Is God’s word sufficient? Do you believe it is inspired and without error? I just completed 30 hours of classroom instruction in Biblical Counseling where the central objective was, Yes it is! The Bible attests to its sufficiency in that it contains everything we need for salvation, trust, and obedience in God. Within God’s word we can find flawless truth to build our lives upon (John 17:17) and guidance to help us navigate throughout that journey. (Psalm 119:105) But for those who think the Bible doesn’t pertain to modern times and situations…sin started in the Garden of Eden and continues to today. You can go ahead and hang all kinds of new names on it, but sin is sin…it’s rebellion against God.
After Job’s three friends had been unable to win their argument that he, (Job), was being punished by God… a young man by the name of Elihu stood to speak. (Now you can read his entire speech in Chapters 32-37 of Job.) Elihu’s assertion was that God was instructing or teaching Job…that even in all the trials and suffering he was going through, Job was to trust God. (Interestingly enough, when God started to speak, He never condemned Elihu’s words like He did Job’s and his three friends!) Now the Lord allows righteous people to suffer and go through trials everyday…but it’s not out of punishment, but to strengthen their faith and trust in Him. And when we should wander from the truth, God faithfully keeps bringing us back, that we may see the error of our way and turn. (James 5:19)
We all spend our lives searching for it. But when we’re confounded with it, we usually don’t like what we hear or see. What is it you ask? It’s the Truth. The truth is sobering, straightforward, and serious. It’s what we don’t want to hear or see, so instead, we play mind games with ourselves, pretending it doesn’t exist. But the truth will remain the truth, regardless of what we want to think…and God is really good at revealing it to us. What we have to do then… is accept it.
Sometimes, the truth hurts. It’s not that we don’t already know we’re on the wrong path…it’s when it’s brought to the light of day by someone else that we squirm. For when someone is bold and loving enough to confront us openly and honestly…we need to not react, but to listen. It’s called speaking the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15). It’s genuine love, not wanting to wound, but sincerely desiring spiritual growth in the other person.
For many, the bondage of fear stops us from being able to move forward with life. We long to be liberated from the paralyzing emotions, but feel there’s little we can do to change. But if we’ll take the time to study a few Scriptures, we’ll discover that God has already made the way for us. It starts with this verse in Psalms. When I cry out to the Lord, He answers by liberating me from the terror I’m going through…in other words, setting me free from its control. And this freedom from fear can only be found in the truth of the Gospel. For Jesus declares to us in John 8:32, ” If you hold to My teachings, you are really My disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” There can be freedom from doubt and fear, and it starts with the saving revelation of the Gospel Message.
We have become so accustomed to hearing half-truths, falsehoods, and the spinning of the account to serve ones self…it’s hard to identify truth from lies now a days. Selfish love deliberately mixes truth with falsehoods to best serve the present situation. They conveniently leave out details that might incriminate or point the finger to them…having no regard for others. Selfish love is only interested in its own welfare…not caring how it may impact another person. The love of Christ is glad to tell the truth…the correct and accurate rendition…not the sugar-coated half-truth that might get us out of trouble. Also, unselfish love doesn’t have to remember what story was told to who…if it’s the truth from the beginning.
It tells us here to stand fast against the enemy, but unless you’ve prepared for battle ahead of time, the enemy will have you for lunch. The belt of truth is that solid foundation of doctrinal knowledge of God’s Word…It’s His unshakable, unchangeable, everlasting truth that we need to gird our heart, soul, and mind with. Our belt of truth also holds all our weapons in place around our waist… weapons that are always at the ready. Finally, this belt of truth girds us with the power and authority of Jesus Christ to stand firm against anything the enemy throws at us.
I love nightlights! I’ll admit I have at least 8 spread throughout the house, casting their subtle radiance so I won’t trip and fall in the dark. God’s truth is like a nightlight into our darkness…showing us His way so we won’t stumble. But when we choose to not live by the light of His truth, we are easily deceived and blinded by lies that only foster hatred and distrust against our fellow-man. When we love one another, the light of God’s truth illuminates situations, obstacles, and personalities for what they really are…exposing hurting hearts and revealing with honesty how we’re more alike than different.
You may have been like me…your parents took you to Church every Sunday, you participated in activities at Church, and you even memorized Bible verses. You had lots of head knowledge about God…but it never migrated south to your heart. It wasn’t until years later when I had a very personal encounter with Jesus, that my life was changed forever. So what happened? We can go through life knowing “about” something, but it’s not until we come to the full comprehension and experience it for ourselves that it’s made real. When God reveals the spiritual truth of just who Jesus Christ is to us and that He died for our sins…there is no longer any confusion. For the spotlight of truth shines brightly onto our wretched lives, and we see ourselves for what we really are…a sinner needing salvation.