Nothing Tops the Word of God
“… the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:17, ESV)
Recently I walked away from a church. From the ministry God had led me to. From people who trusted me and counted on me.
My heart is sick. But I had no choice.
The leader of the church (I can no longer call him a pastor) has turned from truth to puffery, has turned from the Word of the Lord to heresy. He claims God speaks directly to him, telling him new and better information than is in the Bible. He teaches the people in the church to listen to him rather than to trust Scripture.
I prayed, and explained. I went to him, and I went to the church members. I argued, prayed more, waited … and finally had to leave. Because nothing tops the Word of God.
Seventy-six times in the Bible we are told, “It is written …” Twenty of those are spoken by Jesus, referring to the Old Testament as God’s eternal Word.
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16, ESV). We are not to add to it, nor take anything away from it (Deuteronomy 4:2, Deuteronomy 12:32; Proverbs 30:6, Revelation 22:18).
God’s Word tells us that God’s Word is alive and active (John 6:63, Hebrews 4:12),
- is to be treasured (Job 23:12),
- bears witness to Jesus (John 5:39),
- is sacred (2 Timothy 3:17),
- is truth (Proverbs 30:5, Daniel 10:21, John 17:17),
- is pure (Psalm 12:6),
- is eternal (Psalm 119:89, Isaiah 40:8, Matthew 24:35, 1 Peter 1:25),
- gives light (Psalm 119:105),
- brings joy (Psalm 119:111), and
- gives us life (Deuteronomy 8:3, Matthew 4:4, Luke 4:4).
Before I left the above-mentioned church, I was teaching the kids to go to the Bible to check the truth of every statement. I told them about the believers in Berea, who were praised because they listened to Paul’s preaching and then checked the Scriptures to make sure Paul was right (Acts 17:11).
“The Bible says there is no God,” I said. “I’m not lying, and I’m not joking. That’s in the Bible.”
“It can’t be!”
“Check it out,” I said with a smile. “Prove me wrong.”
They scrambled for their Bibles, concordances, on-line resources. Pages turned; kids were muttering and talking among themselves.
“Got it, Miss Elsi! You tried to trick us! You didn’t tell us the whole verse! Psalm 14:1 really says, ‘The fool says in his heart, there is no god!’”
Ravi Zacharias tells the story of Hien Pham, a Vietnamese man who was imprisoned by the Vietcong for helping Americans. He was so beaten down, he decided to give up on God. The next morning, as he was cleaning the latrines, he saw writing on a piece of soiled paper in the trash. Curious, he picked it out of the filth, washed it off, and read, “We know that for those who love God, all things work together for good … Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?” (Romans 8:28, 35).
When I was a new believer in college, I learned that I couldn’t stack my Sunday school materials by size. Nothing could be set on top of the Bible, because the Bible was God’s Word, and nothing tops Word of God.