The average Christian believes that the Bible is the Word of God. If asked why, there will be no reason given other than “it is what it is”. When tough mind-boggling questions are then asked, seeds of doubts will eventually be sown in your mind concerning the infallibility of the Bible. Thus, the need to know what makes the Bible the Word of God.
When reasons why it is NOT the Word of God is presented to you, you may begin to water the seeds of doubt in your mind. Just as the cornerstone became a stumbling block for many, the Bible has started wars and brought peace. It has been used as a reference to perpetuate evil, preached as a message of hope, quoted as the basis of fierce debates and misquoted in the quest for propaganda.
The Bible started off as a library of books than as just one book. We know the Bible has 66 books, but some of these books are also collection of books in itself. In 1229, chapters and verses were added for easy quotation. Written by about 40 authors within a 1500-year period, the coherence of the book is humanly impossible. However, the ultimate question remains; is the Bible the Word of God?
The Word vs the Spirit
When the Spirit of God leaves a body of believers, what is left is just an organisation. They have a form of godliness, but lack the power thereof. One thing you’d realize is how the Holy Scriptures all of a sudden replaces the Holy Spirit as a member of the Trinity; Father, Son and Holy Bible. Whatever you say or do, such people ask, “was it done in Bible times?”. Such people believe that everything is in the Bible and that the Bible has an answer for everything. They are quick to label unbiblical things as secular or outrightly demonic.
Not everything is in the Bible. The Bible does not also provide an answer to everything. It is the work of the Holy Spirit, not necessarily the Bible. He is the One to lead us into ALL truths. Such mindsets are what make us slowly replace the Holy Spirit with the Holy Scriptures. Yes, the Bible has a say on a lot of issues of life and they tell us the mind of God but if you need someone to teach you, go to the Spirit and He will lead you the Word. The Word of the Spirit is the Spirit of the Word. The Bible can be misinterpreted in a billion ways. Go to its Author. Simple!
Proceedings vs Preceedings
There are two words for “Word” in Greek. Logus, which is the Logic of God, the Mind of God, used in John 1:1, Jesus. Another is Rhema, a specific Word for a specific person/people, at a specific time for a specific purpose. It’s not that God’s Rhema has an expiry date, but when God speaks, it is established, fulfilled and returns to Him “unvoided”. To one He says “go”, to another He says “stay”, to all He says “love”. If you’re not abreast with God, you’ll pick His “go” Word in a season you had to “stay”.
What God said tells us how God thinks but what God is saying shows us what God is thinking. This is so important that I can’t stress it enough. Why? Because sometimes what God is saying now may be the exact opposite of what He said then. Imagine if Abraham wasn’t always checking for God’s updates. Isaac would have been dead had Abraham still held on to God’s initial words of sacrificing Isaac to him. Centuries later, the same God gave the Israelites a command not to sacrifice their children on any altar, the exact opposite of what He told Abraham to do.
Jesus said man shall live by the Words that proceeds of the mouth of God. Not preceed. God speaks, His Word is accomplished and returns to Him. If you’re not current with God, you will be pouring your energy to establish a Word that has already been fulfilled. This lack of understanding is responsible for half of the Christian denominations today. They read something God said 8000 years ago and has been fulfilled and then make a doctrine out of it.
You read the books of Moses and declare that believers have to sacrifice cows because God says so? Honey, where have you been? Jesus already fulfilled that. “But it’s God who commanded it?” Yes please. That preceeds what He is saying today. Today, He is saying that if you simply believe in Jesus’ sacrifice, your sins will be atoned for once and for all.
The Word vs the Bible
All truths are not the same. Some are more essential than others. Isaiah 28:10 says, “For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept, Line upon line, line upon line, Here a little, there a little.” So it is important what we emphasize. Obedience is more important than sacrifice; loving one another is more important than speaking the language of angels. The Truth is as important as the Order of Truth. To understand this more, read on the Mystery of Revelation.
That’s why it’s wrong to overemphasize the Bible more than the Author. Paul himself said that the letter killeth. We read the Bible to encounter the Word. The Bible is a book but the Word is a person. The Bible is the Word of God but the Word of God is not the Bible. The Word of God is God Himself. The truth is, you can read the Bible and miss the Word. This is very dangerous, but many have walked this road of perversion.
Now that you’ve carefully read all this, I would like you to re-read it from time to time and use to check some things in your own life. Am I holding on a “preceeding” Word or “proceeding” Word? The Bible is the Word of God alright but have I made the Book more supreme than the Author? Remember, “the letter killeth, but the Spirit giveth life”.
It is the Spirit of God that makes the Bible the Word of God. He makes it comes alive. Without Him, the Bible is a book. With Him, you encounter the Word.