April 2, 2014
The 4 Bibles
The creation of God is a Bible in itself. The Apostle Paul says that all of God’s invisible attributes are CLEARLY seen thru looking at (what I term) the Bible of nature/creation (Romans 1:20). Again, Paul, quoting Psalm 19, goes on to say in Romans 10:18 “…I ask, have they not heard? Indeed they have, for ‘Their voice has gone out to all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world.'” So whose “voice” is Paul referring to? He is quoting Psalm 19 so the answer is found there and that answer is that Creation is “speaking” of God and His glory….. so one may deduce that creation is a Bible “speaking” to us of God.
Jesus Himself is also The Word of God…..John 1:1 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and The Word was God.” Then again a few verses later John writes “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” And finally we see a name by which Jesus is known in Revelation 19:13 “He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God.”
Finally the Apostle Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 3:2-3 “You are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men; being manifested that you are a letter of Christ, cared for by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.” The word “letter” is the Greek word “epistle.” The books in the New Testament which follow the book of Acts, are called “epistles”. So Paul is saying, “God has written His story and His word on the tablets of your hearts and lives. You are living bibles, known and read by all men.”
What I love about this is that everyone on the planet who comes into contact with a follower of Jesus Christ reads their bible daily. It may not be the actual physical Bible, but they read the bible of your life. Unfortunately many of those who bear the name Christians are false converts and many others who are true converts exhibit a corrupted “version” of the bible in their lives. Therefore when the only bible that people ever read is your life, then it is imperative that we present to them an accurate and true one. For they will make conclusions based upon what they “read.” The very name and character of God is at stake as we live out our daily lives. May we, who name the Name of Jesus Christ, endeavor to present a fresh and living bible to those around us and not one which is marred by the corrupt nature of our flesh.
So practically what areas can we focus on? Let’s start with our human relationships. When we walk in forgiveness by the power of the Living God, others see the gracious and forgiving God thru our lives. When we choose not to gossip or drag others down with our words, we demonstrate a different nature. When we express gratitude and thankfulness in the midst of a trial, others see that our heart and life is different and are forced to wonder why. When we are generous with our time, energy and money, the world looks on and has an opportunity to read about our Heavenly Father who Himself is generous. It does matter how we live, how we react and respond, how we relate to others.
Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” The Greek word for “new” does NOT mean new in time (something brand new or new to me), but rather new in NATURE. The very character and nature of our life is new. We are now “foreign” in that our values, our nature, our character and our lives have been transformed and no longer of this world. I pray that we can live today in the new character and crucify the old nature so that we may present ourselves as living bibles to those around us.
Bible verses are from the ESV and NASB translations