Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Catechism #5

Q. What rule hath God given to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him?
A. The word of God, which is contained in the scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, is the only rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him

If the chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever, how do we accomplish this? How do we know how to glorify God, and how can we learn to enjoy Him?

It seems these days the key to being a best-selling author is to have had some type of awesome encounter with God. The latest fad in religious bookstores is books written by people who claimed to have been to heaven, or that they simply put their pen to paper and God did the writing. Others say God appeared to them with some new message that God chose them to share.

Are these the ways God has chosen to reveal Himself? It seems very unlikely.

God does not need to give anyone a special tour of heaven or a new word of knowledge; everything we need to know about God has already been recorded for us. As Abraham told the unnamed rich man in Luke 16:31, “If [the unsaved] will not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.”

Do you want to know what heaven is like? God already gave John a vision of it, which was recorded for us in the New Testament book of Revelation. Do you want to know what message God has for you? All 66 books of the Bible are His message to you.

It is true that we can learn about God through His created world, as Psalm 19:1 says, “the heavens declare the glory of God, and the [sky] shows His handiwork.” We can look around and know there must have been a Creator who is powerful, and therefore God. But when it comes to knowing how to live—how to glorify God—the Bible is the only sufficient source of information.

Although God used humans as His instrument, He is the author (2 Timothy 3:16/2 Peter 1:19-21). Every word contained in the Bible is true. I don’t have to prove it; if anyone doubts, it is up to them to disprove it. And after 2,000 years of trying, so far no one has.

As believers, we need to take Scripture for what it is, and be careful that we do not add to or take away from it, even if that means rejecting the teachings of a pastor that preaches something extra biblical (Revelation 22:18-19/Galatians 1:8-9).

The best way to learn the Bible is to read it. Make sure you pray first for the Holy Spirit to teach you as you read and to lead you into truth (John 16:13). 

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