Lesson Two (Part 1)
So, Why Is It Imperative That I Read Godís Word?
Let the word [spoken by] Christ (the Messiah) have its home [in your hearts and minds] and dwell in you in [all its] richness, as you teach and admonish and train one another in all insight and intelligence and wisdom [in spiritual things, and as you sing] psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, making melody to God with [His] grace in your hearts. (CoI 3:16 Amplified Bible).
Expounding on this verse, reveals to us that it is through allowing God's word into our hearts (by letting His word dwell in, or take precedence in our hearts), it is with purpose that we do so, that purpose being ... as we teach, admonish and train one another, it will be done so, in the wisdom of His truth. Also revealed in the verse is:
As we praise within our hearts, and sing spiritual songs to our Lord, our songs will be acceptable to Him, because they are brought before Him with hearts filled in the truth of His word. Here's a verse that confirms this:But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. (John 4:23-24 Amplified Bible).
God is most interested in our knowing His truth. Why? Because He desires to see us set free:
Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. (John 8:31-32 KJV).
Let's look at that same verse in the Amplified Bible:
So Jesus said to those Jews who had believed in Him, If you abide in My word [hold fast to My teachings and live in accordance with them], you are truly My disciples. And you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free. (John 8:31-32 Amplified Bible).
Notice the words in this verse, I've underlined (from the King James translation)? They are key words. Consider what's being said here. "If" we continue on in God's word, "then" are we His disciples. The King James translation goes on to say, that when we do so (continue on in God's word), we shall know the truth and shall be make free. Again, unless we spend time sitting at the feet of our Master, learning of Him through His word (His letter to us), we cannot know the truth, and because it is the truth that makes, or sets us free, without our hearts being filled with His truth, our hearts remain bound.
How shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed and keeping watch [on himself] according to Your word [conforming his life to it]. (Psalms 119:9 Amplified Bible).
Sanctify them [purify, consecrate, separate them for Yourself, make them holy] by the Truth; Your Word is Truth. (John 17:17 Amplified Bible).
So that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the Word,That He might present the church to Himself in glorious splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such things [that she might be holy and faultless]. (Eph 5:26-27 Amplified Bible).
You are cleansed and pruned already, because of the word which I have given you [the teachings I have discussed with you]. (John 15:3 Amplified Bible).
2a. Our way is cleansed as we keep watch on ourselves, in accordance to God's word, living our lives according to it.
2b. The truth of God's word dwelling within our hearts, causes us to be sanctified, meaning pure, set apart and seperated unto the Lord, and made holy.
2c. Recieving God's word into our hearts (through the revelation of the Holy Spirit), washes and/or cleanses our hearts, leading us into a faultless, consecrated, and holy life, thus preparing us as Christ's Bride, to be a Bride without spot or wrinkle. It is such a Bride Christ is returning for, a holy Bride. The following verse speaks to us about the importance of "pursuit" ... of pursuing a life lived in consecration (dedication) and holiness before the Lord.
Strive to live in peace with everybody and pursue that consecration and holiness without which no one will [ever] see the Lord (Heb 12:14 - Amplified Bible).
For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the  breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart.(Heb.4:12 Amplified Bible).
Your word have I laid up in my heart, that I might not sin against You. Let my heart be sound (sincere and wholehearted and blameless) in Your statutes, that I may not be put to shame. (Ps 119:11,80 Amplified Bible).
Within our hearts, as the Holy Spirit, through the living word of God, searches our hearts, our hearts discover their true motivations, whether our motivations are pure and acceptable to God, or whether our intent is sinful. The word that comes to mind, regarding this function of the Holy Spirit in our lives is: "conviction".
Study and be eager and do your utmost to present yourself to God approved (tested by trial), a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, correctly analyzing and accurately dividing [rightly handling and skillfully teaching] the Word of Truth.(2 Tim.2:15 Amplified Bible).
In this verse, herein again lies conviction: Let's mention of few of them:
4a. When we hide God's word in our hearts, and are facing trials in our lives, His word acts as a guide on our path, directing us in which way we should travel, or in which way we ought to handle our trials.
4c. Filling our hearts with God's word will cause us to rightfully share as well as teach it to others. If we don't fill our hearts with His word, through false teaching and information, we may very well end up responsible for leading others to a life of sin and destruction. Rather, we ourselves, are commanded to study God's word, that we be workers in His Kingdom, who meet the approval of our Heavenly Father, as the above verse confirms.
Here is yet another controversial issue. There are those who proclaim (and believe) that all they need to do is say a quick little prayer of salvation, and they are Heaven bound. Nothing else required. Nothing more to do on their part. They believe they can continue to "live it up" where a destructive life of sin is concerned. The following verses tell us otherwise:Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come! (1 Cor 5:17 Amplified Bible).
So get rid of all uncleanness and the rampant outgrowth of wickedness, and in a humble (gentle, modest) spirit receive and welcome the Word which implanted and rooted [in your hearts] contains the power to save your souls. (James 1:21 Amplified Bible).
For I am not ashamed of the Gospel (good news) of Christ, for it is God's power working unto salvation [for deliverance from eternal death] to everyone who believes with a personal trust and a confident surrender and firm reliance, to the Jew first and also to the Greek (Rom 1:16 Amplified Bible).
AND NOW let me remind you [since it seems to have escaped you], brethren, of the Gospel (the glad tidings of salvation) which I proclaimed to you, which you welcomed and accepted and upon which your faith rests, and by which you are saved, if you hold fast and keep firmly what I preached to you, unless you believed at first without effect and all for nothing.(I Cor.15:1-2 Amplified Bible).
Now let's read this same verse in the King James bible:Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; by which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain (1 Cor 15:1-2 KJV).
Notice that word "if", again? Indeed, a key word.
Unless Your law had been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction. I will never forget Your precepts, [how can I?] for it is by them You have quickened me (granted me life). I am Yours, therefore save me [Your own]; for I have sought (inquired of and for) Your precepts and required them [as my urgent need] (Ps.119:92-94 Amplified Bible).
Again, from the KJV:
I will praise and give thanks to You with uprightness of heart when I learn [by sanctified experiences] Your righteous judgments [Your decisions against and punishments for particular lines of thought and conduct]. (Psalm 19:7 Amplified Bible).
Surely, within the words of each of these verses, we are shown the importance and urgency of seeking God's truth (through His word). From Matthew Henry's Commentary, in regards to the importance of the word of God in our lives, he says: "It is the design of the Word of God to make us wise to salvation".
Do all things without grumbling and faultfinding and complaining against God] and questioning and doubting [among yourselves], that you may show yourselves to be blameless and guileless, innocent and uncontaminated, children of God without blemish (faultless, unrebukable) in the midst of a crooked and wicked generation [spiritually perverted and perverse], among whom you are seen as bright lights (stars or beacons shining out clearly) in the [dark] world, holding out [to it] and offering [to all men] the Word of Life, so that in the day of Christ I may have something of which exultantly to rejoice and glory in that I did not run my race in vain or spend my labor to no purpose. ( Phil.2:14-16 Amplified Bible).
Towards our relationship with God, and with one another, the above verse offers to us the understanding of how we are to be blameless, innocent, uncontaminated, and without blemish and/or deceit in our lives. The very first part of this verse tells us what we are to do. We are to do all things "without" grumbling, faultfinding and complaining against God, and we are to stop questioning and doubting among ourselves (I kind of see this as "stop knit picking" against one another. Rather, we are to build one another up, in the faith). In this referrence, God says we will be held faultless and unrebukable in His sight, "if" we live such a way. It is also revealed to us in these verses (and to my point of this verse), that in this very dark world in which we live, we are to shine before men, as bright lights, as we hold out (offer) the Word of Life (God's truth) to others, so that like Paul, our race (how we served in this life) will not be run (or served) in vain, or that our labor (service to our Master, and to one another) will be to no purpose. May our lives (through God's living word) count in this world, bringing forth blessing, to both our Savior, and to man.
Next week, we will continue with "Part 2" of this lesson. In the meantime, may each of you be greatly blessed, as His truth fills your hearts with life ... His life!
In His Service,