When You Rely Only On The Word of God...
1. It is not necessary to agonize over the doubts that always accompany human intuition. If you simply listen to others talk about the Bible and do a little superficial reading, mixed in with the assumptions of your heritage and the intuition of your present circumstance, there will always be lingering doubts; never strong conviction. The solution is, read to learn and learn to live the Word of God (Psa. 119:9-16). Strength comes by the Word of God abiding in you (1 Jno. 2:14). Get the Bible off the shelf, into your head and life!
2. It is not necessary to qualify some man to trust in. Through informal and subtle means, we may qualify certain men, let them study and blindly accept their pronouncements. "Do not put your trust in princes, nor in a son of man, in whom there is no help," (Psa. 146:3). "Happy is he who ha the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God, who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, who keep truth forever," (Psa. 146:5,6). "Let God be true...," (Rom. 3:4). The people of Berea had it right (Acts 17:11).
3. It is not necessary to adopt a pre-formulated and fluid creedal, institutionalized religion. If you are willing to do the work, to read the Word of God and abide in it, it is not necessary (and in fact wrong) to find your place among existing religious denominations and offerings of men. Think in terms of finding your way to God through Christ, as taught in the Word. Comparative religious studies often become an exercise of simply comparing human history and doctrine. Go back to the source. The Word is sufficient and profitable "for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness," (2 Tim. 3:16,17). The word of God lives and abides beyond all the changing revisions of human creeds, and stands wholly above every one of them whether written or unwritten (1 Pet. 1:23).
4. It is not necessary to fall under the influence of your emotions or the emotions of others. As human beings, there is certainly an emotional component to our make-up. The role of emotions is not to guide us! Our emotions along with the emotions of others has no authoritative role. But when we submit to divine authority, one result will be the emotion of joy. "Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help," (Psa. 146:5). We must accept God's help first (by the obedience of faith), then the happy state of joy results as we continue to walk by faith (see also, Acts 8:39; Gal. 5:22).
By Warren E. Berkley
The Final Page
From Expository Files 15.4; April 2008