THE HOLY SCRIPTURES
ALL SCRIPTURE IS GIVEN BY INSPIRATION OF GOD, AND IS PROFITABLE FOR DOCTRINE, FOR REPROOF, FOR CORRECTION, FOR INSTRUCTION IN RIGHTEOUSNESS..
2 TIM 3:16
There are probably very few homes in the United States that do not contain at least one Bible. It is the most quoted single book in the world. Some newspapers across our land still run daily Bible verses even though many have ceased the practice for the sake of political correctness. The majority of people in our nation (at least in the south) would claim to believe that the Bible is true. There are hundreds, even thousands of churches that have vacation Bible schools each summer and Sunday schools each week where (supposedly at least) the Bible is taught. There is perhaps not a state in our nation that does not have at least one “Bible School” or seminary. The Bible is the very basis upon which many of the laws of our nation are founded. Many politicians make a habit of quoting from it quite often when they see an opportunity to gain popularity by doing so. Yet there is no book in all the world that is more neglected and ignored than the Bible which contains the holy scriptures. This is not a phenomenon which only affects unbelievers but is also a glaring problem among those who profess to be the followers of CHRIST.
Nothing in all the earth astounds me any more than the lack of knowledge of the scriptures which infects many of those who claim that the Bible is the very textbook of their lives. It seems to me that there is no greater shame for a follower of JESUS CHRIST than neglecting the study of that book which HE has given us as a written testimony of HIS word. Did HE not say, “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15)? Yet how can we expect to know what HE expects of us if we are too busy with other pursuits to even take the time to read it? Now in the early days of Christianity, not many people had access to, or the necessary literacy to read the scriptures. Such is not the case today. But many have grown lazy, expecting that they will rely on the study of others rather than searching the scriptures for themselves. (see Acts 17:11; I Pet.1:10-
One of the reasons that men rely heavily on the scholarship of others is the fact that an understanding of Holy Writ only comes by revelation; not natural learning. Because of this fact it is simpler (and the masses can be processed more efficiently) and quicker just to read the “revelation” given to someone else without taking time and effort to pray and study. This is a more trouble free method of learning but it most often produces multitudes who have heads full of doctrines and practices rather than hearts that are humbled before the LORD. Often I hear people say, well I just don’t understand the Bible. This is not a problem of natural perception but rather a lack of spiritual light. This is not to say that GOD does not use human teachers, of course HE does (see Eph.4:11) but spiritual illumination cannot be imparted by men; only GOD through the work of HIS HOLY SPIRIT can accomplish this task. (see John 3:3,19; Mat.13:13-
Doctrine. Sound teaching and learning. “Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of CHRIST, hath not GOD. He that abideth in the doctrine of CHRIST, he hath both the FATHER and the SON.” (2 John 1:9)
Reproof. The Greek word literally means a proof or conviction. Of the gospel that he wrote, Luke said, “Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us. That thou mightest know the certainty of those things, wherein thou hast been instructed. “(Luke 1:1,4)
Correction. Restoration to an upright state. All of us are prone to get sidetracked and out of the pathway from time to time, the LORD uses the scriptures to bring us back. “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.” ( Gal 6:1)
Instruction in righteousness. Literally to train or teach children, including chastisement. “But when we are judged, we are chastened of the LORD, that we should not be condemned with the world.” (1 Cor 11:32) “For therein (i.e.; the Gospel) is the righteousness of GOD revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.” (Romans 1:17)