I enjoy reading. I enjoy research, which involves reading. I enjoy … well reading. Reading and analyzing was a part of my work career for many years but I enjoyed reading even before going to law school. So, what book do you love to read? What is your favorite book? If you were on a desert island and only had one book with you, what would it be?
I expect there would be a myriad of answers, and there are quite a number of books that I would like to have with me, but there is one that is high above the others, that is the love letter sent to us from a Holy God and it is entitled the Holy Bible.
I believe that the Holy Bible is the Word of God, that it is inspired and God-breathed, and that it is the only guide for my faith and life as a Christian. So, it is the book that I would select above all others.
In our home, there are a number of Bibles and each one has a special meaning to us. All are versions of the inspired Word of God.
This is the Bible that I used for many years. When it began to come apart, my beloved husband had it rebound for me. I use the English Standard Version now, but there are times that the text of the King James Version is just too beautiful for me to ignore.
This is my Great Uncle’s Bible. It was so worn, that he had electrical tape around the edges to keep it together. One characteristic of this Bible is that in the front of it there were blank pages. These pages were for the owner to write notes in, to keep at hand references that would assist their study of the Scriptures, or even outlines of lessons that were presented during Sunday School or worship.
The first entry is dated August 24. 1947. For more than 50 years my Uncle had written in his Bible, had kept copies of inspirational thoughts, had written the Sunday School lessons that he taught in the Men’s Class, and had read and notated the text of God’s Word. I have spent hours reading his notes and lessons that are recorded in these tissue-like pages of his Bible. This is a beautiful reminder of a man who is now with our Lord. I am blessed each time I read out of it.
Praise God that He has provided us with His Word.
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”
2 Timothy 3:16-17 ESV
Note that this verse does not say “Only the New Testament is breathed out by God” or “Only the scripture that you think is easy to obey is breathed out by God” or “Ignore what you don’t like because this is just an historical text!”
ALL Scripture is the Word of God, even the passages that are difficult to hear. Scripture tells us that which He desires, how He wants us to live, what He values … we don’t have to guess and we don’t even have to ask. He has given us the answers already, and they are available if you just read His Word.
God’s Word is powerful. Through it the Holy Spirit can convict of sin, and through it the Holy Spirit can teach us how to grow into the likeness of Jesus Christ.
“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”
Hebrews 4:12 ESV
God’s Word is our guide to living the life that God has intended for His people to live. We are to share it and we are to express it through our life as we live out its teachings to those who watch us interact with others.
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”
Colossians 3:16 ESV
I thank God that I live in a country where owning a Bible is not a crime and where I can carry my Bible with me without fear of being attacked or killed. Not all in our world are so blessed. My heart aches for them as I pray for those for whom owning a Bible seems to be a far off dream.
The Holy Bible is the inspired holy scripture of the one and only holy God. The Holy Bible truly is a love letter from the Almighty God to us, telling us everything we need to know to live a life that is pleasing to Him. We should recognize its inestimable worth and treat it with the respect that a love letter deserves!
So, what is your favorite book?
Father, I pray that we would remember that Your Word to us is holy, that You inspired the writers and that You protected the Word so that it has remained inviolate for thousands of years. Forgive me when I treat it with little respect or ignore it altogether. Help us to remember that it is Your Word to us, not just another book by some author or another. Reverent treatment should be afforded to the scriptures and loving use should be given as we cherish it through the years.