So for my first post, I wanted to address why I have set out to start a blog and what I hope to do. The bible is an amazing book, which I highly suggest you read if you haven’t already done so. It makes BIG claims, yet many people today disregard it as irrelevant. Those people who do say they believe in the bible, many do not read it regularly and often people say that large sections of it are simply unimportant. However, if the bible truly is inspired by the Holy Spirit, and the living and eternal word of God, then we need to take a long and careful look at scripture, and work out what it is telling us.
The amazing thing is that wherever you look, the bible is telling one coherent story. God’s plan was always to send Jesus, his own Son, to die on a cross so that he could win for himself a holy people that would glorify him forever! Look from Genesis to Revelation: all the Old Testament points towards Jesus, God is making promises and sending prophecies telling of Jesus; then in the New Testament we see Jesus fulfil all those promises and prophecies. By willingly dying on the cross, Jesus takes the punishment of death each human deserves enabling people to be in relationship with God again.
So if that’s it, the bible is just all about Jesus dying on a cross for us, why actually write a blog? If we have the point of the bible figured out can’t we just put it neatly back on the shelf and turn on Netflix instead? To borrow a phrase off Paul, by no means! The bible claims it is the living word of an infinite God that is able to pierce our hearts, and provides sustenance to us:
12 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)
4 But he answered, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone,
but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4:4, where Jesus quotes Deutoronomy 8:3)
Can we really have learnt everything we can about an infinite God from one read through or stop needing the food God is providing for us?
People often complain that the bible is hard to read and complicated, while in some places its just mystifying. If we realise that God intended the bible to keep us looking to him for a lifetime, and that he is infinite yet we are finite then this makes sense. Wouldn’t it be a little worrying if we could know everything about God in a month or a year? From experience as every year goes by, I can understand more, and he is growing me in my knowledge of him, which is an amazing and wonderful thing. This enables me to be constantly in awe and delighting in new aspects I learn about God, as my relationship deepens.
The bible also says that it is required to keep us going in the faith, and that those who aren’t growing in the faith are in danger of spiritually dying. Sometimes this is a biblical truth we find hard to believe, do we really need to be growing in our knowledge of the Lord all the time to not fall away? But the bible does assert this to be the truth:
5 For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, 6 and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, 7 and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For whoever lacks these qualities is so short-sighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. 10 Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to make your calling and election sure, for if you practise these qualities you will never fall. (1 Peter 1: 5-10)
Therefore, knowing the Bible seems to take itself very seriously, and expect to be an essential aspect to a Christians life, I hope that, as I write this blog I will grow in my knowledge and love of the Lord through his word. I also hope that anyone who reads it will feel an increasing assurance in Christ’s love for them, as they grow to understand what God’s word is saying.
I will try to aim to post about different topics and books of the bible, but also critically review Christian books for their biblical accuracy as well as how interesting they are, so that together we grow up mature in Christ (I know that in this post I have covered several topics briefly, but I will come back to each of them and do a whole post, and if you have preferences, let me know in the comments, and I will prioritise). I would love to hear from people their thoughts, and while I aim to be as careful as I can in handling God’s word, please be kind as I, like you, am a fallible human, under God’s grace.
Grace and Peace to you all,
(Scripture quoted from English Standard Version Anglicised (ESVUK)
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.)