God Wants To Talk To You!
Sermon preached at Gospel Light Christian Church, Singapore
on 08 December 2002
Introduction: Christianity is more a relationship than a religion. Relationships are strengthened by communication. Prayer (man communicating with God) is evidence of a relationship with God (Acts 9:11). God communicates to us through His Word. Therefore, a Christian can only enjoy a healthy relationship with God when he prays and reads His Word. Failure to do so, results in an empty Christian religion.
Most Christians, including long-time Christians, only read bits and pieces of the Bible. The Thru-the-Bible (TTB) program is designed to help Gospeliters read through the entire Bible in five years. TTB notes are provided to help Gospeliters to understand the Bible. They are "helps" not substitutes for the Bible. They must never be a "hindrance" to reading the Bible!
Several Gospeliters feel that the one-chapter-per-day format of the TTB is too much. Considering that the average Bible chapter is 2 pages and the local newspaper is 100 pages, the problem cannot be the length of the passage but rather its "difficulty"! Satan has, through the ages, tried to "destroy" the Bible. During the Dark Ages, he used the Roman Church to burn it or burn those read it. From the time of the Reformation until thirty years ago, the Roman church forbade members from reading it. For the put 100 years, he used "liberal" Bible professors to question the accuracy of the Bible. In many of today's mainline denominations, Christians are taught that the Bible is only accurate in matters of faith. Even in so-called Bible-believing churches, many are under the impression that the Bible can hardly be understood by most Christians - and the only way to understand it is to have it explained by "trained men." Satan's present attack on the Bible is to produce endless "translations," each claiming more understandability than earlier "translations" - implying that the Bible is extremely difficult to be understood!
While we may claim to believe that God wrote the Bible for us, the truth is that many Gospeliters just do not read it - largely, became we have believed the lie that we cannot understand it.
GLCC's stand regarding the Bible: We are a Fundamentalist church because we have a foundation "fundus") on which we stand, namely, the infallible, unchangeable Word of God. We believe that the Bible is our supreme and final authority in all matters of faith and life. Most Christians claim to believe that the Bible is God's Word but in practice they do not. Romanists' supreme authority is the Pope and church tradition. Liberals are led by human reasoning; Evangelicals by "science;" and Charismatics by feelings and dreams. While Gospeliters may be at different stages of biblical understanding, we must all agree that the Bible is our supreme and final authority in faith and life.
The Book of books:
(1) God only wrote one Book for all Christians (Revelation 22:18,9) - therefore, it is for all generations of Christians and for all types of Christians (babe to mature). It contains both spiritual "milk" for spiritual babes (1 Peter 22) and "strong meat" for matured Christians (Hebrews 5:13,14). Therefore, young Christians should obtain "milk" and not be discouraged if they cannot "chew and digest the "strong meat."
(2) God provides a personal Tutor for all Christians (1Corinthians 2:10-16) - Since spiritual babes might "choke" on the "strong meat" (Hebrews 5:14) and be discouraged, we must ask our personal Tutor, the Holy Spirit who wrote the Bible through men (2Peter 2:20,21), to guide us as we read. We can trust Him to reveal the truths that we need to know, and help us not to be discouraged when we do not understand the truths that we do not yet need to know. TTB notes are written for the "average" Christian - and are often too difficult for babes and too simple for maimed Christians. If we know more truth than we need, we may be proud and think that Christianity is about "knowing" rather than "doing" (James 1:22).
(3) God reveals Himself through His Word (Romans 10:17) - We cannot hardly know God without His Word. The Christians main purpose for reading the Bible is to know God - and to enjoy a relationship with Him. Many Christians do not read the Bible for this purpose - and find the Bible boring. Knowing our Lover is much better than knowing what He wants us to do.
(4) God transforms us by His Word - God's Word is "alive and powerful" (Hebrews 4:12) and is able to change us into Christ-likeness (2Corinthians 3:18).
Conclusion: May all Gospeliters set apart time daily to let God speak to them through His Word - using the notes as a help and not allowing them to be hindrance. May SF gatherings be times of encouragement to all Sfers (including the babes) that the Bible is relevant and understandable, as they each share what they have learned and how their lives have been changed. May we talk to God in prayer and listen to Him more and more each day. May we enjoy sweet fellowship with Him! May we exchange our religion for a relationship!
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