Invest in knowing and applying God’s word of truth and guard against adding our own twists on God’s word. God’s word doesn’t need any of me on top of his wisdom. Does anything in your life compete with God’s word for first place in guiding you?
5 Every word of God is flawless;
he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.
6 Do not add to his words,
or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar.
16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness
What place does God’s word have in your heart and your life? Do you esteem God’s word as the perfect word of knowledge and wisdom and truth for all things? And does anything in your life compete with God’s word for first place in guiding you? The Spirit of God, promised by Jesus, was even sent, in part, to remind us of Jesus’ words to us (John 14:26). God wants us to know how important his word is to us for our entire lives.
In fact, if we hide God’s word in our hearts, we will be less likely to sin against God (Psalm 119:11).
I find that God’s word is the shield and refuge God says it is – when you are not sure what to do or how to do it, God’s word in the Bible provides guidance and protection from taking the wrong steps. That doesn’t mean that everyone always likes what you do or how you do it, yet our goal isn’t to please people. Our goal is to please God. And so, when we appeal to God’s word for direction, we can find confidence in doing right and no matter what the world thinks, we can take refuge in God and his direction.
There is a risk, however, in using the word of God in our lives. If we add to it, we risk God proving us to be liars. And that’s what we do, don’t we? We take a little from God, and then we insert ourselves and our ideas into the mix, and what comes out the other side is God’s word-ish. What a dangerous concept.
I see this in people who consider themselves to be God’s judge and jury in the word, proclaiming the sins of people who don’t know God or follow him. God’s word-ish in action. Our role is to love the world and extend God’s grace to the world. The only people we are to judge are ourselves.
The church should apply God’s word and have low expectations of those outside the church and high expectations of those inside the church (1Corinthians 5:12-13).
So where does that leave us?
As much as possible, we should have the attitude and mind of Christ (Philippians 2) in living and representing God in our world. Invest in knowing and applying God’s word of truth and guard against adding our own twists on God’s word. His word is sufficient and perfect in itself.