and bring you back down to earth. It seems like He does it, one way or the other, on a daily basis now.
Do you know what I am talking about?
It is the greatest feeling in the world, actually, when you realize that you are not as smart or as good as you thought you were, but God loves you anyway. He gives you the chance to leave your preconceptions at the door and be taught by none other than Himself, through His Word. It is then that you begin to really “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” (2 Peter 3:18)
“The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; The judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether.” Psalm 19:7-9
As the hymn goes, “How wonderful! How marvelous!” The Word of God is perfect. If you believe in Jesus Christ and are not studying His Word and measuring your life up to the standards which God lays down in it you are missing out. It is by reading the Word and finding the truth in it that you realize just how amazing God’s grace is.
It is through the sufficiency of God’s Word that you can realize that Christian living is not about adding works to your salvation, but responding with good works, which God prepared beforehand (Ephesians 2:10), out of a desire to serve the Savior who has given us so much.
It is through God’s Word that we learn of His Majesty in creating the heavens and the earth and everything that dwells within them.
It is through God’s Word that we learn of His covenant with Abraham, which He has kept since its inception through the slavery of the Hebrews in Egypt, the supernatural parting of the Red Sea, the giving of the Law, the Promised Land, the kingdom of David, the Messiah, the dispersion of the Jewish people, and the restoration of the nation of Israel.
It is through God’s Word that we learn about Jesus, the promised Messiah who saves His people from their sins. We learn that He was born of the virgin Mary, lived a sinless life, performed many miracles, fulfilled the Law, was crucified, buried, and rose on the third day. We learn that today He sits at the right hand of God as our Advocate.
It is through God’s Word that we learn about the establishment of the Church on the day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit indwelt believers. We learn how the apostles laid the foundation started by the Chief Cornerstone, Jesus Christ.
It is through God’s Word that we learn that, as believers, we are “living stones” upon that foundation. We learn how to live a life worthy of the calling with which we have been called (Ephesians 4:1). We learn how to do all to the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31).
It is through God’s Word that we learn that “the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.” (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)
It is through God’s Word that we learn of tribulation, the man of sin and the false prophet, and the judgments of the tribulation.
It is through God’s Word that we learn of Jesus Christ returning to the earth at the end of the tribulation to establish His thousand-year reign on earth as King.
“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105
Peter said in his second epistle to the churches, right before he was martyred, that while he got to see Jesus in His glory on the Mount of Transfiguration, “we have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place…” (2 Peter 1:19, emphasis mine). How valuable, then, is the Word of God if Peter considered it more sure than what his own eyes saw on that mountain? The Bible, the Word of God, is such a treasure.
Paul agreed in the last letter he wrote before he was martyred. He told Timothy that “all Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
God requires perfect righteousness, but we learn in Romans that none is righteous, not even one. Jesus, the only Righteous One, bore the punishment for our sins on the cross. Those who believe in Him and proclaim Him as Lord and Savior of their lives are, therefore, declared righteous in God’s eyes.
It is the Word of God that trains us in righteousness. We can learn how to treasure what Christ has done for us when we begin to treasure the Word.