There’s a missing word among many, if not most Christians.
Most preachers rarely, if ever, use the word
It’s found 53 times in the Bible.
It’s a word used by Jesus. John. Luke. Paul. Peter. And James.
We claim to believe it. Obey it. And teach it.
Ironically, we substitute another word in its place that is not found in the Bible!
Can you guess what the word is?
We talk about what the Bible says, yet the Bible word for its contents is Scripture!
The word “Scripture” literal means “a writing, or a thing written.” However, “scripture” is used to identify the sacred writings. Paul calls them “the holy Scriptures” (Rom. 1:2).
“Scripture” most often refers specifically to the Old Testament writings. The expression “the Scripture says” in the New Testament points back to a passage from an Old Testament prophet.
Jesus used the scriptures to point people to God and to identify Himself as the Messiah. (John 5:39)
The apostles argued from Scripture to prove their points, elicit faith in their hearers and demonstrate that Jesus was the Christ. (Acts 18:28)
2 Timothy 3:16, reminds us of the Scripture’s value.
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.”
The apostle Paul affirmed that the Scripture is inspired. Not inspired in the sense of an “ah-ha” moment. Or a stroke of genuius. But in a divine sense. The word “inspired” literally means “God breathed.”
Paul affirms four ways the Scripture helps us.
(1) The Scripture shows you what is right!
Paul calls this doctrine or teaching. Without the Word we are ignorant of what is right in the sight of God. Paul said the Jews in his day were ignorant of God’s righteousness. Instead they established their own system of righteousness. It reminds me of some folks today.
We are admonished not to be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is (Eph. 5:17). The Scripture shows us what is right religiously. Morally. Ethically. I can know how to live right in my relationship with others. In my family life. In my business and social dealings. And most importantly how to be right with God!
(2) The Scripture shows you what is wrong!
Paul calls this reproof. It means to convict or refute error. The Scripture reproves us when we get off the path, when we get away from what is right.
The world today doesn’t know what is wrong. In fact, it’s not politically correct to say anything or anyone is wrong. The watch word today is tolerance. We are told that we must accept any idea, belief or lifestyle, regardless of how bizarre or outlandish it is! The only thing wrong, is to say anyone is wrong!
The Scripture teaches some things are wrong! It is wrong to lie. To lust. To cheat. To steal. To commit fornication. To hate others. To gossip. To be greedy. The Scripture is our standard. It rebukes us when we are wrong
(3) The Scripture help you get right!
Paul calls it correction. It means to straighten up or reform. Rectifying what is wrong. Setting things right. It’s the idea of admonition and restitution. It gets us on the right path. If we’re honest, we admit what is right and forsake what is wrong.
We get right by reforming our lives. By changing to conform to Truth. By allowing the Word to convict our consciences and change our lives. The Scripture will correct my attitude and fill me with love. Correct my motives and make them pure. Correct my actions and make them godly.
(4) The Scripture helps you stay right
Paul calls this instruction in righteousness. It’s nurturing, training and teaching. Righteousness stands in opposition to unrighteousness. The Scripture shows us how to live. Really live
Instruction in righteous living helps us to correct our mistakes, curb our passions, and control our lives by continued personal growth (2 Pet. 3:18). Through Bible Study (2 Tim. 2:15) Through a Closer Walk with God. Through Fellowship with Other Believers.
Like the Bereans, let’s “search the Scriptures daily!” (Acts 17:11) In them you will find eternal life.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman