I remember my very first prayer after I was born again and began my journey as a Jesus follower. The fact that I can remember it means that it must have been important to me, as I can’t remember the other 99% of prayers that I have prayed since. Whilst I can’t recall the exact words that I said, I prayed and asked God to help me to believe that the Bible was his truthful, inerrant, personal Word to me and that I could trust it as being his.
What we believe about the bible is incredibly important. Is it just a book of wise sayings, or the thoughts of various religious people written over the years, or is it something greater? It is certainly a popular book where tens of millions of copies are sold every year. The early church fathers valued it greatly, Irenaeus said, “The scriptures are perfect”, and Martin Luther spoke of “scripture which has never erred”. This is high praise indeed. Like them and the Psalmist of Psalm 1: 2a I have come to delight in it.
Whilst there can be difficulties sometimes in understanding its message – even the apostle Peter had trouble with Paul’s letters, (2 Peter 3:16) – I have come to love it as the God breathed and inspired Word to me. We have seen in previous blogs that the Holy Spirit breathed life into God’s creation, and breathed life into us as his created loved ones. The Holy Spirit has also breathed life into the written words of the bible, 2 Tim 3:15. It’s amazing to think that he did this by using the authorship of some 40 or so people; people of all types: kings, scholars, poets, fishermen, statesmen, historians and doctors. People who lived submitted to, and in the worship of our almighty father. Living vessels through whom he could work.
In so doing, he has given us something that is infinitely trustworthy, powerful, and lifegiving. When we read it as people filled with the Holy Spirit, because it is Holy Spirit written, we connect with it, and ‘know in our inner knower’ that the Bible is his and that he is speaking to us. Let us be thankful for it today and appreciate the Holy Spirit master craftsman at work.