We so often think that it’s what WE do that matters when we read, meditate upon, and study our Bibles. Of course, our attention, and our reverent obedience is crucial. But God did not just deliver His word as if by mail, and leave it all to us. Oh, He is quite active and living in His word, and one reason we should reverence the Word that we read and hear is because we are opening ourselves up either to transformation or to judgment when we expose ourselves to it. We are not as in charge as we think. If we read it rightly we read it with a spirit of submission and “reverent fear” because we know it is God’s surgical instrument. He is the surgeon, we are the patients! The Bible is not a tame old dusty book that we treat as we will. And we are not earning brownie points when we read it, or let’s say, we shouldn’t read it for that reason. Our flesh does not always like what it reads or hears. The two Scriptures below remind us that God is at work in and through His word. I like these two passages juxtaposed as it were, because each in its own way reminds us of the truth of God’s sovereign and active presence with his words and promises. Oh, yes, we must read our Bibles. But we must be prepared to be changed, and challenged, and never quite be the same, and not the same in ways we may not expect. God’s agenda for us may not be the same as our agenda for ourselves. Isaiah 55:1o-11 and Hebrews 4:12-13:
10 “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
11 so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.
12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. 13 And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account.