Of The Word Of God
Jesus said: "Thy word is truth" (John 17:17).
Jesus declares not only that God's Word contains truth but that it is truth. The Christian who believes in Christ as "...the way, the truth, and the life," (John 14:6) is one who believes the Word of God set down in the Bible. Jesus Himself explains the nature of that Word of God. He said, "Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me" (John 5:39). It is by God's Word alone that we know Christ and the truth of the gospel, that we believe, and that we are saved.
But to believe in that Christ of the Scriptures means that we also hold that Word as He did. Jesus Himself declared of that Word of God, "The scripture cannot be broken," (John 10:35). It is essentially one Scripture, (Jesus uses the singular not the plural). It is one Word of God, an unbreakable truth. And it is without error. Truth by its very nature is the opposite of the lie. By underscoring the unbreakability of God's Word, the Scripture, Jesus leaves no room for misunderstanding. The Scripture is altogether truth, from beginning to end. Deny that fact, and you deny Christ and call God a liar.
When Jesus said that "the scripture cannot be broken," He was speaking first of all of the Old Testament, for the New Testament had yet to be given. Therefore Jesus Himself spoke of the creation and of Noah and the Flood as factual history. Not only so but when He said, "Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me" (John 5:39), He made certain principles clear. First, the entire Bible is God's Word concerning Jesus Christ. It is all gospel, not just some of it. Even the law represented Christ in types and figures. It was Jesus Christ by promise in Whom the Old Testament saints believed and were saved. Secondly, Jesus defines the relation between the Old and New Testaments as one of promise and fulfillment. He says, "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill," (Matt. 5:17). In harmony with this the entire Bible, as it finds its center in Jesus Christ, is God's Word to New Testament Christians. This means also that God does not need to restate in the New Testament matters which have always been the plain principles of His Word. "The scripture cannot be broken." Therefore the New Testament declares also of the Old Testament, "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness," (II Tim. 3:16). All Scripture means all Scripture. Do you know well the entire Bible? Is your church life founded on "all Scripture?" Half a Bible in faith and practice, is a false gospel. The Scriptures, and Jesus Himself, say so.
Nor is Jesus' doctrine of the New Testament any different. It also is the Word of God. Concerning the New Testament Scripture He promised His disciples the Holy Spirit which He would send. He said, "howbeit when the Spirit of truth is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come" (John 16:13). By that work of the Spirit, Jesus would give His church the gospels and the epistles. His promise to His disciples was that His Spirit "...shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you" (John 14:26). That promise was fulfilled in giving us the written Bible in its finished form during the lifetime of the apostles. The Bible was given by the Holy Spirit through men in time, yet in such a way that it is wholly God's Word--not man's word or opinion ( II Peter 1:20, 21). This is the testimony of the Scriptures themselves, it is given "by inspiration of God," (II Tim. 3:16).
Jesus teaches an abiding standard of truth for the church of all ages in the Word of God. He said, "I am the light of the world" (John 8:14). His light is not dim, obscure, or uncertain. The Bible can be read and its teaching can be accurately known and understood by believers. He that believes in Jesus then, believes that Word. This is Jesus' own doctrine concerning faith and unbelief in the Word. He says, "He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God" (John 8:47)
You must either say, "Thy word is truth," in obedience to Christ about the Bible's teaching concerning the origin of the world, concerning grace and salvation, concerning marriage and the roles of men and women, or you must call Jesus a liar in unbelief. Do you hear His Word?
By Rev. Thomas Miersma, Missionary Pastor
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