We have two bits of evidence about the Somebody [behind the Moral Law]. One is the universe He has made. If we used that as our only clue, then I think we should have to conclude that He was a great artist (for the universe is a very beautiful place), but also that He is quite merciless and no friend to man (for the universe is a very dangerous and terrifying place).
The other bit of evidence is that Moral Law which He has put into our minds. And this is a better bit of evidence than the other, because it is inside information. You find out more about God from the Moral Law than from the universe in general just as you find out more about a man by listening to his conversation than by looking at a house he has built.”
Sometime ago I set a goal of praying through the psalms, one psalm a day. This is an ancient practice because the psalms have traditionally been the great prayer book of the people of God… But a strange thing happened. I found that my goal became to get through the psalms. Each day that I did one, I could chalk it off my list, for I was one step closer to the goal. This meant that I never wanted to get stuck on one psalm two days in a row – that would keep me from my goal.
It was as if in my mind God had a great big Behavior Modification chart on the refrigerator of heaven, and each time I made it thorough a psalm I got a gold star. Naturally this utterly sabotaged God’s real purpose for giving the psalms in the first place. The goal is not for us to get through the Scriptures. The goal is to get the Scriptures through us.“
Gratitude is like a flashlight. It lights up what is already there. You don’t necessarily have anything more or different, but suddenly you can actually see what it is. And because you can see, you no longer take it for granted.”
I prayed for faith and thought that some day faith would come down and strike me like lightning. But faith did not seem to come. One day I read in the tenth chapter of Romans, “Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” I had up to this time closed my Bible and prayed for faith. I now opened my Bible and began to study, and faith has been growing ever since.
The Bible is very easy to understand. But we Christians are a bunch of scheming swindlers. We pretend to be unable to understand it because we know very well that the minute we understand, we are obliged to act accordingly.”
Now, what happens if you eliminate anything from the Bible that offends your sensibility and crosses your will? If you pick and choose what you want to believe and reject the rest, how will you ever have a God who can contradict you? You won’t! You’ll have a Stepford God! A God, essentially, of your own making, and not a god with whom you can have a relationship and genuine interaction. Only if your God can say things that outrage you and make you struggle (as in a real friendship or marriage!) will you know that you have gotten hold of a real God and not a figment of your imagination. So an authoritative Bible is not the enemy of a personal relationship with God. It is the precondition for it.”
I am on a completely unplugged vacation this week. (Are you happy for me or mad at me? Or a little of both? ‘wink’) I didn’t want to leave you hanging, so I put together some terrific quotes about the Bible. No commentary. The quotes speak for themselves. I’m curious which one is your favorite. Would you let me know in the comments?
Photo Courtesty of FreeDigitalPhotos.net – Graur Codrin
A Bible that’s falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn’t.”
Charles H. Spurgeon
The Holy Scriptures are our letters from home.”
St. Augustine of Hippo
As I walked out the door toward my freedom, I knew that if I did not leave all the anger, hatred, and bitterness behind that I would still be in prison.
The Bible is often like the National Anthem. You hear it at the beginning and then never again. And it’s not usually sung well.”