Friday, December 17, 2010

God said.... (Part 1)

What comes to mind when you hear the words, “God said”? How do the words, “God said” affect you? These two questions got me to thinking during a recent meditation. The bible says that God’s word is alive, powerful, and revelational:

For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.1

For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart.2

When God speaks, it is unlike any words I could utter; there is a vast difference between what God says and what I say. God’s words are spiritual and life-giving words.

Every word I've spoken to you is a Spirit-word, and so it is life-making.3

God’s word contains the elemental qualities of creativity; giving and sustaining life where none existed. We recognize great works of art, music and literature, yet none of those we recognize have the inherent ability to infuse life where none existed. Science and researchers are making tremendous strides in biotech research, yet what they discover and produce is not life-making; they have simply discovered how to manipulate properties at a cellular level that already have life.

God’s word is Alive: Recognizing that God’s word is alive ought to cause me to seek more of His word in my life, causing me to think, say and do that which affirms and glorifies Him. The fact that God’s word is alive is what propels me forward. His word is alive to the extent that as I store His word in me, I am renewed, invigorated, and refreshed. The sad truth is that I often find myself bogged down by my own words that continually try to shape my view of the world I live in. I keep thinking about a post written by Joan (Reflections) called The Right Perspective ~ Choosing Thankfulness, in which she expresses that we need to look carefully at 1 Thessalonians 5:18 to see that it says, give thanks in all circumstances, not thanks for all circumstances. It has helped me tremendously to appreciate the grace of God that sustains me in every aspect of my life. Having the properties of life, God’s word sustains me with patience and endurance. I’m learning to thank God no matter what the circumstance (all things) may be. I remind myself of His word, what God said so that my spirit is renewed with the life-giving, sustaining properties of God’s word; enabling me to endure and get through my circumstances.

God’s word is powerful: Men and women make powerful decisions in government and business that affect the lives of many, yet they lack the ability to say one word that is truly creative and sustaining. Who is there that can oppose God? The bible recounts numerous instances when those with power assumed they were above God only to come face to face with the God whose power they had not imagined possible. The bible asks the question in Revelation:

…who shall be able to stand?4

God’s word is alive and powerful. Combining these two elements tells me that God has the ability to make and shape who, what, when, where, why, and how He speaks His word. Touring a nuclear power facility gives one an idea of the awesome power of nuclear energy and yet nuclear energy pales in comparison to the power of God’s word.

Who but God can speak a word that changes my life?

I remember a commercial in which a group of investors were discussing the volatility of the stock market. One investor asks a question of a representative of this prestigious investment company and as the man begins to answer, the entire room of investors turns silent and attentive to what is about to be spoken. The slogan of the commercial was:

When E.F. Hutton talks, people listen.

Questions to answer:
  1. Am I attentive to what God says?
  2. Do I thirst for more of His word?
  3. Do I see His word as a lamp to my feet and a light to my path?
  4. Do I believe that the same power that raised Jesus from the dead is able to resurrect my life?
People with influence have an audience but there are times when even influential people are at a loss for words, or are unable to change the overall attitudes of others. Throughout history, there have been notable people with charisma, but even charismatic people lose the power of their charisma. You can be a person of influence, charisma or some other quality that enables you to affect others, but you can always be identified by some other trait. A person of influence can also be insensitive. A charismatic person can also be a liar. Who you are is distinguished by what you do.

The power of God’s word finds no obstacle too hard, no mountain too high, no valley too low, and no river too deep that cannot be overcome by what God says. God’s word represents Him by representing His power. We have seen the destructive power of explosives and machinery that can demolish a building, but that power has no ability to oppose the power God. God’s word has no peer; nothing can stand up to the awesome power of God. What God says cannot be revoked or invalidated by anyone.

I will continue this discussion in my next post.

Father God,

Thank you for the joy You give, and what You have said regarding Your word. I want to rely on Your word because You renew, refresh and invigorate my life. I want to count it all joy, no matter what circumstances I find myself in; I know You are with me in all things. I can trust You because Your word is representative of You. Your word is truth, lacking nothing. Your word never fails. I pray not for myself, but for family and friends, I pray for those reading these words as well. Speak to them as only the Sovereign God speaks. Shower your grace upon their lives. No matter what circumstance they may find themselves in, without a job, without a home, without family, without food, or whatever those circumstances are, speak the words that will illuminate their life, directing them what to do. You are the God who cares, loves and guides our steps. We can do nothing without You Lord. I pray Your favor upon them Lord, Your grace is sufficient. I want to always praise You, for who You are. Thank You Lord. Amen.


Spiritual SundaysNote: This post is linked to Spiritual Sundays (hosted by Charlotte and Ginger). You will find that the blogs linked there are filled with a love for Christ, and a passion to share. I encourage you to visit. You won't be disappointed.

Footnotes:
  1. Hebrews 4:12, NLTB
  2. Hebrews 4:12, The Amplified Bible
  3. John 6:63, The Message Bible
  4. Revelation 6:17, KJV
References:
  1. The Ryrie Study Bible (New American Standard Version), Edited by Charles C. Ryrie, Moody Publishers, Chicago, Illinois, ISBN 0-8024-8920-6
  2. The Amplified Bible, by The Lockman Foundation, Zondervan Bible Publishers, Grand Rapids, Michigan, ISBN-13: 978-0310951414
  3. King James Version, The Crusade Analytical Study Edition, Crusade Bible Publishers, Inc., PO Box 90011, Nashville, Tennessee 37209
  4. The Message Bible, by Eugene H. Peterson, NavPress Publishing Group, Colorado Springs, CO, ISBN-13: 978-1600060250
  5. New King James Version, by Nelson Bibles, Thomas Nelson Publishers, Inc., PO Box 141000, Nashville, Tennessee, ISBN-13: 978-0840713704
  6. The NIV Study Bible, Edited by Kenneth Barker, Donald Burdick, John Stek, Walter Wessel and Ronald Youngblood, Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49530, USA
  7. The New Living Translation Bible, by Tyndale Charitable Trust, Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois, ISBN-13: 978-0842384896

21 comments:

Charlotte said...

How important it is to listen when God speaks and not just listen, but think about it and respond to it as well.
Blessings,
Charlotte

Renee said...

Very thoughtful post with good quetions for us to consider...God's words are so very powerful, yes. I wonder if I truly realize the power they have in my life. Thank you for giving me this to ponder.

Joan said...

Hi MTJ - as I read your post, I thought of the words found in Genesis 1 - "and God said." With His very words, He spoke the world, the Heavens, and all creation into being. Now that is powerful! When He speaks, we should listen.

I'm glad my post blessed you. I confess that I had a hard time finishing it. As I was in the middle of writing, my husband phoned to say he had stopped to help at the scene of a bad traffic accident that involved two women and a toddler. (I wrote about it the following day). The incident challenged my faith and caused me to ask myself if I can truly say I am thankful in all circimstances.

I look forward to reading part two of your post.

Blessings,
Joan

B. Niles said...

Thank you for your insigtful post MTJ. What comes to mind when I hear "God said," is that I need to shut up and listen closely. I think I talk too much some times. I think of the picture of Mary at the feet of Jesus while Martha was busy preparing a meal and scurrying around. I want to be more like Mary and soak in the Word and experience his power.

Sharon Kirby said...

Oh MTJ - once again you have blessed me with the power of your words. And yet, they were especially powerful because you spoke about God's Word. Alive and powerful in itself. There is an old saying, "The pen is mightier than the sword." The point being, words have the ability to CHANGE things in a big way. Am I letting God's Word CHANGE me, TRANSFORM me? I hope so - that is my prayer. Am I listening to the things God says to me loudly...what about the things He whispers to me? Am I being attentive to those words? Oh yes, Lord, let it be so. Am I thirsty for more? Absolutely, yes.

I will be pondering these thoughts, as I eagerly await your next installment...

GOD BLESS!

Susy said...

Thank you for this wonderful study concerning God's Word. Over my many years as a Christian it is His word that has kept me, healed me, restored me, encouraged me, and is transforming me into His image. Many blessings to you this week.

sarah said...

When God speaks...I can run....I can fly...cause I know He's got everything under control. Even when it doesn't look like He does...just one whisper in my spirit and I know....Thanks MTJ for this post...for always inspiring me to live my best life. Have a great weekend...the best.

Karen said...

Thankful for God's Word, His Son, and the Comforter! God bless you

Wanda said...

MTJ, this a very insightful post and such great questions for me to reflect upon. It makes me wonder why at times one can give more weight to the words of other humans than to God's Word. All words have power I believe, thus I never liked the say that words could never hurt. Being even those hurtful words spoken to us or through us do not over power God's word.

Crystal Mary said...

Oh yes!! "God said"...
How important is His Word!!! so important it took the form of flesh in Jesus Christ. Oh I love what you have written here...I speak the Word out all the time..I wonder if you have heard of June Newman Davis? I have used her 'Scripture Keys for Kingdom Living' for years...It is a prescription book with scriptures for many problems. The Word of God is to be spoken out, believed and held...
So wonderous...
His Word surely is, a light unto our path...He guides and we follow.
God Bless you dear sister. <><

Vintagesouthernlife said...

Very insightful post. Thank you for sharing.It is sometimes difficult to be thankful in all things but I need to remember he has a plan and will even use the negative things that come my way.

Wishing you and your family a Very
Merry Christmas!

Ian Curtis said...

Good evening, MTJ, and Merry (forthcoming) Christmas! What better subject matter could you approach than the word of God; when God speaks, indeed no one can invalidate it. And He has spoken through His Son to us. The living Word and the written word are capable of raising the dead, transforming lives, and giving us the ability to rejoice in adversity. Look at Paul when he was bound in chains in Rome!

God bless your ministry, brother. Ian.

lynnmosher said...

Oh, I've always loved that Hebrews' verse, especially in the Amplified. The definition of *two-edged* is interesting. It actually means having two mouths and implies its language. Interesting. The sword of the Spirit, as the Word of God, can cut both ways, to pierce and to heal, and has two mouths, as if out of God’s mouth and then out of our mouths in agreement. Cool, huh? Thanks so much for this great post! Blessings to you! :D

Mya said...

What comes to my mind?
Few things in life are truly constant. Few things give us the same feeling as the phrase, God says, and the quotation, I am that I am. God and God's word are constant, all power. God speaks and it is. Truth beyond our understanding. I feel very small and very blessed.

Kaye Swain - SandwichINK for caregivers and grandparents said...

Excellent points! My first choice in most situations is to seek out and use just the right encouraging Bible verses as God's Word is, indeed, much more powerful than mine! Thank you for a sweet Spiritual Sunday.

dunlizzie said...

MTJ - this is part of why "Word" is actually my favorite word. I can't wait until part 2 to see if that includes some of my other reasons - such as John 1 :)

You say When God speaks, it is unlike any words I could utter; there is a vast difference between what God says and what I say. God’s words are spiritual and life-giving words.

This is so spot on, yet it is so easy to constantly drown ourselves in the words of the world. Yet God is the one who is ALWAYS true to His word and His word brings life indeed. It was by His Word the universe was created and in that is still making waves today.

Until Part 2, God bless -- dunlizzie

Nicole said...

Beautiful post brother! God's word should be the most important thing, something you crave and can't live without. It is so very important to listen intently instead of half heartedly.

I also think that His word is alive because to me it keeps changing. There could be a passage or verse that I read one day and His words touch me but not like the next time I read it. He continually uses His word to reach out and make you listen sometimes!

Oh and yes, I am learning to give thanks in all situations. No matter what!! It's not my plans it is His and He will be there with us through it all!

Love you post and I hope you and your family have a blessed Christmas!!

William said...

Thanks for sharing. I never get tired of reading about God and his word. Love the word God has given you. Merry Christmas

lioneagle said...

Hi MTJ -

Thank you for this rich message.

You expressed that GOD'S Word is alive - Yes, Amen!

I too remember that E.F. Hutton commercial (I really liked it.) Great reference to use here in your post.

You have my agreement indeed on "count it all joy."

Peggy (mazmagi) said...

AMEN!(to the beautiful prayer and message)

Profound and deep thoughts MTJ ~
God's Word is ALIVE and all POWERFUL!

But to me this is the most definitive declaration of the WORD:

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." John 1:1

This declares that God is the Word!

Perhaps this is where you are going in Part 2. Your ending sounds like you had a song in mind... "ain't no mountain high, ain't no river wide enough" but it's also a well known Bible verse but about His love not usually the power of His Word.

Interesting that you see the same for His love and His power in His Word. Since God is Love, God is the Word, God is alive in us, God is the Word, the Word was made flesh and dwells among us...then so should our words reflect God, His Word but only by His spirit. Too many of us walk in the flesh even after we surrender. It's constant that we must crucify our flesh and hold our tongue.

I went to look up the Bible verse on how deep, how high, how wide...
and I came across this pdf instead ... sharing the 4th and 5th point:

Jesus Christ has the power to show you how small your mountain really is.

If you are going to conquer your mountain, you have to grow spiritually.

Since this has more to it... and most of your readers have read this by now, I thought I'd share that. I easily get sidetracked

Let the Holy Spirit guide you to renew your commitment and continue to seek His WORD! Jesus is the WORD! (I'm watching the Nativity Story in Spanish) so I'll have to catch part 2 later...
I'm attentive, thirsting,hungering, holding the Word as a lamp before me, as His Word (HE) lights my path, the same power that raised Jesus will raise me, redeem me, save me, lift me from the pit and conquer sin and death in me & you eternally!

May His Word dwell among us...
Peace MTJ and Joy... in Him,
Peggy

Peggy (mazmagi) said...

Blessings MTJ...

Here's another song by Christy Nockels:

Healing is in Your hands

starts with your words:

No mountain, no valley, no gain or loss we know
could keep us from Your love
No sickness, no secret, no chain is strong enough
to keep us from Your love
to keep us from Your love

How high, how wide
No matter where I am, healing is in Your hands
How deep, How strong,
And now by Your grace I stand, healing is in Your hands

Our present, our future, our past is in Your hands
We're covered by Your blood
We're covered by Your blood

How high, How wide
no matter where I am, healing is in Your hands
How deep, How strong
And now by Your grace I stand, healing is in Your hands

In all things, we know that.
We are more than conquerors.
You keep us by Your love.
You keep us by Your love.


I'm praying that as you are kept by His love and His aMazing grace,
you stand... covered, healed...

Peace,
Peggy