Saturday, April 25, 2015

Accurately Handling the Word of Truth

Psalm 119:133
Guide my steps by your word, so I will not be overcome by evil.
Psalm 119:133

Romans 1:16 (NIV)
I am not ashamed of the Gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.
Romans 1:16 (NIV)

Matthew 4:5-7
Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, and said, "If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say, 'He will order his angels to protect you. And they will hold you up with their hands so you won't even hurt your foot on a stone.' " Jesus responded, "The Scriptures also say, 'You must not test the Lord your God.' "

There's that TONE. Satan tends to use a hateful, accusing tone. Jesus NEVER uses that kind of tone. Satan also likes to twist Scripture and use it out of context which is exactly what he did here. That is why it is so important to know the Bible and to look for the whole counsel of God. We can't take isolated verses and apply them without knowing and understanding their context.

The verses satan tried to trick Jesus with are a perfect example:
Psalm 91
Those who live in the shelter of the Most High
will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
This I declare about the Lord:
He alone is my refuge, my place of safety;
He is my God, and I trust him.
For he will rescue you from every trap
and protect you from deadly disease.
He will cover you with his feathers.
He will shelter you with his wings.
His faithful promises are your armor and protection.
Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night,
nor the arrow that flies in the day.
Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness,
nor the disaster that strikes at midday.
Though a thousand fall at your side,
though ten thousand are dying around you,
these evils will not touch you.
Just open your eyes,
and see how the wicked are punished.
If you make the Lord your refuge,
if you make the Most High your shelter,
no evil will conquer you;
no plague will come near your home.
For he will order his angels
to protect you wherever you go.
They will hold you up with their hands
so you won't even hurt your foot on a stone.
You will trample upon lions and cobras;
you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet!
The Lord says, "I will rescue those who love me.
I will protect those who trust in my name.
When they call on me, I will answer;
I will be with them in trouble.
I will rescue and honor them.
I will reward them with a long life
and give them my salvation."

If you were to read just verses 11 & 12 it sounds like a cart blanche to do whatever we want and God will protect us. But reading the whole psalm reveals that it is actually a call to trust God and to rely on him alone as our refuge. Very different from what satan was implying.

Digging even deeper, we realize that this psalm, which could be taken as a promise that Christians will never suffer from disease or trouble, is not such. Verses like 2 Timothy 2:3, 2 Timothy 4:5, Hebrews 2:10, Hebrews 2:18, 1 Peter 1:11, 1 Peter 4:13 and many, many others show use that Christians are called to suffer and even our Savior had to suffer.

Lord, help me to never take your words out of context or misapply them. In Jesus' Name, amen 

2 Timothy 2:15
Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.

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