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The Bible: God’s Perfect Word - Sermon #3

 

2 Timothy 3:14-17

THE PURPOSE OF THE HOLY SCRIPTURES

Intro: In our text, Timothy is challenged to maintain a close relationship with the Word of God. Paul tells him of the benefits that come from such a relationship. He is reminded that it is the Scriptures which have taught him what he knows about God. It is the Word of God that has fed him and led him to this point in his life. The Scripture has been foundational in making him the man of God he is, v. 14-15. He is to continue in them so that he might continue to progress as a believer and as a man of God.

Friends you and I need the Scriptures in our lives as well! If we are going to be all we can be for the glory of the Lord we need a close relationship with the Bible. If we are going to grow in the Lord as He wants us to, then we need the Word of God. The verses we have read today have something to say to us about the purpose of the holy Scriptures. They answer, at least partially, the question of why God gave us His Word.

Why did God feel the need to give His revelation to the original authors of the Bible? Why did God feel the need to exert supernatural power to inspire His Word? Why has He demonstrated the same supernatural power in preserving that same Word? While I would never presume to speak for God, I believe you and I can look into His Word and see for ourselves just why God gave us His Word. Let’s take a few minutes today to examine The Purpose Of The Holy Scriptures.

 

I. THEY SERVE THE PURPOSE OF REVELATION

(Ill. Revelation is the process of God telling the original author exactly what He wanted to say. Of course, just as God revealed His mind to the original author, His inspired Word continues to reveal Him and His mind to all those who open the book and read, this is illumination and it is what Timothy had already experienced, according to Paul, verses 14-15. Notice what the Bible reveals about God.)

A. They Reveal God’s Person - The only way God can be known by us, at least now, is through His Word. The Scriptures reveal God to be holy, loving, just, eternal, glorious, exalted, loving, gracious, merciful and infinitely good. They teach us that He is Lord, He is Sovereign, He is a consuming fire, He is terrible and a God of wrath. In the Bible we learn truth that man could never have come to by himself. In the pages of the Bible, we meet God Himself! We could never know Him as well any other way.

B. They Reveal God’s Power - In the pages of Scripture we can read of the awesome power of God. We can read of His power to create, Gen. 1-2; ***Ill. Isa. 40:12***; of His power in impossible situations, John 11; John 6 (Feeding 5,000 and walking on the storm); of His power to heal; of His power to do anything that He desires to do, Luke 1:38; Job 42:4; Eph. 3:20.

C. They Reveal God’s Promises - Thousands of promises fill the pages of the Word of God, and every single one will be kept, Rom. 4:21! The saints of God need never fear that any of the promises of God will fail! (Note: Everything God does is for the glory of His name! God does nothing that does not exalt Him! However, we are told that He has exalted His Word above His very Name, Psa. 138:2.)

D. They Reveal God’s Plan - It is in the pages of God’s inspired, infallible, inerrant book, the Bible that we can read of God’s plan to Save the Sinner - Rom. 5:8; Rom. 10:13; Satisfy the Saint - Psa. 103:5; Secure the Saved - John 10:28; John 6:37-40; Supply His Sons - Phil. 4:19; Psa. 37:25.

 

II. THEY SERVE THE PURPOSE OF REDEMPTION

(Ill. The Bible is the unfolding of the story of redemption. Verse 15 reminds us that the Scriptures are “able to make thee wise unto salvation. From the moment man sinned in the garden of Eden, there is a continuous red thread that can be traced through the pages of the Bible. This story of redemption culminates with the death of Christ on the cross for the salvation of the lost.)

A. They Demonstrate The Wickedness Of The Sinner - The Bible is what teaches us that we are sinners in need of a Savior, Rom. 3:10; 3:23; Gal. 3:22.

B. They Demonstrate The Wrath Of The Sovereign - Rom. 6:23; John 3:18, 36; Psa. 9:17.

C. They Demonstrate The Worth Of The Soul - 2 Pet. 3:9; John 3:16.

D. They Demonstrate The Way Of Salvation - John 3:16; Matt. 11:28; ***Eph. 2:8-9***; Acts 16:31; Acts 4:12.

 

III. THEY SERVE THE PURPOSE OF REINFORCEMENT

(Ill. Verses 16 and 17 speak of the benefits that can be derived from a careful and close study of the Bible. After we have received God’s revelation and are part of His redemptive plan, the Bible serves as a reinforcement tool, helping us to grow and to develop into all that God wants His children to be. I want to point out two ways in which the Scriptures can help us to develop as believers.)

A. They Build Us Up Through Their Standards - One of the criticisms of the Bible is that it is a rule book. People do not like the idea that the Word of God tells them how to live their lives. But, it is the guidelines for living that are found in the Bible that enable us to live lives that bring honor and glory to the name of God. Jesus said that keeping the commandments was the tangible evidence that we really love Him, John 14:15. John tells us that obeying the Word of God is proof of our salvation, 1 John 2:3-6; 1 John 4:6. John also says that the commandments of the Lord will not be harsh to the believer, but they will delight the soul, 1 John 5:3. Those who determine to live out the commands and teachings of the Bible will grow! (Note: By the way, don’t get hung up on all the do’s and the don’t’s. If you will spend your time doing the do’s, you won’t have the time or the energy to do the don’t’s!)

B. They Build Us Up Through The Symbols - The Bible identifies itself through several clear metaphors and similes. These symbols serve the purpose of helping us understand what the Bible is and what it can do in our lives. Let’s examine of a few of those symbols today.

1. A Mirror - James 1:23-25 - As a mirror the Word of God perfectly reflects the mind of God and the condition of man.

2. A Seed - 1 Pet. 1:23 - When the Word is properly planted in human heart, it will bring forth life, growth and fruit.

3. Water - Eph. 5:25-27 - As water, the Word has the power to cleanse, quench and refresh.

4. A Lamp - Psa. 119:105; Pro. 6:23 - The Word is a lamp because it shows us where we are, it guides us into the future and it keeps us from falling.

5. A Sword - Heb. 4:12; Eph. 6:17 - Called a sword because it has the ability to pierce the heart. It is equally effective on sinners, saints and Satan.

6. Precious Metals - Gold - Psa. 19:10; Psa. 119:27; Silver - Psa. 119:127; Psa. 12:6 - The Bible is referred to as gold and silver because of its desirability, its preciousness and its value.

7. Food - Job 23:12 - The Word of God is called food because it strengthens those who partake of it. (Note: The verb “furnish in verse 17, means to be “finished, complete. It is in the passive voice. In other words, this completing ministry of the Word is something that is “done to the one who gets into the word. If you will feed on the Bible, you will grow!)

A. Milk - 1 Pet. 2:2 - As milk is nourishes the young.

B. Meat - Heb. 5:12-14 - As meat it nourishes the mature.

C. Bread - John 6:51 - As bread it can nourish everyone.

D. Honey - Psa. 19:10 - As honey it is sweet and provides strength for the journey.

8. Hammer - Jer. 23:29 - It is referred to as a hammer because it possesses the ability to tear down and to build up.

9. Fire - Jer. 20:9; Luke 24:32 - It is called fire because it has the power to judge, purify and consume!

Conc: Thank God for the Bible! God has blessed us beyond our ability to comprehend! He has given us an inspired, infallible, inerrant record of Himself, His will and His ways. May we take this blessed old book, may we love it, read it and carry it in our hearts, assuring ourselves in the fact that it is the truth! And that it will develop us, feed us, lead us and teach us all the way home to Heaven!

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